NTMI: Good evening everyone! I'm here this evening with Stickycattabby, whose cartoons have had aishas in trouble for months in the Neopian Times. Welcome!
Stickycattabby: Hello there! How is your day going?
NTMI: Very well, and trust the same for you :-) So tell us, how did you find Neopets?
Stickycattabby: I found Neopets through a good friend of mine. I used to play another virtual site which closed, so we migrated over to Neopets. I was probably the worst newbie out there!
NTMI: LOL, well the first thing you had to decide as a newbie was your account name. How did you come up with stickycattabby?
Stickycattabby: Stickycat is something cat owners would probably understand...they always get into something! Of course, being the most creative username in the world, someone on Neopets took it. :P So I added the tabby part to the end.
NTMI: Was that after any particular cat in your life?
Stickycattabby: Yes, actually there are two. Fluffy is a HUGE grey tabby, and cleo is a multicolored, small cat. I grew up in a family of cat owners, I think that's why I like them so much! :-)
NTMI: I see what you mean! So once you got on Neopets, what did you like best about it?
Stickycattabby: I liked the fact that everything was small, and everyone was very friendly! I remember, on my first day, getting a thank-you letter from buying from a shop. Right away, I knew it was a very nice site to join. :-)
NTMI: I'm sure it made an impression! And once you found the site, how long did it take to find the Neopian Times?
Stickycattabby: I remember it took a couple of weeks, and I became a frequent reader. I just loved the comics, and knew it was my calling!
NTMI: So it didn't take long for you to decide you wanted to submit comics?
Stickycattabby: Actually, it didn't take long to decide. It took longer for me to MAKE one. As you can see by looking at my earlier comics, they evolved quite a bit. That was my first time ever drawing a Neopet!
NTMI: Had you done any drawing before?
Stickycattabby: Besides Neopets, I'm an art freak. I unconsciously draw on everything! Neopets art was a completely different style for me, I love looking back on my old Neopets and saying, "Wow, did I draw that?"
NTMI: Hey, it means you've been getting better! I notice that just about all of your comics feature aishas. Is that because they're feline?
Stickycattabby: WELL! You sure catch on! :-) Not only that, but I started out drawing TeTeTe, my Aisha. That was the only Neopet I could *kind of* draw at the time. Wockys were my next challenge. More felines, yes!
NTMI: And speaking of TeTeTe, does she take battledome challenges?
Stickycattabby: TeTeTe is more of a 1-player battledome fighter. Her weapons are optimized for fighting clown chias. People have this all-out, extraordinarily rich view of me. I would tell them to not bet their money on this! :-)
NTMI: LOL, well she certainly has impressive stats!
Stickycattabby: Thank you. :-) That's two years worth of stats though! Its nothing compared to these people who have been playing one year and have 500hp. They either have a lot of time, or A LOT of time! ;P;P;P
NTMI: There is that! But anyhow, back to the comics. You like aishas in them because they're feline, but where do you get the ideas for the comic "plot"?
Stickycattabby: You can thank my sister's messed up mind! Hehe, just kidding. ;-) When I get mad about something on Neopets, for instance, not winning Tombola, I make it a comic. If you notice, most of my comic have a political edge to them, in a less obvious way!
NTMI: Like trying to rob the hidden tower?
Stickycattabby: Lol, yes, don't you wish? I'm sure we would all love to steal from there! I have about every bad-guy in my comics. Of course, I made my comics AFTER I got stuff stolen.
NTMI: Hehe, sweet revenge! So after you get a target, er idea, how long does it take to draw the comic?
Stickycattabby: My first comics took about 20 minutes, if you look, theyíre simply a scribble. :-P As time went on, they started taking much more time, hours on some of them! The most I ever spent was 3-4 hours. I also tried doing some 1-frame comics, as opposed to 4 frames. Some comics didn't need 4 boxes to make a point!
NTMI: So why dilute the message by taking more frames, right?
Stickycattabby: Yep, some of the comics told a story and needed background info, some didn't. Some were just funnier with one frame, because you can put multiple jokes into one picture. It makes the viewer really think about all the little details! :-)
NTMI: Not to mention the writer! But after you draw them, you scan them into the computer, right?
Stickycattabby: That's the tricky part, it all depends on your scanner. I computer-drew most of my graphics. My scanner has a tendency to leave fuzz everywhere! Yanno, the 2 billion little shades of grey dots that are a pain to erase? :P
NTMI: Ohhh yes! What program do you use to draw them?
Stickycattabby: For most of them, I used the oh-so-simple program, that most people call "Paint." :P For others, I needed airbrush, so I used Photo Studio 2000. (Itís a program that came with my notorious scanner.) Last but not least, thereís the trusty Paint Shop Pro!
NTMI: Ah, yes, spent many happy hours with PSP! And after you get through fooling with it and send it into the Times, what sort of resolution and file type is it?
Stickycattabby: My comics are usually gif files, because I can't stand the jpeg blur. The most I make them is 305 width, I don't want to drive Josh crazy! I know some friends who made them all across, the poor guy has zillions of emails to go through! Now imagine writing that to a whole bunch of people!
NTMI: I've heard that he has a heavy duty "delete" key.
Stickycattabby: I bet most people at the NeoTeam do! They probably did it because of me, the newbie, sending them squillions of emails. I used to actually think the Scabu-random-event-bug would eat all my food! I would run and put it in my deposit box. Dumb, right? :-)
NTMI: No comment. ;-) So you get your comic sent in, sneak it by Josh, and it actually gets published. Then what happens?
Stickycattabby: I scream for my sister, and then we scream together. It's a very happy time, yanno. :-) My parents don't quite know what to think.
NTMI: LOL! Outside of the family, what sort of reactions do you get?
Stickycattabby: I get lots of mail from other users. Most have a problem with my anti-chia messages. Besides that, I get some very nice mails. People usually think I won't read them, but I'm so flattered when I receive one!
NTMI: Do you have time to respond to them all?
Stickycattabby: WELL! :-) I receive a lot of neomail every day, and I do respond to all of them, no matter how long it takes! I would feel sad if someone didn't reply to me. It has happened! :-(
NTMI: I don't doubt it. In all of the email you send out, you probably have people asking how they can get into the Times like you did. What would (or do) you tell them?
Stickycattabby: Never give up. I didn't get in the first time I tried...or second, or third for that matter! If your file doesn't get in, go back and ask yourself why. Be critical of your own work. After you've revised it a bit, send it again. If you get in once, your chances of getting in again are higher! :-)
NTMI: Quality is remembered, isn't it.
Stickycattabby: Definitely. Some people send in stories with tons of errors, no real plot, and incoherent paragraphs. It's all about creativeness and proof-read work. Comics, also, should be checked for spelling...or Aishas with 2 tails! (been there, done that. ;-))
NTMI: LOL, well outside of impossible physiques, what other mistakes have you noticed in NT comics?
Stickycattabby: I haven't noticed any mistakes in comics besides my own. My sister, who also plays, points out the less obvious mistakes. It's good to have other people look at your work as well, before Josh dies laughing at your horrible errors!
NTMI: True, killing the editor would NOT be a bright idea...
NTMI: ...but outside of that, what's been the best part of your experience being in the Times?
Stickycattabby: My best experience would be the fun that comes with it. Right when you see your comic in, itís the best feeling! I also like the Neomails I receive. Unfortunately, I haven't had time to make comics lately. :-( I miss the feeling!
NTMI: Any chances that you can get back to it before long?
Stickycattabby: There's always a chance, but its hard when I can't be consistent every week. I tried sending a few last month, none got in though. But of course, there's so many more better artists in Neopia nowadays!
NTMI: Do you feel your own art has improved with practice?
Stickycattabby: Yeppers. :-) My styles have changed sooo much lately, it's hard to even judge. I'm far past the Aisha-scribble age, though.
NTMI: Do you have anything else on the Neopets site besides your NT comics?
Stickycattabby: Yes, I have some pictures in the gallery (1 2 3) , a poem (that was probably my biggest Neopets shock), and that one Neopian Times story thrown in!
NTMI: What about outside of Neopets? Anything on the web?
Stickycattabby: Nope, most my online time goes to TeTeTe. I'm not big into writing, but as long as I have that nifty thesaurus, anything is possible!
NTMI: Well we will certainly keep that in mind! Outside of "anything", what else do you see your creative talents leading you into in the future?
Stickycattabby: Probably nothing! I take art as a hobby, I haven't really considered it seriously. Art is supposed to be relaxing and stress free, I couldn't imagine being paid to do it. :-P
NTMI: Hehe, well get it posted and let the rest of us enjoy it with you! That's about all the questions I had. Was there anything else you wanted to tell us?
Stickycattabby: Lol, alrighty. That's about it I have to say. I'm not that interesting. :-) Thanks for letting me do this interview!
NTMI: I think some of us will disagree about the interesting part, and thank you for taking the time to chat!
Stickycattabby: It's my pleasure! Thank you infinitely!
Would you like to read all of Stickycattabby's pieces? Just click here to check her out in our database!