Art school...(yea yea yea so I'm getting nostalgic today so what!) You remember, standing in a circle smoking hand rolled cigarettes, acting out scenes from My Own Private Idaho as if Gus van Sant might be around the corner rolling film. It was the 90's, manic panic, grunge making way to British invasion part 2 and the return of how cool vinyl is. It was during this adolescent maelstrom of intellectualism and pretending I understood Sartre that I found myself moving away from just comic book mutants and space aliens into a whole new world of visual storytelling in comics. As I was discovering Hal Hartley and hanging out on the Santa Cruz cliffs I feverishly read everything I could find on Adrian Tomine, mainly all the OPTIC NERVE'S my young sad bastard heart could stand!
It was in 32 Stories:The Complete OPTIC NERVE mini comics that I drowned myself in. Tomine's work showed me a whole new world of self reflection using comics as part journal, part surreal commentary with humor and a literalness that defied what I thought comics could be. It was a time of great exploration and breaking barriers and what may seem commonplace now was a brave new world to me. I wasn't hip to Clowes and the Hernandez Brothers, It was Tomine that broke my indie comic cherry and I'm forever grateful. It only fueled my desire to know something you didn't but alas those days are over and I want you to know ADRIAN TOMINE the way that I know Tomine. Check out his website at: http://www.adrian-tomine.com