Today we’d like to introduce you to Sean Yager.
Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
I was born in Chicago but grew up in the early ’90s in Indiana in a run of the mill neighborhood. Most of my childhood days were spent playing video games, wandering around backyard creeks, reading comic strips, and pretending to sword fight my younger brother with sticks. Fast forward about 20 years and I never stopped doing any of that. I make comics and games now alongside playing and reading them, most of which are fantasy based, inspired by the games and imaginings of my youth.
Growing up consuming media like cartoons, games, comics, and other visual content while teetering on the edge of the final pre-internet years, blissfully exploring a suburban environment without the burden of social media molded me for better and for worse. My age led me to grow up in a halfway point between digital and traditional art movements and took some mental adapting to balance my approach to being an artist. I sometimes feel stuck in-between traditional and digital media, not quite fitting into either category wholly, as my attention was always split between the two as a child.
Please tell us about your art.
I make content trying to mirror what I remember seeing on TV, in games, and in stories as a kid, holding onto my childhood nostalgia is important to me. It’s a way to retain my roots for adventuring in my backyard and a coping mechanism for the loud world of today. Lately, I’ve been questioning the validity of my content, wondering if my escapism art and storytelling is helping anyone or relaying any important messages to others. My goal with my art will always be to inspire others and I’ve been leaning into that concept more heavily by building positive relationships and inclusive characters in the stories I’m telling.
Two huge influences in my work, and possibly the largest two are role-playing games, like Dungeons & Dragons and other pen and paper games, alongside cartoons and anime from the ’90s. The fantasy and exaggeration of human capability from both, paired to hanging out with friends and improvising imagined places is a fountain of inspiration to me. Leaving the world behind and traveling to other realms at a kitchen table, fighting beasts and defeating insurmountable odds to the sound of clattering dice lets me relive my childhood adventuring as an adult. All this nostalgia is what I try to capture in my illustrations and comics. I want others to see my work and be able to take a break from reality, to use their imaginations for a moment with friends and acquaintances.
We often hear from artists that being an artist can be lonely. Any advice for those looking to connect with other artists?
If you’re in the Indianapolis area, come out to the Artist Meetups, hosted by myself. We’re always looking for new members to talk art and process with. We try to meet once a month usually on weekends but maybe broadening to Tuesdays to be inclusive to the weekend workers.
Some other Meetups in Indiana include Cold Press Doodle Crew and Doughnuts and Doodles at the links below, both great communities run by great people and they have different crowds, so hopefully, they work for you.
How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
Lately, I’ve been getting into zine culture and small run self-publishing. For the past year 2017-2018, I’ve produced a monthly publication titled “Zine Cuisine” featuring line work drawings of my illustrations and characters. I sell them through my Patreon subscription and digitally on Gumroad.
I also table at local Indiana and surrounding state zine conventions as “Misuse of Mana”, a moniker from my comics and webcomic series at misuseofmana.com (under renovation as of 9/12, hoping to be back up within the month).
Becoming a Patreon subscriber at patreon.com/misuseofmana is the easiest and most helpful way of supporting me, I’m aiming to ultimately become 100% financially supported via Patreon in order to make art and comics my full-time job.
If you don’t have cash though, a follow on social media is great too. Find me on Twitter and Instagram @misuseofmana.
- Website: seanyager.com
- Phone: 3172858599
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/misuseofmana/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MisuseOfMana
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/misuse_of_mana
- Other: rickcrickcrick.tumblr.com