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Kellett, Schroeder raising funds for comic documentary

Dave Kellett (creator of Sheldon and Drive) and cinematographer Fred Schroeder are now into the post-production process of their Stripped documentary. The feature-length documentary features 60 of the world’s best and most famous cartoonists to talk about the art of cartooning. The two have started a Kickstarter project to raise $58,000 needed to finish off the project. As of this writing they’ve raised just over $27,000 with 28 more days to go.

Here’s their pitch video and the description below.

Hi, fellow comics fans! We’re Dave Kellett & Fred Schroeder, creators of the comics documentary STRIPPED. This film is our love-letter to the

art form: Bringing together 60 of the world’s best cartoonists into one extraordinary, feature-length documentary. The film sits down with creators to talk about how cartooning works, why it’s so loved, and how as artists they’re navigating this dicey period between print and digital options…when neither path works perfectly. We want this film to capture the extraordinary people behind the comics you love, to show how they work…and ask the question: “Where does the art form go from here?”

Head over to the Kickstarter page to see who’s featured in the movie.

Community Comments

#1 David Jones
August/25/2011
@ 9:47 am

Sounds like a cool project. I am down to my last two dollars and fifty three cents. I can mail them a check for that amount. Do they have a minimum?

Us web cartoonists don’t make enough money to just throw around anywhere…. but you can have my two fifty three…… Oh wait, that candy bar looks tasty….. and I need a coke to wash it down with…. On second thought, I’ll catch you next pay day………

#2 Mike Cope
August/25/2011
@ 12:34 pm

It’s wonderful to see such an immediate outpouring of support. I’ve been looking very forward to seeing this film for some time now. Based on the teaser we’ve been offered, I truly believe that “Stripped” will be a source of inspiration for not only many contemporary cartoonists, but also an entire generation of future cartoonists.

With the benefit of this latter group in mind, as a pledged supporter, I’m extending a friendly challenge to my fellow NCS members to back this project.

From the project’s FAQ:

“If we exceed the goal by a *large* amount:
We have a big-picture idea that gets us very excited. We’d like to edit and make available ALL 230 HOURS of the individual interviews. These cartoonists shared incredible stories, tips, tricks, and recollections with us, and we’d love them to be enjoyed and preserved for posterity.

As we’ve said elsewhere…the 13-year old versions of ourselves would’ve killed to watch all these interviews, so making them available to the world would be a real gift to all who love cartooning.”

After making my pledge, I wrote the following request to Dave & Fred:

“After the film is released and has been given suitable time to be appreciated, please make as much of the the “extra” footage available as possible, worldwide, so that all who love — and will love — our profession have the opportunity to enjoy, learn from, and be inspired by the many talented women and men you’ve honourably interviewed.”

Dave replied:

“know that all these pledges are for the *film itself*, and not for additional projects. Even if we run into a surplus, that will most likely still go toward the film.”

Don’t get me wrong. I think a feature length documentary will be wonderful; however, I also think it would be a shame for all that additional material to go to waste. Personally, I wouldn’t have the time (or ambition) to watch over 200 hours worth of interviews with contemporary cartoonists. I have my own work to focus on.

But I’m sure some young, aspiring kid would. If not today, then certainly tomorrow.

As an NCS member and professionally trained educator, I truly believe that our greatest legacy is what we provide for future generations — for the sake of THEIR benefit.

Both Dave & Frank will rightfully gain so much recognition from the cartooning community (including both creators and fans) for their completed film, but the cartooning community and our profession, in general, stands to gain so much more from their outstanding efforts.

The material is already there, so now it’s time for us, as professional cartoonists, to offer our support.

To advance the ideals and standards of professional cartooning in its many forms.

To promote and foster a social, cultural and intellectual interchange among professional cartoonists of all types.

To stimulate and encourage interest in and acceptance of the art of cartooning by aspiring cartoonists, students and the general public.

Thanks for your consideration!

#3 Eddie Pittman
August/25/2011
@ 5:47 pm

Wish someone would raise money to help Kickstarter get better video players.

#4 b.j. Dewey
August/25/2011
@ 7:00 pm

A very worthwhile project in these tough transition times for comics. But from the video, it sounds as if no one knows where comics are going, including Scott McCloud. And if he doesn’t know…

#5 Mike Peterson
August/26/2011
@ 4:10 am

David, I had the same thought and bookmarked the link until I became solvent. Lo and behold, one of those checks-in-the-mail turned out to actually be in the mail. I had planned to piss it away on groceries and utilities, minus the 30% I have to send to one of the artists in the film, without whom it wouldn’t exist, but …

One of my competitors told me she’s down 50% in gross sales over a few years ago. Still, you have to spare the seed corn. This looks like the sort of thing we ought to support out of self-interest, if not generosity of spirit and god knows not out of an excess of funds on our own part.

#6 Michael Corlehy
August/26/2011
@ 2:29 pm

I go over and over videos showing expert cartoonist at their craft. I can’t wait to see what a full range of experts have to say about the craft.

#7 B Birdashaw
August/27/2011
@ 8:38 pm

I donated to the project even though I’m very short on funds. I know this DVD will be worth it because A: Dave has two degrees in cartooning and understands the form better than most people. B: Their devotion to this DVD put them across the country on their own dime to interview the best people on the subject. C: Every time I lift my pen the artists who came before me are the reasons I do what I do. Even if my idols won’t be in this DVD; people who I admire in the field will make this worthwhile.

#8 Dave Kellett
August/29/2011
@ 2:16 pm

Thank you to everyone who spread the word or who directly supported the project. We were able to reach the funding minimum in 6 days, 15 minutes…which is kind of astounding.

If you want to read where the film goes from here, we’ve added an update, here:

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/smallfish/stripped-the-comics-documentary

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