First off, what are you wearing?
Gold pants, and a t-shirt that's very comfortable. And suede-ish shoes, shit, I could wear these for the next ten years.
How did you get into comics?
I'm not a comics freak, I'm not that into comics. But you can read it and really look at the corners, you can dictate moment to moment and stay however long you want. Holding it in your hand--that's why I like them so much.
What is your process?
At any given time I have like fifty of those pages with the squares on them. There's this dilemma of not knowing where your main action is with comics.. you want to jump from this fantastic thing to another but you still have to build a story in between. You don't know which panels to follow and then there's too much art direction--it started looking like the Sunday comics. So it was easier for me to just make this template and just fill it in as I went. If I have the pages already made--four small panels and then the big one, the page flips around depending on what's going on--I found that it really helped me. I think it really teaches you a lot about storytelling and momentum. My main action happened on the bottom. It helped me get through the boring stuff. I don't like the boring drawings where you have to watch the characters talking.
Where do you do most of your work?
I just do it now as a kind of in-between thing because there are so many other things that I do. I'm always working with other people. The comic is something that I can do by myself, no one has to help me. That's the part of it that I really like.
What's the story about? Who are your characters?
I don't like it when it's just a bunch of fantastical stuff. I want you to care about the characters. They work a lot in the absurd world, but you still have to care about what happens. Who are these people and what's gonna happen to them? I never really thought about the Blind Princess having a baby that's just an eyeball until the end, but when I got there I just thought, "oh, that could be an awesome fantastical part of the story." Once it happened I was like, "she loves the baby enough that she'll be able to see through the baby," but I never thought of it in the beginning and shit, I was just drawing.
What's the future of the Flaming Lips comic?
We've got a few people making Flaming Lips comics, and I thought, let's print Wayne's and start selling it at shows and see if anyone cares, and see how it goes from there.
Other Flaming Lips comics in the making include Andrew Pawley's "Captain Yeah! and the Children of the Moon" and Lauren YS' "Moth in the Incubator" (pictured below.) Find more Flaming Lips Comic Updates at The Future Heart.
Interview by Lauren YS