Hi, I'm Matt. I draw and write at dudeimanaspie.com. I finally have a deviantArt account! Thanks for stopping by.
So, I have no training in cartooning. When I started "Dude, I'm An Aspie" in 2009 I had barely picked up a pencil in over 20 years. I draw the same way I used to back when I was ten, doodling obsessively on notebook paper in class.
Why start again? When I first learned what Asperger's is, and how we tend to have "special interests," my cartoons were the first thing that came to mind. I drew them for myself, more than other people -- piles and piles of creativity, observations, and weirdness -- all categorized and meticulously numbered. I still have those old cartoons today, an essential piece of who I was, growing up in the '80s.
Many years later, when I decided to disclose to my friends I have Asperger's, it just made sense to do it as a cartoon. I believe special interests are part of what makes being an Aspie a positive thing, and I realized that those cartoons I used to do were my most special of special interests. The positive response to what I'm doing today has made me very glad I started to draw again.
"Dude" started as a private Facebook photo album that became a blog and then a book. I have been posting every week for almost 2 years and continue to do so. Many of my characters like Fuzzy and Squishy Bird go back to my childhood. "Dude" allows me to inform, advocate, satirize, and make people laugh. Oftentimes, when I can't describe autism through words, I can describe it better through doodles. It's been amazing to acquire the audience I have, and to hear from fans who feel a connection to my work.
Thank you for being part of this fun ride with me, and I plan on continuing to draw for a long time to come.