They say “take your broken heart and turn it into art”. In the case of Stephen Beals, it’s more about turning negative emotions into humorous comic strips.
Stephen Beals is an artist who has been drawing comics forever “out of sheer love for the art form.” As Stephen himself said, his illustrations are something he did after work to blow off steam. He titled them “Adult Children” because, according to the artist, “adulthood seems to be a myth that we tell children to make them behave.”
The comics present situations from everyday work life in the retail sector. Although the little bits of work-life are presented in a humorous way, we think most of us can hear the characters silently screaming from helplessness and exhaustion. At the same time, the illustrations are very identifiable.
The artist was delighted that his comics appeared in Bored Panda, as he has always been a fan. “I can only look with one eye open at a post about my work. I’ll try to be brave. I could use both eyes to look. We’ll see, we’ll see…”
The characters in these comics are Stephen Beals divided into four different parts. A really interesting concept. The artist believes that we all have different personalities, or at least Stephen has “four usable ones.”
As the artist explained, Penny and Berle are brother and sister. Harvey (named after Stephen’s grandfather) has known them since they were children and has formed a long-term relationship with Penny.
Harvey is Stephen’s ego, Berle is his full identification of him, Penny is the small part of his responsibility, and Claremont (the dog) is Stephen at his best, “that’s why he’s a dog.” There is also Todd (an extra), who represents the naive side of the artist.
The artist told Bored Panda that he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in animation from the California Institute of the Arts. For most of his college years, according to Stephen, he was still a teenager and therefore still stupid. “I made a bad decision. I love animation and film, but in the end, I didn’t want to work in the industry. I wanted to do comics, which notoriously doesn’t pay enough to buy the luxuries I’ve grown accustomed to like toilet paper, so I ended up working for the university library. I love libraries! Who doesn’t? If not, find out more at your local library.”
Stephen continued: “The library I worked for was busy. Very busy. ‘I’m going to die’ busy. I dealt with every type of person imaginable. Libraries are similar to retail stores, except they are free to the public, so everyone’s welcome unless they’re actively trying to burn the place down.”