Ingrid: Paul, do you remember how we started Paul’s Signs?
Paul: I do. I have been drawing little drawings at McGuffey for a long time. I think I have been making comics since first grade. You didn’t like people taping things to the wall, and that’s how Paul’s Signs was born.
Ingrid: I remember telling the class I didn’t want them to tape whatever they wanted on the wall, then you immediately taped something on the wall. When I looked at the sign it said “No taping things to the wall.” That’s when I decided I should give you a designated spot for your humorous signs and comics. It was a good compromise. Did you have to have to make adjustments so your comics were appropriate for all audiences at school?
Paul: Yes, I have had to abandon some ideas because the jokes were too obscure for some littler kids.
Ingrid: How did kids react to your signs being on the bulletin board?
Paul: At first I think people were jealous but then I made them more interactive and it helped.
Ingrid: I recall people asking earlier in the year if they could put things on the bulletin board and I said it was fine as long as they asked first, and it was appropriate for school. But after a while it seemed like people just looked forward to your interactive signs. So, what are some of your favorite comics?
Paul: I read them in the newspaper at home and my favorites are Speed Bump and Pearls Before Swine.
Ingrid: What was your most successful interactive comic and what was your biggest failure?
Paul: My biggest failure was the one called If Others Made Signs. I tried to show what I thought signs would be like from other people in the class but it turned out my interpretations were offensive to some people. My most successful sign was when I fixed that one and let each person draw on the sign themselves.
Ingrid: I have learned similar lessons. It sounds like you handled the failure well and came up with a great solution. Where will your comics go from here?
Paul: I will keep making comics. It makes me feel good not only to make the jokes, but to know they make other people laugh.