Archiving Project #1: Uncovering 30+ Years of Art

A note from Lynn:

As you may know, many of the original FBorFW strip illustrations have been donated to Archives Canada and we’re preparing to send a second shipment to them, for storage and preservation. In total, I’ve drawn more than 11,500 strips since 1979!

When you stack them upright in boxes, you begin to fully appreciate just how much work is there!

While we were getting the strips together for the Archives, we (my daughter, Katie, and I) began to collect up all the other pieces of art that I’ve produced and saved (dating back to my days in grade school in Vancouver). There is a lot! Not only have I done commercial art, student work and personal pieces, I also drew thousands of pieces of For Better or For Worse “spot art” for various projects.

Here’s an example of Spot Art – it’s FBorFW art, but not a comic strip. These were most often done for calendars or other products.

We’ve estimated that I’ve created about 25,000 works that are NOT comic strips!!

We then realized that we needed to catalog and store it all properly. I never thought people would be interested in seeing my school-age scribbles, but my daughter and some of my crew were aghast at the idea of not storing the stuff correctly – and creating an inventory so we knew where to find it!

My website developer, Stephanie, is a big comic art fan. She was willing to take on the job of sorting, preserving, scanning, and indexing my art. Her partner, Greg, has a background in records management and system development, so he has joined in and is helping to organize 30 years of important documents.

Along the way, we’ve been learning a lot about preserving and storing various types of keepsake, from posters to collection books to newspaper clippings. Yes, not only is there artwork and letters and files, there are 30 years’ worth of newspaper and magazine articles featuring moi! People insist I need to save these things.

Since we’ve picked up so many new techniques, we thought we could share them with you – they apply to your personal scrapbooks and artwork too. And it gives us an excuse to share some photos from the studio!

We’re beginning a series of blog entries to show you what we’re up to; watch our site for insider photos and exclusive looks at pieces of art, some of which literally have not seen the light of day for 20 years (or more!)