An interview with Mike Oncley.
A twenty-something northwest artist. Born and raised in Long Beach, CA, now residing in Seattle, WA. Oncley says of his Stupid Little Squares: “[It’s] where all of my dumb puns and dad jokes get to come to life in a colorless drawing on a 6×6″ paper square.”
If the The Far Side ever made the humdrum of your daily life just a tad more palatable, just a tad more endurable, and if you were devastated when Gary Larson retired his comic strip in 1995, now is the time to rejoice. The Far Side fans, meet Mike Oncley. You’ve probably never heard of him, so here’s your chance; once introduced, you are unlikely to forget him or his work for a long time coming. This is our interview with Mike Oncley, the comic guru stepping in to fill large shoes like Gary Larson’s with his wickedly funny- and witty- illustrations, Stupid Little Squares.
Our Interview with Mike Oncley
Who are you, and what’s your story?
Mike Oncley – I’m Mike Oncley! I am originally from Long Beach, CA and moved to Seattle in 2012. Long and rainy nights in the heart of Capitol Hill lead me to doodling out the dumb jokes I kept in my head. Once I noticed my friends actually enjoying the doodles I was doing, I began to ask them for scenarios or thinking of my own puns to guide my next drawing and Stupid Little Squares was born!
How would you define your chosen art method?
MO – In regards to Stupid Little Squares I think of them as simple, punny doodles in ink. I suppose referring to them as single-framed comics would make a lot of sense but since I’m harnessing Instagram for my posts it just never felt like traditional comics.
What are your greatest inspirations for your artwork?
MO – As a kid my Dad would always throw me the comic section of the newspaper, that and stacks of Gary Larson and Garfield books which really shaped my style of humor. These days I get a lot of inspiration from the English language, there are so many words and ways to use them that puns are just the perfect pair for the English language. As for art inspiration, I am a big fan of the humor & style of both Noel Fielding (The Mighty Boosh, Luxury Comedy) and Alex Pardee (http://www.alexpardee.com/).
What do you seek to achieve with your work, either for yourself or for the sake of your audience?
MO – I just want someone to laugh! Anyone! I don’t really have an end goal planned yet but would love to be able to draw custom squares for people for a living. I love hearing the reaction to a drawing that means something to someone, whether it be from a custom order or they just understand and enjoy my own joke.
If you could have fans understand one thing about you, what would that be?
MO – I want fans to know that whether I set them to low, medium or high, I still appreciate how much they are cooling me off.
Mike Oncley utilizes Instagram as the primary medium for communicating his comics. In a world where newspapers are old news and social media reigns supreme, Instagram is the perfect way to bring brilliant comics to a mainstream audience. The best part? We’re not even paying for them- yet. Mike Oncley is an up-and-coming humorist that is as talented as he is accessible. He takes custom requests and provides unique art that you can, in fact, purchase and hoard at home. See his current work and revel in what feels distinctly like an ushering-in of a new era of The Far Side-esque dry, unmistakable humor. Thanks for making life a bit more bearable, Stupid Little Squares.
- Visit Mike Oncley’s website here.
- Visit Stupid Little Squares Instagram here.
- Visit Stupid Little Squares Etsy here.
A big thank you to Mike Oncley for participating in an interview with The Fluid Lens.