FindChaos: The Official Blog of A. Stiffler

Professional illustrator, comic artist, graphic designer and avid birder. Stuff I draw and other nonsense.
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Asker Anonymous Asks:
You and A often mention that you met online, but I was wondering how you bridged the gap between knowing each other over the internet to meeting and getting to know each other in real life. Was it a tricky transition?
findchaos findchaos Said:


Sort of! Kind of. Not really?

You know those little moments in life where you go for something completely impossible and it all works out surprisingly better than expected? Well, it was one of those things. Serendipitous, stupendous (not to mention, stupid) and utterly… amazing.

We’d both known each other online since we were 12 and 14 years old, respectively, and made fast friends. We talked almost every day, shared e-mails, IMs and art. Stiffler was one of those people in our online group that a lot of others had a crush on, so I was just another notch in that cyber belt. I honestly didn’t think I had a chance. I was, to put it lightly, a raging bitch.

But apparently I did have a chance. Stiffler instigated and… We started flirting nightly. Our RP characters started having tons of sex, too. 

We eventually started dating and after six months of cyber sexing, talking on the phone, revealing secrets and sending each other gifts, I finally wanted to make the leap. I decided to go meet Stiffler once and for all (of course, I cleared it with them first). This news caused ire from a lot of our online group, and congratulations from others. I even had one of Stiffler’s ex’s come after me rather harshly.

But I didn’t care. I wanted to meet this person I was so attached to. So, at 17 years old, I bought a one-way ticket from Alaska to Ohio, packed a small backpack and left home. 

We met in-person at the airport, hugged awkwardly, spent the car ride touching pinkies and I unceremoniously passed out on a cot in their bedroom. After a night of recuperation (the flight was over 24 hours with long layovers and I had been too wired to sleep), we shared some adventures around Columbus, a strawberry milkshake and flirtatious eye fluttering.

When we got back home that night, we fell into bed, made love and Stiffler whispered French sweet nothings in my ear — “You’re skin is like milk, your hair is like night, your lips are like cherries…” It was a magical carpet ride.

We’ve been pretty inseparable ever since.

So… It was an easy transition for us. Maybe it was because we’d been open about who we were and what we were about from the start. Maybe it was because we were jacked up on teenage hormones (and apparently still are, over a decade later?).

But meeting Stiffler was like coming home. It was easy, it felt right, it felt safe. I’d found my heart in another person. I’d found someone I didn’t know I’d ever needed, but I needed them desperately and constantly. And they needed and wanted me, too.

I count myself incredibly lucky in that respect. 

K documents the beginning of our relationship far better than I can (and it covers several Asks I’ve gotten)!


Asker aburningrose Asks:
What's your favourite "It's so bad, it's good" movie?
findchaos findchaos Said:

This was actually a toughie, because there are a lot of movies I personally consider “bad” that are popularly considered good, and most of the rest have already been covered by MST3K better than any outside jeering could do (I’m lookin at you “The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies," my favorite MST3k episode ever).

However, if I had to pick on off the top of my head, I have to go with: Piranha 3D.

This pick feels an awful lot like shooting fish in a barrel because it was intentionally bad. Yet, despite being largely considered a satire of the B-Movie genre, I contend that it still counts because it doesn’t excel so far in its satire that it’s considered a great movie in its own right, like Slither or Evil Dead has in the past. No, it rolls around in the proverbial mud so much that it really does come across as genuinely bad, but in such a redeeming way that it still clings desperately onto “good.” Sharknado tried to do the same thing, just not as well and with too many moments where it literally and figuratively jumped the shark.

Piranha 3D is definitely a recommended watch from me, just… know what you’re getting into first.

Asker Anonymous Asks:
Does your wife actually call you Stiffler when you are alone? It sounds weirdly formal to call someone that close by their last name :o
findchaos findchaos Said:

She does!

In our 10 years of being together, K and I never referred to each others’ complete first names because it always felt… weird. I still get referred to as “Annie” (Yep. Let that mental image sink in.) around family, because it’s what they’re all used to (or they, y’know, are likewise named ‘Stiffler’ and it might get confusing), but between us, close friends (internets included), and increasing numbers of family members, it’s “Stiffler.”

It might seem formal to some, but it sounds great to me. It’s a name I’m both proud of and is delightfully gender-ambiguous. Our bloodline is one of noble and ignoble repute alike, with entire businesses founded upon it. And a couple of off-color movie characters with similar spellings, not that they wouldn’t fit in, anyway.

I mean, do I seem like an “Anna” to you?

Asker Anonymous Asks:
I honestly thought you and K were vegetarians until your Freakazoid post the other day... or is there a level of double entendre that I'm missing here?
findchaos findchaos Said:

Funnily enough, K and I have each been vegetarian separately and together for spans. I officially fell off the wagon years ago and haven’t been back since, whereas K still maintains a mostly-vegetarian diet for mostly health reasons. My reasons were purely for moral/environmental reasons, but I feel they are largely offset by buying meat from local, humane sources and campaigning/contributing to other environmental causes. I would say 80-90% of our meals are still completely vegetarian. It’s not perfect, but unless I’m living off the grid, growing 100% of my own food, and creating all of my own goods, I’m never going to be completely morally and environmentally sound.

And I’m just not that moral of a person.

Sorry, folks.

That's it. It's the end of the world, and Gozer the Gozerian, Gozer the Destructor, Volguus Zildrohar, the Traveller itself has picked *you* to choose the form of the destructor, that which shall lay waste to the world. What would be your go-to pick? What would be your most embarrassing choice?
findchaos findchaos Said:

My Go-To:

I finally get the ending to FFVII I wanted and our deaths would look super cool. Yes, I would destroy the world based on the ending I wanted to have to a video game. I’ve ended humanity with petty reasons. That’s the dream.

My Embarrassing Choice:

Because I would try desperately not to think of anything, but my brain is sick with funny bird gifs, and one is bound to pop up eventually. I’m sorry, everyone. I’m so sorry.

Box Cats

They’re no Maru, but the box love is real.

Asker wcwit Asks:
When it comes to panels on a comic page, do you prefer a basic grid format or more dynamic shapes?
findchaos findchaos Said:

Honestly, it really depends on the subject matter and what’s being conveyed emotionally. I do hate the school of thought that one or the other is the “right way” to make comics, because that notion is founded on completely outdated reasons and standards.

It might not be immediately obvious to most readers, but I try to over- or under-emphasize the angles of FindChaos' panels to reflect the mood of the page or the character in focus. If it's meant to be a jarring or fast-paced scene, the angles get more extreme. Quiet moments or sterile settings get simpler angles. For example:


It’s just a subtle detail that I think (hope?) infuses the scenes with subconscious cues. Just food for thought in regards to creating comics!

you posted the other day about horror movies you liked. I was wondering if you'd ever seen or enjoy the original Swedish Let The Right One In? Also I'm sorry if you got this before, i wasnt sure if it got through or if tumblr ate the ask.
findchaos findchaos Said:

I have and I did! I was really impressed with that movie, and enough so to bear watching the American remake later just to relive the experience. I honestly don’t understand the flak the American remake gets, other than perhaps being completely unnecessary since it was shot-for-shot, even with the same (great) ending. If only more release companies would trust Americans to read subtitles, we could enjoy a hell of a lot more stellar films much faster!

And we wouldn’t have the Oldboy remake.

Fuck the Oldboy remake.

Asker thedarthness Asks:
Do you have any favorite video games?
findchaos findchaos Said:

Only in the way that would make avid video game players cringe. I hardly ever play them, so my favorites are either rampant nostalgia or fairly straightforward and short. In no particular order, they are:

  • Final Fantasy 7 - Y’know how this game has rabid fans who still go nuts over any mention of it and hold out hope that it will be remade (for the consoles) with modern graphics despite years and years of constant disappointment and mounting evidence of its unlikelihood? Yeah, I’m one of those. Sephiroth 4 Eva.
  • Tekken - I love fighting games, and this one has been a favorite since the beginning. The graphics keep getting better, the characters keep getting goofier, and the plot has been beyond me since it expanded past “people who like hitting stuff.”
  • Little Big Planet - So sue me. It’s adorable, the physics are fun, and it has both Stephen Fry and John Cleese as voice actors.
  • Guilty Gear X - Another fighting game, different style. I love Capcom 2-D animation-style fighting games and this one was one of the best. Plus, I can kick a lot of ass as Bridget.
  • Super Smash Bros. Melee - I would say that to hate this, you’d have to be Satan, but I bet he’s really great at winning with Mr. Game & Watch. That motherfucker…
  • Burnout 3: Takedown - Drive fast. Drive very, very fast. Intentionally wreck people and yourself. Laugh at explosions. Good music.
  • Twisted Metal Black - Yep, these games are that old. See “Burnout 3: Paradise,” and add “be an evil clown/priest/ghost/cop/trucker” and hilarity ensues.

So, if you haven’t guessed by now, games aren’t exactly my genre, but I’ve still managed to develop a fondness for some old friends. The last time I tried my hand at modern games, it consisted of nothing but me screaming, “WHY ARE THEY ALL SHOOTING AT ME, GOD DAMN IT, WHY DOES MY GUY HAVE THE COORDINATION OF A DRUNK MONKEY WEARING OVEN MITTS?! HE’S DYING. FUCK, HE IS DYING SO BA- he’s dead.”

I’ll take beating up people as a genderqueer nun, thank you very much.

I’ve been drawing non-stop for a long time now and will be for the next few hours/days/etc., but I need to get into the habit of taking wrist-breaks to ward off scary tendon explosions. That’s where you guys come in! If you’d be so kind as to Submit An Ask or two, I’ll have a valid excuse to put down my pen now and then!

I can’t promise they’ll all be answered, let alone right away, because, y’know, still working, but it should be fun! Any topics are welcome, and thanks in advance!

Have another link, ‘cause the other one is all the way over there.

I guess I don’t need that hand back.