Modus Operandi is about making mistakes, in circumstances where mistakes are often not forgiven.
1. What’s the main inspiration behind your latest project?
Tish: I did longform narrative (novel-style) text-based roleplay for about 15 years. The characters and world I built are the bulk of Modus Operandi’s source material, but that only goes so far.
Leah: I like solid characterization that isn’t outright manipulative. Tish had that.
2. Is there an aspect of your process that you particularly enjoy?
Tish: I like talking to Leah about what we’re going to do. That feeling you get when you suddenly resolve a plot issue that’s been tough to move past, is great. I also like drawing/painting the more abstract or emotive sequences in MO. On the whole, though, the process - particularly on the drawing end - is hard. It’s really hard for me. I rely on a lot of people for emotional and moral support.
Leah: Mapping/time-lining. Problem-solving. Breaking story with Tish. Also being able to tune out distractions and start working in these nice productive chunks where I can start building upon the skeleton with the muscle and sinew and fat and fur to make a great script.
3. What drives your interest in making comics over other mediums?
Tish: Accessibility and familiarity. The likelihood that I could get people to read MO in novel format is slim, even if it might be easier to make. I’ve always turned to comics when I wanted others to read my fiction. Besides that, it’s not like I would be able to get it turned into a TV show. Comics are the best fit for our skillsets, and as things stand, our ability to reach an audience. The downside of the medium is that MO is paced a lot more like a novel or TV drama like Breaking Bad than many comics, so the production rate might negatively affect the reader’s perception of pacing. I’d like to eventually update twice a week, but that seems far off.
Leah: I don’t feel particularly interested in one medium over another. I like all of it. I just need to make shit or I will die.
Read the rest of our interview with Leah and Tish under the cut!