by Katie Tandler

word to your mother

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About the Comic

Business as Unusual was, originally, your basic 'college strip' which took place at Radford University. It features four girls who share a dormitory suite, and most of the action takes place in either room of said suite. There is an element of randomness in their daily lives, often taking the form of a hyperactive stranger in a squirrel suit. The cast is presently composed entirely of females, mostly because (a) Radford's population is mostly female (especially where the Honors Academy is concerned) and (b) the artist isn't too good at drawing guys just yet.

Presently, BAU is decidedly more random. The focus shifts from retelling events in the artist's life to bizarre fictional situations, with a cast that varies from comic to comic (though the recurring cast continues to be comprised of Rory and co.). It's pretty open-ended. Maybe it'll get an actual binding plot. Someday.

BAU originated in September 2001 in Whim, Radford's campus web-magazine, and presently still runs there on a weekly basis during the school year.

About the Cartoonist

Aright, basics... m'name's Katie Tandler, nowadays I usually go by Kate, my 'artist's alias' is Kate Sith (yes, I likes me some RPGs)... I just finished(?) my freshman year at Radford University majoring in Media Studies, and I frankly have no bloody idea what I want to do for a living. Beyond maybe this.

I love to's my chief stress release. I started not-sucking around 1996-97...I learned to draw by going through and copying artwork from my little bro's Nintendo Power magazines... it took a while to be able to draw original stuff well, but now it's pretty much all I do (well, I do fanart and stuff, but it's not straight copying the 'official' art).
Of course, the game art is what gave me this anime-influenced style... though, as you can see, it's hardly by-the-book How-to-Draw-Manga material. Not quite sure how the style evolved... it just did.

I'm a web junkie... I used to do interactive stories on AOL message boards (started in the Nintendo site's Hyrulean Adventure III story, if anyone actually remembers that), and that's how I met my oldest group of friends... from there I got into a lot of online role-playing (more on that later), and a lot of my drawing was based around that (character sketches, mostly).

One of those friends happened to link me to Sluggy Freelance a few years back... and ever since, I have been a webcomic addict, through and through.

In high school, I did a lot of drama-related shtuff, and that helped me expand my staging/storytelling abilities, as well as my sense of comedic timing... I was also in a magnet school for gifted students from all over the county, and between that and the drama, I met an awful lot of strange people, which also helped me to develop my unique sense of humor.

I started doing a lot of strange doodles in my classes... mostly in junior and senior science class (Physics and AP Chem, respectively). In those classes, I actually did my first comics, each time collaborating with a friend of mine (different friend each year). The art was crude and the plots were bizarre... junior year was an epic about cannibal potatoes, and in Chem, we drew molecules who battled DBZ-style. I still have these, and may scan them and put them up sometime.

Then I came to college, where I knew of like 6 people from my old school and none of them were terribly close... I was in great peril of being The Weird Girl With No Friends until I happened across a great little organization called Whim... at the first meeting, I brought my art-binder with me (which has since been upgraded to a huge blue binder of DOOM), and showed it to some of the higher-ups, and they were very impressed... they mentioned that Whim had run comics in the past, and maybe I'd want to draw one... now doodles in science class were one thing, but an actual REAL comic that people would read was another... I probably wouldn't have done it except that I was supposed to write an article one week in September, and couldn't get it done in time... rather than come up empty-handed, I whipped up a little three-panel cartoon instead. The two characters featured are now part of the core cast of 4 in Business As Unusual, and my comic (along with others) inspired the creation of a seperate Whim section for toons and toon-related stuff. Not to mention Whim has helped me make a whole slew of awesome friends.

And then I decided to try my hand at a KeenSpace account. And so here I am. Booyaka.

This bit of the site was last updated 7-11-02.


Business As Unusual is hosted on Keenspace, a free webhosting and site automation service for webcomics. All content copyright 2001-2002 Katie Tandler unless otherwise noted, and may not be used elsewhere without her permission, lest she hunt you down and kill you in your sleep. 'Kay?