About the Asshole


I was born on September 18, 1979 in Nashville, TN, but have lived most of my life in Texas.  I have brown hair and eyes and a fairly dark complexion due to my half-Iranian heritage.  I’ve been short and pretty skinny for about as long as I can remember (fortunately, my puny physique stopped being a social issue as I got older), finally topping out just shy of 5’8’’ and I’d guess around 160 lbs.  I graduated from Keller High School in North Texas in 1997 and went directly into undergraduate studies at The University of Texas at Austin.  I started drawing OFF CAMPUS as a comic strip for the school newspaper, The Daily Texan, during my fourth year and continued it until I graduated with a BS in Microbiology in May 2002.   Currently, I’m still living in Austin, TX, unmarried but in a long-term relationship with a wonderful woman, and still drawing OFF CAMPUS as a webcomic as much as my day job permits.

The genesis of OFF CAMPUS

So, I decided to do a comic strip, and that’s really most of the thought that went into the project.  Now, I did have this vague goal that my strip should be something that would appeal to men and women, but that was pretty much all I had as a starting point.  At the time I sat down to do this (the summer of 2000), The Daily Texan’s comic strip line-up was widely regarded as fairly terrible, so even though I had no real idea of what I was doing, I figured worst case I’d just be another bad strip (as it would turn out, a number of strong comics would debut that same year, so that notion went straight out the window).  Another thing that struck me was the lack of comics about college students in a college newspaper, which I perceived as a niche that I could fill if I so desired.   I designed seven undergraduate characters and began working from a series concept of a relationship-based situational-comedy (so as to draw in the ladies); the hope was that if the perceived audience was indeed there, I’d have something fairly unique to bring to the table.

My influences

As most artists are want to do, I tend to cannibalize any small bit or piece of another artists’ style that I come across and like.  That being said, there is definitely a short list of artists who have had a larger impact on my stuff, the earliest of whom were Erik Larsen and Jim Balent; at the time I started trying to learn to draw, I procured a handful of comics and their stuff was by far my favorite (years later, I would learn that in an industry noted for drawing large-chested females, Larsen and Balent were among the most notorious offenders).  The Disney style that permeated most of their cartoons during the 90’s was another biggie around this time, as I’m definitely a fan of clean artwork with nice, bold lines.  I discovered Frank Cho (another breast fiend, by the way) and his superb comic strip, Liberty Meadows, at the end of the decade and fell in love with his inks, and have since tried to emulate his line as best I can.  Last, but certainly not least, would have to be Terry Moore, whose work made it all look so deceptively easy that it really got me to start trying to push myself to attempt harder drawings and, consequently, to get better.

This should theoretically be the part where I discuss the evolution of my writing style, but I have no idea how to even begin tracking that particular course.  There are certainly a number of writers I admire greatly, but to compare myself to any of them, even for the purposes of self-evaluation, strikes me as kind of absurd.

My nom de plume

I’ve signed OFF CAMPUS strips with the name “Seno” since the comic’s inception (my full name is just too damn long), and more recently, started using Seno as a pen name in place of my real name in the credits.  Seno is a nickname I picked up in 8th grade Spanish class; I actually chose it of my own volition, thinking it meant “sinus,” an English word that sounds quite a bit like my real given name.  A friend of mine would later discover a Spanish-scripted mammogram pamphlet that seemed to suggest it actually translated as “breast,” and while I don’t believe this is actually true, I don’t think I need to say that I never lived the incident down.  I adopted Seno as a more full-time pen name, so to speak, in order to pursue day jobs without fear of reprisal for the comic’s R-rated content. 

Seno in a suit

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