FLINT (WJRT) - (04/12/19) - He offered his artistic gift to mid-Michigan for free - in the form of a newspaper you may have heard of, called Flint Comix.
But now he's calling it quits.
Despite the struggles, his mission to showcase his and other artists' talent has taught him a lot.
After 10 years and one million copies, Flint Comix printed its 100th and final issue. Cartoonist Randy Zimmerman says ending it is bittersweet.
For a decade comic lovers could count on creative cartoons inside Flint Comix to entertain them. Artists from Michigan and Illinois looking for an outlet to showcase their talent could count on it, too.
"We were looking at Flint Comix as being more of a information portal as well as entertainment because there was so much that was going on," Zimmerman said.
Zimmerman and Ted Valley Sr. set up headquarters at the Masonic Temple downtown in 2009, and began Flint Comix & Entertainment. They had hoped they could make some money by selling ads in the paper and started producing one issue every month.
"The paper has been a struggle ever since we started really. We were lucky to do one issue let alone...you know, issue 5 we almost didn't do it then issue 79 we stopped for six months," Zimmerman said.
Those struggles led to a gradual decrease in production, but he still managed to fill red boxes outside of stores, restaurants and churches.
"Stopping is something I never planned on doing, but if I'm going to stop I'll stop at 100 because that's a good mark," Zimmerman said.
Zimmerman, who also organizes Flint Comix Con, has given us superhero characters like Spark and the Preservers, inspired by Flint and For Mar Nature Preserve, respectively.
"The paper literally reinstilled my love, not just for comics, but for the area," Zimmerman said. "Most cartoonists sit in their basement all day and they hardly get out or get around or get to meet people, especially people in the area, and this gave me the opportunity to do that."
If you still need your Flint Comix fix don't worry. Zimmerman says he'll do the Flint Comix Con for as long as he can. That's happening April 27 at the Flint Farmer's Market from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. He's also reaching the masses through his YouTube channel, ZimmGeek.