Janelle Blarg (also known as Janelle Hessig) is a Bay Area writer, cartoonist, and multimedia humorist.
In 1990, while other bad kids were making secret bongs in her high school Crafts class, she made her first publication, Tales of Blarg, which became a definitive and influential East Bay punk fanzine. This sparked a lifelong love of publishing and collaborative art projects. She published and illustrated The Cruising Diaries, a collection of writer Brontez Purnell’s erotic anecdotes, which was adapted into an expanded edition and later published by Silver Sprocket. Her autobiographical comics can be found in numerous periodicals and comics anthologies published by Three Rivers Press, Silver Sprocket, Popula, Maximum RocknRoll, and Vice, but can be most often found in their xeroxed and ephemeral natural habitat in self-publishing. Her love of the Bay Area is reflected in artwork commissioned by beloved local institutions like Lovely’s Burgers and Oakland’s Mosswood Meltdown music festival.
She’s been a touring drummer, a pop culture journalist, the subject of a seminal riot grrrl album, and the Marketing Director for San Francisco publisher Last Gasp. She works in public media and lives in Oakland with her dog, Carl.