weiner(mobile) in motion

What a difference a week makes, especially in the Midwest in the early spring.  Just last Friday, I was trying to photograph the Oscar Meyer Weinermobile. With a phone camera. From a moving car. In a blizzard.

I will photograph the Weinermobile properly.  Someday.  For now “found art” oddities will have to do.  (Panning with a phone camera is a skill that demands practice.)

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work in progress: werewolf librarian

Every so often, a nifty bit of penciling comes along that you are sort of afraid of ruining in the inks– I’ve started taking pictures of these sketches and posting them on line to give them a tiny shot at immortality.  Usually, these are character bits that just seem to capture the essence of these people I know so well.

This is Gideon Lykander, the werewolf librarian, cleaning his nails while reading and lecturing his apprentice.  Professor Lykander usually walks around in a 90% human/10% wolf transitional form– just wolfy enough to use some of his enhanced senses and strength while depending on Kekionga’s localized “notice me not” to keep people from staring.  But safe in his library workroom, he can let it all hang out a little and go to 20 or even 25%, as we see here.  Iowa isn’t going to tell on him.

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placemat drawing: ballpoint menagerie

Related to the phone doodle is the solo, improvised placemat drawing, usually executed with an everyday notebook pen rather than actual art supplies.  A hard little ballpoint like one of my favorite Pilot Better Retractable yields strange results, particularly on a heavily textured paper placemat.  Let’s just say I don’t usually go to places with textured placemats, or I would have brought a different pen.  Looks like I was still able to build a few tones.

There’s not much to say about the subject matter, which is the usual assortment of automatic drawing Mysterious Animals and Horrible Creatures, but that’s a variation on the Small Feather Bat in the center.  As always, a placemat is never the right size to fit on the scanner.  And just for fun, I scanned this in color, and coffee rings and greasy fingerprints are gleefully apparent, especially when the image is viewed at full size.  This is the true nature of the placemat drawing.

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product of the day

Today’s product raises many questions. 1) Why does anyone need a scented notebook? 2) Who imagined what would happen if you crossed a sentient cupcake with a Cyclops?  3) Even if  you did cross an imaginary sentient cupcake with an equally imaginary Cyclops, how would you know what it smelled like?
Truly an item to want and buy. And it’s a bargain!

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natural media art supplies: a phone camera photo shoot

Participating in an interesting discussion about “old school” natural media art supplies elsewhere on the interwebs.  To many of the participants (the younger ones, I assume) these tools were as obsolete as buggy whips.

Over here, not so much.  I took these four photographs around the studio as the discussion was going on.

Drawing table: tape, dusting brush (Purdy Cub angle, shiny copper ferrule), props for current comic, templates, erasers, penciled pages, scrap paper, Drawing Table Vision holding my pencil, spirit rock.

Side box holding tools currently in use.  Clearly I was doing corrections and pasteup as correction tools of all kinds, triangles and glue sticks are on top of the brushes and fountain pens.

Extra tools and pens in coffee cups– lettering pens not being used for the current project, markers, correction pens, and the scissors.  Plus crayons, more glue sticks, bandanna for wiping my hands, spare cartridge for brush pens, the Big Chinese Dusting Brush, etc. etc.

Piece of used tape stuck together to keep them from getting in the way.  They also form a barrier to stuff that might roll down the drawing table to its doom.

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love in a time of alternate history

A glimpse inside my latest project, a minicomic flip book that both reprints my very first story and a later, extended canon version, and acts as sort of a meditation on the relationship between the two stories and Kekionga today, and on the minicomic itself.

Flip books are technically difficult to make and you always end up with a couple of stray pages where the two pieces don’t quite match up.  Spare pages mean pinups, and this book includes this romantic interlude between Jack and Iowa, and my favorite corny comic-bool line from the second story.  In the universe of the story itself Jack says it, and in this universe it’s Iowa, but it doesn’t really matter.  (Josef is the same in any universe– always right there when the action is happening, even if he is not paying attention.)

The font is P22 Kane, a distressed newspaper Roman that really seems to work in combination with hand lettered pages.

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haiku for a late snowfall (illustrated)

  • March snow. The old dog
  • Wanders in a figure eight;
  • Does pretty good job.
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save the phone doodles, again!

A Cartoonist in Kekionga is on a quest to save the great American phone doodle.  I’ve been on the phone a lot recently and here are three of the current crop. Media:  Zebra Sarasa 0.7 “Porto” on cheap yellow legal pad from Staples.  From the top, a fat businessbeing, a pig that looks to be inspired by some Japanese cartoons I’ve been looking at lately, and what appears to be a dancing television.

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movie time at the cinemark: logan

(Welcome back.  This would have been posted yesterday except I was participating in the Day Without a Woman.)

It has been a very long time since I have read an X-Men comic, and almost as long since I have seen an X-Men movie. (At least, not one from the original timeline where Professor X is played by Patrick Stewart and Wolverine by Hugh Jackman; I have a sneaking fondness for First Class that probably has a fair amount to do with Michael Fassbender and those beautiful ears.)

But when an unexpected opportunity to take in an after-breakfast super-bargain early matinee came along on Tuesday, I dropped everything for a chance to see Logan.  And that’s because I’d heard that it wasn’t a superhero movie, it was a movie with a superhero in it. A very good movie with a superhero in it.  And that is one of my favorite things.

Capsule review: Logan really is a very good movie. So good that the rest of 2017 is going to have to work hard to catch up if it doesn’t want to make it two years in a row that the “best of” goes to a “movie with a superhero in it” that was released in the late winter/early spring lull. Granted, this one is pretty much as far from the brilliantly nasty black comedy that was Deadpool as it’s possible to be (except as regards the violence), but it is every bit as good. And every bit as deserving of its R rating, so beware.  But as long as you don’t mind a lot of blood, it is highly recommended. Bring a handkerchief.

The rest of the review is behind the cut, and man does it need to be. Spoiling this one would be criminal.

Continue reading

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three faces of bud

Here are three little faces of Bud, as requested by the person who is developing a new product for us.  Bud, longterm Kekionga resident, junkyard owner and semi-unwilling participant in a “trained by a Master” superhero origin story, is drawn to a model of my own devising, best described as “half conventional Happy Buddha, half retired pro wrestler”.  If you know Bud, which of these looks most like him?

Bud #1

Bud #2

Bud #3

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