Sunday, May 15, 2016

"Voldemort" + Teaser Swatches

This is one that I didn't even tweak as the raw scan from the sketchbook nailed it. Composer Alexandre Desplat's score for Deathly Hallows Part Two is on my go-to studio mix of soundtracks, and "Courtyard Apocalypse" is a favorite to cue up for classroom critiques (along with the "Imperial March Theme").

Teaser swatches/All in a weekend’s’s work: Zeta males, buff halibuts, moose luggage claim, blowin’ coats, chillin’ cats, desert island beavers, teddy bear trauma, sourdough sommeliers, barfing owls, crying koalas, hypochondriac huskies, vocal salmon fry and farting whales. Sometimes you just gotta love this job: "oh the places you'll go" even if it's all just inside your head, and the eclectic range of topics to explore… it’s gonna be a weird + wonderful few months ahead in the funny papers.
These snapshots are from a recent binge session at the drawing table trying to get ahead of the curve on pieces in the pipeline for publication in the paper. It's a prudent buffer zone to have when other events conspire to keep me out of the studio for a spell, so being at least several months ahead with material all ready to go is a sort of artistic insurance policy. I’ve actually been well into the seasonal winter gags, which is I start getting SAD about this time of the year. Paradoxically (perversely?) it cheers me up somewhat to have my headspace in the summer during the depths of subzero darkness.

Another thing is how hard it is sometimes to sit on what you're convinced is just about the funniest thing you've ever drawn: knowing way ahead of time what's in the works and wishing everyone all at once and everywhere could see it. It's especially tough nowadays what with the instantaneous transmission across social media and the instinct to share everything as it happens. But this is kinda like the flipside of my 48-hour rule on never, ever reacting to things online (tends to weed out a lot of the huff + puff)... and tempered by the objective observation over the years that what I might personally think is so incredibly awesome right now, is more often than not average material - at best - when seen in retrospect. But the meta-lesson here really is that regardless of either extreme in the love/hate or ecstasy/despair continuum of creativity the overall balance only comes about after keeping one's head down and focused on the task at hand. Back to that blank sheet of paper.


  1. The need to produce volume on close deadlines may explain the massive amount of pedestrian gunk that comes out in daily syndicated strips. And the massive amount of pedestrian gunk in daily syndicated strips may explain why so many people think being a cartoonist must be an easy job.

    1. Maybe there's a connection between that and "slow food" movement. Consumers expect to be fed a constant diet of stimulation, easily digested, full of sugar + fat, and cheap.