Thursday, December 4, 2008

Saturday at the EYEDRUM!

Please join the members of ASIFA-Atlanta this Saturday, December 6th at the Eyedrum for an evening of music and artwork. I will be among the exhibiting artists there. The fun starts at 8 p.m. so don't miss out! There will be work on display from a multitude of local talents, with live performances by several outstanding Atlanta bands! Drop me a comment if you are able to attend! I look forward to seeing you there.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Returning from SPX

I am back in Atlanta after a visit to the Small Press Expo in Bethesda, Maryland. It was my first time attending and I was truly blown away by all the exhibitors and the high quality of indie and self-publishing I saw there.
Here are some doodles of just a few of the friendly people I met:

Drew Weing, of Little House in Athens, Georgia!


Joey Weiser--the man, the myth, the legend!


J.P. Coovert from One Percent Press!!!

James Kochalka of Top Shelf Productions!!!

It was a great weekend! I distributed my own 'Zines and Minis, reunited with old friends, and picked up some cool comics. To everyone I met: I hope to see you again soon!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Agnes SCOTT!


Last night, I had the good fortune to hear Scott McCloud lecture at Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia. McCloud is best known for his trilogy of books that dissect and analyze the form of comics. This trilogy includes the seminal work "Understanding Comics," as well as "Making Comics" and "Reinventing Comics." His lecture briefly covered material from these books, accompanied by a brilliantly concieved computer presentation and anecdotes on the state of comics today.
Speaking about creating comics, McCloud said that we can't choose where or when we are born, but we have an inherent birthright to build our own worlds to escape into. Thus comics, like any other medium, offer an escape from our own lives--both for the artist and the reader.
He talked about storytelling as the prime function of comics--it doesn't matter what form or style the comic comes in, as long as one can lose oneself in the story. When the presentation gets in the way of the story itself, it makes for bad comics.
McCloud described comics as a "call and response" medium. The comic provides a temporal map that guides the reader through the story. Each panel is a guide point, and each gutter(the space between panels) is a place for the reader to infer different parts of the story. In true comics, SPACE EQUALS TIME.
McCloud believes that comics pre- and post-date print. That is, they are not restricted to the printed page. Comics can be a single, unbroken reading line such as the Bayeux Tapestry or Drew Weing's webcomic "Pup ponders the Heat Death of the Universe." To McCloud, comics, because of their potential seamlessness, are a medium unlike anything else.
Addressing his favorite comics, McCloud dubbed XKCD "the perfect webcomic," and stated that Brian Lee O'Malley's "'Scott Pilgrim' is the funniest comic on the planet right now." He may very well be right.
Scott McCloud's advice to budding sequential artists is simply this: "Learn from everyone, but follow no one."
I enjoyed the lecture immensely--it was as humorous and poignant as McCloud's books. Don't miss him if he comes to your area!


Scott McCloud's Autograph
(note the icons)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Back Pockets (Inaugural Show)


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Four weeks is not a lot of time to put together a band, especially one that writes high-quality, roof-shaking songs. The Back Pockets, however, have pulled it off! Through hard work and “obsessive” practice, this art-rock group delivered an incredible show at WonderRoot last night. I expect great things from this band, whose songs can currently be heard on MySpace. I’m looking forward to more concerts and, hopefully, an album of some kind! Keep up the good work, y'all!

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Here is the set list from the show:
Dance of Shame
Sanskrit Around
Leave me Alone! (but don’t go away)
Terrible Man
She She
The Money’s not There
The Laughing Song
Hai
Feast of Kings
I will Die
You’re all Wrong
Peace
Codependency
Pubic Hair

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Solar Power!


Do the right thing this Fall--vote for green energy!

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Noisemaker

Here's a drawing I did that was inspired by a vintage 60's noisemaker. More practice with the ink and brush!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Bluegrass Sketch


Here's a sketch I did at bluegrass night at the Red Light Cafe on Amsterdam Avenue in Atlanta.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Emily Maxwell at WonderRoot

Last night I attended a benefit opening for MINT Gallery, held at the WonderRoot Community Arts Center. WonderRoot is a truly impressive facility, featuring a darkroom, a computer lab, and a recording studio in addition to gallery and concert space all under one (formerly residential ) roof! I went to see the work of my friend Emily Maxwell, who had three large paintings and several small collages on display. Her boyfriend Fred and I chatted about our mutual interest in the Electric Light Orchestra, and he informed me that the terrible XANADU will soon be arriving at the Plaza Theater in Atlanta. I am planning to move out of town. Emily's work was going like hotcakes, as it often does. Her art expresses both humor and femininity.
I also ran into some high-school friends, including Nat Slaughter, a local Sound Artist and a gifted bassist.
The Atlanta Glam-Punk band VERA FANG played, featuring a song based on the diary of Laura Palmer from TWIN PEAKS among other far-out tunes.

And a good time was had by all!

Emily Maxwell with her painting "Real Men Only Exist on T.V."


Sunni Johnson of VERA FANG, Emily Maxwell, and a representative of MINT Gallery.


VERA FANG rocks out!


Monday, July 7, 2008

Turkey Lurkey

Here is a comic inspired by real life events, such as the time I encountered the turkey woman.

Monday, June 23, 2008

HEROES CON

Brent, Shazzba, Tommy, and David working the SCAD table.
This past weekend, 17 SCAD students (including myself) set out for the HEROES CONVENTION in Charlotte, North Carolina. There were tons of great artists there, not to mention a few comic book publishers. The highlight of the convention for me was “Indie Island,” a haven for cartoonists published by independent publishers. I got to meet the likes of Jeffrey Brown (Changebots, Bighead, Be a Man), Alec Longstreth (Phase 7), Liz Prince (Various Top Shelf Books), Andy Runton (Owly), and Matt Kindt (Superspy). I was also reunited with cartoonists I know from prior conventions: Kazimir Strzepek (The Mourning Star) and Duane Ballenger (Haunted Samidge, Give me the Creeps).
My friend Chris Schweizer was had his own table (right next to Brian Lee O’Malley of SCOTT PILGRIM fame). He was promoting his forthcoming book from ONI PRESS entitled: “Crogan’s Vengeance,” which I commend to anyone reading this blog. Chris also gave an excellent presentation on Character Design as part of the convention programming.
I got to talk briefly with Chris Staros of Top Shelf Productions, Dylan Williams of Sparkplug Comic Books, and Alvin Buenaventura of Buenaventura Press. I got some positive feedback on my ‘Zines and Mini Comics from Alvin, and Dylan Williams is possibly one of the most down-to-earth people I have ever met. I’m sort of courting Top Shelf and Sparkplug as possible outlets for my cartoons, so it was a relief to find a publisher that was so approachable. I highly recommend the Sparkplug series “Reich,” a comic about psychoanalyst Wilhelm Reich researched, written, and drawn by Elijah Brubaker. I found issue one at Oxford Comics in Atlanta, and picked up issues two through four at the Con.
Another highlight was meeting Chris Duffy, comics editor of Nickelodeon Magazine. He, Alec, and Brian Ralph (Cave-In) gave a great, interactive presentation for kids on gag cartoons and sequential art. This included a presentation of some astounding 3-D work by Michael Kupperman, which required special glasses for viewing. There was a Pinocchio panel with a nose that really popped!
I only took a few pictures at the con, but hopefully they’ll give you a taste of the fun, friendly atmosphere there.
My Bro Duane Ballenger and me at INDIE ISLAND!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

B. O. Plenty

Here is my take on the character B. O. Plenty from the comic strip Dick Tracy.