Manien and I drove around the city yesterday morning tracking down the Cloudscape “Comics in Transit” bus shelter posters. It was a fun little scavenger hunt, they are not all up yet. But mine was! On West 10th, at Tolmie, just before you hit UBC.
So that was very cool, having a comic as big as I am. Happy with how it turned out, the colours looked nice, the text was at a good readable size. As we waited to take photos of it, we even saw a couple of guys reading it. It should be hanging there until October 5. Here it is, for those who can’t make it out (click to see it bigger)
In a year that has been change change change, the past month has provided me yet another change. Stuff happened and I decided it was time to leave the dayjob I have had for the past 7 years. It had been a while coming and it just seemed to be the time. This was the longest I had ever been at one job.
The world beyond the 9 to 5 life I had been living for 7 years is strange. Suddenly the days stretch out with endless possibility, rather than hoping to squeeze in a tired hour of drawing after a day at the dayjob. Now I can go on a good walk every day, and there is still lots of time for other stuff. Today Manien and I were trying to figure out what day it was, as her job is not a Monday to Friday gig. Is.. is this a weekday?
So yeah, anyways, 2015. Year of Change!
I spent the past week putting together a comic for an interesting project through Cloudscape Comics. They are having a bunch of artists do comics that are going to be put up in bus shelters, so gigantic 5′ tall poster comics. Someone dropped out at the end of May, and since I just happened to suddenly have lots of time on my hands I was able to jump in and be part of the project. It felt great to get drawing and colouring again. Here is a panel, if… instagram displays properly.
I had an unusually busy month. When I finally had a quiet weekend I just needed to decompress. Then last weekend was the first time Manien and I had so much as a day together in weeks. We went to the farmers market and put together a new barbecue. And then I went off to the comic jam.
What is with this hot dry summer, Vancouver? Usually everything isn’t brown and dried out like this until late July or August. Vancouver being what it is everyone just raves about the great weather. You know we need rain, right people?
Yesterday I finally started drawing my next big comic project Fir Valley. It feels good to finally get going on it, as I am seeing thoughts on it in sketchbooks from way back in 2005 or something. The June part of my sketchbook is full of pages and pages of me writing notes for it. I need a database or something.
Since I have a little commute now that we moved, I try to do some drawing or story thinking on the 15 minute seabus ride coming and going from the dayjob. As I say, a lot of it has been Fir Valley thoughts. But also just things like this that I can draw away at for 15 minutes.
Or something like this where I drew it on the seabus and then coloured it at home.
And I polished off my 2015 summer mix titled A New Song for a New World. Here are a couple of songs off it.
Okay I just wanted to put them all on, but couldn’t find good versions of all the songs. That last Peter Tosh song I put on a pumped up remastered version from the special too many songs edition of Mystic Man.
After all the selling, the moving, the settling, and then the mad scramble last week to get things ready for VanCAF, now I feel like “What do I even do with myself?”
VanCAF was fun. Sold some comics, talked to lots of people, bought some comics. Last night I went to a book launch at Lucky’s for Julian Lawrence and Kat Verhoven‘s new books. I had been planning to go, but had forgotten all about it. Luckily the twitter reminded me, and I was able to just stroll over. Maybe 20 minutes from my place.
Oh until I figure out a suitable online venue for my comics, mostly what there is to look at is the really really old ones, from before webcomicsnation. Although now that I look, some of those are gone too. Oh internet.
Wow it has already been three weeks since we moved. Everything is finally settled, even pictures up on the walls. The new neighbourhood is awesome. Everything walkable, lots of interesting places to eat and go. Running into people I know. It was a long arduous journey to get here, but we are happy and relieved now that we’re here.
Next weekend is VanCAF. I will be at table H4 in Hall 2. I just finished drawing my Two Birds comics, and will be printing that up. I also have a bunch of comics I drew about the moving process that I will be printing up as Vinegar 37.
In other news, I just noticed the other day that Webcomics Nation appears to finally be down. So most of my comics are not on the internet suddenly! I will have to figure out some kind of alternative. Bummer. I had a lot of comics up there.
I was looking through an old sketchbook and found a conversation I had written down between me and Randy at Schlockbuster in 2008. Schlockbuster was an independent alternative video store in North Vancouver that was a life saver back in the day. Wow it has already been four years since they closed.
Oh gosh it has been a while since I updated. It has been a busy month, staging the house, showing the house, selling the house, finding a place to rent (Main Street here I come!). And once that was all done, I have been able to draw again. I have actually been drawing comics about the house selling process, so you will be able to experience it along with me at some point. And I have been doing more of these Two Birds comics too, see below. Both of these should be printed up into little books for VanCAF next month.
There has been a lot going on at my dayjob, on top of all the house stuff. I find myself in meetings a lot, which leads me to doodling a lot. My doodles have gotten a bit out of control. You can see the progress of them here.
And that doodling put me in the mind to do this doodle while I was listening to a very interesting You Made It Weird chat with Shane Mauss.
My band of the spring so far is Parts and Labor (I guess they are American). If a song comes on my phone and I excitedly think “WHO IS THIS???” it is Parts and Labor. I should get more of their music.
My Mom was visiting us, back before they got rid of pennies. We were looking at a penny from 1968 and there was discussion of how pennies used to have more copper in them. We wondered if an older penny would age differently outdoors, so we set up an experiment on the Buddha. They do age differently. Though my younger brother later remarked that we didn’t have controls and such that one should have in an experiment. He is a teacher.
At my dayjob, an award was mistakenly delivered to us. The supplier didn’t want it back, so I thought I would set it in the backyard and see what happened as it weathered. Not too much really. The points of the star fell off.
As Manien worked in the garden, she kept finding pieces of glass, so she collected them in these jars. The legend goes that there was a drunk who lived in the house back in the day, and he would hide his empties in the garden. There was also one wall that got opened up and was full of bottles he had deposited there.
If you are a new visitor, coming over from Savage Chickens, hello! There are pages up there at the top where you can find plenty of my comics online to read for free. Also a store, where you can buy things.
You ever just want to stop using computers I have been experiencing technical difficulties. The new book was tantalizingly close to being ready to print, and it drifted further and further from getting done. Hopefully soon. Here is the cover as it currently stands.
If you aren’t one following me on Instagram (vinegar22), you may not have seen this thing I did the past couple of years. Every time I was walking up past the library at night, I would take a picture of this van that always sat in one corner of a parking lot, dramatically lit by the street lamp.
Then in September there was a notice saying the parking lot was closing October 1! And indeed on October 1, the van was gone. Discussing this with cartoonist friends, we thought some sort of commemoration of the van was in order. So I have started doing drawings from the van photos, as the Van Project. If anyone else is inspired to make art inspired by the van, please feel free to join in. The van photos can be found here.
While I have been struggling through my technical difficulties, one thing I did to sooth my aggravated soul was more North Van house drawings from Google Streetview. Here are a few of them.
I guess I haven’t updated in a while. I have been plugging away on the new book. 22 pages finished, 10 or so to go.
On the weekend Manien and I were visiting her sister and family on the Island. Manien bought the kids some modelling clay and so we were playing with that a lot. As I made animals and things I tried to figure out how we might animate them using my phone. Vine turned out to work well enough, and we went on quite an animating run!
I guess I haven’t been updating here lately. Mostly I have been working on my comic “The Adulation” and don’t feel like posting it online right now. But look, comic pages are gradually being produced!
I recently had a lovely offer to go see Nick Cave next week, so I am going to be looking forward to that. He always puts on a great show. It just happened that I was drawing him on the first page of the Adulation right around then.