Friday, November 30, 2012

Christmas Card Logos - Various Years

I'm not going to bore you with detail of each logo.  Normally each year the logo shares something with the card theme.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Christmas 2001 - Santa Gets Hog Tied

This was done with dip pen and colored on the computer.  By this time kids are 6 and 3 so a bit of a play on them become more mischievous.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Christmas 2000 - Stock Market Crashes

I was extra ambitious in 2000 and did a card for family/friends and one for co-workers.  Both cards were done with dip pen and colored on the computer, and the family card I used computer to do the lettering.

Of all the cards I've done I think I hate this one (above) the most.  The theme is fine, there are just a lot of mistakes that I see that maybe most don't.  The theme came from the experience we had the year before where we bought a tree way too big for the room.  When we first stood it up it was bending on the ceiling.  We thought our loft ceiling was higher and didn't account for the exact spot the tree would go which was where the ceiling started to decline down.  I had to buy an extra stand, made multiple cuts to bring the height down and even then in the end I barely could reach the top to put the topper on, hence the theme.

This above card is one of my favorites and is the only time I've done one for co-workers.  I was a branch manager for a large brokerage firm at the time.  It was a play on the stock market crashing in early 2000 when the tech bubble popped.  If you were a market trader you would recognize the shape of the tree is essentially the shape of the charts of the market up to that point...straight up from 1995 to 2000 and straight from the 2000.  For those not in the know NASDAQ is the over the counter electronic stock market.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Christmas 1998 - Santa Clause Addiction

This would be about a month after my second son was born.  My oldest was addicted to the first Tim Allen Santa Clause movie and re-enacted that movie, as if he were flying a sleigh, all the time.  We began to think he would never out grow that phase.  He used to refer to the movie as Ho-Ho Fell Off the Roof.  The goofy looking ornament was a secret nod to one of my friends who would get the card.  This face is all he could draw.  He thought it was pretty cool how I sneaked that in.  I think this is the first year I used a computer to color

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Christmas 1997 - Drug the Kid

This was definitely a nod to the fact as my first son got older, he was nearly 3 by now, he was not going to bed as early which caused us to have to stay up later to pull off the Santa trick.  I just notice the little white bear in front of him.  That was his best friend, Bear.  He was also beginning to understand the whole Christmas thing.  Nothing like drugging your kids to achieve a desired outcome. (we would never really do that)  

This was very clearly colored pre-copy with markers.  I used to use those Design markers, you can see how they would bleed and blend. 

Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving Day Cartoons From the Past

Christmas 1996 - Another Missing Year

I don't recall what was happening in 1996 but evidently I didn't do a card.  This strip is just an idea I've been dicking around with and I'm bound and determined to work on it until I like it.  I'm not particularly pleased with this rendition either.  It just seems to be missing something and I can't figure it out.   I almost feel like there is too much white space.

This is another go at it.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Christmas 1995 - The Torment of Kids

By this point my first son would of been 9 months old, so rest assured the lack of discipline this kid is showing would not of been a representation of my son.  I'm sure though I was more aware of kids in general and had started developing the appreciation for what constituted good and bad behavior. 

As technical note, this would of been drawn and colored on card stock.  I'd not moved into the world of digital color.  The problem I remember most was color copiers weren't as true to the original as they are now.

Back of card mock logo

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Christmas 1994

Well I guess the 1993 Christmas gift of me naked worked by all appearances we are LARGE with our first. At this point we are 6 months along, due end of March.  I'm sure my wife has not ever been please with my representation of her.  But I'm a cartoonist, not Rembrandt.

I think this is the first year I put a mock logo on the back

Monday, November 19, 2012

Christmas 1993

Yep you guessed it.  Been married a couple of years and no kids yet.  Dig those fluffy pink slippers.  We were both a lot younger than the drawing suggest.  Hell I' had just turn 30 and she was only 23.   We look a couple of old farts.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Christmas 1992 - Whatever Happened To Christmas 1991?

I really don't know what happened to Christmas 1991.  My assumption is it was the first year I was married, and perhaps we just did traditional cards.   This one was a bit of a play on my consuming career as a stock broker.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Christmas 1990 - Card Tradition Begins

I'm going to do a Christmas card this year.  I don't care how bad it has been financially.  I'm going to put aside the mental effort and get it done.  Early!  So I started doodling ideas.  Since it has to be a secret you will not get any doodle posting for a while, but I"ll share the process when it is complete.

Here is what I will do.  I've been doing cards for Xmas and other holidays for years.  I'll just post those until I've completed this years contribution to holiday debauchery.

This is where it all started.  1990.  It was just a doodle on my scratch pad, I colored it with markers and had it copied at Kinko's.  I think some misinterpreted it as Santa wiping his ass with the toy list, but I meant it to be he just decided to take a dump at one of the houses, reviewed his list and was caught by this boy.

Monday, November 12, 2012

I Thought I Had A Stroke

I think I've isolated the issue, and recognize my true self.  I took an old finished strip and printed it out real light.  I wanted to trace over it with the quill to see if I could, and what it looked like.  I like the effect, but I don't draw that small when I do a strip.
 So I tried again full size and this is the crap I created.

Out of frustration I scratched out a couple of quickie sketches and inked them with the Penstix.  Below.

So what do I think the problem is...Well when I'm inking in I'm following very in exact lines.  Effectively I'm drawing as I go and using the sketch as a guide.  I sketch somewhat free handed to try to get the feel of the lay out and look I want.  When I ink with the quill I can freely draw.  Again I'm a pusher not puller and that inhibits my smoothness.  Also, maybe, it is just a bit of size, and need for larger nib size.

But I was getting real depressed that I'd had some brain stroke and lost my ability to draw.  Doing the Penstix drawings again reassured me I'm not a stroke victim.  

Friday, November 9, 2012

Oh, Yea..Here Comes Mister Depressed

Like a dark cloud hanging over me.  This whole week, hell these past two weeks, just are for shit.  The reasons are the same as normal and throw in a dash of being sick and bam you've got shit.

Look, I can appreciate you don't need me gripping in your ear.  Well enough, stop ready then.  This is my blog and my therapy.  I thought things were improving, then things didn't come together like I expected and life just tripped and is trying to regain its footing.  I'm sick and tired of everything not coming together in one long consistent manner.  These ups and downs are killing me.

When I get off track, then every things seems to be thrown off track. I find it real hard to pretend life is grand in other parts of my life when one is a complete whirlwind of chaos.  Hell look at these drawings from the last few days.  They suck so much I almost decided to just hang up the old dream.  Fortunately I looked back at some past work and confirmed I can draw and can be funny and talked myself into believing things will be okay.  Just wish it wouldn't wait too long to be okay.

Monday, November 5, 2012

I'm a Pusher, Not a Puller

I got this hair up my ass to experiment with different pens. Again. I really like the old style, organic, look of a quill pen, and have this fantasy that I could use these for inking. I'm a product of the ball point pen. I've heard old teachers complain the ball point pen ruined penmanship. It causes you to press down too hard. Which I do. Also I do a lot of pushing when I write and draw. What I mean by that is I don't exclusively pull down, but will also push up, left and right rather than using a pulling motion, which kind of requires you to either rotate the paper or rotate the pen some.  Pushing with a ball point or round point is fine, but with a nib is scratches, catches, skips and generally doesn't work. The nibs with more rounded tips and those with flow flaps (don't quote that as a standard term) like the Speedball B-6 can be pushed, but really only create a uniform thickness of line, which kind of negates the value of using a nib, and increases the chance of globs and spills.

Below I've scanned in four different pens, on the same doodle.  This actually began as an exercise in using the non-photo blue pencil, which lead me to realize I'd have to ink in every doodle to be seen..  (hmm, idea could I doodle with a nib all day?  Only concern would be spilling that ink on the carpet.  The cat or I could knock it off.)  In my opinion the Sharpe, Penstix and B-6 show the most confidence in line work.  The Hunt you can see the potential for globs, and it is fussy because it was done on copy paper which typically does that with anything wet.  The Sharpe is not practical in every day use unless I plan to draw in super large scale, the line weight it too much for small work.  This was done on at full size on 8.5x11 copy paper.

Hunt Globe Bowl Point
Fine Point Sharpe

Penstix .5mm
Speedball B-6 
Hunt School Round