MON-DAZE: Ah, so you've come to kill me again?
LIFE! You dastardly bastard!
Currently writing this while answering phone calls, making phone calls, and texting and pulling the whole GOBLINFEST/FCBD thing together for this Saturday. Oh, great customers, another pause… while I do that, check this out:
It’s going to be a good time!
I mean, with a Free comic, how can it not?!?
I have to move stuff out of my old office soon, probably next week, and I dread it while being excited. I could/can finalize my back office, but I have so much shit and so many books I want to keep; I wonder what can be done. I don’t wish to storage space, but we are heading there. FUCK. Let’s See.
This also happened:
Nice to do some national news for the shop, but in ESPAÑOL! SO yeah, very proud; I hope to do more!
Read this the other day: It’s straightforward to get comfortable. To build up your life exactly how you want it to be. Minimize inconveniences and hand off the stuff you don’t like to do. Please find what you enjoy, where you enjoy it, and never leave.
A velvet rut is what it’s called. It’s nice, but the comfort tricks you into thinking that you’re not stuck.
The Stoics knew that this was a kind of death. That as soon as we stop growing, we start dying. Or at least, we become more vulnerable to the swings of Fate and Fortune. Seneca repeatedly talked about the importance of adversity, embracing the struggle life throws at us, and actively seeking out that difficulty so you can be more robust and better and more prepared. He said a person who has never been challenged, who always gets their way, is a tragic figure. They have no idea what they are capable of. They are not even close to fulfilling their potential.
Every time I hit that wall of frustration, I say this to myself when things don’t go smoothly and figure it’s me; I have to be stronger, adaptable, and on it. The Hustle is accurate, and it’s always there, and it’s always fickle, fleeting, harsh, and a fucker. There is no other way. Sometimes I sit back and say fuck it, and meditate on this, and no, that it’s better to grind and dismay, knowing I did my best than to sit back and allow the foot to rest on my neck.
“Don’t! Pity! Your! Self!
The wounds of vanity, the many offenses our egos have to endure, being housed in bodies that age and hearts that grow tired are better accepted with a tolerant smile – like this! – You see?…
Otherwise, what you become is a bag full of curdled cream – Leche mala, as we call it! – attractive to nobody, least of all to yourself!”
― Tennessee Williams, Camino Real
BeenI have been working again on new paintings, new work; I may even become sculptural over time. I have a canvas I’ve repainted four times this year, pulling it here and there, slapping a new layer, starting something, and going away again. I’m starting to love the damn thing. In that, I dug this from the MARGINALIA:
“We love to contemplate blue,” Goethe observed in his theory of color and emotion, “not because it advances to us, but because it draws us after it.” This particular color — or, instead, this universe of hues — seems to have drawn after it more minds than any other, inking the body of culture with a written record of adulation bordering on the religious.
After my recent excursion into the color blue across the past two hundred years of literature, several readers pointed out that I had missed an invaluable contemporary addition to the cerulean canon. (I might say “somehow missed,” but it somehow implies a level of surprise at the fact, and it is hardly surprising that when one spends one’s days with dead poets, philosophers, scientists, and artists, the living ceases to be one’s forte.) I had missed Bluets (public library) by Maggie Nelson — a slim, splendid collection of 240 numbered arguments? Meditations? Incantations? About the color blue, its tentacles reach into nearly every chamber of Nelson’s life and universal questions of desire and destiny, compulsion and choice, the disorienting delusions of memory, the delicious fantasies of love.
I have been getting in tune about getting drawings done in the mornings. I may experiment and start waking up EARLY ( 8 am) and get to the shop/studio by 9 am, ready to go and work that way. Nights are shit for me. I’m drained and tired by then, and it’s better to explore with a fresh mind before the daily work makes it into rubble. I’m going to try; waking up is not my thing, and I love working at night. When other people dream, I do.
It's been fun having both series running; it gave me a hankering to make more! Ideas are galore now.
ZOMBIE YEARS this week
VIGIL this week
I’m digging webcomics more and more as I look at the feasibility of printing. I don’t see why any comic artist would be working in print right now. The web is a fertile testing ground. But I wonder if there is a fundamental divide between Webcomic readers and Print Readers? Are they two different crowds?
This week we lost a legend but a massive influence on me: NEAL ADAMS passed away at 80 years old. To say he was essential to comics is an understatement. He was a FORCE more than anything, pushed the craft and mindset behind comics, and helped create Opportunities for comic creators to have rights and positions in the business we never had before. We are in debt to him.
As for myself, he was a pillar for the form, a cornerstone that we all drew from, his work, and him personally. I was lucky enough to call him a casual friend, someone I waved hi to and occasionally spoke with at conventions and events. One time at a Wizard World, he came to a bunch of us working the @creatureentertainmentllc booth watching us grind and draw, and said, “this is what it’s about, working the trenches, you. Guys are doing it right!” I talked to him, and he gave me colossal advice that opened my eyes so wide. We laughed when he yelled at us about using references and getting the job done. He was a force. I kept thinking I would see him on the road again and say hey as always. I’m saddened I won’t see him. My heart goes to his wife Marilyn and son Josh. Rest In Peace, sir, and thank you for those small words that made a big difference for a comic creator like me.
I have been lucky enough to meet my heroes and dig them all. Amen.
Finally, I go back on it, giving myself time to sit down and paint and wreck and make a mess. TENEDOR is on the desk now hope to finish him soon. Have so much to do this week. I wish I had returned quickly; I wanted to make a good ink wash for him. SIGH. Soon.
Another portrait for a client, this time a bit risque
From Warren Ellis’s ORBITAL OPERATION newsletter last week, I will refer you to this excellent essay by Martin Scorcese on Fellini, which I re-read last night.
Curating isn’t undemocratic or “elitist,” a term now used so often that it’s become meaningless. It’s an act of generosity—you’re sharing what you love and what has inspired you.
Martin Scorcese on Fellini
It’s what I did here, for now, to give you the bits and pieces that come across my brain and make the wheels turn. These are the things I try to do to get across the creation gap. I love living like this. To think and to act, to not sit back. If I was younger, I think I would be an adventurer by now, in Ukraine saving Giraffes or something. For now, I hope to inspire people to do that.
So yeah, a hell of a week, with more to come. Tune into my Patreon tomorrow as I get into the most 80s cover I’m doing! Plus, some other stuff I’m kicking around as a behind-the-scenes post!
Thanks, and let’s do this!
Great post and thanks for hosting free comic book day, I had a blast. Love the quote you posted on adversity. Adversity is the force that allows us to grow as individuals and transform to a new person. Without it , there is no growth and there is no transformation. Many people run from adversity without realizing the hidden opportunity it provides.