Archive for July, 2010

friday robots

These robots wouldn’t look completely out of place on a totem pole.  Or destroying a major city with their laser beams.  Either way.friday-robots-7-2-10 friday-robots-7-2-10-2

Happy Friday everybody!

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happy july fourth from falling rock

From all of us at Falling Rock National Park, happy birthday America!
see-america-first-brown-paper-lowFor extra patriotism, imagine fireworks exploding above this book while a marching band plays Irving Berlin and bald eagles swoop around.
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at last, the bob dylan kid’s album

He is a titan who walks among us.  He has given us the musical treasures Highway 61 Revisited, Blood on the Tracks, Time Out of Mind, and about 75 other albums.  Last year, Bob Dylan saw a gaping hole in his catalog.  Thankfully, we now have a Dylan Christmas album to put on when we’re sick of Elvis, Harry Connick Jr., Amy Grant, and nearly every American Idol contestant.

But what could possibly be next for Bob?  Has he finally plumbed the bottom of his lyrical well?  Never!  This fall, get ready to be the first on your block to get Bob Dylan’s brand-new children’s album!rabbi-zimmy-sings-for-the-kids

Rabbi Zimmy Sings for the Kids is a rollicking, romping rockfest that is sure to have your toddler screaming to turn it up to 11.

Hear Bob sing:
Ringiddy-Ding Them Bells
The Times They Are A-Jumpin’
The Boy In Me
Spanish Harlem Incident
Happy Eyed Girl of the Highlands
Last Thoughts on Woody Guthrie
All the Animals on Maggie’s Farm
…and much, much more!

In addition to all those instant classics, the album itself comes packaged with a sticker book depicting Bob’s musical milestones.  Have you ever wanted to populate your own Desolation Row?  Well, now you can!  Join Bob in his Woodstock basement when he played silly and soulful songs with The Band!  Hang out with Bob in New Orleans when he was recording Oh Mercy!  And kids under age 6 will love the colorful page devoted to Bob’s born-again period.

Yes, Rabbi Zimmy Sings for the Kids is sure to please anyone from ages 9 to 109.

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okay bill watterson, time to come out of retirement

You’ve watched every movie in your Netflix queue.  You have plumbed the depths of your Pandora radio stations.  You’ve thoroughly tested the capabilities of your custom-built road bike.  It’s time now, Mr. Watterson, to return to the publishing world.

Judd Apatow has said that comedians are just people in search of a philosophy.  That makes sense, because they make fun of everything.  Maybe that search for meaning is part of why you dropped out of public life for the past 15 years.  You went off the grid.  Cartoonists have heard rumors of a mysterious moustachioed man at Buddhist temples, hiking the Andes, riding a hot air balloon over the North Pole.  Did you find what you were looking for?  I sincerely hope so.

If you had simply stopped publishing, that may have been the final answer.  Bill Watterson, the J.D. Salinger for Generation X, threatening trespassers with his shotgun.  But you have popped up every now and again, which makes the long pauses all the more infuriating.  Your heartfelt review of the Charles Schulz biography, the short and funny interview you did for the Plain Dealer earlier this year.  It seems like maybe you’re not done – that you’ve still got something to say, and the skill with which to say it differently than anyone else.

So do it already.  It could be the comic strip equivalent to The Dark Knight Returns.  It could be a sci-fi farce.  It could be a series of paintings, or a piano concerto, or an ice sculpture.  My point is, a talent that strong shouldn’t be denied.  Michael Jordan tried to retire like seventeen times, but he knew he was put on Earth to sell shoes play basketball.  Don’t be the guy who one-ups Michael Jordan by only retiring once.

You could draw a comic strip or a graphic novel about anything you choose.  You were an editorial cartoonist without talking about politics, a philosopher without talking about religion.  You got to all the heavy stuff in life without weighing your comics down, an amazing feat.  I credit you with getting me into watercolors.  And though I haven’t used a brush to draw comics for quite a while, I’m thinking of trying again.

Mr. Watterson: show us how it’s done, again.

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friday robots on the coast

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die, comic sans, die

Even with the word ‘comic’ in its name, I can’t think of a font cartoonists avoid more than Comic Sans.

Faithful readers of this here blog know you can count on three things: Robots on Friday, YOUR SOURCE for Alan Rickman news and information, and a pure fire hatred for the Comic Sans font.

Did you know that, according to a survey of Alan Rickman, the worst font ever created was Comic Sans?  It’s true!

Comic Sans is the monster that won’t die.  It comes to us in our dreams and tries to strangle us with our own intestines.  It lurks in old abandoned summer camps and hacks teenagers to death with a machete.  It jeers at us, mocks our feeble attempts at “civilization” and “profound thought.”

In this photo taken from an art exhibit, even Thoreau is not safe from the creeping tentacles of Comic Sans:thoreau-comic-sans

Over at McSweeney’s, Comic Sans lays down what amounts to a shot across the bow.  No other font can stand up to the towering menace that is Comic Sans.

Most recently, Comic Sans crept into the last place any of us would have expected: a fuming letter written by Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert to departing star/traitor to democracy LeBron James.  Gilbert’s letter was rightfully ridiculed not for its content, but for his choice of fonts: Comic Sans.

Like a venereal disease, Comic Sans cannot be vanquished in one fell swoop, but must be consistently and methodically scrubbed from every computer that is infected.  Together, we must raise awareness about his horrific and disfigured font, and ultimately end its use.  For the United States – nay, for the world – Comic Sans must be defeated.

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Harvey Pekar, 1939-2010

He was, among other things, proof that Ohio breeds great cartoonists.
We’ll miss ya, Harvey.who-is-harvey-pekar

palm trees

I’ve been drawing a lot of palm trees lately.  This is a series of them I drew.  The last one, I think, is either about to explode or just had a really great idea. palm-trees-series

And of course no drawing session would be complete without turning palm trees into hot air balloons.  This would be my preferred method of travel, if it existed.palm-tree-balloon

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friday robots: from the sketchbook

Two unvarnished pages of Friday Robots to take you into the weekend.friday-robots-7-16-10 friday-robots-7-16-10-2

Hey, next week is San Diego Comic Con!  Hope to see you there!

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see you in san diego

This will be a quiet week around Falling Rock National Park, as I am busy preparing for San Diego Comic Con!  I have to make copies of comics so I have something to give Denzel Washington in the totally likely event I’ll bump into him.  If not Denzel, I’m sure there will be just a few comic publishers there.  Who knows, maybe they will be interested in my comic book.  That’s part of the magic of Comic Con.

Have a great week everybody.  Friday Robots will appear as scheduled!  Have no fear that you’ll have to face the weekend sans robots.

And if you happen to be in San Diego, drop me a line!  I’ll be the red-head kid wandering around with a look of limitless optimism in his eyes.peanuts-beautiful-kid