Monday, March 31, 2014

Painting a Giant Mushroom Head This Week on the Wall of Frankie's Pizza

Frankie's Pizza will be open in about two weeks behind Rita's Italian Ice in Gahanna, OH.
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Western Roundup!

One of several old paperbacks I purchased during last year's Route 40 Yard Sale.
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Saturday, March 29, 2014

Recently Read: Scorchy Smith and the Art of Noel Sickles

Quite simply, Noel Sickles' 1930s run on the comic strip Scorchy Smith is the ur-text of American adventure cartooning. Though Roy Crane's Wash Tubbs and Captain Easy led the way, Sickle's single-handed and seemingly off-handed advancement of using ink and brush-based chiaroscuro to define shadows, forms, figures, compositions and objects revolutionized and galvanized entire generations of cartoonists.

The first cartoonist who utilized Sickles' new technique was his friend and colleague Milton Caniff, who applied it to his Terry and the Pirates strip, with amazing and classic results (Caniff's writing and strip characters were better, so the graphic advancement in his strip brought the quality of comic strips to a whole new level). Nearly every major adventure cartoonist afterwards applied Sickles' new techniques to one extent or another, far too many than can be listed here: Jack Kirby, Carmine Infantino, Don Heck, Alex Toth, Lee Elias, Wally Wood, Will Eisner, Frazetta, Johnny Craig, Frank Robbins, George Tuska, Alex Raymond...

Scorchy Smith and the Art of Noel Sickles reprints every Scorchy Smith strip Sickles drew, including strips before he started and after he left. That's only the second half of this very heavy and large, nearly 400-page book. The first half functions as an excellently researched biography by Bruce Canwell accompanied by hundreds of beautifully reproduced color and B&W illustrations, ads, paintings, sketches, comics and graphics
of all kind by Sickles through his long career. Jim Steranko wrote the introduction.

I cannot recommend this fine book enough; it's an essential, foundational reference and document for any serious reader of comics and scholar of the art of cartooning. The only small compaint I have is the binding developed for the book isn't adequitely strong enough for the weight of the pages the book holds.Though I was very careful, the end papers began to tear away from the book. A book which weighs 6 and a half pounds needs much stronger binding, especially at $50.
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Carolina Country Snacks Line of Pork Rinds

The extensive line of Carolina Country Snacks pork rinds (including cracklins and strips) are the best I've had in decades. I wish they were sold in Ohio. If you're journeying from NC some time, buy a bunch of the Carolina Country Snacks Kettle Style BBQ Pork Cracklins and I'll pay you back!
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Friday, March 28, 2014

Book Signing Scheduled for Gem City Comic Con

We will be set up at Gem City Comic Con on Saturday, April 5th, selling comic books, posters, t-shirts, buttons, coffee mugs, minicomics, original art, books and framed mutated cat paintings! Stop by and check out the weird coolness.

Gem City Comic Con will be in the Nutter Center at Wright State University in Dayton. Some of the featured guests include Kevin Eastman, Lora Innis, Mark Waid and Trina Robbins.
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Copy This! A Celebration of Mini Comix!

I was very happy to receive the inaugural issue in the mail of a new mini comic which celebrates mini comics! It's getting surprisingly more difficult in the digital age to find places which review and promote small press comics (mini comics, digests, fanzines and indy comics printed on paper) and Copy This!, published by D. Blake Werts, is a welcome addition.

My good friend Dan Taylor is on the cover and interviewed inside and longtime cartoonist Steve (Morty the Dog) Willis provides the intro. 

I'm not finding ordering info inside the book, but send a couple bucks to D. Blake Werts for an issue (or two): 12339 Chesley Drive, Charlotte, NC, 28277. 

Dan Taylor's website:

It looks like Steve Willis' blog is by invite only, but here's an interview with Willis:

BTW, Dan Taylor will be set up at the Gem City Con in Dayton on April 5th and 6th. I 'll be set up there on Saturday.
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Have Brain - Will Travel

My new desktop.
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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Art Detail From a Promo Poster Created Today for Nix Comics Quarterly

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1963 OSU Theatre Season Ad

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Saturday, March 22, 2014

Frankie's Pizza Mushroom Mascot

I'm painting a huge mushroom head on the wall of my sister Deborah's pizza shop this week, Frankie's Pizza in Gahanna, OH

The shop will be open in a week or so. Check out their Facebook page for details:
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Thursday, March 20, 2014

Kyanize Your Home

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Sunday Comix, March 23rd, 2014

Come share your cartooning work! Sunday Comix is meeting this month at Wild Goose Creative, 2491 Summit Street, Columbus, Ohio, from 2-4.

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Monday, March 17, 2014

The Circus Is At Lazarus Department Store, Assembly Center

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Sunday, March 16, 2014

Pics from the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum Exhibit, "Substance and Shadow: the Art of the Cartoon"

                                                    Jeff Smith art from Bone.

                                    Milton Caniff art from Terry and the Pirates.

                                         Chester Gould art from early Dick Tracy.

Winsor McCay explosion.

Hal Foster art from Prince Valiant. Notice Foster's influence on Barry Windsor Smith in the second panel.

Sergio Aragones art.

Jack Kirby and Frank Giacoia art from Captain America.

Neal Adams art from the famous "Answer me that, Mr. Green Lantern!" story.

Winsor McCay editorial art.

New Yorker art by Roz Chast

 Hulk art by Marie Severin.

Mutt and Jeff art by Bud Fisher.

Blondie, by Chic Young.

Mort Walker's Beetle Bailey.

Guess who?

More McCay.

George Herriman's Krazy Kat.

Cliff Sterrett art from Polly and Her Pals.

Robert Crumb.

John Buscema Conan art (inked by Rudy Nebres?)

Chris Ware.

Fred Lasswell (or Bllly DeBeck?) art for Barney Google and Snuffy Smith.

Gorgeous Roy Crane art for Wash Tubbs and Captain Easy.

E.C. Segar?

Basil Wolverton's take on FDR

Close up of Carl Barks pencils.

Animation cel art.

Felix the Cat, by Otto Messmer.

Floyd Gottfredson's Mickey Mouse.

Billy, from The Family Circus, by Bill Keane 

McCay again, drawn for his animated film, Gertie the Dinosaur.

Cartoonist Max Ink, enjoying the exhibit. 

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