Sunday, June 30, 2013

Truly Outrageous Coloring Contest

I'm told from time to time, "I'd love to see your take on ____." I have a folder of reference images and on rainy days, I dip in and fulfill some fantasies.

Among the top requests is Jem and the Holograms from Hasbro's doll line & TV show.  Yah, I know I kinda Fd up her shoulder/back, and the drummer looks a little wee. Overall, it's a good warm-up piece for the club scenes I need to draw for my half-finished indie-rockers-with-baby OGN.

It's hard to think of a B&W Jem drawing since all the "truly outrageous" characters have crazy-colored wigs and awful clothes. But, I didn't have the giddy-up to color this.'s the 

TRULY OUTRAGEOUS coloring contest!

1) Email me for the high res image.
2) Submit your colored version by Labor Day.
3) Judging panel of me will award places.

Prizes as follows:
3rd place: Tim Fish designed t-shirt
2nd place: Piece of original Tim Fish art
1st place: Dinner with me (paid for by me) when we are at the same con/city.

If anyone actually submits colors, I'll post them here.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Arche-Lady SPECIAL #13 Preview

It's that time of year again, when I start thinking about Arche-Lady! Well, that's a bit overly dramatic. Fish-philes know I worked nearly exclusively on my campy homage to super-herodom for nearly the entire '90s. Her series ended with her in an ageless coma, but 7 years later (ish) she was revived in an unpublished ditty that was to be the compilation of the entire series plus specials, etc. I really couldn't multi-task while working on Cavalcade of Boys, Strugglers, Young Bottoms in Love, Love is the Reason, Trust/Truth, Something Fishy This Way Comes, plus shorties for indie publishers and Marvel. 

So, in true fashion to the series, I took a hiaitus. 

Kick forward to 2011, the 20th anniversary of her first appearance in Ten Minute Cartoons, I revived my annual tradition of the special, with the Arche-Lady Special #11. I know a few people saw it at Ne York Comic Con October of that year, but if you weren't there, you probably didn't see it. And with literally zero con presence in 2012, I'm guessing you also missed the Arche-Lady Special #12. Bummer!

So now it's time for me to get excited about the Arche-Lady Special #13...I'm thinking of a break from both the Arche-Lady vs. the digital race of the MITAANS storyline as well as the Astro-Boy vs. the conjoined cosmic entity storyline. You may recall my sketches of Doctor Monkey-Face a while back...those are turning into a nice shortie. And since 2013 is the 20th anniversary of Arche-Lady's series proper (she lingered in Ten Minute Cartoons for a year-ish before busting into The New Adventures of Arche-Lady and Astro-Boy #1 in 1993), I was thinking to revisit a villain that graced the pages of episode 1, 2, or 3. Time will tell!

I'm not planning to do any cons this year either, except for attending TCAF in May, so I'm not sure when you'll get to read these gems!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

The closed chapter

Following up on all my business travel, and my enjoyment of the company of professional peers, I was intrigued by the goings-on at a NYC-school I interviewed with back in spring 2009. A lot has changed since then!

Through these conversations, I was convinced by my counterparts—and myself—to apply for an open position there. It was a great professional opportunity, and not a bad one financially. So I went about the evaluation process with personal factors: do I want to give up what I have ? do I want the NYC experience?

Along the way, it became increasingly clear, that while I would get a lot out of the NYC experience, I finally feel comfortable and "at home" here and with my life. 

Though I've been in my evolving position at MIT for some time, before and since, I've moved around a bit. NH, Saint Louis, San Diego, CT, Boston, back to Saint Louis, back to Boston. Between the time I graduated college and bought my loft 3 years back, I lived in 15 different apartments!

While "moving" is a lot of work, it's not change and moving that was causing me anxiety in the decision making process; I've moved, I've relocated, I've changed, I've adapted. I know I can do that. But I've never felt comfortable before, and I often deny myself happiness for the sake of a new challenge. Before I bought my loft, the longest I'd lived anyplace since I left for university is two and a half years. Three years and counting in my loft is new frontier for me; comfort, and happiness is new frontier for me. So, in short, staying put is the greater challenge for me to tackle at this point in my life.

It was an interesting journey to reach the decision, and professionally, I am remorseful for it. But one must make these decisions, yes? I'll miss the opportunity to live closer to my many NYC friends, but every coin has a flip side, and in this case, it means I won't have the awkwardness of living closer to, hrm, someone who it would be highly awkward to live closer too! I hope someday I have the opportunity to live in NYC when the timing and circumstances are right...but for now, as the post title suggests, the chapter is closed.

For your delight, waiting for my train for my trip for my second interview, I spotted this ample lass in tight & short clothing. Like one of the fellows I sketched in Toronto, she sported a bolero length denim jacket. All the rage I guess.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Jiggling, I mean jogging

Cooling down after his run, checking his pulse and still jiggling.

Monday, June 10, 2013

You saved MY Saturday, too!

Let's get this part over with—yes, I know I mindlessly, carelessly smudged up the drawing and then sort of gave up on making the car look nice. There.

Memorial Day weekend, I was headed up north to spend time w/my family and work in my dad's woodshop. If you check my Facebook, you can see the two case pieces I made.

Stopping for gas on my way out of town, I noticed a cute fellow dressed all cosplay for (I hope) the anime con that was in town. He finished pumping his gas, and got in his car, leaving his tall ice coffee on the roof.

Part of me desperately wanted to see how it would play out. But, the nice guy in me (well, maybe 2/3 the nice guy...) knocked on his window, and then reached up for his coffee and handed it to him. 

"Dude, thanks!" said he, "you totally SAVED my Saturday!"

Well, no, thank you, for brightening mine.  

Attention gamers/anime fans, do you recognize this character? If it's not a Gatchaman member, Sailor Moon or Pikachu, I'm lost.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Toronto boys

this scanned poorly, didn't it?

Sunday, June 2, 2013

TCAF 2013 report

The last time I attended a comics festival was NY Comic Con 2011—18 months ago! 2012 was completely con-free for me. It felt good to step away as I turned to designing and building furniture, but at the same time, I miss the camaraderie of the shows and seeing my friends!

This year, dear Monica Gallagher was exhibiting solo at the show (she used to have to sneak in on my table...sorry TCAF) and Greg and I decided to tag along for a Toronto good time!

I saw some nice comic work, talked to a few creators I hadn't met before, and attended some panels. All and all a good time.

However, the stand-out cranky moment was attending the "book design" panel, which was supposed to focus on everything but the creation of comics themselves. So excited. The panel was a great line-up and I have much to learn here.

It was awful.

Mostly due to the moderator's questions... such as "What's your dream comics assignment?" and "What would you be doing if you weren't a graphic designer?" and for a panel about design, no visuals was a no-no. It ended up the panel bitching about past failures and hyping successes. My favorite, they told us not to break the design rules, but never told us what those rules were.

On to the Q&A. I asked if they ever test different covers at trade shows, A/B test, or focus group test...or do they go with their gut (see the NYT article about how the re-issue of the classic GREAT GATSBY cover was outselling the movie poster cover like ten to one)? 

I won't name names, but the first response was "Thank GOD we don't!" followed by a rant about focus groups. Ooops, guess this big deal in the publishing world doesn't even known what A/B testing is? The next response, "you have to just trust your instincts." Uh, you might be wrong? The whole point is to test two, and see which sells better. I don't mind the fact that they aren't testing covers, but the venom unleashed at the question was absurd. I'm not a beauty school drop out, but a marketing professional with, hrm, 14 years experience.

No wonder why the industry is floundering. 

Saturday, June 1, 2013


Here was my Saturday:

5:45 awaken by sunrise (despite the blinds on my loft's 25 windows, the light can't be stopped).

6:00 walk Mr. Darby, coffee, cereal

6:45 bring my car up to the flea lot (it was full of Pier's stuff) and unload at his space.

7:30 start to bring my stuff to the flea

8:30 all set up...hang time

9-1 sell stuff at my building's flea market.was exhausting. I sold about 2/3 of my stuff, so it was a good sale. I had hoped to make a bunch of custom pieces of furniture, but in the end, I only had time to make 2 case pieces (one sliding-door cabinet 38" x 12" x 20" and one open bookcase 38" x 12" x 20") for me, so I could sell off a bookcase I don't like/want (38" x 12" x 40").  Maybe for next year's flea. Check the Brickbottom flea's Facebook page!

1-2 break down the flea

2-4 errands

4-6 reorganize

6-7:30 clean (this was a big deal since Thurs-Fri I had new windows installed and was prepping for the flea. I also trimmed back my beard w/the electric shaver, always messy and I cleaned my bathroom. I wanted to shave off the scruff, as I have a business trip to NYC on Mon-Tues).

7:30-8 take recylcing out, take trash out. warm up leftovers.

8-9 eat dinner, do dishes.

I'm tired! Time for bed! What did you get up to today?