Posts Tagged ‘illustration’

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Penguins don’t do casual Fridays.

February 23, 2013

penguins dont do casual

Two nights ago while brushing our teeth, I was asking our daughter Emma what sounds different animals make.  We started with the easy pet types (cats, dogs, and birds) before moving on to barnyard livestock (cows, roosters, pigs, horses).  Like every other two-year-old in the world, she was a pro at mimicking each of these creatures.

It wasn’t until we came to some of the more exotic members of the wild kingdom that things started to get interesting.

          Me: What does an elephant sound like?

          Emma: Achoooooooo!

          Me: Achoooooooo?

          Emma: Yeah.  Their big noses…  achoooooooo!

          Me: Okay.  How about a Penguin?

         Emma: /high-pitched, squeaky voice/ Penguin, penguin, penguin.

         Me: That’s what they say?

          Emma: Baby penguins.  Mama penguins say – PENGUIN, PENGUIN, PENGUIN!

          Me: Wow.  Well, what noise do monkeys make?

          Emma: I like pink bananas!

She delivered each of these answers with no hesitation and complete confidence.  At the moment, we’re not sure if she’s a little bit brilliant or just completely batty.

Either way, she’s awfully entertaining.

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Mother inferiors are often overlooked.

February 12, 2013

mother inferiors

When I was quite young our family moved from Kansas to Alaska.  One of the most immediate differences that our family noticed was the way that people dressed for church on Sundays.

In Kansas, men wore suits (or at least a shirt and tie) and women generally wore dresses.  At the age of four, I already owned a goodwill suit and clip-on tie.  It was the norm.  In Alaska, things were very different.  Men and women both wore sweaters, turtlenecks, t-shirts, jeans (gasp!), and even jackets emblazoned with the name of local bars.

Although we adapted to the more relaxed style over time, to a strict Catholic family from the midwest it looked less like Sunday Mass and more like laundry day.

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Always insist on cultured pearls.

February 3, 2013

cultured pearls (fixed)

This little fellow is dressed up for a special occasion!  Last Friday marked the third anniversary of this blog.  Wow.  I’ve been posting for three years (with a few extended breaks) here at wordpress.  In honor of this modest milestone, here are a few blog stats:

  • total number of posts = 284
  • total number of comments = 986
  • total number of followers = 2,898
  • total number of visitors on busiest day = 3,252
  • total number of countries visitors came from = 148
  • total number of new babies in my household = 2
  • total number of comics published in national magazine = 1
  • total number of drawings that feature a stylish mustache = 26
  • total number of drawings that feature an unstylish mustache = doesn’t exist

Cool.

Cool cool cool.

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The old roll didn’t have the heart to warn the new one.

January 28, 2013

old and new rolls

When my wife and I were newly married, we rented an apartment containing two bedrooms, a small kitchen, and an absolutely minuscule bathroom.  The bathroom was so tiny that it was nearly impossible for two people to stand back to back between the tub and the sink.

One day I was shaving at the sink while my wife was standing at the bathroom door talking.  During a short lull in the conversation I felt a gentle scuffing on my heel.  The mirror was fogged over from the steam, but I assumed that my wife was trying to slip behind me so I scooted forward as much as possible to give her room.  I continued shaving until I felt the small scratching sensation again.  As I attempted to squeeze even further against the sink, I saw someone out of the corner of my eye.

It was my wife – still in the doorway.

In fact, she wasn’t moving at all.  She was frozen in place.  Then, her eyes (which had been focused on the floor behind me) slowly moved up and met mine.

Before I could ask what was wrong, I felt yet another bump on my heel.  I turned quickly and saw a small brown mouse nuzzling against the back of my bare foot.

After a series of impressive jumps, kicks, and manly pirouettes, I was finally able to catch my breath and ask my wife why she didn’t tell me about the mouse caressing my foot.  Or, better yet, why she watched it do so three separate times?!

She couldn’t give me a good reason.

In fact, it’s been nine years and she still hasn’t.

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Circles are definitely not the sharpest shapes.

January 23, 2013

circles not the sharpest shape

Recently I’ve not been feeling too sharp myself…

I have never signed my little drawings or put the website address on them.  I really liked the simple look that just a sketch and caption have.  As a few of my drawings have become kinda-sorta popular online I have seen them surface on lots of social media sites (Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Reddit, etc…) multiple times.  It’s neat to see them spread far and wide.  The last time my English Muffin cartoon was posted on reddit.com (last week) it had been viewed over 250,000 times in just a few hours.  Pretty cool…

What’s not cool is finding people taking credit for them.  Or even worse selling products decorated with my little drawings.  Over the past few weeks I have found hats, shirts, stickers, mugs, phone cases, and many other products with one of the many cartoons I’ve drawn.

Booooooooooo!

I guess I should have known better.  Putting unsigned content online means that it can be posted and reposted from site to site and the original source can be lost if not cited each time.  Like I said, I’m not feeling so sharp.  So… rather than focus on the problem, I’m going straight to solution!

I have started signing my drawings so that I can retain some amount of ownership as they move out through the world wide web.  I’m feeling smarter already!

…actually, I guess I’ll feel smarter tomorrow since I forgot to sign this drawing…

D’oh.

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Elephants never forget (or forgive).

January 16, 2013

elephants never forgetWhen I was 2 or 3 years old, my parents took my older brother and I to a renaissance fair.  It is actually one of my earliest memories.  There was a log rolling contest that my brother won, but I don’t remember.  There was jousting and sword play by knights in full armor, but I don’t remember that either.

What I do remember is riding on the back of an elephant.  I remember it very clearly.  If you have ever been on a horse, you are familiar with the up and down bouncing motion that riders experience.  The elephant was entirely different.  I remember it involved something more like swaying left and right of center as it moved.

It was exciting.

It was a unique.

It was absolutely terrifying.

Thinking about it now, I realize that many of my earliest memories are things that either shocked or frightened me (being attacked by a goose, choking on a hotdog, crashing my tricycle while being chased by a gorilla, etc…).  Somehow, the more powerful emotions helped the experiences seat more firmly in my long-term memory.

I know that I had a wonderful early childhood filled with special, one-of-a-kind moments… I just can’t seem to actually recall them.

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Stached potatoes are the most stylish side dish.

January 14, 2013

stached potatoesLast summer we did quite a bit of gardening around our house.  Cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, spinach, peas, squash, and potatoes.  Although everything did well, the potatoes were the most successful element.  We pulled up about 150-200 pounds worth of Chieftain Red, German butterball, Yukon Gold, and Bake King potatoes.

It was pretty impressive.

What’s even more impressive is that we ate the last ones tonight.

(For anyone who’s curious – that means I have personally eaten at least 50 lbs of potatoes since August.)

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