Archive for August, 2009

Big Funny Aftermath…..

Sunday, August 9th, 2009

So, for those that didn’t know (and am sure all that read this blog do…all seven of you) Big Funny happened this weekend. For pictures of the event, check out Danno Klonowski’s site.

Now, I’d like to explain my piece that was in the show, since there is A LOT more than meets the eye. It isn’t just really a jumbled mass of confusion. About 90% of the people I spoke with were able to figure out how to read it, so that’s a good thing. You can blame Chris Ware for the layout inspiration.

My Big Funny submission is entitled “Hey Rube!” There are many meanings to the title. First and foremost, this strip was a dedication to Rube Goldberg. Goldberg was infamous for his machines that were overly elaborate and engineered apparatuses that perform simple tasks in a unique and complex fashion, causing a chain reaction. That is what the comic basically is, one big Rube Goldberg machine, but with human elements. The second meaning to the title is a phrase that was used by carnies to indicate a local getting out of control and becoming wise to the schemes of the midway.

To view the image in it’s entirety click here.

As you can see, the scheming carny in the first panel has his eyes set on “the prize” a pearl necklace from a passing burgeois couple. In panel two you can see that the male companion of this couple has been “marked” with an “X” on his back. This was a commonplace activity in the carnivals of old where a member of the outfit would slap a particular carnival-goer on the back with his/her hand covered in chalk. This would make the rest of the carnies aware that this particular customer was an “easy mark” or just simply a “mark.”

In panel three and four you can tell that there is a commotion going on at one of the games. This game, an actual one that existed in carnivals of the golden days, involved a bowling ball on a string that one would toss towards a bowling pin. The game, of course, was rigged in favor of the carny and the local or “rube” would barely ever win. In panel five you see one of the carnies explaining to the “rubes” that the game is fixed, which is the catalyst to the Rube Goldberg Machine.

Pretty much everything beyond this point is self explanatory if you are able to follow the subtle devices that cross over the gutters of the page to dictate which panel to read next. In fact, when creating this piece, I was unsure whether these devices would be enough to lead the reader to the next panel, so I created the panels in shapes that would lead one to the next. Also, I included various background elements to do the same thing. Basically, I decided that using arrows would be dull and rather unimaginative.

So, there you go. If you were unable to read this piece, I apologize. Take a second or third look at it. Discover all of the easter eggs, there are many. And most of all, thanks for supporting the sponsors and artists of Big Funny.

St. Paul Cartoonist Conspiracy Jam! This Thursday, August 20th, 2009!

Monday, August 17th, 2009

Join the St. Paul Cartoonist Conspiracy Cell and create a jam comic! This jam will be extra special as we will bid farewell to our friend and Twin Cities conspirator Mike Sgier. Mike is moving out to Philadelphia in a couple of weeks and this will be your last chance to jam with him in the Twin Cities! So, come on out, say goodbye to Mike and jam with us. It’s easy and fun! Just bring some drawing utensils, an idea for the jam, and a few bucks to get a tasty beverage — the baristas really do appreciate that.

The jam will start promptly at 6:30 and run until…whenever.

The meetings are open to anyone who wants to draw with us, and the results are posted here sooner rather than later.

To join us come to:
Cosmic’s Coffee Shoppe
189 Snelling Ave N.
St. Paul, MN 55104
(Northwest corner of Snelling and Selby)

More not than often we head on over to grab a brew at:
O’Gara’s Bar and Grill
164 Snelling Ave N
St. Paul, MN 55104
(Southeast corner of Snelling and Selby)

Bus info here.

Hope to see you there!

City Pages Comix Issue 2009

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

Hey folks! It’s that time of year again! The City Pages Comix Issue will be out on newsstands Wednesday. Pick one up and see all of the fantastical comics that myself and my pals put together!

If you don’t have access to a physical copy of this great alt-weekly periodical, feel free to check them out on the web, right here!

And if you ABSOLUTELY CANNOT read my copy on their website (there is no option to enlarge), check it out here:

Super Maxi-Pad Girl #2 Cover

Thursday, August 20th, 2009

Hey everyone! Fallcon is right around the corner, which will see the debut of the somewhat anticipated Super Maxi-Pad Girl #2! Yeah, believe it or not some people have actually been asking me when this thing is coming out! Anyway, the release date is October 10th and 11th at the MCBA Fallcon. Copies will be available all throughout the convention and eventually online through the store. This twenty-four page book contains three stories plus a letters page; hosted by none other than The Period itself!

Below is a sneak peak at the cover. Mind you, changes may still be made. For instance, the signature in the lower lefthand corner of the page and the font at the bottom, which I am just not happy with.