Thursday, April 10, 2008

Danger Bobby Thompson! Danger!

Today I bring you another prime example of drawing inspiration from something well beyond my years. I am a pretty big "Lost In Space" fan. Not so much the movie from the mid-90's, the original 60's television show with Jonathan Harris. I remember staying home sick and watching re-runs as a kid, and it's because of that, I think I find comfort in old television. As a kid, during the day if you stayed home, that was all that was on television. Back in the days when morning TV was not full of talk shows who's hosts are content to talk over each other just to get themselves heard. Networks ran great old TV shows. It was here my love for Lucy bloomed. I found fun in the antics of the evil Doctor Smith, and laughed at the zany physical comedy that was Jack Tripper, aka the late, great John Ritter.

So enough old man banter. Here in all his "Will Robinson-ness" is Ace Fernando's trusty young ward, and venerable side kick, Bobby Thompson!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

The Monk Stays In the Picture

Here are some older designs of The Monkster and his friend Jimmy. If you notice, the design of Monkster's feet have changed. Now that I am actually designing cartoon characters to be turned into toys, there are certain guidelines I have to keep in mind while designing. His feet in previous incarnations provided what I was told could be a "choke hazard" in toy form. Meaning if the feet on a toy of the Monkster were to break off of said toy, a child could choke on the busted parts.

So on the newer renditions below, you'll notice he's got regular looking chicken feet, as opposed to the retro cool, 50's modern design above. The irony here being that when I set out to give the character an overhaul a year ago, the sturdy feet you see below were the first thing I placed on the chopping block. They were the one thing that always bothered me about the character, but now with Monkster's new properly proportioned body, they give the character a unique look. I can't wait to get him in motion and see those little chicken legs flying!

Now Jimmy here had quite the long and arduous journey to get to the sleek and fun design you see above. I do feel he needs one or two more redesigns before we hit animation. I would like to lessen some of the hard angles on his midsection and get to something a bit more rounded in some places. I was going for a hybrid Jay Ward-esk look for our boy here. He's part Peabody's boy Sherman, and part Timmy Turner of "The Fairly Odd Parents" with maybe a bit of Hanna-Barbera rolled in for good measure. I'll be posting some exploratory expression work I've been doing with Jimmy and Monkster shortly.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

What I'm Listening To (With a P.S. of What I Saw)

Time yet again for another installment of this classic weekly series in which I tell you what you should be listening to, because I'm listening to it. You all know how amazing my taste in music is. What's wrong with you? Go buy the stuff I tell you to.

Don't get me started on how things would be better if I ruled the world. Lets just get into the musical selections of the week shall we?

So have we all finally accepted Jack White of the White Stripes as our personal lord and savior? I know I have!

Jack is back again with singer/songwriter Brendan Benson and the rest of The Raconteurs for another stellar album. Their sophomore release "Consolers Of The Lonely" shows just what happens when 2 cosmically stellar musical forces combine for not just a first, but a SECOND album. Solid all the way through, and yet, only came close in dethroning Air Traffic's "Fractured Life" for my favorite album of the year so far. God, (aka Jack White) may strike me down for saying so, but right now the race for album of my heart ('08 edition) belongs to them Brits.

Specifically, the tracks "You Don't Understand Me", "Salute Your Solution", "Old Enough", and "Many Shades of Black" are my faves. I'm listening to the album as I write this. Pick it up, you will not be disappointed in the least! The tracks that are even mixes of Jack and Brendan are nothing short of beauty.

Oh, Stephen Malkmus. (admirable sigh) How I remember rocking out to your now legendary 90's-college-radio-friendly band known as Pavement. Then how after when I got out of high school, lost everything I owned, couch hopped all over the North Hollywood/Studio City hood, drove around in my piece of crap car rocking out to quite possibly the best song ever written about Yule Brenner called "Jo-Jo's Jacket" from your solo album; I would smile and want to get home to watch the movie "West World". Yet sadly, I am a bit disappointed in your new album. Well, disappointed may be a harsh term for the moment. I'm a bit preoccupied with the now broken out street war between Air Traffic and The Raconteurs. Never the less, when my ears can take no more of either of the champions for my heart, I'm listening to "Real Emotional Trash" from Stephen and his new band The Jicks. I'm on the fence about it now, but I'm sure when my ears clear, and Jack White has laid waste to what was once the band Air Traffic, I will listen to this album and like Stephen's past releases, enjoy them with a passion. For right now, my heart belongs to Jack, and not in a gay way.

Now we end this week's feature with a bit of the unusual. In accompaniment with what I've been listening to, I would like to bring to light, what I recently saw at my local cineplex. It's now firmly been established that I will go see anything Simon Pegg is in. (With the exception of the forthcoming Star Trek movie. I just can't do it. I've had far too much sex in my life to be able to sit through a Trek film, no matter who's in it, or who helmed it) Simon Pegg, you may or may not know as Shawn of "Shawn of the Dead" and the Fuzz, of the film "Hot Fuzz", in which he played Sargent Nicholas Angel. Not only does he star in the film, he co-wrote it with MTV's "The State" alum, Michael Ian Black. Oh but wait, it gets better! It stars quite possibly one of the most underrated actor/comedians of our time; One Mr. Hank Azaria. Now the bad news is, it was directed by David "Ross from Friends" Schwimmer, who you all know we had to forgive at some point for the whole Ross and Rachel debacle. Finally we are now able to do so and David may return to the rest of society. He turns in a fine directorial debut in this film. A film that is full of heart, and laughs, and even a few shots of a very unattractive British man ass. Go see it, and listen to The Raconteurs on the way to the theater.