Casanova X

My god, I’ve been reading this book for 10 years.

Casanova is my favorite comic book series today. It has only published a few issues in the last 10 years (dear god it’s been ten years?!) and it’s been in fits and starts as its creators have become more popular and have left to work on books that are less passion-projects and more actually-paying projects, but I love that they haven’t given up on it.

The second series ending is still one of the greatest reading moments of my life.

The concept is pretty simple: a debonair bad guy gets pulled into an alternate dimension where he’s the ultimate good guy by an even WORSE guy to act as a double agent. He tries to negotiate his new life, stay alive, enjoy stylish adventures that are (very metaphorically) representative of the career of the writer and artists creating it. There’s a ton of twinning and mirroring: Casanova has a twin sister Zephyr. He’s a bad guy playing a good guy. His twin sister returns in the second book and is the main character for a while, time and space and destiny and love all figure in together. Universes end (sometimes just as the first two pages of an issue).

I love it dearly. I hope someday you will, too.

http://fabioandgabriel.blogspot.com/2016/05/casanova-celebrates-10-years.html

 

I Found My Old Car, A New Jacket, It’s All Gonna Be Great!

"...they're not as good as I remember."

There are a lot of questionable elements to seeing old Han Solo, but I appreciate that Abrams and Kasdan put him into the movie right at the end of his journey where he was about to get everything he’d been searching for and realize it all meant nothing to him.

Right after I saw Star Wars: The Force Awakens, I mentioned to a friend that there’s a whole Harvey Pekar story about a dedicated Wookie friend sticking by his aging human friend. The human is at the end of his emotional rope, trying to vainly recollect all the artifacts of his lost youth, transforming the dashing ramshackle setting of rebellious youth into a terrible and carefully orchestrated setting. A decor. A diorama of a thing that no longer exists. It fits in perfectly with the general fan-nerd impulses streaked throughout The Force Awakens.

SPOILERS: Continue reading I Found My Old Car, A New Jacket, It’s All Gonna Be Great!

“Who Controls Your Health Care Data?”

Supreme-Court

Unused cartoon for this article in the New Hampshire bar news about a supreme court case regarding state’s attempts to keep accessing health care data (that insurance providers already collect) in order to provide more data about costs of health care at different locations.

The Supreme Court justices really dragged the speed of getting this image done. There’s just flippin’ NINE of them. And I think you can tell I started in the center with Roberts (who I thought I did a good job in representing comically and not politically), and had some highlights with people like Alito (although he looks like a South Park version of him), Ginsburg, and Kagan, but by the time I get to Thomas I’ve lost interest… and I just can’t be bothered to make Scalia look remotely human.

(Incidentally, did you know New Hampshire has an online tool that tells you what you’re going to be charged at different locations for different medical services?! Yeah! It’s pretty incredible!)

Hello, New Year

2015 Art Gif

Your predecessor had a pretty interesting tenure. I really got put through some crazy paces thanks to ol’ 15. It’ll be remembered fondly in some ways, but not all ways.  2015 was a year in which I decided to make a plan right from the start, and as always, god laughed right in my face as soon as the word “plan” left my mouth.

I started the year thinking it was time to consider transitioning to a new job, and by the end of January I was informed that I was getting laid off from said job. The same day I got that information I had an interview for a job that I ultimately got — as the graphic designer for Revels North.

“This position is part time, and it’s really more supplemental for someone who already has a full time job,” my interviewer said.

“Well,” I replied. “I can answer with complete honesty that I am fully employed today.”

That job felt like the pebble that started a lot of pebbles rolling on my freelance opportunities. First off, its been an incredible experience. Suddenly I was drawing the ad materials for their entire summer program. I was asked to crank out flyers, posters, and postcards. After a frustrating and futile attempt to create their winter show art myself, I commissioned a freelance artist to do the work for me (a weird thing to feel like I have to make a big deal about, but it was cool to be the person doing the contracting, not be the contractor).

I made a connection with the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center communications office to do some freelance work, and that led me to designing the artwork and marketing materials for the 10th anniversary Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth (CHaD) half marathon! It’s a big deal in our little valley.

Friends and colleagues worked with me on a huge variety of projects: from advertisements to restaurant signage to building graphic novels for a kickstarter campaign.

  • 5,000 people saw the program I made for the Revels Christmas show.
  • My artwork was on street banners, t-shirts, and posters all around the valley for the CHaD.
  • I saw signed portraits of my work put up as prizes, as real, legitimate artwork! The crap I draw! Can you imagine?!?

I went to my Aunt and Uncle’s for the Super Bowl, and my girlfriend was almost killed in a car crash while I was gone. She was slammed into by a drunk driver going double the speed limit on the way home. Her car crumpled like a sardine can and she walked away.

We moved in together in May (in a sweet apartment that I was able to find because of the mixed blessing of having a lot of time free because I was “fun-employed” for six months). The apartment is the first I’ve unreservedly loved in years. It might be the apartment… It might also be the company.

I got to officiate a wedding (designed all their invitations, menu cards, etc… Some of my favorite work!) and finally used my ordained by the Universal Life Church status!

Thanks to my work with the UVYP, which elected me Co-Chair of the organization in 2016, I got the lead that led to my new job as Content Specialist for the NH Bar Association – I’m working on graphic design, social media, and strategy! I’m even encouraged to work some cartooning in where we can!

Creatively, this year has been more stressful and more rewarding than any before. I’ve designed more material than ever before. I’ve had more freelance work than ever before. I’ve gotten more exposure as an artist than ever before. But I’ve also drawn fewer comics than I have in years.

At SPX this year, I still broke even. Thanks largely in part to a couple of anthologies I’d been in that continued to sell. This was really the year I felt confident in my table presentation, my seller patter and general convention etiquette and strategy; there are people I know and see, heck, as Denis put it, this SPX was almost a class reunion for us.

But as a type this I feel like I’m coming back to the same complaint: I’m running up against barriers to what I’m doing. SPX felt good, but it also felt a little static. I am hitting the upper barrier of what I can accomplish with my current methods. I need to level up. I’ve made more money from creative work than ever before but I feel like I’m rising up and falling down but never escaping the financial bracket I’m fluttering around in like a caged butterfly. I need to level up.

’15 was good. ’16 could be better. I guess it’s time to make a new plan?

Have a sweet ’16