Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Funnies Aficionado

Guy and rOdd are Gary Larson reincarnated. Larson was so genius, it took two souls to replace him.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Funnies Aficionado

(originally posted Feb. 2008- before I came up with the "Funnies Aficionado" feature)

I told myself that I would use this blog just for my own cartoons and not post things by other people- but holy crap, I stumbled on this guy's website and he is HILARIOUS! I am SO incredibly jealous of how funny, creative, and free from convention he is. I have no idea if he's actually managing to make a living off of this stuff, or if he still has a "day job," but I just think he's the funniest cartoonist since Bill Waterson and the weirdest since Gary Larson. Apparently, like Scott Adams, he was working in the cubicle jungle and just up and decided that cartooning was a better lifestyle. So he started drawing chickens on PostIt Notes!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Funnies Aficionado

Frog Applause by Teresa Burritt really scares me. Most days I think Burritt has the most rapier wit and it is high time something as raw, sharp and unapologetic made it to the comics page. Other days I don't get her. And every once in a while I react the same way I do about South Park and Family Guy- "How does someone get away with that crap?!!"

I'm also one of a few people who believes that collage/montage should be an accepted and respected means of cartooning (you'll notice I do it alot myself). Whether it's New Adventures of Queen Victoria by Pab Sungenis or Montey Python cartoons by Terry Gilliam- I say if you have a sense of humor, a sense of irony, and a sense of design- then juxtaposition away. 

We need more cartoonists who are willing to challenge our sense of aesthetics and our cultural taboos.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Funnies Aficionado

"Scary Gary" by Mark Buford debuted in 2008. This is one of those strips that kind of makes you say "who THINKS of this stuff?" Gary is a frumpy middle aged, over weight vampire who moved to the suburbs. Gary has a demon henchman who resents their middle-class lifestyle and gay Frankenstein-monster neighbors, Frank and Steve.

Buford has a quirky drawing style that reminds me a little of Gary Hart and Gary Larson, yet it's absolutely uniquely Buford's. His humor is sometimes corny, sometimes macabre, and always crisp and quick. He's a cross between Charles Addams and Seinfeld. This is really one of my favorite comic strips out there-  in fact, it's one of the reasons I wanted to start this "Funnies Aficionado" feature on this blog.

Scary Gary deserves to be a huge hit. Of course, I'm an overweight, middle aged, middle class white guy with a mortgage and a minivan, who was once a dark brooding Art major type in college so I would, wouldn't I?

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Funnies Aficionado

Haven't done a very good job of drawing & posting new cartoons, or even of collaging or montaging either. I had an Art professor in college who said that artists were more prolific when they weren't on an even keel, giving credence to old maxim, "what garlic is to salad, insanity is to art."

Not to make excuses, but it's a good thing if I'm happy, contented, or well adjusted enough to not NEED to cartoon, that's a good thing. I've pretty well resigned myself to the idea that I'll never be a rich, famous, full-time professional  cartoonist. Which is just as well, because I enjoy teaching and parenting and because very few professional cartoonists are full-time, let alone rich or famous.

But what to do with this blog? Just leave it to acquire dust and cobwebs? Nah. I'm a life long cartoon aficionado, so why not share my love of the funnies with others?

Here's the first of my amateur reviews of some of my favorite cartoons and cartoonists.

I only recently became acquainted with 'Cul de Sac' by Richard Thompson and I'm already in love. Thompson has been an illustrator for the Washington Post years before he launched Cul de Sac in 2006. This year he'a a Ruben Award nominee and rightfully so. 

His drawing style has a freedom and loose spontaneous feeling like Edward Koren and Jules Fieffer, yet his staging is as sophisticated and immersive as Bill Watterson's. His writing is as whimsical and thoughtful as Bill Watterson's too. Yet the spirit of the strip is as light and gentle as Charles Schultz or Patrick McDonnell.

In short, the cartoon gods have endowed Thompson with all the magic at their disposal. It would be easy for me to become resentful lie Antonio Salieri was of Mozart in Amadeus, if his comic strip wasn't so intoxicating.

I hope to be following little Alice Otterloop and her family and classmates at Blisshaven Preschool for years to come. 

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Ellen at 8

Here's a cartoon of a "pop star" by my dauther Ellie.

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