me & my lizard brain

well this went a bit darker than i imagined. i was thinking “quirky” and…well…day 5 without my minions…arguing with the narcissistic dusty about my not seeing them for another 2 days & how pissed off i am. i pick up a pen. and my lizard brain gets pretty dark. i like it though. nothing against quirky…but whenever i read a quirky novel i kind of want to throw it at the author. repeatedly.
don’t get me wrong.
i have written some quirky crap.
like here is a quirky short story i wrote for a writer’s workshop:
a severe lack of grace

my instructor, with her funky british-japanese heritage and goth name, assured me that i was “funny” and that i would have an audience accordingly. i’m pretty sure she meant it as an insult.
suck it, rowan.

anyhoo.
so i started working on my new comic, just me and my lizard brain. it could be disturbing…but i am going to try for dark & funny.

i just need my minions to come home. then i can be properly distracted and not wander to the darker realms of my brainstem.

on a lighter note! i played with more buttons.

buttons4

stark raving whimsy: hilda’s dilemma

i finished my second wall piece of whimsy. i am also going to use these wall pieces for my digital media class.

i am making an “alter ego website” for that class. i am creating bluejean’s website, should she have one. which made me realize the best way to present these large pieces–video. reading rainbow style narrated videos of the story. the trickiest part so far is the background noise every time i try to record…screaming minions. also! getting the picture flat and easily recorded. i might have to do it at my drawing class, after class. i have my critique tomorrow. so i could leave it hanging, wait for everyone to leave, and then video my piece, talking to myself (aka narrating) as i do it.

also! i need to scan in a bunch of art, using the university’s big scanners. speaking of art. i did put prices for a zine package on my “STORE: prints & zines” page. i am hoping my friend is still willing to do some website work for me. then i will have a better store for anyone so dedicated that they want to buy my stuff. i did mail zines off to a couple of fans/friends….

IMG_0518

they will arrive wrapped in plain brown wrapper–just like porn. if anyone else wants any–go to my store site. i will be notified of your paypal purchase & will promptly mail them off. just message addresses to me? my email is: emconnell@live.com…. see, i need to figure this out so it’s easier. soon…hopefully…soon.

meanwhile, the semester is almost over & everything…life, the universe, and me, are set to change–for the better!

as always, stay tuned!

stark raving whimsy

here is the first installment/draft of stark raving whimsy, my newest graphic novel project. yay! i created the character of bluejean back when i was in a watercolor class. she was a side character in my story trials of the moonfish. however, i became more interested in her than i was in the lead character (gertrude buttons). so i have been playing with her image & story ever since. with my intermediate drawing class, i get the opportunity to work on her. when my professor suggested a more encompassing story to incorporate my images into, i knew it would have to revolve around bluejean.

the storyline is still peculating within my psyche & subconscious, but i have determined that she is a pirate. and a storyteller. and that her own world is dark & fanciful–as well as her stories. but that is as far as i have gotten. i like to give stories life & then follow them to see where they go. i am very excited to see where bluejean & her stark raving whimsy take me.

meanwhile…zine fest is on saturday & i still haven’t actually made my zines. okay, that sounds really bad…but! i have all the pages in my email. i just need to get to a printer. i loitered around in the uw computer lab…but then decided to go to my neighborhood cooperative press. so i will be going to class late today in order to stop & make zines on the way. i could go before class, but that would mean taking 3 or 4 of the minions with me. okay, my brain just exploded even thinking about that. so, i have to wait for dusty to get home–he comes home in time for me to go to class–then i will go make zines. then i will go to class.

and i am very excited about zinefest. it’s on halloween and i’m all like–would i be a geek to dress up for zinefest? then i’m all like…wait, it’s zinefest. i’m already a geek. and what’s one more nail in the coffin?

i’m so cool.

zinefest!

(ps. dusty came up with the name stark raving whimsyi was playing with calling it dark whimsy or the whimsical nightmare _________ …but fidgit & dusty vetoed both of those ideas…& when i googled them, they were already being used for other stuff by other people. then dusty suggested this when we were talking & the words were there, but not put together yet. so thank you again, dusty! the name feels perfect to me.)

the much anticipated–mostly by me–page 30!!

i didn’t die…or fall asleep…trying to get this page done. i even worked a bit on the next page as well. so, tell your friends, moses jones is alive and well.

the personalities of the squatters are starting to flush out. funny thing about my writing. it kind of takes on a life of its own. i don’t exactly know what will happen or who my characters are. divine inspiration? if you insist. but my stories unfold–seemingly–of their own determination. i’m sure my subconscious has some input. my memories. my neurosis. but my choices seem to me to be influenced by the characters and the stories themselves.

like susan. i didn’t realize that i didn’t like her until i tried to draw this page. i not only struggled with drawing her, but i also found myself wanting to smack her character. i’m pretty sure moses doesn’t like her either. she reminds me of a couple of women i used to live with who seemed to be cool, but when push came to shove, they would go with the pack mentality and turn on you. see, i used to live in a cooperative house–this experience largely influences my interactions with moses jones’s squatters–as i was very affected by my experiences in this house. some good–a lot bad. there were plenty of people who were nice to my face but actually plotted behind my back. so far, the squatters here are a lot more benign than the people they are based on.

and jake. who knew he could be such an asshole? i didn’t actually see that coming. i knew he was a smartass…but in these next pages he shows he can be a real asshole as well. jake, i realized, is reminding me a lot of a guy i knew a long time ago. i have also known people like him since. yes, he can be an asshole, but when push comes to shove, he will get your back in a fight…or help you move your stuff…whichever. jake’s a good guy. these pages paint him in kind of a bad way, but he is a good guy. malcolm, i’m not so sure about. he seems to have a real chip on his shoulder about moses. i don’t know what that is about. that’s what’s so fun about writing my stories–the suspense of discovering my characters and how they will turn the plot….

cheetah is still a bit of a blank page. he might be the yin to jake’s yang–or would it be yang to his yin? i guess we will see about that as well.

and the more i get to know lucy, the more i like her. she’s tough. she’s a good egg. she doesn’t take shit, & she stands up for what she believes in.

page 31 is following close behind. & page 32 is already written–but not yet drawn. exciting stuff!

page 28

here is the inked-up final of page 28. fidgit, moses jones’s oldest child gets to start displaying some of that lovely attitude inspired by the real life attitude of a certain first born son i happen to know. i want to start developing the characters of the children more. also, the other squatters. especially ones we haven’t even met yet. and very soon there will be some zombie action.

i can’t get too gory because if number one son sees me working on anything he denotes as “violent,” “scary,” or–god forbid–anything with zombies, i get lectured about it. (even though it is apparently okay for him to be “violent” & “scary” with his little sister who enjoys provoking him??) fortunately, i have invested in some stocks for his future. he should be able to afford therapy.

number one son
number one son

i started this comic over a year ago. my kids–my model minions, however, keep growing and changing. like poppy–not yet walking in moses jones. still promising that he will be the good one. in real life, however, he is walking and has developed into a little psychopath like his siblings. more so, in fact, because he is watching & learning at a quicker rate due to having three role models teaching him everything they know. i joked that we should find some well-behaved children for poppy to live with until he is a bit older & less impressionable. anyhoo, my models keep growing, but only a few days have passed in the comic, so i have to continue drawing them as younger than the children they are based on. however, i do want they to grow & change in the comic, to develop their growth at a natural rate–not leave them perpetually little like some dytopian family circus.

and what will happen with dusty? if the dusty in my life & i start getting along–does that mean dusty pantaloons will waltz back into mojo’s life and stay for longer? hmmm.

almost done…

character profiles 016 character profiles 017 character profiles 018i finished the last character profile painting last night at one in the morning as my ex-husband held our wide-awake baby and glowered at me.  that was simon starbuckle’s painting–perhaps my favorite & the one i am most happy with.  maybe i should have my ex glare at me while holding the baby for all my work.  ha!

i finished.  despite depression.  despite thoughts of–why don’t i just drop out of school?  despite feeling like i’m a fraud to call myself an artist.  despite four kids and an ex plotting against my project.  i finished the four character profiles.  now i have one more of the big paintings to finish before my critique tomorrow at 1:20.  will it happen?  stay tuned.  meanwhile i have to give a presentation today in another class.  meanwhile i have the toddler hitting the baby.  the cat attacking the nine year old.  and the six year old screaming at me that i hate him.  dishes to do.  dinners to cook.  toilets to clean. diapers to wash….

my watercolor professor says i need the fabled “room of my own.”  yes, that, perhaps, and a visit from mary fucking poppins.

onward!

simon starbuckle III

here is the last of the core cast of characters.  a very ambiguous character.  i am not sure of his story–& i don’t think i am supposed to be sure.  i like this about his character.

now i will work on some story lines and background pictures.

ps. i am officially an art major now.

A Most Manly-Man Chin

i kinda went over the top with this version of harvester wright, but i like it.  i had a “Remington Steele” kinda vibe going with him from the moment he was conceived to be the male energy that would offset the female tsunami of professor buttons & her girl, bluejean.  think bruce willis in “Moonlighting”…both or either Simons in “Simon & Simon”…or all of “The A-Team.”  Yes, as a dysfunctional child of the ’80s, I am highly influenced by crime solving men of TV…that oh-so-masculine, aren’t-i-charming assholery of ’80s prime time men.  just look at both of my failed marriages for further proof….

nonetheless, here he is, harvester wright.

he’s not the hero of this story…but he thinks he is.

harvester wright…not quite….

in previous pictures, harvester wright has had a prominent chin.  in this one i did the other day, his chin is relatively small.  he appears more effeminate and not so pompous.  but how do i want him to appear?  smug and confident or thoughtful and a bit sad?  apparently it all has to do with chin size….or my mood when i am painting.  ha!  i am going to try another draft today.  also!  i am going to do a new page or two of moses jones over the weekend.  and on monday, i change my major to art.  i have tentatively registered for a full spring schedule.  my half-time snail’s pace of schooling is driving me slowly insane.  but i need to apply for scholarships because my schooling is also driving me deeper & deeper into debt.

moonfish 034   big chin pictures… art by fin, soy, & me 006

blue jean

gertrude buttons’s girl friday.  blue jean pilots & maintains the moonfish as well as always being there for professor buttons.

probably the character i feel most connected to & who will most resemble my attitudes & quirks.

she’s the coolest one in the cast, of course.