I’m in the New Yorker again this week with a cartoon began as this idea:
Yup. “The gym,” with some cavemen standing around and large boulders on the ground. It’s a fragment of an idea, that I wrote down a while ago and figured that I’d do something with it later. But I kept looking at it and thinking “meh” and moving on to other fully-realized ideas. This happens a lot. When I go to draw my weekly batch, I paw through my sketchbook and if a concept requires too much work, then sometimes I leave it for another day.
I did that a couple times with this, but then I must have had just the right amount of coffee, because I realized all it needed was a simple scenario to illustrate it.
For a moment I considered trying to invent a clever prehistoric treadmill, or some primitive version of a modern stationary bike or elliptical machine using a pterodactyl or something, but that seemed to make the joke weaker. The pile of rocks was enough. Things were, you know, simpler back then.
And here’s the final version that ran.
I don’t know anything about wine (although I did this cartoon about the language of wine). I prefer whiskey, honestly. But sometimes you have to buy a bottle of wine. And when I do, I’m just as likely to be influenced by the label as anything else, because – yeah, art. I made a list over at Curator about the different categories of wine label design, and what each says about it’s buyer. Read it here.
The 21st Precinct police building, on East 22nd St in New York City, is a long-defunct building targeted for demolition. But before it gets the wrecking ball, it is the temporary home of a plethora of great wall art, curated by Robert Aloia. Brooklyn Street Art has the story behind the exhibit as well as a good documentation of images, so I won’t merely repost anything that you can see there. But I went to the opening this weekend (it is up for one more week) and here are some shots from that. It was hot, crowded, and claustrophobic, but as they wrote at BSA, there aren’t too many things like this in Manhattan. As Gothamist put it, it was “four floors of dope.”
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I just uploaded a t-shirt design to TeePublic. It’s only $14 today, but will be $20 after. Hey, I think it’s worth it at either price, but why not get it now?
It’s suddenly that time of year when my hand is sticking to the page, because of the humidity. It’s time to break out those cooling summer cartoons! An issue of the New Yorker makes a nice face shield. And you can use the back issues – you know you’ve got them lying around – to cover your other body parts.
I did this one a few years ago and am still waiting for the movie to be made about this summer superhero.
For this week’s issue I thought of a similar idea. Full disclosure: I got my grad school degree in drawing shade. My professors said it was at least 5 degrees cooler than the other students. So it seems like a good thing for me to focus on.
I was already a fan of Fela Soul, Amerigo Gazaway’s full album mashup of Fela Kuti and De La Soul tunes, so when he asked me to do the cover for Yasiin Gaye, the second volume of his project mashing up the music of Mos Def and Marvin Gaye, it took me a hot second to mull it over before saying yes.
The record has something of a backstory. Gazaway’s previous release, Bizarre Tribe, which set the vocals from The Pharcyde over the music of A Tribe Called Quest, met a quick internet death. It was effectively shut down by Sony, who cited copyright infringement despite the fact that Gazaway wasn’t actually sampling ATCQ – he was sampling the same jazz and funk recordings that the Tribe had sampled for their recordings. Big fat irony, right? (For a fantastic documentary on the evolution of the fair use exception in regard to art in general and remix/mashup music in particular, watch RIP: A Remix Manifesto, which features Girl Talk.)
So, this new release felt like it had a mission, like it was part of a thrill ride, or more to the point, a chase. And that was reflected in the imagery that we chose. This was an initial contender:
but in the end we chose to make it an airplane or a spaceship, because that seemed to fit better. And it wasn’t going to be so much of an action scene, but more of a conceptual journey, with Gazaway piloting Yasiin Bey and Marvin Gaye to new heights as they confabbed about their new venture.
and after a few drafts it came together nicely.
For the reverse side click here to finish reading this post
I did an interview with Jeff Thompson last month, which is up at Curator magazine. Officially he’s the Assistant Professor and Program Director of Visual Art Technology at Stephens Institute of Technology, but what that means is that he’s an artist who prefers to mess around with computer code. He does fascinating work. We talked about abusing Photoshop, Twitter bots, Andy Warhol, and why Nokia will probably never hire him to write a ringtone. Check it out!
Filed under Art, Interview