By the frequency of these blog updates it must look like I’ve given up on art, or at least scaled back my ambitions. But I assure you, dear reader, things are moving slowly yet surely towards some inevitable conclusion.
As you know, Life is a delicate balancing act involving dream chasing, money making, responsibility maintaining, friendship sustaining, family visiting, relaxing, grooming, and dating. That’s right, lonely ‘ol Dallion ain’t been so lonely since May, when he started seeing a lovely lady who’s been very patient and understanding with this goof. Turns out this summer has been one of growth, more often in areas less-related to art, but important nonetheless.
Yet even artistically, things move forward.
I’m excited to announce that I’ve snatched a table at Alternative Press Expo in San Francisco on October 4th & 5th! It’s a comics convention put on by the same people as the San Diego Comic Con and will be my first experience displaying and selling my work publicly. It has lit a fire under my ass to make merchandise, and lately I’ve been collating and binding my two comic books as well as creating prints and hand painted greeting/thank you cards.
Having no idea how many copies of my books will sell at APE, I’ve decided to horde my limited stash until after the event, but soon afterward, you’ll have a chance to purchase goodies when I open my online store. Start saving your pennies!
“So what’s the deally-o Dally-o? Not going to tell us about your Vagrant Adventure?”
It’s true, I’ve been protective of my homelessness experience. I’ve shared some details with a very few people, but have been careful with what I give away, and when asked, usually speak in generalities like: “It was powerful. I met the people I needed to meet, saw what I needed to see, and had the insights I needed to have.” If I feel like a mischievous imp, I simply say: “You’ll have to buy the book.”
It’s not that I’m trying to be a mysterious dick, it just that when an experience is precious and profound, you’re not wanting to give it away. I feel like the magical quality of the trip would diminish if I tried to portray it with words. It would be a shadow of the real thing, and the more I’d talk about it, the more I’d believe the words and forget the experience. I found this to be true with Vipassana. I came out of Vipassana “high” and wanting to share it with everyone, but the more I tried to explain the transcendent, the more it became words. Flat, dead, rational, categorical, words.
If I were a William Blake or a Rumi, I could get you close the the actual thing with words, but even their poetry isn’t the thing itself. The thing itself is always beyond words. If you want to know the thing, then go do the thing!
Honestly, I’m still processing the experience and expect it will take a while. The Vagrant Adventure is like a gold mine to visit when I need material for this book or understanding about life in general. I’m excited to explore expression via the unique combination of art and words.
I haven’t done a sad, whiny, love comic in some time, and if there’s one occasion they’re allowed, it’s Valentines Day, right? They would put the Love holiday in the longest, most desolate month of the year, wouldn’t they, the bastards.
But I’m doing fine. Great, in fact. People on Tumblr liked this comic and it earned me some more followers, and tonight I’m having dinner with friends, and showing familial love in the meantime. Besides, it’s not like I always feel this way. The concept came quickly in a moment of passion, then passed, like all feelings do.
Wishing you a good V-Day.
PS: Added a few more faces to the gallery below…
There were so many “likes” and encouraging comments about my Mr. Mug book, I’m a little ashamed to admit it was a joke. Mr. Mug was a product of my wry sense of humor, and came forth from whimsical doodles drawn between more “serious” projects. I didn’t think anyone would actually believe I was doing a children’s book in which the main character apparently kills himself.
My favorite children’s book creator, Shel Silverstein, had a dry & dark sense of humor too. He created a picture book called “Uncle Shelby’s ABZ Book” in which he playfully encourages kids to drink ink and put sugar in daddy’s gas tank because there’s a little horse in there and horses like sugar. They put a big “For Adults Only” sticker on the cover lest it turned kids into homicidal demons.
I’m grateful for the support anyway. I’m lucky to have supportive friends and family who want to see my work published. Perhaps one day I’ll actually do a book staring Mr. Mug — he seems to be a likable guy.
Meanwhile, a REAL project is nearing completion. Stay tuned!
Been going back and forth on this for a while. Recently sent the manuscript to a friend whose artistic taste I respect, hoping her opinion might nudge me one way or another. She’s had it for a week and enjoys keeping me in suspense. :P
If a three day visit to Portland helped confirm life choices, this upcoming week-long trip to Los Angeles will only nail the point home. Have mercy!
I’m just bitter because Portland revealed how uncool I am.
I’ve been working so much lately, drawing feels like play!