How I feel about last week's picks.

Pen and crayon on watercolor paper.

Please, Vikings, do better this week. Please.

Now playing: NPR - The Apples in Stereo in Concert 09-20-2007



(Looks like somebody's been studying the drawings of France Belleville a little too much.)

I listened to an interview of Demetri Martin on NPR the other day. (Links for his hilarious act.) He was talking about how he dropped out of law school to do stand-up, saying that he just wanted to get paid for doing something he loves to do anyway. This is hardly a new concept to me, but I keep thinking about how I always want to draw these days. If I could find a way to get paid to road trip, draw, and write, I would be the happiest employee of all time. This is my stated goal.

Unrelated, but when are Feist and Sufjan Stevens going to hook up and start punching out the most musically-inclined babies of ours or any other generation?


Living room.

I drew this as the countertop guys were finally installing a correct piece in my kitchen. The whole time I felt like I was right on the edge. I had a lot of pent-up anger and if they said or did the wrong thing I was just going to snap. It was the most intense countertop installation of my life. But everything went swimmingly and now my kitchen is being arranged and used properly. We win!

These chairs are actually drawn quite accurately. They just always look like they're supposed to fall over, but somehow they don't. Happy Hump Day!

Now playing: Blur - Threadneedle Street



You know how sometimes something happens in your life, and you feel like not only did you lose precious moments of drawing breath, but you also died a little inside? Multiply that by about five and you have how I feel right now. I just got out of a marketing meeting and I'm just despondent, for lack of a better word. Why don't all marketing people just say, "The sky is blue", "Children like ice cream", and "Rex Grossman is a lousy quarterback"? It would be just as true, take just as much thinking, and waste a lot less time than any of their stupid meetings. Honestly, I'm not a great marketing mind, but I already know everything they told me.


Monday problems.

I don't really even want to talk about this weekend, apart than to say that if you're Kelly Holcomb, Brad Childress, Builder's Custom Counters, a chunk of cement, or a punk kid in my neighborhood, you best steer clear. I'm fixin' to smack somebody.

File this illustration under: "Hypocrisy in coloring." It's a rare attempt at drawing an entire scene as opposed to an object, so that's a good step. I'm pretty inspired by this today.

Now playing: Badly Drawn Boy - Four Leaf Clover


Football, ignore if you care about my feelings.

I was furious last Sunday night. I really was. I can't stand more games like that crapfest Minnesota put up against the Lions. Unfortunately, this week is Kansas City, which promises to be more ugly from their side, and the Vikings always tend to play to the level of their competition. It's going to be on TV out here, and even considering that I'm still not excited. Basically Minnesota needs to run the ball fifty times, and that's it. If you have Vikings D on your fantasy teams (I'm looking at you Sk0t, Paul, and myself), play them. I dare you, Paul. Final score prediction: Vikings 13, Chiefs 3.

Other picks:

PHILLY over Detroit — Let's end this madness already. I can't live in a world where Detroit is 2-0 and Philly is 0-2. Not really so much the Philly part, as their self-loathing fans can use a bit more abuse. But it's time for Detroit to wake up and smell the exhaust. Matt Millen could get an extension through 3207 if they're not careful. All this time we thought it was some cruel joke that Millen still has a job, but really it turns out that God is very interested in the Lions. I'm shocked.

NY JETS over Miami - I still like the Jets to make the playoffs. They were supposed to be 0-2 if you looked at their schedule three weeks ago. There's not reason for Jets fans to panic. Oh, except they're going to lose in the wild card round again, and they're a bunch of pricks for cheering against their starting quarterback. Other than that, golden.

NEW ENGLAND over Buffalo - I don't share the sentiments, but this is still funny. Thus ends my internet-mandated mention of the Patriots.

Indianapolis over HOUSTON - Thanks a lot, Andre Johnson. We had a good thing going before you pulled that stunt. Every year I pick you, every year you burn me. Someday I'm not going to be there when you turn around on your crutches.

Jacksonville over DENVER - Tune in for the last five seconds. Skip the rest.

Carolina over ATLANTA - Duh.

NEW ORLEANS over Tennessee - Reggie Bush is killing me. Stem the slaughter, please. I really should have known better than to make a Saint my keeper. I bought in to the hype, what can I say? Penance is forthcoming in the form of missing the playoffs in one of my fantasy leagues. I'm sorry. Could we look the other way, just this once?


Hair removal day.

On Monday I made an important decision. Facial hair decisions are always much more important than they may seem, after all. I decided that although I liked having something on my chin to stroke thoughtfully, and although it made me look at least five years older (so I actually looked my own age), it was time for the beardlet to go. Mostly, my wife expressed her displeasure at it, so after a year plus of hanging on my face, I gave it the razor. I timed it so that I would get a proper haircut on the same day, thus giving my head an opportunity to lose up to maybe three ounces in a single evening.

The results were a little disappointing, the reception even more so. My haircut was not all that great, and it'll take a good two weeks to get it to a manageable point. This is normal. But I was most disappointed in the fact that I had to point out my chin to my wife, who initially thought I just looked particularly clean-shaven. Add to that the fact that nobody else has said a thing, and I'm really starting to regret my decision. I mean, what's the point of trying to please people when even those closest to you don't notice? Facial hair ain't like prayer, I do it to be seen. It may be a matter of weeks before I start growing it back.

I documented the occasion the best way I know how, in contour line form. Apparently not only did I lose some hair, but I dropped about 40 pounds and got facial reconstruction surgery and collagen injections. C'est la vie.

In other news, Burnside Writer's Collective likes me. I don't really understand how I made their surprisingly limited blogroll, but being put adjacent to Draft Kevin Durant is quite an honor. So if you are from the BWC or are one of their fans, I thank you. And if you know any one of them that's about to put out a book, ask them if they want any illustration. I'm cheap and easy, just like... ach, that's too easy.

Additionally, Nick's Book Review!
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
You guys, this is a really good book. You should read it. See the movie first (yeah, it was a movie too, I don't know if you heard of it), then read the book. It helps keep you from using your imagination. Best whodunnit I've read in quite a while. Oooooh, I just hate that Malfoy. Here's to being ten years too late!

Now playing: Madeleine Peyroux - La Javanaise


Panic, please.

Now playing: Hum - The Inuit Promise


Fox Run Park.

My first sketch crawl. It's such a beautiful day out here. Low 70s, no humidity, slight breeze. It's a perfect day to sit in the middle of a forest and draw. Just awesome. If you experience a day like that, especially at this time of year, I strongly encourage you to do the same.

Now playing: SoftLightes - The Robots In My Bedroom Were Playing Arena Rock

Sketch crawl.

My coworkers and I will be doing a sketch crawl (like a pub crawl, only drawing) this afternoon. So soon and very soon I'll have some good stuff to post. In the mean time, there's something very important that we need to decide.


Football, ignore if you like.

Some thoughts on MIN v. DET this Sunday:

Vikings are 5-0 at Ford Field, and 10-0 in the last five years against the Lions... The Vikings had six picks against Jon Kitna last year, without the aid of a pass rush... Adrian Peterson is the top running back in fantasy football... Every year you hear faint whimperings of "the roar is restored" but the Lions keep stinking it up eventually... My prediction: Vikings 31, Lions 6

Other picks for this week:

PITTSBURGH over Buffalo, Houston over CAROLINA (upset special), JACKSONVILLE over Atlanta, New Orleans over TAMPA, Green Bay over NEW YORK GIANTS, ST LOUIS over San Francisco, Cincinnati over CLEVELAND, Indianapolis over TENNESSEE, Dallas over MIAMI, Seattle over ARIZONA, BALTIMORE over New York Jets, DENVER over Oakland, CHICAGO over Kansas City, NEW ENGLAND over San Diego, PHILADELPHIA over Washington



This is starting to wear on me.

I should do more than just draw what's around me. Maybe it's time to start my illustory. Maybe I'll keep doing the same thing visually, except start to make the captions into a fictional narrative. Pretty good idea? Eh?

Now playing: Blur - Day Upon Day (Live)


Lisa’s typewriter.

Three posts in a day, what can I say? I had a drawing binge the last couple days. This one is a “commissioned” work for Lisa (of Candid, see link on right). I put quotes around it because I wasn’t paid. It was professional practice for which I am very grateful. Hopefully I’ll get a few more and then I’ll get some moola from a rich sucker in New York City or something.

Another baby.

They just have such expressive faces. This one comes from Romain desailly. I heart flickr! Check out how much better my watercolor has gotten too. Mmmmmm...

Using the whole page.

The baby comes from this picture by Varf.


Risk of death.

I saw this today on Google News. And this might just be me, but, um, WHAT?!

Vitamin D might extend your life, but it doesn't reduce your risk of death. Barring the Rapture, that remains firmly at 100%. Maybe Globe and Mail would fall prey to a logical fallacy like that, but TIME? Really? Who's doing the fact-checking over there these days?


Monthly Communication Meeting.


1. Watercolor and I, though not yet friends, can one day be pretty good.
2. A focus on cross-hatching might need to be undertaken, as mine seem to be deteriorating.
3. I have an extreme case of Thick Neck Disease.
4. Pineapple and strawberries are delicious.


I can't stay away.

I tried to stay uninvolved with picks this year, but here are mine for week one. I can't resist.

Saints over COLTS, Steelers over BROWNS, Eagles over PACKERS, RAMS over Panthers, VIKINGS over Falcons, Patriots over JETS, REDSKINS over Dolphins, JAGUARS over Titans, TEXANS over Chiefs, BILLS over Broncos (upset special), CHARGERS over Bears, SEAHAWKS over Buccaneers, RAIDERS over Lions, COWBOYS over Giants, Ravens over BENGALS, NINERS over Cardinals

Week one is always the hardest to pick, and the ESPN guys agree on a lot of games. I think we'll all look a little foolish come Tuesday.


New sketchbook.

I finally finished off my first sketchbook, now it's on to my fancy watercolor paper sketchbook. I'm in the middle of really expanding my artistic prowess. [Stifled snicker.]

"9.4.07 - These are the first feeble attempts at using a multitude of new mediums [media, whatever]. I'll be the first to admit that my watercolor skills have severely diminished since I last attempted it as a small child [actually, high school]. Tomorrow I should definitely look up some techniques online and try to figure out just what the heck I'm doing. I could also use some practice with my handwriting, if I was totally honest. But enough about my shortcomings. I invested in a couple of india ink pens, which I'm pretty stoked about.

Pictured: Sasha's ball (one of many), my new brush pen, some of Sasha's delicious food, and a collection of assorted papers and trash on an end table."

Another haiku.

It was only after this one that my wife informed me that a haiku has to refer to nature. A quick Wikipedia search confirms this. Dang. Well, it's still nice.

I was referring to the band, not the food. Not that I have anything against cake the food, far from it. I just had Cake the band on the brain.


If you're ever stuck for inspiration, don't ask someone to say a random word. Then you end up trying to draw some white-water rafters.

When I realized that I was all off, I gave up. It happens. But now this image is forever linked to Garden State in my mind. Maybe I'll just listen to music when I draw, as opposed to watching movies. I thought I'd try to salvage this with a haiku, only I'm about as good at haikus as I am at drawing white-water rafters.