Monday, December 8, 2014

On Press!

If you scroll down a ways, you'll see that since April I've been working with Redmoon Theater on a "scroll cranky" featuring a luche-libre-inspired sailor who finds his true love. It has already had several iterations: first appearing at a private party, then at Redmoon's Boneshaker and Skelebration events with performer Yuri Lane and finally with the Chicago Sinfonietta set to the music of Manuel de Falla.

Scroll of the Drunken Mariner, my reinterpretation of the Redmoon project in book form is on press this week! It will be available in the Spruce Moose Shop this weekend. I will also be selling it along with prints and original drawings at Redmoon Theater this Friday—opening night of the Winter Pageant.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Redmoon's Winter Pageant

Redmoon Theater's Winter Pageant is starting this Friday! I will be there selling some art. If you do make it over there for any of the performances, one thing you'll see is a giant pop-up book with puppets. This was my Saturday. I started painting at 10 am and 14 hours later—voila!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Tracking, Labeling and Naming…

It's safe to say you've reached a strange point in your life when excitedly, you turn to your wife and say, "you know what, I'm gonna create google spreadsheets and track my expenses and time on this project." Who's that guy? Research time is a bit "nebulous," but 29 hours into this project (9 hours build time) I would say things are going pretty OK. I mean check it out, you're looking at a bass:

Just a few more cuts and some shaping… and that's it.

Upright basses are made by master luthiers, working off centuries of tradition and that can be pretty intimidating. I don't have those kind of chops, so I'm trying to stick to that cigar box guitar mentality of using what's available and making it work. Above, your looking at mahogany for the neck which I bought last year for my birthday, aromatic cedar for the top and back and reclaimed pine for the sides (left in the garage by the previous home owners). All in all its not that scrappy of a lumber selection although it is pretty atypical for an upright bass. But this isn't exactly an upright bass, it's an electric upright, in fact I might call it a 3/4 condensed bass.

The 3/4 condensed bass isn't too snappy of a name, but after gluing together the 2 layers of my sides I think I might have something with a bit more pizazz: My Rocket 88. Seems like a good name for rock 'n' roll bass given that Rocket 88 is often credited as the first, or one of the first rock 'n' roll songs ever recorded.

I'm still sketching away on the details, but the build is underway—let's see what happens…

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Big Bastard

The electric upright bass, like the trombone or the bass clarinet is a real outcast… a true bastard. For several years I've been toying with the idea of building an electric upright bass (from now on "EUB") and well, long story short, it's go time.

Starting with research, I've been reading up on existing EUBs and uprights seeing what works, what doesn't and deciding how to make the best possible bass for what I want to do.

I'm looking at the Stagg bass, Blast Cult, Eminence and the Kolstein Lee Rocker and Travel Busetto basses… taking measurements making some sketches…

I'm looking forward to a woodworking winter wonderland, planing in the freezing garage and spending some time with my dad in his shop.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

And then suddenly, last summer…

It's been a summer of cartoons and after last week my chapter in the story is finito. I pulled my first all-nighter in eight years and enjoyed sleeping in this morning (although I do feel like a bum). Aside from some manic sleep patterns I drew several hundred feet of cartoons that you'll be able to see at Redmoon's Skelebration and Boneshaker events—more info here.

I'm pretty lucky to have met Frank, Alex and the rest of the Redmoon gang. I've had my drawings projected on the facade of the MCA with The Astronaut's Birthday and now this massive Halloween scroll project. They are a wildly creative group that I'm happy to be a part of.

So what's next? Well… aside from some Swedish brunch, I think I'll strip some paint off the front door so T and I can paint it pink and then it's time to crank out album art for Curio's forthcoming album, Twisted Roots.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Chapter 6, the tattooed princess

The backstory of the princess is told through her tattoos. It also serves as a style break in the scroll. I really love classic tattoo design, but I'm not particularly good at it, however I had a lot of fun with this and I think they look pretty good…

Monday, September 1, 2014

Chapter 5…

…was several meals, a handful of Neil Oliver documentaries and many sheets of paper ago.