Saturday, June 23, 2018

Artificial Illiteracy

As I write this dispatch from Bizarro Studios North, I'm catching up after a weekend getaway to Connecticut and New York. We visited the Brooklyn Museum and caught the astounding exhibit, David Bowie Is.
The multimedia collection includes film & video, costumes, artwork and lyrics, and more. It runs through July 15, so if you're in the area, I enthusiastically recommend checking it out. One of my favorite pieces was the original art layout for Bowie's 1980 LP Scary Monsters. The original was huge, and it was fascinating to see the paste-up in its collaged glory.

The weekend mini-vacation was fun, but I'm happy to be back at work on more comics for Bizarro's faithful Jazz Pickles. Here's a rundown of the latest batch.

We started the week with a canine twist on a cliched scene from just about every TV cop show. I was pretty happy with the facial expressions and body language in each of the characters. My first sketch was pretty close to the final art, but after roughing it out, I realized that if the Chihuahua's ears were turned down and back, he'd look more threatening to the suspect.

The main benefit of autocorrect is having a culprit to blame for our mistakes, so it's useful in a way its developers may not have intended.

Sometimes our cartoons include layers of social commentary. Other times, we feel like doing a silly gag that makes us laugh. Interestingly, there's another member of the Pied family who plays the fiddle, and is effective at luring swarms of bumblebees.

Thursday's corporate gag includes a tip of the hat to MAD Magazine, which was one of my early comedic influences. The character with a pencil in his hand is meant to resemble MAD's mascot, Alfred E. Neuman, doodling the odd bird-like creature that often shows up in the magazine for no apparent reason.

We love to draw Frankenstein's monster, so any time we can work the creature into a gag, we're happy. The monster also seems to be pleased with his new ink.

Difficult or critical parents are common enough cartoon subjects, and we dip into that well now and then. Although I'm not a parent myself, we strive for equal humorous reference to disobedient children, too.

Come back to visit again next Saturday, and please pop by Dan Piraro's blog to check out his latest Sunday page and his commentary on this week's cartoons.

Bonus Track

When I was but a wee lad, "The Supermen" was the first David Bowie song I ever heard. This version remains a favorite.

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