Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Cartooning circles

I’m finally enjoying another one of those long-awaited fully-caffeinated cups of coffee and some non-MaltoMeal breakfast. I can eat. I can almost smell. My kitchen is done and awaits all my gadgets. My Camry is all fixed up and purrs rather than rattles.

Oh man (another sip), life is good.

Gerald came by yesterday and dropped off a bunch of stuff from the old place. I was leery of what might have been left. Most of it came from my art room, so I discovered quite a few gems that finally made the move. My application portfolio to design school. Boxes of Epson color printing paper. Boxes of greeting card-sized envelopes. Odds and ends and final presentation boards from class projects.

In the pile was a large-sized binder portfolio. Flipping it open, I was amused to find a small sampling of graphic design and cartooning I’d done a really long time ago. Really long time ago. I’d do little jobs for friends, baby and “We’ve Moved” announcements, stuff like that. All before flickr, MySpace, digital cameras and Shutterfly.

I used the computer primarily for typesetting to go with my little ink cartoons. I’d get them photocopied onto card stock. For my Christmas cards, I’d add in color by hand (we’re talking about 120 cards here, people, not just a dozen), with watercolor pencils or sponged-on paint or rubber stamps. It was quite the production every year, and I did those for about 7 or 8 years, I’m guessing. When I find them, I’ll scan them and share. Since then, I’ve lost a bit of the motivation and time and inspiration to do those and have been sending photo greeting cards, which are so much quicker to produce.

A few of my old-time friends tell me they’ve kept all the cartoon cards and have missed my hand-painted greetings. And they tell me they hope: Maybe this year?

Anyway, I found this card in the portfolio last night and it made me smirk. Photocopied artwork with watercolor pencil added. This is from 1990. I’ve thought about all that’s happened since then: my mustang, the earthquake, mortgages, marriage, the dogs, my Tercel, Europe, skiing, endless DIY projects, design school, wakeboarding, divorce, running, painting.

Boy, it’s like a lifetime ago.

Things tend to come full-circle, though. A few weeks ago, I started doing thumbnails for little cartoon drawings in my moleskine sketchbook. Seems I have a really good dose of inspiration that’s gotten me kicking around a few ideas, personal, individual greeting cards for a few holidays and celebrations that are coming up. I don’t think it’ll work for (this) Christmas, although I guess you never know.

I doodle and doodle and think, “Hmm”.

And then the little peas showed up, and I found myself thinking, “Yeah...”

Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

1990! That WAS a lifetime ago... I didn't own a computer, typed my high school papers on a typewriter, wore 29W-32 jeans, and stopped sporting the mullet! Doh! did I say mullet, ahem, I mean.. long hair..
- Anonymous at work

Karen said...

Oh, hurray for the nose cold gone and huckleberry jam and Christmas cards and creative juices flowing into cartoons and all sorts of imaginative projects!

Wendee said...

A Mullet? In my day it was big hair and Flock of Seagulls ...
Ohhhh noo. You're just a young'un.

A said...

Hey I've still got some of those cards. Somewhere in a box in a closet in Hawaii, but I know they're their. So in another 20 years I can sell them as early works of a famous artist and they'll be my retirement fund right?

Wendee said...

A - you've been saying this for over 20 years. Your retirement fund? Righhhhht. I'll let you know when you can put those up for bid on eBay ... and we'll all be rich ...


Robin Neudorfer said...

Have a computer, access to many printshops, and still.... I do 120 by hand, each year. My concession is they are New Years cards. Hope your holiday is filled with special memories.