Big Poly Love

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It gets the message across, I think.

I said I was going to do this and I did it. Poly Pride, Poly Love is available on many fine products in my RedBubble shop. So now I have 3 non-heteronormative designs in my shop, I have to create a new portfolio to house my message. I had way more to say about this design and accidental representation spotting but it took me way longer to draw than estimated and now it’s late and I’m tired.

Anyway: T-shirt! And I actually have a comic in the works.

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Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Raven”

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Will I be doing any more hand lettering in the immediate future? Quoth the raven, “Not tonight.”

This is Halloween! This is Halloween! Halloween! Halloween! La la la!

Pretty often, the Halloween design is the bulletin board I’m most looking forward to. This one definitely was. I knew I wanted a raven, so I knew I had to do Edgar Allen Poe. The sticking point there was picking the right stanza; the poem is a lot longer than I remembered. I guess it could have worked with just “Quoth the raven ‘Nevermore’,” but where’s the fun in that? You don’t get very much poetry in 4 words.

Then again, cutting 170 paper leaves with terrible plastic scissors was nothing compared to the 4 straight hours I spent inking this bad boy. The raven himself was fairly simple. I sketched him out on Monday, cut and pasted him Tuesday (lost a lot of time because the Girl had hours of math homework to get to), fixed him up a bit more on Wednesday and blocked out the letters (in true Halloween horror fashion, I lost a lot of time on Wednesday because the school had a freaking hard lockdown because there was an active shooter across the street; The Man says it was an accidental discharge but tell that to 400 crying children who have just spend the last hour hiding quietly under their desks in a dark classroom), sketched out the lettering on Thursday (lost more time because the Girl had conferences at a different school in the suburbs and also some jerkface kid had pulled out 30 or 40 staples and tried to peel the raven off), and then strapped myself into my iPod and went at it with a handful of permanent markers on Friday.

It was 4 hours straight with no more than a few minutes break here and there to stretch. Made a lot of mistakes toward the end. It is what it is. I don’t have a name for that font; it’s just something that came up when I Googled “fun Victorian fonts for kids” and started clicking.

Sadly, the kids are on autumn break, which is a thing here. I always wanted an autumn break was I was a kid, and was always told to shut up about it, that I didn’t need a break because school just started. Kids today are lucky with their autumn breaks and their regular early dismissal days. But not so lucky with their active shooter hard lockdowns. Anyway, good thing their break had already started and the teachers just had grading day, because there’s no way I would have finished this if I also had to deal with children.

Anyway, you can read the complete poem here, and you should if you haven’t.

Seriously, my hand hurts. Happy Halloween.

 

Special Request: The Nurse’s Rose Bush

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My hand still hurts from using those cheap decorative scissors, but I guess it was worth it.

They asked me to do an extra bulletin board for the nurse’s office. The health aide had painted the bulletin board and added the paw print border and the letters but then she didn’t know what to do with the rest of the space, so the attendance clerk’s idea was to let me fill it in. Which I did. I couldn’t find any pinking shears so I ended up buying a set of 12 “decorative scissors” for $13 just to get the ones with the zigzag edge, and let me tell you, you get what you pay for. Those scissors were just awful, but I wanted to make the leaves jagged like rose leaves are.

I had the Girl to help out one of the days, so she cut 30 leaves, which is more than I thought she’d manage. I cut 170, making 200 leaves total. There are 27 roses, 12 ladybugs hiding in the foliage, and 6 yellow butterflies. This one took forever, in part because each little component was time-consuming, and in part because I was so busy last week that I never had any long blocks of time to focus.

As I finished, I told the aide, “Let me know when the kids destroy this one and I’ll make you another.” And she said, “The kids are not allowed to touch it!” And I said, “Yeah, but they will.” However, it will last longer than the designs I do in the breezeway because it’s inside, protected from the elements, and there will never be unsupervised kids around it. Any kid who gets near this delicate papercraft will necessarily be no more than 5 feet away from an adult. So I give it until at least next fall.

If you want to see some close up pictures of the flowers you can check out this little gallery on my Instagram (taken with my Moto X4). If you like flowers, cactus, pets, food, or my art, you should totally be following my Instagram. I’m hubris_and_smoke.

Cut, Painted, 3D Flower

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Exactly what it says on the tin

I wanted pinking shears for a special request bulletin board I’ll be doing later in the week, but apparently that’s not a thing anymore, because I had to buy a set of 12 “decorative scissors” to get the one pair I needed. They’re not as high quality as the ones my mom used to own but the whole set was $13 so I’ll probably get my money’s worth. Testing them out tonight, I accidentally made this flower, which I then painted intentionally and glued down with matte medium. Cute. I’m on a mission to get paint on every time of this floor.

“Youth” by Langston Hughes

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Seems like an appropriate message for today’s youth.

I chose “Youth” by Langston Hughes as the theme for this bulletin board, as it seems like a timeless poem, about feelings that keep coming around, and also because it feels hopeful. It suggests a sense of agency on the part of the reader, with the poet clearing the way. You have power! Into the future you go! Good stuff.

I wanted to change the board for September but I didn’t want to go too crazy time-wise, because soon it will be October and this year’s Halloween design is going to slay. Cutting all the letters took about 2 hours, and glueing them another 3 and the feet took about 3 more. So really I didn’t save any time.

Paradoxes of Childhood #127

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Dirt is relative. Stink lines are definite.

The first comic since I got this new computer, and it’s drawn in pencil. In hindsight, it would have worked better in the other style. Maybe the funny ones should be digital and the serious ones in pencil? I’ve been drawing webcomics for over 4 years now (four years!) and I’m still working this stuff out.

Anyway, this one, obviously, is based on a true story that I hear pretty much every day. You know how I know if the dishwasher is clean or dirty? I look at it. Then I use my powers of perception, primarily sight, but also smell to some extent, to determine whether or not the dishes therein are soiled with food particles. The same skill you use to determine that 1 part per octillion of your fork tine hosts a speck of foreign matter, except what I’m looking at is discernible with the naked eye.

This one harkens back to Superhuman Abilities Endemic to Childhood, except this is like a subhuman ability. Kids, amirite?

I should also add that I am speaking on 7 (seven!) panels at Tucson Comicon. One of the panels will actually be about comics. (The other 6 will not. The con’s tag line is “Pop culture for all!”) I am a bit apprehensive about the comic discussion: it’s the only one that I’ll deliver on my own, plus the time slot is not desirable. It’s just when the con really kicks off, early Friday evening, and last year I did another panel in that slot, which happened to be during the first big-name guest’s autograph session. What I mean to say is, nobody came to our panel, because everyone went to meet Billy Dee Williams. True story. Actually, one guy came: the official con photographer. He thought Billy Dee Williams’s people were being dicks, and he was cool enough not to mention the fact that we gave a 50-minute presentation to a empty room, and he told us a funny story about how Stan Lee owes him a beer, and he took this picture of us, which the con is using for publicity on social media.

The Future Is Non Binary in the Wild

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You must provide your own attitude. Come on, you can do it. 

Here’s the world famous Ms. Kitty modeling my “The Future Is Non Binary and Intersectional” shirt at the world famous Tucson Bartending Academy, where I presume she is about to earn a degree in mixology. It really looks like a bar, but it turns out all those bottles are full of water and food coloring. The fruit is all plastic. She mixed me about 25 drinks in an hour but I left feeling very thirsty.

Anyway, this shirt! It looks good. You have to get it in black. The tiny spaceship is adorable. Also available as a sticker, a travel mug, a wall clock, a notebook, and much much more. Check out this design in my RedBubble shop.