Tag Archives: blogging

Turned Diamond Mandala


The flaws in the pattern almost give it an Escher-esque dimensionality. 

I was a little bit sick last week, and a lot painting (more on that tomorrow) but mostly I was low and apathetic and in need of a vacation after my non-vacation vacation. Usually I take a little break around Thanksgiving and again around Christmas but I didn’t take off any time from the blog the entire 2 1/2 weeks we were on the road. I’m hoping I’ll have lot of cool projects to showcase at the end of the year anyway. If I can stop feeling low and apathetic. Which I could do. By distracting myself with cool projects.

It’s just hard. The forces of darkness seem to be surging.


So Fancy Mandala


Put that on your hair ornament and wear it. 

There’s a nice string of pretty fancy mandalas coming up. I must have had a great run of calm focus and serenity a couple years ago. Trying to remember what that’s like.

I thought I’d start a Tumblr to promote my blog, but not that I’ve poked around Tumblr, I realize that I should have just started the blog on Tumblr. Oh, well. Too late now. Still, having your own website is useful, too. Twenty-six dollars a year isn’t that much.

It’s full-on springtime, edging into summer, around here. Winter usually breaks by mid-February around here, but still. This el nino global warming weather is getting ridiculous. The man commenced to showering outside in the unheated garden shower last week. Anyway, with springtime in the desert comes an explosion of wildflowers, which inspire a lot of macrophotography. You can see some of it on Imgur: here’s a tiny fleabane wearing a tiny insect as a hat, and here’s a red poppy stamen.

That’s about it for art this weekend, although I scripted some comics. Not really feeling the Wacom tablet right now. Maybe it’s time to switch to pencil and paper.


Nothing to Report

I have no new art to upload today; the new design isn’t quite finished yet. The last bits are the hardest. Basically what I have to share with you is this:

Time flies.

Time flies.

Yes, an entire year since I started this blog, although I was doing the art bit for a few months before that. In some ways the blog has superseded the art, but I’m trying to get away from that, probably by changing the blog schedule as soon as I figure out the new plan. The blog is still a useful tool for me, and I have 130 followers, 98% of whom are total strangers who liked my work well enough to follow me. Thanks for caring. Tell your friends.

Other than that, all I have is a hilarious article about The Savage Sword of Conan coming out Tuesday morning. For a long time I’d thought about writing something in the style of articles from Cracked or Buzzfeed, sarcastic and mocking but also loving and full of admiration. I love these books, which transport me to the sort of world I loved as a child, even though the adult me can’t help but unpack the insane messages it contains. The thing is, yes, Conan does something that’s worth joking about, but it does that thing incredibly well.

I could probably write another article from a feminist perspective and tell the story in a very different way, but maybe simply pointing out the ridiculous can be just as effective as dissecting and analyzing it.


Fear and Loathing on the Internet

Eddy when he said he didn't like his teddy...

Eddy when he said he didn’t like his teddy…

When we were in grad school, the Rabbit used to draw little comics, which she sometimes stuck on my office door. I still, somewhere, have a rather dark one (which probably in part inspired this comic) with a little teddy bear and a big teddy bear, and the big teddy has spaced out eyes and a bottle in his hand, and the little teddy has a worried expression on his face, and the caption says, “Daddy, why do you drink?” This probably tells you more about the Rabbit than my comics do. She also had a surreal one about Sylvia Plath, except Plath was represented as a roast turkey. If this doesn’t make any sense to you, you probably don’t have an English degree. But trust me, it’s darkly humorous.

I fell into a click hole the other day at a website called getoffmyinternets.net (GOMI), which is basically a platform for a sarcastic blogger to make fun of other bloggers. The author chooses her targets–they’re exclusively the sort of  entitled popular attention-seekers who post dozens of pictures of themselves and their fabulous lifestyles we secretly want to watch fail–and takes a bitter joy in tearing them down, or, as often happens, watching from the sidelines as they self-destruct. She’s talking about people with thousands of followers, with monetized sites, with book deals, so it’s not as if she’s hurting anyone. These people will sink or swim regardless of her snarky opinion.

Still, after a dozen or so pages, I started to feel bad about myself for reading it. After all, if you think someone’s blog is overly precious, or ostentatious, or oozing with braggadocio, or petty, or stupid, or ugly, or pointless, or whatever, you can just not read it. Sure, it’s frustrating to see someone you deem utterly talentless succeeding on any level, particularly when you can’t reach that level yourself (I would know), it’s utterly unhealthy to focus on your distaste and make it the target of all your emotional expression (I would know).

Obviously, GOMI is successful because it’s mean, because it doesn’t pull punches, and because it lacks any sympathy for its victims. It doesn’t play safe.

You can like something even when you think it’s inappropriate. Weeks ago I read a scathing criticism of the fact that in Age of Ultron, Tony Stark makes a joke about prima nocta–that is: a rape joke. And yes joking about rape is horrible (although I would argue that this sort of thing results from the existence of the rape culture, rather than being responsible for its perpetuation) but to be totally honest, I laughed when I heard the joke in the theater last weekend. Hardly anyone else laughed, although I expect this was more because hardly anyone else got it, rather than because people were unamused by a casual historic reference to state-sanctioned rape.

The viewer knows that Tony Stark would never consider raping anyone, because he’s a billionaire philanthropist playboy genius and probably needs the Iron Man suit just to keep women from crushing him to death with their desire to get on him. And it’s totally the kind of unconsidered joke the character would make. (That was sort of the point of the movie, that Stark is a guy who is so intent on answering “Can we?” that he doesn’t consider “Should we?”) Sure, the movie would have been just as successful had he made no joke at all, or if he had instead joked about some other right of totalitarian dictators, but–screw it–I’m sorry, but that joke was funny to me, in context. It was dark and violent and inappropriate and it made me laugh at loud.

By and large, I’ve tried to keep my blog rated-G. My stepkids and my nephews read it sometimes, and other family members, and, I would imagine, my stepkids’ other family members. Occasionally I edge into PG territory. Anyone who actually knows me probably realizes what an accomplishment this is, because I myself am a basically R to NC-17 kind of person, despite the fact that I’m able to dial it back in the presence of children, the elderly, and the ethically prudish. So I drew this comic a while ago, and a big part of me wanted to run it because it amuses *me*, but at the same time, what it is is very dark, in its way. It’s different than what I’ve run in the last year. (Oh, wow, it’s been a year….)

Let me say this: I understand that domestic violence is NOT FUNNY. But a little girl’s relationship with her stuffed animals and primary love object can be very funny. Anyway, if you don’t like me, you’re free to get the hell off my Internets. The inside of my head is a weird place, and not everything can be compartmentalized all the time.


Dragon Comics 74

You've got the power!

You’ve got the power!

A long time coming but here it is: comics about self-affirmation and belief in your true core’s strength. The answer was right there all along.

So far this has been a good week! My friend the Owl sent me a job posting for a website looking for someone to blog about non superhero graphic novels. This is my thing! I have a deep background and many ideas to share on this subject, and I am professionally trained to write and to deconstruct texts. Yet, knowing about the process of reading open calls for submission triggers my fear of rejection. What if, despite my knowledge that I am perfect for a job, I fail? What does this say about my belief in my abilities, if I cannot even escape the slush pile? This is the sort of thing that tears me up and prevents me from putting forth the effort.

But I put forth the effort. And I made the cut. My little essays are going up as guest posts and if everything works out I will probably get my own column. To write about non superhero graphic novels. Which is a thing I would be doing anyway.

Another fun thing that just happened was the advent of my 100th follower on this blog. Hello! Everything’s coming up Dragon!