Tag Archives: cats

Dragon Comics 9

I apologize in advance to any splendid otters who may just randomly stumble upon this comic strip, and also potentially any foxes even though obviously any similarity of these characters to any people/animals/mythical creatures, living or dead, is purely coincidental. Clearly, drawing a comic that is really only a thinly veiled depiction of ones friends and family could be a very dangerous pastime, unless all of ones friends and family have a really great sense of humor. Which, of course, mine do. But still. Purely coincidental.

I drew that otter around 1 a.m., looked at it, and then laughed for about 10 minutes straight.

I drew that otter around 1 a.m., looked at it, and then laughed for about 10 minutes straight.

I definitely do not know any large, muscular, barrel-chested otters. That would be utterly ridiculous.

Comics! Part 3

I’ve probably drawn hundreds of one-panel things that are like surreal cartoons, I’ve never quite gotten the hang of telling a story in pictures. My words tend to overwhelm the pages, I can never make the characters look like the people from panel to panel. And I’ve tried.

Crack Cats in Suburbia. Unfinished, but a high-res scan. If you blow it up, it’s possible to read.

These two unfinished comics, Crack Cats in Suburbia, were drawn in 1996 or 1997. I was heavily immersed in the counterculture at the time. We didn’t watch TV or listen to the radio. The strip was about a sense of alienation in a mainstream world, but also about finding a person to be an outcast with, as Dr. Seuss said: someone with a compatible weirdness.

I wanted so badly to draw this comic but could never get it right, and the more I worked at it, the further it was from completion.

I didn’t try to draw a full-page comic strip again until 2010, when I read this funny article by Shalom Auslander. I actually really enjoy his writing, but there was something so upsetting to me about the “loathsome writing jobs” reserved for people who didn’t know enough about writing, because of course, I was working at one of those loathsome writing jobs at the time, and I was ALSO writing fiction. Which no one liked. Whenever I read published authors with actual audiences complaining about how hard writing is or how they are crippled by their own self-doubt, I want to find and punch them. Although I did find it amusing that one of his demons was whether or not Philip Roth had done it first, since he’s easily compared to Roth. Anyway, I don’t want to hear any successful artists complaining about being successful artists, especially if they have spent years doing a loathsome job in the field.

I must have tried a dozen different punchlines but they never came out right. I was searching for that balance between comedy and outrage.

I must have tried a dozen different punchlines but they never came out right. I was searching for that balance between comedy and outrage.

Kitties!

If your cat requires entertainment and Animal Planet does not capture its attention, you can always get a fish.

If your cat requires entertainment and Animal Planet does not capture its attention, you can always get a fish. This is a watercolor I did in my late 20s. I’d like to offer this design on a T-shirt.

I’m in mourning for my cat right now. Algernon was geriatric at 17, and he suffered from a rare slow-moving cancer called multiple myeloma, and, at the end he was deaf, and blind, and incontinent, but he was the best cat, absolutely full of devoted love. In fact, he was my husband’s cat, and had been since he was young. My husband had Algernon before he met his first wife, but once we moved in together, the cat decided to love me best. He would purr so loudly you could hear him from twenty feet away whenever I walked into the room. He used to sleep next to my head (he had his own pillow) and purr into my ear when I had a headache, and he would head butt me repeatedly if he didn’t get enough pets. He was also prone to tender love bites.

Fast cat

Fast cat

I can’t find the sketch I want to include here, of my friend’s imperious cat, Suna. I know it’s around somewhere, because it’s one of the nicest cat sketches I’ve ever done. Possibly, I gave the picture to my friend. Instead, here is a super-fast drawing I did on the Wacom tablet in a minute or two. I was trying to look at the proportions of a child’s body, and the cat was a convenient way in.

Another fast cat

Another fast cat

Cats make terrible subjects. While they may lie, unmoving, for hours a day, the second you try to sketch one, it will move. You have about fifteen seconds to limn a cat before it changes poses.

I miss him a lot. You were a good cat, Algernon.

I miss him a lot. You were a good cat, Algernon.