March 31, 2011

Pirates of Mars Cover Art

 Sometimes I can't decide... because I make too many options, [natch] haha :D

What do you guys think?  

March 28, 2011

Antique cameras + other people's memories

 Andy got me this cool box lot of antique cameras!  Some have film inside! *gasp*
And that is a Kodak movie projector!

The auction is always pretty cool.  It's weird shifting through other people's lives.

I read this man's journal from 1889 - it's a day by day account of what his cow "Charlie" did...

 amazing avocado lime salad and sweet potato roll at TenKa!

 Boston Public Library
We did lots of fun stuff in the past two weeks, ran out to the Natick Collection to get something special for Tomoko's birthday (お誕生日おめでとう、智ちゃん!) tried the new Japanese fusion place TenKa (it was awesome but full of fashionable drunks, as the hibachi tables tend to attract) went to the auction (which was exclusively paper this week) went to a sake tasting to benefit Japan relief at Julio's (no one believes I'm 25 and married), and went to our friend Keenan's art show at Dark World Gallery.

oh! and I finished the first volume of Sherlock Holmes!  Now it's on to scanning, coloring, lettering, editing - all that fun stuff.  Images soon, I promise! 約束ね!

A bit late posting about this, but last week was that wonderful Super Moon! 大月!

I jumped out of bed at midnight to try and steal it into my camera. 

March 26, 2011

Swamp Things + Merry Melodies

Watched those silly "Swamp Thing" movies with Andy a little while back - they are so hilariously awful!

One of the things I loved about Japan was the moss that grew on everything.  It made everything feel ancient but still lively and green. (Ryoanji Kyoto, Bunny moss by 8Tokyo)

Oh, and also - you NEED to play this amazing music matrix!

It's not only addictive, but I think it's subconsciously teaching you melody-making.  And you thought the title meant Bugs Bunny cartoons.

March 24, 2011

Joan of Arc + picnics

 watching "La Passion de Jeanne D'Arc"

A super intense movie. Like Shindler's List and the like, you don't exactly watch it all the time.  More like once in a long while, you know?

After all that's happened with the disasters in Japan (aptly named ), watching Chris Marker's documentation of South American guerilla warfare (I'll never again use the word "guerilla" to describe a piece of art), and researching the final days of Joan of Arc - it's easy to be overwhelmed with death and the suffering of people.

But I'll tell you what it makes my problems seem like a picnic!

And speaking of which, I don't go on enough picnics.  Ok.  I've decided:


go on more picnics.

March 21, 2011

Sans Soleil (1983) + Tokyo-Ga 東京画(1985)

When in Japan, Andy and I felt like Scottie (James Stewart) in Hitchcock's "Vertigo".  We were voyeurs of a culture we didn't fully understand walking around in a dream like state, totally unaware of what day it was, running around chasing nothing.

So I went searching for other people who had felt that way while traveling, and specifically people viewing Japanese culture from the outside.

I have been enormously touched by two films, Tokyo-Ga by Wim Wenders and Sans Soleil by Chris Marker.  These are really insightful and both connected in many ways -check them out!

Alice Liddel :
'Sans Soleil' ... is full of documentary images, snapshots from the faraway places Marker visits. The film is full of the observations of the filmmaker about the cultures he observes.

... where all time is the same, and therefore irrelevant, just as Scottie Ferguson wanders around dazed, in a loop of fantasy and distorted memory.

'Soleil' is anything but bleak - its stories, myths, cultural tidbits, observations are unfailingly entertaining. Krasna compares the overcultured, saturated Japan to the timeless emptiness of Africa, to the spooky otherworldliness of Iceland, as his 'objective' narrative becomes increasingly a personal odyssey .... In its focusing on the minutae, the forgotten, the arcane, the ephemeral, the back alleys, the garbage,... an apocalyptic vision teeming with life.
In Tokyo-Ga, Wenders visits LA JETEE, a Shinjuku underground spot for film makers and rogue artists named for Chris Marker's 1963 film.  A place to which Coppolla, Tarrantino, Juliette Binoche and lots of others have all made pilgrimage.  I think we should all go there, what do you say?

March 19, 2011

In the Realms of the Unreal

I recently watched the movie "In the Realms of the Unreal", a documentary by Jessica Yu of the late Henry Darger.  Darger has become a new mentor to me, as I feel I seriously lack one lately.

His unrelenting drive, meticulous work ethic and unencumbered imagination.  It's seriously inspiring stuff.

* As a side note, I totally disagree with the choice to animate Darger's work, it's pointless, so you just have to get past it.

I've felt a dark cloud over my work lately, but it's really my doing.  Will someone like this?  Is it good?  Is this helping my career go forward?"  Darger had none such worries - because they are a waste of time to begin with.  He just made stuff, all the time, in total creative freedom.

In other news, I am supremely excited to be offered the chance to be an Artist in Residence at the Eagle Hill School in Hardwick, Massachusetts this fall!   I'll be working on a new project in a studio on campus and teaching a class in storytelling and graphic novels later in the semester.

I'll also be living there for just over 4 months, about half the week.  It will still be hard to live away from Andy, but we'll make it work.  And thanks to Darger, I'm super inspired to delve into some epic work.

The campus is really inspiring, and the faculty and staff are unbelievably positive.  Should be awesome!


So I've been into preparing good food lately!  Not exactly complicated things, but kind of a leap into "the Finer Things Club" from my end.  I think even taking the time to put something nicely on a plate and wait for your tea to steep is a good way to slow down your day.

That is a feta mini burger, (bakery-bought) danish, my favorite fig jam with Vermont sharp cheddar cubes, mozzarella , tomato and pesto panini, and zucchini pancakes!

March 17, 2011

Ireland 35 mm

from summer 2000

Pictured : Giant's Causeway, Grand Opera, botanical gardens, Dublin, Irish National Sweepstakes horses, my sister Audra on the top of the Causeway cliffs, Co. Galway, Japanese gardens

March 13, 2011

SAVE JAPAN: charity exhibition

Hey everyone,

I'm happy to say that Caro, the amazing curator of Sweet Streets, is putting together a charity exhibition in which 100% of sales go to the American Red Cross for Japanese relief.

If you are in Los Angeles but can't attend the opening, it runs March 19 through April 4, 2011.

There was no time to make a new piece, but I was able to touch up a mono print I had and send it off ASAP.

8x10 | gouache over mono print

Please buy some artwork for a great cause!!

@ JapanLA
7320 1/2 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90046

March 11, 2011

Japan Earthquake 日本地震

As you probably know, Japan has been devastated by an earthquake, tsunami, after-shocks and threats of nuclear melt-downs.  So far I've heard from all but one of my Japanese friends, and I'm really hoping the reason being is that she simply doesn't have power. 

Thanks for all the well-wishing, and yes, our family is luckily untouched as they are in the southern half of Japan.
If you go to the Red Cross website and select which disaster relief you'd like to donate to.  REDCROSS.ORG

It's times like these that make me feel like being an artist is a totally meaningless job, that I should be out there helping people, doing something that really matters. 


March 8, 2011

Flash Gordon


After 2 years, this piece is doneI know, right, 2 years! 

Well, at the time I started it I was preparing for a huge showing in Boston and was in the midst of completing about 35 other pieces. While Flash Gordon, Princess Aura and Ming the Merciless were the center pieces, I still felt like I didn't have adequate time to devote.

So Flash got a revisit!  I'm finally satisfied with it.

This is the original painting, as it hung at Space 242 Boston, June 2009.  

It is currently available for purchase 
// mixed media on heavy cold press paper // about 20x30" // inquiries, please contact

a digital make-over

Ramon Perez - I love his work!


March 7, 2011

Northern Ireland

So St. Patrick's Day is around the corner and it got me reminiscing about my first time out of the country in 2000.  I was about to enter the 10th grade I think? and my dad and younger sister and I took an 11 day trip around Ireland and Northern Ireland. I met up with my long time pen pal Trevor. (also an artist now!) His family was so kind and generous, I still remember the strawberry rhubarb pie his mom made, and his sister talking about gymnastics.  They ran a market, so the fruit was incredibly fresh.  I should really drop them a line!
some 35mm snaps from my disposable

I will confess that I did witness a very scary thing in Belfast.  We were at a shopping center and I separated from my family to walk to Marks & Spencer.  There was a small crowd of people forming a U shape around a brick wall, but I couldn't see what they were staring at.

A small band of thugs, who almost looked a bit like greasers from the 50s, were biting on the knuckles of a young man. Literally biting his fist.  A few things struck me as bizarre -

Firstly, the crowd was incredibly close to them, and the men weren't intimidated or scared off at all - in fact they were oblivious.  Secondly, the crowd was horrified and shouted, but no one took the initiative to stop them.  Finally after punching the young man in the stomach, they sneered at him, smacked a nasty smile over yellow teeth and left him to slowly slide down the brick wall.

I distinctly remember an old woman, a petite little lady, kneeling down to him and taking his hand in her glove.  It was so kind, even though she neither said nor did nothing, just sat with him.

Perfect strangers.

I'll never understand the Northern Ireland conflict fully, and was too young to comprehend what natives were trying to explain.  But the incident left a remarkable impression upon on me.

All I remember was the comment "There are people who benefit from these kinds of things".  I'm not sure if I want to know who.