WRCT Notebooks and a trip to PGH

I christen this the beginning of an era of regular updates.

As y’all already know, I love WRCT. It’s a place of good music and good people. Two things, that, more often than not, are hard to come by.

Last weekend I took a trip down to Pittsburgh for which I prepared 62 little graph paper notebooks with silk screen covers and inner covers. They idea was to make somthing nice for the station’s current membership given that I’m away. It seems like the station has grow immensely over the past couple of months and that the programming has gotten exponentially better since the summer. Knowing that warms my heart.

After making 62 of those, I’m pretty sure I’m never going to buy a sketchbook for a good long while. I’m too precious with things I buy and, at this point in time, I can’t afford to be precious with my drawing. Right now, my aim is to just get all of the shitty drawings out of my system. It’s going to be a while, but the shittier the notebooks, the faster this whole process’ll go.

If you’re interested in seeing some the junk I’m churning out, check out my tumblr. While some of the drawings may be nice, they definitely don’t deserve spotlights here.

So, if I haven’t told you this in the past couple of days, Pittsburgh, I love you. 42 hours on the road and 46 hours in the city and every minute was precious. I really needed the trip.

I spent the weekend with my good friends Tim Sherman and Caitlin Boyle and got the special treat of being their helper monkey as they built arcade cabinets with the New York City game collective, babycastles. The weekend saw the glorious housing of two fun games, the TOASTMOTHER (Tara Helfer and Tim Sherman) and the sleeper hit, Trampoline Goat (Caitlin Boyle and Tim Sherman).

Babycastles did some workshops on cabinet building and gave a talk about their history as an organization. They’re stupendously nice people with an amazing outlook on creating. Although I’ve never programmed any games before, the fine folks at Babycastles have lit a fire to do so. DIY or die.

Here are some photos from the work on Saturday and Sunday.

Tim Sherman working on the Toastmother Cabinet.

Caitlin and the two beautiful cabinets that we transformed to house the Toastmother and Trampoline Goat.

And here you can have a look at the one and only, Trampoline Goat. Trampoline Goat was a game that Caitlin and Tim churned out in an hour while at CMU. The game was astonishingly popular. The premise is simple: Move left and right to stay on the trampoline. Collect Tomato Soup cans and avoid the bluebirds that race across the screen to bring your downfall. The record for the night was 18 points (soup cans collected in mid-air).

Babycastles have a history of making buttons out of objects (In the case of the games we made, toast and lamb plushie were used). They also like to make plushies into game consoles. Behold QWOP on the fish.

Oh, and if you’re wondering what game that little boy is playing, it’s QWOP. Gameplay goes something like this:
Finally, why not have a gander at the space we were in.


This was all during the annual VIA Media Festival, so Pittsburgh was really hoppin’.

Additionally, I got to catch and help out with a visual performance by Tim that he did for the DJ duo Tiger and Woods.

To give you an idea as to how much I like Tim’s visual work, I often go to shows solely for his VJing.

I caught some performances, danced my ass off and got to see a bunch of my friends. Given that practically anyone who knew anything about anything was in East Liberty for VIA that weekend, I didn’t have to go too far to see folks. Hug after hug after hug, the weekend did me a lot of good.

Arguably unfortunate timing made it such that I had no time to work on CCS projects on Friday, Saturday or Sunday, which definitely put me at a disadvantage with respect to my fellow students, but I wouldn’t have traded this weekend for the world.

While I’ve been getting my ass handed to me right now at CCS, and that’s mainly my fault, last weekend’s trip has given me a good deal of perspective on the past month of classes and work at CCS.

You already know how much work cartooning and comics are, so I won’t belabor that fact. Suffice to say that I’ve underestimated the time things take to complete and as such have been doing A LOT of crunch time work that has been up to snuff.

After this week’s work I’m finally hitting a stride. I’m caught up on everything and besides making solid headway in my current projects, I’m revising all of my past projects so that they’re genuinely great. That’s why you haven’t seen anything round these parts of the internet from me. When they’re ready, your eyes will have plenty to gobble up. A series of George Herriman Krazy Kat imitation strips, an Ed Emberley styled story featuring Miyazaki’s Kiki and a one page poster sized comic about bird watchers in the style of Charley Harper (which is really just a subconscious meditation on my parents) are all on their way.

Stay tuned, sweet heart, as this boy’s got plenty of things up his sleeve for you.



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