One last SPACE DUMPLINS event on the docket: Free Comic Book Day at the Federal Bar in North Hollywood, Saturday, May 7th. This is a fundraiser for LA Children’s Hospital, LA+USC Children’s Hospital, City of Hope Children’s Cancer Unit and Elizabeth’s Canvas organized by Blastoff Comics.
After that, I’m moving on from “all-ages” to work again on “serious”, “literary”, “adult” “graphic novels”.
In the meantime, the release valve for my silly, cartoony energies is a platform of spontaneous, collaborative animations cooked up with my little brother, Phil, called TRACTORBEAMS. Check out the soft launch at instagram and tractorbeams.tv. (“TV”, not “.com”… couldn’t get that one.)
This snow sculpture of Radcliffe perfectly merges SPACE DUMPLINS with BLANKETS and CARNET DE VOYAGE. The sculpting is courtesy my friends and translators, who hosted me at that chalet in Argientières in the French Alps in 2004. (Thank you, Laetitia, Frédéric, Anne-Julia, Walter, and kids!)
In less than a week, I leave for a 6 week book tour in Europe. Details coming soon!
HAPPY NEW YEAR, Dear Readers! Thanks again for supporting the debut of SPACE DUMPLINS! Not yet sure what projects are forecast for 2016… been tinkering with a sequel to DUMPLINS… gathered two months of travel drawings & notes with Edmond Baudoin… and scheming of collaborative animations with my little brother, Phil from BLANKETS! More soon! Hugs, Craig
Presently punting in Cambridge, UK with Sierra, the first leg of post-DUMPLINS vacation. But the big news in my world is that we’re MOVING to LA, packing up almost two decades of living in Portland, Oregon. The process is GOOD-BYE, CHUNKY RICE all over again. That book was drawn when I was 21 and first moved to Portland from Milwaukee, Wisconsin; emotionally devastated from missing my friends. Now I’m nearly forty, but feeling the same. Big love to my Portland posse, and to my extended community of friends & readers around the world.
As ever, production & design on the book is full of headaches, but the author photo shoot this weekend was refreshing.
Here’s an outtake with my photographer buddy Joshin Yamada on my friend Dan’s Harley/VW TRIKE.
Happy Holidays, Blog-Friends, and as ever thanks for your patience with these updates. As of today, CHAPTER SIX of SPACE DUMPLINS is finally complete. Only one more (shorter) chapter to complete the book. Unfortunately, I’ve fallen behind schedule – distracted by finalizing the cover design, a trip to NYC to meet with Scholastic, some health problems, and of course MOMO trampling pages in the midst of inking.
In this first photo – I moved my inking to the dining room table – the only spot with enough natural light to work during a six hour power outage. The second image documents Momo intercepting the blue pencil while roughing out a page (final inks on the left).
Now to dive into the final chapter. Despite being behind schedule, the book should still hit its off-to-print deadline for its Fall 2015 release. Thanks for sticking with me!
My drawing buddy Farel Dalrymple has a new graphic novel out from First Second titled WRENCHIES. On the surface, it appears a post-apocalyptic adventure, but underneath it’s a meta, existentialist, psychedelic, and deeply personal epic. WRENCHIES explores religious upbringing, guilt, addiction, and self-destructive tendencies while leavening it with moments of child-like, nerdy bliss and the most endearing chubby kid in a homemade superhero outfit named Hollis. Haunting and glowing. If you’re in Portland, FLOATING WORLD is hosting a launch for the book from 6-10pm this Thursday, August 7th. (The image on the left is Farel’s rendition of Dodola & Zam from FLOATING WORLD’s launch for HABIBI back in October 2011.)
Another book I NEED to endorse is Kyle Minor’s PRAYING DRUNK. My fervor for this book is almost religious; I went and ordered a bunch of copies directly from the publisher SARABANDE BOOKS to proselytize my loved ones. And yet I’m dumbfounded attempting to articulate the magic this book works — the blurbs on Minor’s site do a decent job – or you can wet your curiosity with a great interview with the author on my pal David Naimon’s literary podcast BETWEEN THE COVERS. What I can say is this book shook me and humbled me and stays with me, and you won’t regret picking up a copy for yourself.
For those of you asking about Dave Stewart’s process coloring SPACE DUMPLINS, there’s a great interview up at FROM THE GUTTERS.
Dave is tackling some ridiculously detailed panels. Here’s one I just drew of an outer space landfill.
As ever, the reference is hodgepodged from both low brow & high brow sources. A) The FOLK ART side hails from the graveyard of cars rusting in the forest behind my parents’ rural Wisconsin home. (See page 533 of BLANKETS for more wooded trash heaps.) B) The FINE ART side is Nancy Rubin’s “Airplane Parts” sculpture at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles.