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johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
feeling like I am coping and learning, basically that I am doing all right
johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
 the almost palpable psychic hum of excitement around me as the new academic year begins on campus
johncomic: (Booth)
feeling kinda invigorated and excited by tomorrow's launch of the new academic year
johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
two weeks in August without putting the air conditioner on -- I mean, I am very grateful we have AC, but also for those times when it isn't required, eh?
johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
 standing here after a week of perfect weather, looking toward what is forecast to be another perfect week -- I need to remind myself that times like this can still happen here, it's too easy to forget... enjoying getting my quota of walks in!
johncomic: (Booth)
a fresh supply of bloobs!
johncomic: (Moss)
Plastics -- for some reason, I have become very conscious of them today. What an amazing invention. Pay attention to the plastic objects you use, and notice how seldom you can think of some other material they could be made out of which would do the same job as well as plastic does.
johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
a beautiful [perhaps perfect] day -- goes a long way toward soothing the savage head
johncomic: (SK BW)
"I try to draw so convincingly that the reader won't notice."
-- Hank Ketcham, The Merchant of Dennis


I read this statement in Ketcham's autobiography years ago, and it stuck with me hard ever since. Over time, it shaped the way I view the comics medium and my own work within it.

My paraphrase of how he described the process is this: if something is drawn badly, so that it doesn't look right, it pulls the reader's attention away from the story and interrupts the flow. The story world ceases to be a convincing, immersive experience. However, as I thought about this, I took it further... and came to believe that if things in a comic are drawn too well, they have the same effect. The reader stops to admire the expertise of the rendering, and focuses their attention on the drawing as a drawing. Once again, they are pulled out of the story world at that point.

As I became devoted to the idea of telling the story as the prime goal of a comic, I grew toward the idea of drawing down the middle -- drawing well enough. That became my ideal. And I gained a deeper appreciation for artists who seemed to me to embody that ideal. The ones who draw well but don't overdraw. These are the artists I study today and strive to learn from. (For me, Tonči Zonjić is the prime exponent of this approach still working today -- I admire his work so much.)

Recently, though, I have grown aware of a strange dynamic involved in my studies. I find such comic art difficult to study fruitfully, because: by its very nature, this art is designed to propel you through the story rather than have you stop and pay attention to it -- so, when I try to study the techniques of this art, I keep getting sucked back into the story and re-reading the comic instead! It's really surprising how much intense focus it takes me to resist the lure of the story world! That's exactly the kind of power I want to harness in my own work... but I can see that it is going to be a struggle!

johncomic: (Sweets)
 a new motto

On my way in to work today, I was brooding on recent issues and challenges, feeling kinda sober... and then I caught sight of a lady walking a couple of cute shaggy pups. And I instantly broke into a grin, and for a moment my burden was lightened. And I thought, When you see pups, enjoy seeing the pups. 

And it occurred to me that that modest epigram actually encapsulates a large portion of my personal philosophy, gathering many aspects of it under one small umbrella. I like that little saying, and so I am going to adopt it. (Feel free to use it yourself as you wish.)
johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
 so many people getting excited about something as inherently geeky as an eclipse
johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
a long deep refreshing sleep --- the second one in a row, in fact!
johncomic: (Default)
 the road reno guys are still on the case


johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
 the wonderful feeling of changing out of cold wet clothes into warm dry ones -- ya forget how good that is
johncomic: (The Mighty Scott)
 revisiting old once-loved music and still loving it
johncomic: (Booth)
 holding fast when at first I don't feel like I can - I like surprising myself that way
johncomic: (Face of Boe)
 the power to make conscious choices
johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
 my coworkers -- I'm reminded that not everyone likes or gets on with theirs as well as I do mine
johncomic: (Uncle Old Guy)
a very peaceful morning, the kind I love most
johncomic: (Steve the Pirate ani)
making myself do something that's good for me but which I really so did not feel up to doing today

September 2017

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