Flubbed Beard Opportunity

Recently, I shaved off the biggest beard I've had in a long time. It was big—ridiculously big. I haven't had one so big since my ill-fated appointment at the DMV almost 4 years ago.

Anyway, as I'm wont to do, I thought it a great opportunity to do a fun in-betweener beard. It was decided that it should be a 18th century old-timey mariner beard/chops*. So I went to work. But in the 10 or so pictures I took at the various stages of completion, I didn't get even one good shot. Alas. So goes life as a self-shot photographer.

Oddly enough, the last time the beard fully came off was in this same backyard in Portland. I never got around to posting the picture of that, so here it is: the always classic halfbeard.
Tuesday February 22 2011File under: beard

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Winter Hiking in PDX

The Columbia River Gorge, just outside of Portland, offers some great, easily accessible, gorgeous hiking (previously covered here). Finding myself in Portland and with a willing hiking partner, I set out to enjoy and explore on what turned out to be a gorgeously sunny winter day.

The hike we chose was Eagle Creek to High Bridge* just 45 minutes up river. The terrain was easy and well-maintained, if a little muddy in parts. The scenery was amazing, with gorges, waterfall(s), views, and a beautiful river.

We saw quite a few people setting out from here loaded with backpacks, presumably for multi-day hikes. This made me so jealous that I just about tried to teach the dog to feed the chickens and vice versa here at my current housesitting house and set out on a backpacking trip of my own. Next time I will plan better and make it a reality.

Yep, with such an amazing taste of the outdoors, I'm planning at least one more good hike before I leave the Portland area. Any readers out there want to come along?
Sunday February 20 2011File under: Portland, hiking

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FC 134 - A Clown and a Ninja Walk Into a Bar...

Funny how a comic can pan out. I drew this whole comic except for the clown and ninja with a completely different caption in mind. But with it all together, I found it lacking. Then, with a bam and a boom, this is what I got. I like this much better. It just goes to show you that the original plan isn't always the best and you should always keep an open mind along the way.

For those of you who don't remember back to the early days of Friday Comics, the clown and ninja are an allusion back to these couple comics from over 2 years ago. In reading back over the comments from when those were posted, I realized 1) the body of readers I have is quite different than today* 2) I think there really might be something to this clown and ninja combo. Perhaps I'll add them to the list of my recurring characters along with the Hippie Mafia.
Thursday February 17 2011File under: comic

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Roses Are Red 2011


Roses do pale
Compared to your beauty
Your angelic face
And your smoking booty

Roses are red
I give them to you
As the smallest gesture
That my love is true

Roses are red
Tomatoes are redder
I like my pizza
Covered in cheddar

@};-s are :-)
And signify <3
Emoticons make me LOL
At least sort of

Giving her roses
Might get you humped
But not giving them
Could get you dumped

I gave her my heart
Along with a rose
Then how come I'm not
The one that she chose

It's that time of year again, time for the 5th annual Roses are Red showcase! For you longtime readers, you know the drill. For the first-timers, here are the guidelines:
     1) Poems must basically follow the standard Roses are red rhyme/stress scheme
     2) Your poem must include either "red"" or "roses"
     3) Anonymous posting is totally acceptable
     4) Submit as many poems as you like and be as creative as you like

For inspiration (or to have a good laugh), check out previous years' submissions: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010.

(Oh, and I fixed the line break problem, so <br /> after lines is not necessary)
Sunday February 13 2011File under: poetry

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FC 133 - One Mans Trash...

Partially inspired by real life events, partially social commentary, and partially an attempt at being just plain funny, this comic has a lot of parts. It also has a lot of words, not exactly how I prefer my comics. I was debating turning it into a three panel, but that's just so much work (and I was already cutting corners on this with the repeated background). Anyway, I hope I didn't make the font too small that it is unreadable. I know for a fact that there will need to be some reworking for it before it goes in Friday Comics 2: Yep, Another Book*.

So a question for you: did you read the long speech bubble first or the one from the boss? It won't make sense if you read the long one first, but I can see how one might, being that it is higher up. Oh the intricacies of making comics.

While this idea started out as a total joke, I wonder if at some point, somewhere, this idea was actually thought of in these terms, if not in boosting the economy, at least inflating profits at airport stands. I've heard of the government doing crazier things...
Thursday February 10 2011File under: comic

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Greenhouse Building

My greenhouse is bigger than your greenhouse. In fact, when it's done, my greenhouse will be bigger than your actual house.*

Okay, so maybe it isn't mine. It's at the quarry, land of hippies and pirates. But I'm helping put it up and I will be growing lots of yummy things in it for years to come. But before it is used for growing food, it will be used for precious precious dry space, to help facilitate getting moving the shipping container so we can get the warehouse up.

Yep, working at the quarry is satisfying. Seeing the vision ever so slowly come together, being part of shaping the amazing concept, and working with fun people is really exactly what I need right now. And you could have it too. We are now to a point of considering/encouraging/begging for new investors.

Update: I was just so excited the project was happening, I posted before everything was done. Here are a few remaining pictures to round things out. (Thanks to Comrade Jules for the pics!). Big piece of plastic, playing on the roof, dry covered space, c'est fin
Tuesday February 8 2011File under: quarry

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FC 132 - Tie-Dye Tuxedo

Procedural note: I don't how many of you actually read this blurb I include with the Friday Comic or if you read it before or after opening the comic. If it matters, I assume that you are reading this blurb *after* opening the comic, so I don't try to conceal spoilers. If you are in the habit of reading the blurb first, please take that into account. That is all.

I haven't been this excited about a comic in quite a while, not so much for how it turned out (although I'm not displeased with the outcome) but more just for the idea. In my excitement, I was thinking this could turn into a whole series or even a whole new comic! But then I realized I'm just barely getting one comic per week out and adding to that might not be the most feasible thing. There is a chance, however, of the Hippie Mafia making a return in a future comic. Perhaps they could be battled by Moon Man.
Thursday February 3 2011File under: comic

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Shoenicycle (Part 1)

I've been putting off this post until the project is complete, but I can't wait any longer. Completion is within sight, but I gotta share what I've got so far.

I introduce you to the Shoenicycle. Totally custom made from salvaged parts (and shoes), it's been a project almost a year in the making. With bucketloads of help from Per, the frame was welded, grinded*, and brazed at his bike fabrication shop in Montreal. The wheel* was put together in Anacortes with my old shoes that I knew I had been keeping around for some reason. Tweaks to the axle/pedal mechanism were made on the spot of the first test ride at the Cirque Lab in Bellingham.

The first (and second) test ride attempts both identified problems, so officially, it has yet to be ridden. But with new steel crank arms, I trust that the last problem will be overcome soon. Hopefully, within a month, I'll have a video of this frankenstein of a machine being ridden around with glee. Then comes working up an act for Vaudevillingham. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for March.
Wednesday February 2 2011File under: circus, misc

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Picture Taking as a Reminder

Recently I've been reminded of how easy it is to take for granted the beauty of Fidalgo Island when I am surrounded by it daily. To those that aren't used to the verdant greens, wide views of the ocean, and occasional glimpses of towering mountains, this picturesque island that I call home is something new, something very beautiful. I was glad to have this reminder, esp. because I've been doing possibly one of the most beautiful hikes on the island everyday for the last 2 weeks, and sometimes even forgetting to look up to appreciate it all.

To force myself to look around and appreciate it all, I took my camera along while out on my daily dog walk. The above shot is the best, but this is one that I've been wanting to get for a while. I like how the color on this one turned out. Then, lastly, I had to do the old self portrait (mostly to document how out of control the old beard is getting).

Anyway, I submit this post to remind us* that we all live in beautiful places and sometimes we can forget that. So I encourage you to take a moment and look around and enjoy it.
Sunday January 30 2011File under: Anacortes, pics

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FC 131 - Non-standard Commute

Yes that's supposed to be a zebra. As I've noticed before (and I think I've even commented on it), animals are harder to draw than people. In the past, I've mostly traced my animals (birds, cats, cows, dogs (though for some reason I've been prone to freehanding chickens)). This time, however, I was determined to do it myself. Afterall, how am I supposed to grow as an artist unless I push myself.

I was also halfway tempted to do this as a caption contest comic. While I like the idea and the drawing, I'm not totally satisfied with the punchline. In that spirit, please feel free to add your own in the comments below. If yours is better than mine, I might just do a switcharoo before putting it in my next comic collection*.
Thursday January 27 2011File under: comic

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