Monday, May 26, 2014

"Retro" Chapter 1: The Tower (Updated: Part 3!)

UPDATE: June 12th, 2014: Chapter 1, Part 3 added below! Check it out! 

Happy Memorial Day! I hope all of my American readers are able to do two things today:

1: Remember those who fought and died in service to our country. No matter your politics or ideas on the military-industrial complex, soldiers have a hard, thankless job, and it's only right that we remember those who've come before.

2. Find something that you really, truly love and spend some time doing it. Having freedom also means having freedom of one's time, and I hope you're able to enjoy some free time today.

That said, I did something I love today: drew cartoons! This story has been a long time in the making (and is still under construction). I'm going to be updating this post periodically with additional parts to Chapter 1 until it's complete. 

For now, I present "Retro", Chapter 1, Part 1!

June 1, 2014: UPDATE! Chapter 2, Part 2 added below! 

June 12th, 2014 UPDATE: Part 3 is a GO!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Hunting S. Thompson on Derby Weekend

Unless you despise things like joy and happiness, you know that last weekend was the 140th annual running of the Kentucky Derby. If you've never been to the Derby and are unaware of what goes on there, I think the description by acclaimed writer and Louisville native son Hunter S. Thompson says it best:

"Beyond drink and lack of sleep, our only real problem at that point was the question of access to the clubhouse. Finally, we decided to go ahead and steal two passes, if necessary, rather than miss that part of the action. This was the last coherent decision we were able to make for the next forty eight hours. From that point on almost from the very moment we started out to the track we lost all control of events and spent the rest of the weekend churning around in a sea of drunken horrors. My notes and recollections from Derby Day are somewhat scrambled." - Hunter S. Thompson, "The Kentucky Derby is Decadent and Depraved".

The whole article from which this excerpt comes is worth reading if you've never checked it out. In honor of Louisville's favorite son, I decided to do a series of cartoons of Hunter.

Do NOT fill my inbox with complaints- I KNOW Thompson was a Cats fan. It's a play on words, okay? Geez.

Ah, bat humor. Truly the Cadillac of comedy. 

Almost makes me with those cigarette holders would come back in style.

So yeah, those were fun to draw, and I got a generally positive response from them. But I wanted to do something more- Hunter's whole point of the article I mentioned above is that, while he was observing all the decadent and depraved behavior at Derby, he inadvertently became what he was documenting. And an experience like that takes getting out in the community on Derby weekend. So I did what anybody (go ahead, ask around) would do- I decided to hide my drawings all over the Highlands!)

(For the uninitiated, Louisville's Highlands is the eclectic hippy part of town. It was also where Hunter S. Thompson was raised. Go figure.)

My idea was for people to track the drawings down, post pictures of them online (so I could see when they were found) and maybe buy something at a local business while they're at it. 

The first of my Hunter S. Thompson drawings is hidden between two copies of "Derby Fever" in the Kentucky section of Carmichael's books (1295 Bardstown Road).

The second of my Hunter S. Thompson drawings is hidden in Day's Esperesso and Coffee (1420 Bardstown Road). I pinned it to the local notices board, behind a flier that says "Phone Cops".

The third and final hidden Hunter S. Thompson drawing is stashed in Why Louisville (1583 Bardstown Road), in the back room, behind a copy of Hunter S. Thompson's biography (it seemed only fitting).

I had a good time doing it, and if it got some people out and about on Derby day that otherwise would've been holed up inside, then I got what I wanted. I never heard back about two of the drawings (though I heard through the internet grapevine that they had been found), I did receive feedback about one of them!

All-in-all, a completely worthwhile experience. Will I do it again? You bet. I just need to find another local celebrity to draw. I wonder how Mitch McConnell would feel about it.... hmmm....