Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Others: Daily Zoo "non-features"

Introducing a new feature to this blog: The Others. One of the problems I encountered while compiling the Daily Zoo sketches into book format was that 365 images is a lot of content to work with! Just the scanning alone was a time-consuming task. Then, while creating the book's layout, I had to choose which images were going to be featured in the main body of the book. Because of production costs (and not wanting to be blamed for the complete deforestation of the rainforest) my publisher and I decided that the book would be 160 pages. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your view, this meant that I could not show all the images at a large size. Of the 365 sketches from Volume One, I managed to "highlight" 145 in the main body of the book while the entire year's worth are shown as small thumbnails in the back as a sort of visual index.

One of the thoughts for this blog was to periodically feature some of the sketches that didn't get their fifteen minutes of fame in the book. Give 'em a little love, so to speak. So with that in mind, here are the first two, requested by Aaron from Portland. (If you have requests to see certain thumbnails larger without using your grandfather's magnifying glass, feel free to send me an email - I make no promises, but will see what I can do.) Click on the images to see them larger.

Day 028 - Alligator Salesman
I guess he's not really a salesman. Perhaps "salesgator" is more accurate? He joins the Serval Salescat (Day 176) and the Insecure Traveling Salesmonkey (Day 192) as animals peddling goods and services. I don't know what it is about salespeople/animals that makes them keep popping up as subject matter in my drawings. I have not liked most of the salespeople I have met...maybe turning them into animals is my way to make them more tolerable?

Day 143 - Wallowing Hog
When you're not tracking it across a freshly-mopped kitchen floor, mud is AWESOME.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Spoils from Santa

Happy New Year!

In addition to featuring my artwork on this blog, I'd like to periodically share other cool art that I happen to come across. Today I'd like to share two very cool books that I just got my hands on.

First up is Fantastical Creatures Field Guide: How to Hunt Them Down and Draw Them Where They Live by Aaron Lopresti. It is filled with whimsical creatures and characters; wonderful art and well-written and humorous text. A sort of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy-esque look at our planet's obscure fauna not yet recognized by science.

Second is Evolution by Jean-Baptiste de Panafieu with photographs by Patrick Gries. I haven't had a chance to read much of the text yet, but I was completely awed by the images: hundreds of black and white photographs of complete animal skeletons (aardvark, sloth, orca, lizards, primates, bison, coelacanth, you name it...) Really fantastic reference material - great for creature/character designers!