Recommended musical pairing: Shovelling by Alessi’s Ark

Hi All,

I didn’t win the Pig Skin Peters award.

But no regrets, the evening was a blast and I was lucky to be among the nominess. The prize went to Henriette Valium for his work The Palace of Champions – and it was well deserved. ‘Valium’ is a Montreal artist who has been making art since the 1980s. Big congrats, mon ami!
Optimized-valiumengcoverweb

Below is an image from the ceremony; the awards table. And also the cookie I received as a consolation prize. It was the best tasting cookie I ever ate!
Optimized-awardsOptimized-cookie

TCAF 2017 was another exciting get together of incredible artists from around the world. And as annoying as this may sound I had a chance to approach some of them with a request for BEST DAY EVR! characters.

First up, Gary Panter. Gary is recognized as one of the masters of American comics; in the same league as Robert Crumb and Art Spiegelman. He is also a musician, a writer, a teacher – and easily one of the nicest guys I have ever met. His graphic novels featuring the hillbilly/punk character Jimbo revolutionized modern comics and basically kicked down whatever walls existed between cartoons and fine art. He is also well known for his production designs for Pee-Wee’s Playhouse which garnered three Emmys. Chatting with Gary as he was drawing my character, I had never imagined it was possible…
Here’s the link to his site;
garypanter.comOptimized-Gary Panter

The next drawing is a picture of Franny by Alabaster Pizzo. Alabaster lives in Brooklyn and produces wonderful stories. She is adept in both black and white, like with Mimi and The Wolves, and with really bold colours, like in Hellbound Lifestyle. One of my favourite projects of her’s is Ralphie and Jeannie, an anthro comic. This comic is so good and it’s available for free on vice.com, which, incidentally, features some of the best cartoonists working today.
Please, check out her stuff;
alabasterpizzo.comOptimized-Alabaster Pizzo

Ines Estrada comes from Mexico and has a really great street art sensibility to her work. Her art is edgy, kind of feral – and I’m really taken with the integration of nature in her drawings. Humans and plants and animals are often rendered in a manner that feels rough and raw, and yet the narratives are very nicely composed.
Loving this Roger she drew. Muchas Gracias, Ines!
inechi.comOptimized-ines estrada

And finally an interpretation of Howie by Connor Willumsen. Connor won the Pig Skin Peters award a couple years back for his work Swinespritzen; one of my all time favourite comics. His three part series Treasure Island is also among my ‘highly recommended’. Simply put, he is a remarkable artist. Technically, he draws like nobody else. But what makes his work really stand out is the surprise – his way of completely working around expectations to produce images which feel new, undiscovered. I have lots to learn from this guy. Many thanks, Connor.
Oh, and check out his site – it is definitely an eye opener with regard to the possibilities of narratives and drawings, amazing stuff!
connorwillumsen.com
Optimized-connor willumsen

Wait, Wait, Late entry! This cute little guy is my version of ‘Devil’; a character created by Patrick Crotty. Patrick is not only a gifted cartoonist but he’s also one of the founders and editors of PEOW Studio in Stockholm. PEOW publishes some wonderful off-beat comics and a look through their catalogue is definitely worthwhile.
Here’s the link;
peowstudio.comOptimized-Devil

Thanks all for indulging me in this.
Speak to you again soon.

Ron