Friday, January 30, 2009
First up, we have a video of a woman in a beauty pageant who,frankly, has a REAL talent! She paints really fast, and really well. It's nothing short of amazing! My theory? She had a sketch underneath to work from, but it's just a theory.
Next, and finally, is a simply hilarious comic done by a really controversial editorial cartoonist. Before I show it, I just want to say that editorial cartoonists do something that I think 99% of professional artists in America both wish they were allowed to do and could do; Piss off people for a living! You have a group of artists who job is to spout off their own personal view and opinions on any subject they want. Basically, 100% Artistic Freedom. I've seen some comics go over lines that most people could never get away with, so that's just what I think. I've considered doing this stuff for a living myself, and now that I know you don't have to do it daily (some folks do one a week), it's a maybe.
So, here it is, a comic by Glenn McCoy on BLARGO:
Courtesy of GoComics.com
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
Larry West Sketch Book
Here are a few random images:
Sunday, January 25, 2009
JOHN K BLOGs!
John K, in case you didn't know, is the man behind Ren & Stimpy, The Riffic Friends, and a bunch of other weird and insane cartoons. He has a lot of blogs up, and I have to say, they're amazing! His main blog has a bunch of rips on Disney and is a great how-to for young artists and animators!
He has another blog up where he has a few pitches for other TV shows and another one called "Demo Reel" that... well, just look at it. It's basically him posting some awesome vidoes and pictures!
I just found this one recently... awesome, awesome blog if your a cartoon junkie! They have articles about a lot of recent stuff, stories of older things, and everything you can imagine! Check it out!
J.R. Spumkin Blogs
J.R. Spumkin is a man who loves his Ren & Stimpy and is awesome! Just AWESOME! He has a blog dedicated to mainly himself, art, and the greatness of Spumco and Animation in general, as well as theories, and another one dedicated to his sketches. He's working on a new show idea right now, too.
El Tigre Blog
OK, I won't lie: I can't get into this show. I've never been a fan and I watched a few episodes of a marathon of the series today... just couldn't get into it. But it is beautiful to watch and this blog is a testament to that!
BRUTE! a.k.a. Aidan Hughes
In case you didn't know, BRUTE! is the British genuis who has done 99% of all the artwork for KMFDM. I love his work, he's a remarkable artist and designer, and his blog is just wonderful!
Steve Purcell Blog
Steve Purcell brought us Sam & Max, and if you don't know who they are... well, you most likely spent your childhood going out, having fun, and playing with friends unlike me who spent it inside watching cartoons and then running around for hours hopped up on sugar. You missed out on a lot of good times!
More likely than not, I'll have a bunch more lare, but for now... courage.
Friday, January 23, 2009
THE PUNK ROCK FLEA MARKET - HOLIDAY EDITION - NEW DATE & VENUE !
What a great place to sell & trade and but everyone else's weird holiday gifts! It's that time again for the semi-annual (twice a year) PUNK ROCK FLEA MARKET. Our most popular reoccurring event/show/whatever (by far). All proceeds raised will goto the purchase of necessary equipment and supplies to ensure that all ages shows continue to remain a reality at The First Unitarian Church in Philadelphia - mainly the remaining payment for our new liability insurance policy. Do not let the name lead you to believe that it's just punk records, clothes etc. - it's a full on flea market with everything from furniture, to laptops / computers , to stereo equipment, to handmade apparel, to vegan treats, information from various non profit groups, book stores, artists selling their work, bicycles & skateboards and whatever else we can fit onto the floor at The Electric Factory.
In addition to the normal flea market stuff there will also be a full bar and food service kitchen to make the day go by a little faster.
CHECK OUT THE 2009 HOLIDAY SELLERS LIST RIGHT HERE !
MOVED TO ELECTRIC FACTORY (read about it in our news section)
421 N 7th Street (7th & Willow Sts In Center City)
$3 Entry Donation
Personal Table (old possessions) : $45 for a half / $65 for a whole
All Business Tables Sold Out - You Can Not Reserve A Personal Table. Sorry
All Ages / 21+ To Drink
Thursday, January 22, 2009
On Tuesday, I felt the need to vent about the coverage of President Obama on the day of his inaguration. It seemed that the media took a holiday and instead of doing their job, instead decided on being the mouthpiece of our administration. While I am thrilled with what Obama has done in his... well, 2 days in office, I pointed out something that I'm glad resignated so much that they felt compelled to make it a headline:
The time to question is when no one else is.
We can not, at this time in this nations history, simply allow ourselves to turn off our brains and be complacent with this election and this outcome. Obama has been built up to a level that no human being is capable of, and it is up to us, those who voted for him, those who elected him, those who want him to live up to his message of "hope" and "change"... it is up to us, the American People, to question this administration and still use the same critical thinking skills we used on Bush.
Today he closed Gitmo, something I am happy about. But, at the same time, what is the result of this? What are both the good and, yes, bad in this move? I don't have the answers, but is this a step in the right direction? I think it's safe to say yes.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
In case you didn't know, yesterday saw the Series Finale of The Powerpuff Girls, "Powerpuff Girls Rule!!!". It was originally going to be a full-movie but got cut back to one 22-minute episode. I think it benefited the show because it was literally jam-packed with laughs and action and comedy. It was awesome!
So this isn't that. Instead, this is a video someone made of The Powerpuff Girls singing "Beezleboss" by Tenacious D. Awesome? HELL YEAH!
I keep forgetting that people never learn from the past.
Eight years ago on this day, an idiot was elected president. Despite that, the media simply ate up whatever Bush did or say and didn't question anything. They simply stayed content to follow the lead, to do whatever he said, and when it came time for the war on Iraq, they went with the name they were given. No objective reporting, no warnings, no original thought. Instead, we were fed lies and propaganda and were told it was news.
Today we get to see history made; we get to see the end of the last 8 years of Bush and the start of a new president. I won't echo his words, and I won't simply say I agree with what he has to say. His actions will say more than anything he could give in a speech. I will say, though, that I do have fairly high hopes.
Just remember this quote as we go into the next 4 years: The Time to Ask Questions is When No One Is.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
The Gaza Ceasefire lost out in coverage over Obama riding a train. Let me repeat that: The Israel-Gaza ceasefire, a war that's gone on for nearly a month, happened and instead, 2 of the 3 24/7 news networks covered Obama riding a train.
I think I'm going to be sick.
A lot of things are going into this entire Inauguration: The end of the last 8 years of Bush tyranny and incompetence, the election of a non-Republican, the first black president... you have all three of these converging at a time when the country is experiencing fiscal unrest and an uncertain future in the world stage... and the presidential campaign slogan has become the theme of the same news networks who job it is to criticize and be objective of our leaders.
At the same time, anyone and everyone is trying to cash in on this Obamania fad as much as possible. T-shirts, posters, bobble heads, dolls, commematrive plates, collector coins, mugs, stickers, buttons, wristbands... LIPBALM!
Here's a list of the 35 Weirdest things... including a wine bottle.
I was standing around about 2 weeks ago in a subway station in Philly and some middle-aged woman was selling Obama posters, buttons, and other merch. I felt a need to say something:
"How great a time we live in when we can profit of the election of the first black president! Yes, in a time when our economic future looks bleak and we're not sure of what tomorrow will bring, thank god we live in a capitalistic society where we can make money of our president! And god bless it!"
Friday, January 16, 2009
Ever since the release of 2007's "Threads of Life", the major-label debut of Shadows Fall, one of the modern "Big 4" of the metal movement, rumors have spread that Shadows Fall was dropped from Atlantic Records. This was spurred by both poor reviews of the album and the fact that, since it's April 2007 release, it has sold only 100,000 copies! Compare that to 2004's "The War Within" on Century Media, which has sold over 300,000 to date and... well, it's safe to say that "Threads of Life" was a commercial flop.
I wrote a review about 6 months after it came out since I wanted to have a more objective review since... well, it's always a bad sign when you don't want to review something as soon as you get it, isn't it?
The album cover looks just about as rushed as the album sounds, like Atlantic Records demanded them to write the album as fast as possible and release it quickly to cash in on their fame. This isn't a new practice in the music world, of course, and Anthrax's "State of Euphoria" from 1988 is a testament of what happens when a great band is rushed to release an album. Scott Ian has even disowned it.
Since then, Shadows Fall went on a tour in 2007, but was mostly quiet for most of 2008, with no real notable tour I can recall. The name is starting to fade from the lips of the metal community, and as a fan of the band, I'm stuck asking... "Where are they headed to now?"
Despite what the band calls a "rumor", Roadrunner Records Europe HAS dropped Shadows Fall, and because of how poorly the album is doing, their relationship with Atlantic Records is on shaky ground. No offense meant to the band (I've met them and they're good folks), but it's a PR statement in order to keep the faithful happy. A major record label doesn't shell out a ton of cash to have a band not do well. This album got great promotion, so it's safe to say that the next one is going to have to slay, or we're going to be stuck with 5 "live albums".
Shadows Fall are playing a free show tonight and are releasing a new album this year.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
I didn't mind the alteration myself; the tilt to make it a "smile" is cute and clever. The Pepsi can was becoming a lot more cluttered lately, with really crappy designs hogging up a ton of room better left to, say, breathing room. The thing became a Photoshop nightmare, so cleaning it up to a more flat vector-esq thing again is a great thing!
Now, my problem is simple: The PACKAGING is generic! It's bland, boring, uses a generic font that's unappealing for something that's supposed to have impact... it isn't "PEPSI" anymore! It's "....pepsi....", a timid little thing that is afraid of being on the shelf and wants to be second-banana to Coca-Cola.
So when the new ad campaign came out, I was kinda glad to see the logo with a font that was better! The font used in the advertising actually has some weight to it and some impact. It isn't thing and kinda airy and thin; it's bold and strong! That, to me, is what is missing in the new Pepsi packaging and the font.
So I found a font close to the one used in the ads, made a few adjustments to it, and added a background that I thought made it say "POP", or at least "Soda Pop"; I wanted the fact that Pepsi is a large part of POP-Culture to be in it.
This is just me screwing around and actually putting my money where my mouth is.
Check out more of my art here: LARRY WEST PRODUCTIONS
Monday, January 12, 2009
Incredibly psyched to hear about this one! I've been playing the guitar myself since 2005 and I've been getting better with time and practice. I also own Guitar Hero III and stopped playing it only after I beat it on Medium because... well, I want to play the guitar! This looks like a great way to either get started playing and improve as well!
Check out more from Gizmodo about this story!
Saturday, January 10, 2009
Around April of 2008, I was working as a dishwasher for $7 an hour at a bar/wanna-be-upscale restaurant in the Northern Liberties section of Philly. I was trying to quit as soon as possible, and I had an out: A job at a company working full-time as a web and graphic designer. I quickly was hired for the job... the same week I was fired from the dishwasher job. Worked out pretty well.
By October, I had finally gotten a handle on things: Bills getting worked out, actually getting by and surviving was possible... By December, I had fallen into a working-class mindset and was actually putting up with having to work 10-hour shifts (I normally work 8) in order to make up time I lost (Flex-time!), living off $40 for 2 weeks, and met someone great.
Today, I look at the past year and all that I've went through, all that I've seen, all that I've enjoyed, and all that I've been forced to suffer to get to this point. I have seen many great people and great minds lost this year, a massive retail bust, and the election of a new president. I've been forced to stoop to levels I never thought I would have to go in order to survive, and my reward was a great career in my chosen field, some great friends, an excellent experience, and finally some relief from my bills.
For the first time in what feels like forever, things are looking up again.
In tribute to that last year, both for the bad and the good, one of my favorite bands with one of my favorite songs ever: Overkill "The Years of Decay".
Thursday, January 8, 2009
Source: Pearls Before Swine/Univeal Press
In the world of freelancing, you're always left with a tough problem: While you may dream big, you always need to keep your client in mind in terms of what they can afford. I don't have any stories about it from myself, and really, the title is just a joke (I love 99% of my clients; the 1% left... well, that's life).
But I have a friend who was struggling with a commission he got to design some labels for a local company. The company was printing the labels themselves... on a label-maker printer. The problem? Because it was their printer and their inks, he had to design something fun and interesting that used as little ink as possible. He was having a hard time until I sent him links to packaging blogs where designers had the same problem. I still haven't seen the results, though, but he did say it helped.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
So Roland Burris, what's your excuse?
Instead of doing the right and honorable thing, he has, instead, pushed himself into a media circus where he has become... well, I don't know. I guess an idiot. But who can entirely blame him? If you were offered a job as a US Senator, would you simply turn it down, especially if you knew it was yours, 100% legally, free-and-clear? The only catch... is that your appointed by a corrupt politican and may never get to serve because of it, especially if you don't try to distance yourself from it.
Here's a fact you may not know; if he doesn't get the job, there will be no black senators this time around. And, in turn... some people have dragged race into this. Great. Pointless racism. Just what we need with our first black President.
Long story short: He should have publicly turned it down. Said it was an honor to be asked, but he can't do it. Now? Now it's too late. And that's sad.
Friday, January 2, 2009
We always cringe and yell when the roll is reversed; when a under-age woman has consensual sex with someone who is legal, even if the age difference is between a 16-year-old and 18-year-old, we recoil in horror that some sick pervert would do such a thing. In the metal world, the story of Tripp Esien is infamous his under-age encounter of meeting under-aged women online to have sex with them, and in the case where he was busted, it was with a 14-year-old. He was 40 at the time.
As a culture and society, we seem to think men are morally inferior to women. The problem, though, is that we're not. In essence, there are very few differences between men and women on a mental level and that we still have all the basic needs and urges.
When I speak to these grief counselors, social workers, and victims, sometimes we go to the topic of the roll a man has in such an event, or more specifically, this: What roll does a man have in determining the life of a child?
There is something unsaid in this country, a debate that is rarely ever brought up, discussed, and mentioned. The reality is this: Men get the short end of the leash when it comes to kids. Men rarely get custody of a child over a woman, men are rarely given any real chance to decide if a woman he gets pregnant should have the child or not. If a man and women have sex and the woman decides they want the kid, despite the fact both of them used safe sex, the man rarely has any recourse in forcing the woman not to have the child. Is that right? Is it right to force a man to support a child they may not have spawned and, if they did, did all they had to in order to prevent it?
So now we reach this point: A 15-year-old boy had consensual sex with a 19-year-old woman which resulted in a pregnancy.
It's a situation fraught with so many twists and turns that if you saw it on a movie screen you might not believe it.
It began when a 19-year-old girl from the town of Lancaster, Ohio was accused of molesting a 15-year-old boy. Jane Crane was allowed to stay at the child's Columbus-area home when allegations surfaced that her stepfather was being abusive.
But something apparently clicked between the girl and the underage son of those providing her temporary refuge. She's since been charged with unlawful sexual conduct, after allegedly having physical relations at least twice with the underage boy.
So far, the story is somewhat sad, but not that unusual.
But here's where it takes an odd turn. The teen became pregnant as a result of the encounter and paternity tests prove the boy is the father of the little girl, who was born in late April.
Now a court has ordered the youngster to pay $50 a month child support, despite the fact the act that resulted in the child's birth was apparently illegal.
Who's to blame here? The sex was consensual, but at the same time, it was done outside the law and is considered rape. the woman, who was the one who decided to have sex with this boy, got pregnant. Instead of aborting the child or giving it up for adoption, she decided to keep the child. This rapist, this criminal, violated the law in order to have sex with a minor and she is now suing for CHILD SUPPORT?! And a court has agreed with this?!
We have just seen a precedent that states that rape victims should pay for the results of what someone else did to them.
I'm left questioning if the boy had any chance to ask her to abort the child, put it up for adoption, or anything else. The boy obviously isn't ready to be a father and isn't old enough to work a full-time job. When I was 18 working part-time, I was lucky to get $50 every two weeks working weekends.
In the end, I can only hope that this idiotic ruling is over-turned and doesn't pave the way for more such suits.