Happy birthday.

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Caricature I drew of him for his 80th birthday.

Caricature I drew of him for his 80th birthday, 2014.

Anybody out there? It’s been awhile, huh?

I felt the need to check in today because it’s my biological father’s birthday. It’s been a little over four years now since I first met him, and almost eight months since he passed away. The three years and change inbetween were not enough, but folks who knew him much longer than that feel cheated by the amount of time they had with him as well. He was that kind of guy.

I couldn’t build a lifetime of memories with him, but the memories I do have are pretty great. His intelligence, his kindness, the way his breath would rise off of the gin snow-cones he called martinis. He was genuinely interested in/entertained by the various accomplishments and shenanigans of his many grandchildren. He had a great laugh–I couldn’t help but smile every time I heard it.

I love you, Dave, and I miss you. I’ll have a martini at wikiwak in your honor.

mr4page08

The Moose Riders, Page 100

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Well, here’s the big reveal. This joke would’ve been funnier 6 years ago, or even 4 years ago when I was outlining the story. I know Sarah Palin is less relevant now than she was at that time, but I’m hoping you still find it mildly humorous.

Haven’t posted much about my whole adoption thing lately (new readers can find previous posts on the subject here), but after this weekend, I feel compelled to bring it up again. Brief synopsis for those who don’t want to read the archives: my twin sister  and I were adopted at two-months old and then reunited with our birth family shortly after our 40th birthday. We’ve now spent a little over a year getting to know our birth parents, brothers, sisters, in-laws, nieces, and nephews, and it’s been an amazing experience.

We’ve spent the last two MLK weekends with as many of us as can make the trip hanging out at a rented log cabin in Branson, MO. Both times were a load of fun, with music and laughs and booze and SO MUCH FOOD. Three generations of my people playing and hugging and feeling the love. I still feel so fortunate to have had this opportunity to connect with my biological family. They really are a kind, smart, talented, and entertaining bunch.

So I guess that’s enough warm and fuzzy lists about my weekend. Hope yours was swell, too.

mr4page07

The Moose Riders, Page 99

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Happy New Year! For those of you in the STL metro area, The Jacoby Arts Center in Alton, Illinois has a comic book art show that opened last Friday and runs ’til the 17th. Sponsored by Dark Horse Artworks (not related to Dark Horse Comics), it features the works of 6 local artists, including 4 Moose Riders pieces. If you are in the area, stop by and check it out. After the snow plows have finished their work, of course.

mr4page06

The Moose Riders, Page 98

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So I’ve been using a Wacom Intuos 2 tablet for years now. I dig it, but I’ve been coveting a Cintiq for almost as many years. I was steeling myself to bite the bullet and shell out for one, but my lovely wife suggested I try out her iPad with a fancy-schmancy stylus instead. This page is the fruit of this experimental union–iPad Air, Wacom Intuos Creative Stylus, and the ProCreate app. Still using Photoshop for cleaning up the scan before and tweaking a few things after painting, and then lettering in Illustrator as always. A bit less convenient having to bounce the file around more, but more versatile, portable, and slightly less expensive than a Cintiq. Seems like a good thing, although after wanting that thing for so long, it’s tough to let go of the dream.

Comic Creators for Freedom is still doing it’s big fundraising drive–donate to them, help fight human trafficking, get a cool wallpaper!

mr4page05

The Moose Riders, Page 97

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Here’s page 97. If you don’t know much about Talkeetna, Alaska, that last panel will make more sense once page 98 is up.

So awhile back I participated in this awesome project called Comic Creators for Freedom, a fundraising event to help in the fight against human trafficking. Today is International Abolition Day, and the official kick-off date of this year’s fundraiser. Unfortunately, I was unable to participate this time around, but it’s still a good cause and your donation will not only help fight the fight, but it will also get you an awesome wallpaper featuring a HUGE selection of comic characters posing for their awkward school photos. Funny stuff for a good cause. Give ’til it hurts!

mr4page04

The Moose Riders, Page 96

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Day-job responsibilities have ramped up a bit, so I’m having a hard time finding the time to work on The Moose Riders. Sorry for the huge delay, but I’ll keep plugging away at it as I find the time.

In related news, I’ve bought the domain name themooseriders.com and am in the process of adding the archive over there. It will still be available here, but I thought having a site that was entirely dedicated to The Moose Riders would be a good idea. Planning to have it fully operational by the time I post Page 97, which is drawn and scanned.

doodles724

Yet another filler post…

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The next two pages of The Moose Riders have been scanned and I’m in the process of doing the digital work on them, but they’re still not ready for general consumption, so I’ve got an assortment of more people I’ve seen walking around at the zoo this summer. Yes, they’re real.

Page 2 of TMR Chapter 4 will go up as soon as I finish it, but no telling when that will be. I’m working today and have big family stuff Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, but I will try to squeeze in time to finish it before the weekend is over. Thanks again.

doodles

More doodles from the zoo

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MOOSE RIDERS NEXT WEEK!  Pages 2 and 3 of Chapter 4 have been penciled. Inks are in the works, then scanning, color/tones, and lettering. Getting back in the groove. Still won’t be back to the regular schedule just yet, but pages are coming. Thank you so much for putting up with my distractions.

Haven’t gotten much business at the zoo lately, so I’ve got several pages of doodles like the ones you see above. I’ve taken to drawing the folks I see walk by that I wish would sit down in front of me.