5 Portraits I Made Once I Started Drawing Again

I stopped drawing for a while.

My after-work time became half-watching TV while absently scrolling through the Internet.

I didn’t even want to draw. I thought things like:

What’s the point of creativity? Who’s benefiting from this? Am I really contributing anything to the world by bothering?

Was I just telling myself that I was “creative” to fill up the emptiness from a childhood spent memorizing my ceiling’s texture instead of going outside?

Was “creativity” a consolation prize for failing in every single other way?

What if I wasn’t even that good?

What if I was the William Hung of drawing?

Sounds like depression, right?

So I did all the things you’re supposed to do:

I reconfigured the way I ate. I took up exercising almost every day before work. I touched up my wardrobe. I lost 15 pounds.

My sketchbooks lay empty. My blog collected dust.

If I wasn’t “creative,” who was I?

The situation was turning into a sloppy existential crisis.

Time for medical intervention.

My doctor recommended taking a class. He knew that: 1) I tend to do things I’ve paid for, and 2) I can’t resist an academic challenge. I’d follow through.

Sketchbook Skool seemed like a great alternative to taking a class in real life. I like Danny Gregory’s blog, so signing up for one of his classes sounded pretty good.

I was so rusty, and busy with all that exercise, that I’m still not quite done with the class (even though it’s technically been over for a while), but it did get me rolling again. Drawing. Painting. Exploring zines. (I still haven’t made one, but I have some ideas.) Playing.

It’s nice, and I hope it sticks around.

5 Links To Cherish This Week

I went through a dark tea-time of the soul for a while there, but I am, perhaps, back to blogging. While I work on assembling a few ideas for new posts, please enjoy a few links.

Google’s developing a program that parses how offensive speech is. To use some offensive speech: it really fucking blows at it.

^ Are you embracing your inner toddler-grandma?

Why do some countries drive on the right, and others the left? You know you’re sort of curious about it. Deep down.

You might enjoy the very short science fiction story They’re Made of Meat.” 

Is giving thin people regular soda instead of diet actually funny? Just a gentle reminder that fucking with people’s food requests can kill them.

5 Acrylic-Infused Sketchbook Spreads! Plus a digression about Laika the Space Dog that’s actually sort of depressing. Sorry about that.

It’s a beautiful Friday! Let’s celebrate with some sketchbook pages.

I can’t draw snails. I don’t even think I have a good idea in my head of how they’re supposed to work. They’re one of the Universe’s weirder offerings. Who came up with  that crap?

Looking at you, Darwin. What niche could that possibly be filling? The “crazy slimy bullshit with an impossible-to-draw shell” demographic?

I draw; then I paint; then I draw some more, just in case. My favorite part of this spread is the upper right corner. I love the dog astronaut.

Speaking of dog astronauts: do you want to be depressed? If yes, read the Wikipedia article Laika the Russian Space Dog. It contains heretofore-unknown horrors. I had not known those horrible facts about that poor animal, its conditions, or its death.

If you’re okay with the way your day was, actually, skip ahead to the next spread and its pithy title.


I call this spread “Furries: After Dark.”

Read More 5 Acrylic-Infused Sketchbook Spreads! Plus a digression about Laika the Space Dog that’s actually sort of depressing. Sorry about that.

These 5 sketchbook spreads will make you more stupid.

“Do male Medusas go bald?” 

You can’t un-read that dumb-ass question.

Space Banksy says: “I flew millions of light years to leave my art in your craps!” 

What if crop circles are “real”? Are they the equivalent of a teenager with a can of spray paint?

Are crop circles left by cosmic assholes who are actively disappointing their parents?

“It’s a dog-eat-dog world. But I’m a vegan.” 

To extend the animal metaphor, you can’t win the rat race if you’re not in it. But who wants to be a rat, anyway?

Why are all of the metaphors about getting ahead always animal-based? What does that say about the nature of success? That we lose our humanity to achieve it?

I know. That’s something a nihilistic 14-year-old boy would say.



Ninja Turtle to Squirrel: “… Dad?”
Squirrel: “Oh hell no. I always use condoms.” 

At what point did Splinter have to tell his kids that they were adopted?

Or did they figure it out on their own?

Donatello: “There’s no one in the universe that Pops could’ve banged to make us come out.”
Raphael: (storms out, breaks stuff)
Leonardo: I’ll go after him, I guess.
Michaelangelo: I’m going to eat my feelings. It’s a 3-pizza kinda day.

Ghosting: “I’m not going to text you back.” 

Was ghosting started by Casper-being passive-aggressive to his girlfriend?

Does your skull hurt from just skimming your eyes over that question?

I hope you found your visit to my sketchbook fun, if not intellectually enlightening.

5 Links, Including A Fugly Shark & Badly-Dressed Teenagers

^ 1. It’d be super-fun to submit something to this year’s Graceful Envelope Contest. Check out the galleries of winners here.

2. We always suspected this, but it’s now been proven that dogs know who’s a jerk.

^ 3. Go ahead and google “goblin shark.” I’ll wait.

4. This Amazon Review makes me laugh every time I think about it. I keep it in my brain’s (metaphorical) back pocket and break it out as needed.

^ 5. The Japanese magazine FRUiTS is shutting down because “there were no more fashionable kids to photograph.” Kids these days. Am I right? Get off my lawn, you shabbily-dressed ragamuffins.