Friday, July 26, 2013

Watercolor Pokémon: #1-3

I've decided that I'd like to know how to watercolor. And what better way to learn than by practicing on the first 151 Pokémon? Well, there's probably a lot of better ways, but none of them would be as much fun. After all, having fun is kind of the whole point.

Fun Fact: I've never chosen Bulbasaur as a starter. Bulbasaurs might be cute, but they evolve.

#1 - Bulbasaur

#2 Ivysaur

#3 Venusaur

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Postcards: John Dies at the End

John Dies at the End is one of my absolute favorite books. Unfortunately it's not the greatest movie. Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed the movie (so much that I even bought it). However, it could have been better. A lot better.

They nailed the casting and the look and the feel of the book, but they messed up in terms of the story. If they skimmed over the Soy Sauce story-arc (which is the most memorable, but not the best suited for a movie plot) and concentrated more on the parts about Dave's lost time and Amy's role in the story, it would have been SUCH a cooler and creepier movie.

Anyways, the quote on the card is the opening line to both the movie and the book. The sad thing is that the movie pulled the entire storyline that shows the importance of the riddle! Ugh! What? Why?

It's still a fun movie though.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Postcards: Cabin in the Woods

Sure, there's a lot of memorable imagery in Cabin in the Woods, but we all know which scene we think of first.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Postcards: Holes

Trying to come up with an image for Holes is surprisingly tough. You could do a bunch of holes (which would be aesthetically lame), or you could do a yellow-spotted lizard (which just isn't Holesy enough), or Jon Voight looking crazy, or a scene from the movie (also not Holesy enough because it would just look like a bunch of kids in orange jumpsuits standing in the desert), or a corpse with a lipstick kiss on it, or maybe a joke about Dule Hill being in this movie before he became the star of Psych.

Anyways, you see my dilemma.

I'm actually pretty proud of the design I came up with though.

Or should I say...I really DIG it!

...oh...I definitely shouldn't say that? Oops.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Postcards: Evil Dead (2013)

A lot of people have been giving this movie flak, but whatever! I thought it was fun. Is it the best thing under the sun? No. But how can you not like a horror movie that is having so much fun with horror? Plus look at that face! How could you hate a face like that?

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Postcards: Pocahontas

There are a lot of things that bother me about Disney's Pocahontas, but there's really only one thing that Visually bothers me: Pocahontas' nose. She doesn't have one! She just has little snake slits in her face. Remind you of anybody?

Clearly Pocahontas was a dark wizard. She was also probably a parselmouth. I mean, she talked with all the other animals, right? It's just the logical conclusion.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Postcards: Beauty & The Beast

No means No, amiright, People?

And wouldn't it have been a much more satisfying movie if at some point Belle had defended herself instead of putting up with Gaston's incredibly inappropriate attitude towards women? I mean, holy crap, I think we all got the sense that if Disney wasn't the puppeteer of this story Gaston would have tried to rape Belle. He saw women as objects to be won and couldn't conceive of a woman who wasn't interested in him. I mean, talk about creepy.

Everyone gets on The Beast's case because he was aggressive, blackmailed Belle's dad, and kind of kidnapped his daughter. But let's be realistic here: he'd been turned into a monster and has been talking to furniture for Lord knows how long. It's fair to assume that he's gone slightly insane and forgotten what does and does not constitute appropriate social interaction. So frankly I'm willing to cut him a break.

People love to hold up this movie as the unsettling example of a story that teaches girls that beastly men can be changed. I couldn't disagree more with that reading. The Beast was a snotty little rich kid who didn't know any better. Instead of teaching him empathy the witch unjustly confines him to solitary, which is the opposite of what he needed! He needed to be away from his family and around normal people; he needed to have the shit kicked out of him and have his heartbroken.

Their strange lens for the story doesn't hold up because 1) The Beast is socially incompetent not a douche like Gaston and 2) Belle doesn't fall for him and then try to change him. She doesn't even want to be around him when he's acting like a jerk. It's only after he starts seeing things from her point of view and trying to be a better person that she warms up to him and realizes that he's not a bad person: he's just a guy who got an incredibly raw deal, is rightly full of anger and resentment about it, and is trying (and succeeding) to be a  better person. She doesn't try to change him, he tries to change himself and she agrees to help him.

So there you go. I've obviously thought about this movie far too much.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Movie List 2013: 66 - 80

The continuing list of all the movies I've watched this year.

There might be some occasional swearing, because I just love movies so much frickin' much!

* = rewatched


Demolition Man

John Spartan, a cop known for going to extremes, manages to catch the notorious killer and crime lord Simon Phoenix, but his brash tactics result in the death of Phoenix's hostages and both are both sentenced to be imprisoned in cryogenic stasis. 36 years later someone unthaws Phoenix to use as an assassin. When the uptopian world of the future proves unable to stop his old-school violence, they must get help from someone who can.

Genre: Sci-Fi/Action...maybe?

I've got a lot of love for Demolition Man. It is just impossibly stupid. So stupid, in fact, that it comes out the other side as kind of amazing. Think Brave New World meets Back to the Future II.

Their version of the future is so outrageous it's hilarious. And I wish I could tell you all the ways it does, but I don't want to spoil any of the lunacy and "WTF moments" so I won't... moving on.

The shocking thing about this movie is that is stars Sylvester Stallone and he's actually really good! I'm usually not a fan of his work, but I've gotta admit that I think he's perfect for this role. I don't know how to explain what he's doing's like he's not acting, but reacting and that makes him more realistic? His reactions to the ridiculousness of this future world are just priceless. He plays the perfect mix of confused, upset, and "These people are all insane..." I mean, in a movie with Sandra Bullock you wouldn't expect her to be significantly out-acted by Sylvester Stallone, but it happens!

Oh! And let's talk about Wesley Snipes! He plays Simon Phoenix, a character who could've so easily been your usual crime lord/crazed killer cliche. But Snipes gives the role a totally different take. Phoenix is gleefully malevolent. He's like one part Kid-in-a-candy-shop and one part Bull-in-a-china-shop. Killer characters are usually so dour and when they are happy it's a dark and inner kind of joy. But Phoenix is just so happy! He's having a blast.

I dunno. It's just such an odd movie, but it's a lot of fun. If nothing else you won't forget it anytime soon.



A town is beset by an ancient evil while the people inside struggle to stay alive.

Genre: Horror

I watched this one because my friend recommended it and yet I didn't know a single thing about it. But I trust her judgement and didn't bother looking it up. I've gotta admit that this is a really weird movie to see that way. I already told you the plot so you already know more about it than I did, but damn. I mean phantoms, right? Haunted house style movie, right? Wrong!

I mean, the beginning is just a cruise down WTF alley. It starts out normal enough, but then it starts to get weird, then Liev Schreiber and Ben Afleck show up outta no where and suddenly you're sending your friend texts like:

"Aaaand a moth just ate this dude's face..."

It's a weird, weird little movie, but I've gotta give it credit because it's really quite memorable and fun.



A prototype for a device used to share dreams is stolen and is used a weapon. The team behind its creation are the only ones with the know-how needed to put a stop to this dream terrorist and save the day.

Genre: Artistic Sci-Fi Anime

I'm still a huge fan of this movie, but I've gotta admit that when I'm in the mood for visually rich animation that tackles heavy ideas I'll usually watch Tekkonkinkreet instead. But that's not to say this isn't a Fantastic movie, it's just to say where my head is residing lately.

Satoshi Kon is a genius. The visuals in this film are stunning, the music is phenomenal (I even own the soundtrack I liked it so much), and it deals with some very interesting ideas. Ideas about dreams and what dreams tell us about ourselves, about the simultaneous dangers and wonders that come with technological advancement, and about all the thing we put in our subconscious to hide them from ourselves.

It's just brilliant. If nothing else it's just a such a treat to watch. There is just so much to look at and appreciate and be inspired by.



The Sun is dying. The Icarus mission was launched to send a bomb into the center of the sun and restart it, however, something went wrong and it was never heard from again. Now the Earth only has the resources left for one more bomb, and the Icarus II is the Earth's last hope.

Genre: Science Fiction

I LOVE this movie. I love this movie so much, you guys. If you don'tthen I don't want to hear about it, because I will go to bat for this movie. Why? Let me count the reasons.

#1. It's just so frickin' nice to look at! I wold recommend watching it on as big a screen as you can, because it's worth it.

#2. The acting is all top notch. I mean Cillian Murphy is out there kicking ass as usual, and who's that over there? Is that Chris Evans knocking it right the fuck out of the park? I do believe it is! Not to mention amazing Asian actors like Michelle Yeoh and Hiroyuki Sanada. There isn't a character in this movie that I don't love.

#3. I love that it isn't your usual Sci-Fi movie! I love that the computer doesn't gain sentience. I love that there are no aliens. I love that it goes is a direction you might not expect.

#4. It's themes regarding the friction between Science and Religion are fascinating.

#5. Not to mention the whole thing is just so epic! The seriousness of their mission really comes across. When things go wrong you feel that tension. You're right there with them going, "Oh, fuck! FUCK! What are we gonna do now!?"

I could go on about this movie forever! I'll stop now to save you from my gushing adoration, but suffice it to say that it's one of my favorite movies.


P.S. I Love You

A woman's husband dies and she is beset with grief until she finds out that he has left a series of messages for her to help her through.

Genre: Romance

Another movie I watched without knowing anything about it. I've gotta admit movies are much more surprising when you don't know anything about them. I mean my friend told me she loved Gerard Butler in this movie, and then he dies! Like...right away. Apparently that is kind of the crux of the movie! Who knew? Well, everyone besides me, but there you go.

Anyways, it's a really cute movie. I really like Hillary Swank and Gerard Butler together. I really didn't like Harry Connick Jr's character and role in the movie, because it's all shoehorned in there and doesn't go anywhere, but that's beside the point.

The big thing that nagged on my mind as I watched this movie though, is the fact that I've heard about something like this happening in real life. A woman with terminal cancer left a series of letters for her daughter and it kind of turned out to be a really bad idea. Here, it was on This American Life, I'll give you the link. Just, you know, watch out because you probably won't be able to see this movie without thinking about that story.


Winnie The Pooh

Winnie the Pooh and friends try and find Eeyore's tail and save Christopher Robin from a Backson.

Genre: Animated kids movie

Wow, synopses for Winnie the Pooh really don't get the charm across do they?

In any case, this movie is SO CUTE! UGH! So cute. It's Winnie the Pooh at its best. When I first saw this is the theater I'm pretty sure I was the only one who was there without kids. Sure it is intended for kids, but that doesn't mean it isn't brilliant. This movie has me laughing out loud every time I watch it.

If you were a fan of Winnie the Pooh at any point in your life, I highly recommend you give it a watch. If you've never experience Winnie the Pooh before then I think this is a pretty decent first experience.

Oh, and the animation is all hand drawn and everything in this movie is a pleasure to look at.


Waking Ned Devine

Ned Devine is old man in a small town in Ireland, but when he wins a huge lottery jackpot he dies from the shock of it. Now the town tries to pass one of their own of as Ned in order to keep the money in the community.

Genre: Silly-good-fun Drama

It's not an epic movie to be sure, but Waking Ned Devine tackles its story with such charm that it's impossible to not be endeared. But the thing that puts it into the upper echelon of comedy for me is its naturalness. Okay, but what do I mean by that? I mean that it's captured that kind of warm humor you get when you're hanging out with your friends and family. It isn't the slapstick staged stuff that you so often get in comedies. Even when they're doing something ridiculous they're still doing it in a warm-hearted natural way.

Plus when you add in all the gorgeous scenery and the lovable characters, it's just golden.


You're Darn Tootin'

Two musicians get fired from their orchestra job and attempt to find another way to make money from their music. Hijinks ensue.

Genre: Silent Laurel and Hardy comedy

Do shorts count as full movies? I'm not sure. But whatever! It's my list and I'll count whatever I want to. There was a silent night special at the theater where I work that I went to. The main feature was The Bedroom Window and You're Darn Tootin' served as an appetizer of sorts. It was an interesting event. Both films were on 35mm prints, and the theater has a pipe organ so the organist provided live accompaniment to them.

Anyways, if you like Laurel and Hardy I'm sure you'll enjoy this one. Old school slapstick comedy. They kind of repeat physical gags for longer than I would like, but that's a minor quibble. There's a fight at the end that's particularly hilarious.


The Bedroom Window

A young woman's father is murdered and the key suspect is her suitor. Luckily her aunt, a celebrated murder novelist, decides to look into the mysterious murder for her.

Genre: Silent Murder-mystery

A silent movie event featuring live musical accompaniment. Gotta kind of love it just for the experience.

The mystery in this movie falls a little short in today's world where detective crime shows have upped the stakes considerably since the 1930s, but it was still good. The older detective lady is kind of kooky. It's an older movie so most of the things I could find fault with are just old school aesthetics that I don't care for. Also, like so many old, movies  there's some racist moments in it. One being the epitome of a Mammy stereotype (whose dialogue, even though done on cards, still managed to be offensive). Same going for the Russian lady character.

Apparently most silent movies were lost over the years, so the only form you'll find this one in is as a film print. So chances are slim that you'll ever come across this one. But now you know, right?


Ferris Bueller's Day Off

An enigmatic high school senior initiates a daring plan to get himself, his girlfriend, and his best friend out of school to enjoy an epic day off. However, obstacles keep rearing their head and threaten to expose him.

Genre: Classic 80's John Hughes Comedy

This is one of my favorite movies.

The characters, the jokes, the humor: I love it all. But what really makes this movie something special is its style. It's irreverent and offbeat in all the right ways. Ferris' asides to the camera provide a look inside Ferris' head while also serving as extremely entertaining exposition. So many movies are about a destination, but Ferris Bueller's Day Off is entirely about the journey. It will slow down and take time to just have fun (the parade scene) or to illustrate beauty (the museum). If this movie was done today I would be fairly confident it would be entirely fast paced. Ferris is a bigger-than-life figure and so is his day off, but it's the mix of the grand-scale of the premise and the little moments of its scenes that really catch your attention. They way everything is shot just makes it feel like you were along for that epic day off.

I love it to death.



A documentary detailing the history of woodblock type, the Hamilton type factory museum, and how the value of old methods is being lost in a wave of modern innovation.

Genre: Documentary

I find typography to be rather fascinating and I stumbled on this one while perusing the media section at the library.

While it does make some rather interesting points, I thought that overall the movie wasn't as grand as it seemed to think it was. I was expecting it to be more about woodblock type in general, but it was mostly focused on that one museum. I would have liked a lot more about the history and creation of woodblock type and a lot less about the museum.


The Lost Boys

Two brothers move to California to live with their grandpa and their mom. While the youngest brother befriends a pair of vampire hunter brothers, the eldest falls in with a a dangerous gang of vampires.

Genre: Vampire movie

I've heard all sorts of references to this movie over the years, but for some reason or another I had never gotten around to seeing it until now. After all this does seem to be the year for catching up on all the classic vampire movies (a genre I've certainly been slacking in).

I'm not really sure how I feel about this one. I think it comes down to me thinking it was a good movie, but not my kind of good movie. There's a number of scenes that I really enjoyed, but overall there just wasn't much there for me. The stakes didn't seem all that high (pun intended) and the story kind of seemed like it couldn't make up it's mind. It's a movie about a down-on-their-luck family, until it's a story about brothers, unless it's really a romance, but now it's a gory monster movie. The tone kind of fluctuates too much for me. But who can really dislike a movie where Corey Feldman (The Goonies) stabs an upside-down Alex Winter (Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure) in the chest with a stake and copious amounts of goo start shooting out all over him?

Weirdos, that's who.

Ps. Someone really needs to watch this movie and count how many times the name "Michael" is said. It's got to be A LOT.


The Fifth Element

Every 5,000 years an ancient interstellar evil gathers its power and heads to destroy Earth. And every 5,000 years a race of alien protectors arrives to fend it off. However this time things have gone wrong. Now it's up to a cab driver, a mysterious woman, and a bumbling priest to save the galaxy.

Genre: Fantasy space

What can one even say about a movie like this? Imagine if Terry Gilliam (Brazil, 12 Monkeys), and Jean-Pierre Jeunet (Amelie, Alien Resurrection) made a 90s Sci-Fi action movie together. It's kind of like that.

It's a strange one and like any weird movie I would understand if someone didn't like it, yet I always find it hopelessly endearing whenever I see it in someone's movie collection. Sure it's nice to see things like Star Wars or Little Miss Sunshine or whatever, but mainstream brilliance just isn't as telling as quirky brilliance. Those oddball movies on the fringes of genres usually say more about us than the classics do, don't you think?

But I guess I haven't really told you much about the movie yet have I? If nothing else The Fifth Element's brilliance comes from being memorable. The costumes, the characters, the sets, the music, basically everything is so unlike anything else I've seen. The fact that you could dress up like nearly any character from this movie and be instantly recognizable to a fan says a lot about the movie.

I wouldn't say it's a perfect movie. Some bits are a little clunky and even though I've seen it a million times I still don't understand how the alien hand created a human woman. And it's kind of got that silly Back to the Future II feel, where their version of the future is kind of ridiculous. But whatever. It's wonderfully memorable, visually interesting, and just so much fun. I've seen it a million times. I love it.

[This guy knows what I'm talking about.]


Winter's Bone

A 17 year old girl's father puts the house and land up for his bail and then goes on the run. Now it's up to her to track him down or risk losing everything.

Genre: Drama

I've heard a lot of talk about this one so I figured I'd see what it was about.

It's a slower movie than I was expecting, but it's delightfully rich with tension and suspense. I mean, God, the whole time you're terrified about what's going to this poor girl. The acting is all around superb and the characters are great. If you're in the mood for a slow-paced thriller I thoroughly recommend it.

Oh, and since one of the characters was played by an actress who I just couldn't place and it was driving me crazy, I'm going to save you the trouble! Here's her IMDB page.


A Series of Unfortunate Events

The Baudelaire children find themselves orphaned and are forced to be whisked away from obscure relative to obscure relative when the wicked Count Olaf sets his eyes on them and their sizable inheritance.

Genre: Young Adventure

I love this movie. It wins my award for the greatest book adaptation ever. It captures the book to a tee. I mean Jim Carrey as Count Olaf? GENIUS. I'll even go as far as to say that this is Carrey's best work. I can't  even imagine anyone else in the role.

But I'm getting too caught up in specifics. In general, why should you see this movie? Because it's completely and utterly charming. It creates a brilliant little offbeat world, full of wonderfully offbeat characters and it all just fits. It hilarious, but it's also full of poignant moments. It doesn't portray the world as some brightly colored fairy tale. In fact it openly mocks such stories.

You're gonna need assistance when we get back to town! Aunt Josephine's gonna tell everyone what happened!"

"And then I'll be arrested and sent to jail and you'll live happily ever after with a friendly guardian, spending your time inventing things and reading books and sharpening your little monkey teeth, and bravery and nobility will prevail at last, and this wicked world will slowly but surely become a place of cheerful harmony, and everybody will be singing and dancing and giggling like the littlest elf! A happy ending! Is that what you had mind?

It revels in the dark parts of the world and those are the parts we can all relate to. But it isn't bleak or depressing. It shows us that there is light in the darkness, but it is up to us to find and create that light. The movie is dark and silly, bleak and hopeful all at the same time.

Just trust me and go watch it.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Postcards: Silver Linings Playbook

The series continues!

This one got away from me as I was in a rush to get it finished on time, but whatever! It happens.

I move onward: the only direction / Cant be scared to fail in the search of perfection / ...On to the next one. 
On to the Next One, Jay-Z

Postcards: Mama

I made a postcard to (hopefully) cheer someone up. If you've seen the movie Mama then this should ring a bell (hopefully). If you haven't seen it then (hopefully) you'll like it anyway! In either case this was the first movie I ever saw with them! Ahh...memories.

Anyways, I'm kind of shocked it turned out so well. I felt a little silly for drawing fanart for a movie like this, but who cares! Sure it's far from the best horror movie around, but gal-darn-itI kind of like it anyway. There is a lot of really interesting imagery at work in the film, plus I quite liked the characters. Okay, I also liked the whole premise as well as the ending. So whatever! Think of me what you will.

And you know what? I rather like what this drawing looked like in just Black&White, so I think I'll post that too!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Dead Cat (i'm not sorry)

Dead Cat (i'm not sorry)

I don’t know how to tell you this
But your cat is rather dead.
I’m guessing that it happened
when my tire went through its head.

I’m sorry you’re upset,
But I’m not the one to blame.
You should’ve been a better owner
And you should be ashamed.

Now before you raise your fists
And make me sue you for assault,
Maybe you should stop and think
About how this is all your fault.


I’m sorry that I’m not sorry,
but your cat was seriously depressed.
Very much unhappy and probably feeling rather stressed.

Maybe if you were a better person
You wouldn’t have to now sit and say goodbye
To that fatty little tabby with such an urge to die.


I’m sure you’ll miss that kitty.
I’m sure you’ll miss its fur.
I’m sure you’ll miss the fun you had
And miss its little purr.

I’m sure that you tried your best
to love that little beast.
Although if you had tried a little harder
Your cat wouldn’t be deceased.

Now before you try giving me the boot,
I’ll just take a moment to say that I think you’re awfully cute.

So if you want to turn this pussy loss into a pussy win
I’ll just leave you with my number
In case you decide you’d like to take mine for a spin.


I’m sorry that I’m not sorry,
but your cat was seriously depressed
Very much unhappy and probably feeling rather stressed.

Maybe if you were a better person
You wouldn’t have to now sit and say goodbye
To that fatty little tabby with such an urge to die.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Album Anagrams

I've only just realized that I've neglected to post the album art I did for the last couple mix CD's I made.

I hate going through all the trouble to carefully create a mix for someone just to write "Jesse's Mix" or "Happy Birthday" or whatever dumb thing on it. It's like making a homemade table then painting over the wood.

My standard move is to take the name of the person I made the mix for (or part of it at least) and make an interesting anagram out of it. Then all I have to do is just draw the imagery to match it. It makes the whole thing much more personal I think. Plus it lets me draw all sorts of weird stuff that I would have never normally thought of.

Seize the Kelp Barbarian

If I remember correctly I made this one in a bit of a sleep-deprived rush on December 23rd of some year or another. It was for my cousin and while I had arranged the mix in advance I waited until the last minute to deal with the rest. Like usual! Which is (of course) why this is a picture of it and not a scan of it like I would normally do.

A Fairer Prop Thigh

I made this one and I was really proud of it. Like super pleased with myself. But then I noticed that it could be viewed as a lamp and not as part of a mannequin like I meant it to be. I've also just realized that I forgot to sign it... *sigh*