January 15, 2010

Obviously I have a thing for 4am.

Today, instead of resting and putting myself together for the half school year ahead (and post-assessment), I decided to instead talk a little about my favourite webcomics.

I can trace my love for said genre of lifestyle back to one single person, in much the same manner as I can trace my preference for certain music to a one person. Now, this certain wonderful geek of a classmate introduced me to QC in what must have been late 2005 or early 2006 and got me hooked.

As I mentioned before, webcomics, comics, graphic novels, it’s definitely a certain style of life. The society I live in, webcomics are practically unheard of. There’s a number of them that people know, however those are chiefly boring or ugly. Usually both. Comics also appeal to a very narrow audience – there’s a large manga/anime following here, but for reasons of  MUCHO DISLIKE, I don’t consider that genre.. a genre..

There’s a number of people native to the likes of Batman, Superman, Iron Man, etc., but it’s nonetheless an imported habit. Unfortunately, Russia has no comic heritage and a very skewed outlook on this certain art. The one annual ‘comics festival’ held in Moscow is a big joke, where out of 150+ works, about 10 were worth looking at. And they were goddamn A2 sized posters. And a representative of a comic shop didn’t seem to have  a clue what’s this ‘Sandman’ I’m asking for. You get the drift.

Anyways, on. In the last 4 years I’ve been told about and discovered quite a number of lovely webcomics – some I read daily, some have since finished and perished, some I have forgotten and some I still want to return to. Here’s some of my favourite webcomics.

Questionable Content (QC)

First on the list if only it’s the first one I ever read, the first one I fell in love with, the one I read daily to this very day. Jeph Jacques changed his style numerously (in fact, learned to draw through the work on the comic), has gotten married, been to comic cons all over America, reissued various merchandise, has upgraded QC from a 3-days-a-week to 5, and generally been a great host, though with his ups and downs, all throughout this time. The comic too, has it’s ups and downs. Old readers have their ‘favourite QC style’ and sulk that it’s dull during some of the story-arcs, but I dare say none of us would drop it. It’s a tradition and it’s love.

Questionable Content

Girls With Sligshots (GWS)

I’m fighting the urge to write ‘2 girls, a bar and a talking cactus’ just because it seems too trivia.. but see, I wrote it anyway. Content and humor-wise, GWS is probably my favourite comic. It’s b&w, a short 4-panel wonder. I dare say there isn’t actually a strip that lacks a joke, but then, with over 850 of them, I could be wrong. You are, of course, encouraged to read the entire archive to prove me wrong. It’s really worth it. Danielle is absolutely wonderful, even on occasion when opening GWS in a public place makes me blush. Dildos for the win

Girls With Slingshots

Joe Loves Crappy Movies (JLCM)

Arguably not a comic on it’s own, JLCM is comics based on/mimicking/somehow in reply of movies that the author, Joe Dunn, watches. And writes a review. Or the other way round. Joe has an amazing style and illustrates a number of other comics (check out Matriculated , another comic I love, only shame it’s a weekly). JLCM is spontaneous, however it still has a number of storylines or, rather, characters, that bring charm and continuity. Below is the birth of Leo.

Joe Loves Crappy Movies


There’s violence, zombies, brains, monster-cats, drums, sex in the dumpsters and the sweetest cartoon style seasoned with multi-eyed flash (you’ll see what I mean). What’s not to love? On the minus side, Michael Lalonde is quite infrequent, and sometimes you’re left re-reading the same strip every 3 days for a few months.


Girl vs Pig (HER!)

.. but if I said anything about infrequent, I must have actually been talking about HER! To quote – “we’re on fire!”. Which only makes rereading the archives  sweeter, really. And it’ll only take you half an hour to embrace the black-humour-morbid-simplicity of this gem

Girl vs Pig

Least I Could Do (LICD)

There’s sex, egoism, breasts, and.. stuff. In fact, one of the 4 comics I have bookmarked on the tabs menu, it updates daily (!!), and Lar has a wonderful style. Sohmer isn’t behind with the storytelling either. While sometimes the content doesn’t keep me comfortable, I still enjoy the comic a great load.

Least I Could Do

Wapsi Square

An honourable mention. Though I hadn’t actually been reading this comic for a number of months, I plan to get back to it. There is a reason for that – Wapsi has great art and is very interesting, but is also way, way too complicated to keep up with a storyline, even when updated daily. So one of these days, I’ll find the one strip I left off from, and get the whole picture in a day

Wapsi Square

Here I’d like to insert a number of other honourable mentions, but honestly, now I’m very, very tired. So to finish off, there’s just one. This girl, Cattish, I’ve been keeping an eye on her ever since deviantart 5-6 years ago. I mean that. The art is absolutely amazing and I’m a great fan. So when around a year ago I found out she’s doing a comic, I couldn’t be happier. One of my favourite artists and a comic! Notably, she and her colleague won the Moscow comic fest I mentioned earlier, for which I was endlessly happy. So please, please, check this out – while everything I mentioned before is well-known and doesn’t need additional introduction, Alabama just as well might.



Aloha begins

January 4, 2010

With exactly a  week to go until the assessment portfolio submission, it’s high time to procrastinate and come back to the blog, right? I mean, I did all my regular ALOHA things, but working just isn’t happening.

Thus far, I have 2 and a half unrefined screwdriver models (presumably for further testing), around 7 A2 boards ready for printing, a bunch of ideas in my head and utter despair at the knowledge that the idiot I am, there’s no way they’ll get translated into anything even remotely… good.

So, obviously, instead of getting on with work that I have TOO much of, I’ll ramble a little about my own ALOHA habits, things I’ve been keeping up with, some things that I like and others that I like less. However much patience I have to keep going.

First, naturally, a brief description of ALOHA. “The state of absolute despair that comes about at any time starting from 2 weeks prior, up to 12 hours before a project/portfolio is due in”. Now, if we’re talking about a single project or, say, an essay, it’s only just a mini Aloha. ALOHA is the one before assessment. It’s that time when you manage to not sleep for 3 days and nights in a row, staring into the screen. Last time, during the spring ALOHA, I actually had hallucinations. And also I managed to fall asleep for half a second each time *while* modeling in 3D, with my eyes open. In fact, I managed to see tiny little mini-dreams in that half second. But wait! I then switched to Photoshop and couldn’t actually believe the workspace is actually flat. I couldn’t believe that something could be *not* 3D. But wait again! That’s not all either! For about 4 days after the torture finished, I could dismantle things in my mind and disconnect all the parts and have them float around. In my head, of course. Actually, I’d dearly love to have that ability all the time. Well, maybe except for the humans. People do tend to deem you weird if you stare at them for a while, then become very amused and start giggling. What they don’t know is… in my mind their head just disconnected from the neck and I can see how it all works. Ah, ALOHA. You do strange things to me.

Now for some of the habits I mentioned earlier.

1. Rock’n’Roll. Oh yes. Though originally ALOHA came to be when a friend and I spend said time rushing projects in the middle of the night to Hawaiian traditional music off the radio, it’s rock’n’roll that gets me though the time. I have this favourite iTunes radio, plays 60’s and 70’s stuff, and though it seems almost on repeat, it’s still my wonderful work music. And sleep music. Which brings me to the next point –

2. Napping on the couch. This, too, is a tradition. See, ALOHA time is incredibly rush-rush, but once in a while (say, 2 days), that 3 hour sleep really is needed. But no more than that. The rule is – don’t sleep on the bed. So far I’ve slept on various couches around our flat and on the floor in 2 rooms, but you know that if you “nap” on the bed, you’re doomed for 8 wasted work hours. So the least comfortable you are, the easier it is to wake up. That’s where rock’n’roll helps too. I just keep it going. While it might slow falling asleep a few minutes, it makes waking up a whole lot easier. And more fun

3. A mess. Every ALOHA I take traditional photos to capture the state of the mess I manage to make. When I say mess, it’s that sort where you aren’t sure you’ll be able to find your legs anymore. In my case that is aided by the fact that I don’t have a single proper work surface in the flat and no chair that would stay comfortable for any longer than 2 hours, hence the entire process is solemnly floor-based. And painful.

4. Procrastination. Well, what I’m doing now. “Oh, I can read another blog page, right?”. No, actually. I ran out of time even before I started. This point would not be complete without what is probably the most widely loved animation among my uni friends.

5. Food. For some reason I always believe that after thiiiiiiiiis cake I’ll start working. It never happens. It’s light Aloha when food is even remembered, however. When difficulty strikes, like the 3 days-non-sleep, I couldn’t quite understand why I’m swaying *that* much when I left the house (in the morning, 4 hours before the deadline. To the print house.). Well, turned out I hadn’t eaten for over a day too.

Now, concluding the rant on ALOHA, I must insist that no one, ever, should repeat those stunts. Firstly – it’s my torture and a way I punish my own stupidity. Because, frankly, I’m a rubbish designer, I can’t manage my time and I also am unlikely to ever achieve anything. And secondly – well, just take care of yourself, guys.

In fact, this concludes today’s post, since I got absolutely off writing and can’t come back now. ALOHA, people!

Jen Stark & Albinos 2

May 5, 2009

Actually, I’ll start with albinos. I am by FAR not rare in my fascination with albinos, it turns out. The amount of hits this blog gets daily just because of that post is incredible for me (alright, so maybe it’s about 30 hits per day on average, but that’s just people searching ‘albino’, ‘albino lion’, etc.) So.. it’s widespread.

For that, here’s a cute little guy


But on. Like I’ve said before, I’m in love with things that could  be 2D but are done in 3d and become 2d, and things that are cut out, and things that are colourful and things that look simple but took so much effort… but really, beautiful things.

Jen Stark meets so much of that. What she does is absolutely lovely



Also, she does awesome paintings


See this

April 28, 2009

First, there’s


I’ve known the place for over a year, at one point spent an entire day of school playing with the head. Just go and see for yourself and you won’t regret it. Well, not unless you need to finish something urgently but get hooked instead. Good luck. 


Second there’s this marvelous video for the song Animals by Minilogue. I’m not really into this music, but the video is rather awesome. 

minilogue(click to watch on Vimeo, youtube quality is awful)


They’re sorta similar, in a way.

That’s all, I need to do project. Sleep and do project. I’ve been getting heartaches when I undersleep now. Ohh, getting old.

Rosemarie Fiore

April 19, 2009

Creativity has no limits, I know that, but the ideas people come up with utterly amaze me, sometimes.

Paintings with fireworks? Huh? Ask me to imagine, it’d all be burnt paper. Ask me to do it, it’d be all limbs burnt to ashes. The results of this unlikely and, in fact, unimaginable combination, are rather amazing.





Fireworks isn’t all she does. There’s also using weird machinery (lent off a playground?)…



… and oil painting, among everything



Generally it’s 4 in the morning, and I’m supposed to be working on -slash- *finishing* a 6-week project I hadn’t really started. Oh, and that essay. 

I’ll do good work one day. The same day I leave institution. It sucks my brain out and freezes the remains. 


One day I’ll make a post with various pieces of ‘funny’ design. My favourite kind. For now, just this I pulled off Adorable and funny (tea bags, if you’re wondering)



(what’s up with all the leather ‘one-use’ bags and parcels, ceramic ‘crumbled plastic’ glasses and other pseudo one-time-only objects lately? Oh, and the deer heads. You know when there’s just too many.)


March 28, 2009

I’ve been obsessed with them lately.


Because they look like spirits.


Albino Snake

Because they are beautiful. 



Because they are different. 


albino lion

And basically, because they are amazing.