September 15th, 2003


(no subject)

I woke up this morning feeling good. I had a strange and twisted nightmare about--oddly enough--having nightmares--there was something called "the grapevine dream" that was going around that drove you nuts or freaked you out or something. (Possibly you were attacked by the California Raisins.) But then it segued into vague dreams about being a wizard zapping baddies while simultaneously trying to fix a last-minute control panel problem with "Digger" so I woke up in a fairly cheerful mood.

And Graphic Smash has gone live. ( ) And people said nice things about Digger so far. (We're running the two week backlog daily--new strips for existing readers will go live on the 30th, I b'lieve, and I'll post a note here, never fear, so that anyone wanting to wait until then won't miss anything. On the other hand, if you sign up now for a year, you save ten bucks...) And I finished a big painting, and people have said nice things about that. And I sold a painting t'other day. And I finished up set of illos for a game book last night, and I've got some black and white and the Frogscape to get done this week, promising a week busy enough to be non-boring, but leisurely enough to allow me to work on some other stuff. And I have some vague notions of doing another acrylic, possibly featuring my faithful Feng Shui three-legged money frog (who's powers I do not particularly believe in, but keep around anyway, 'cos three-legged frogs need work where they can get it.) And James is getting a slew of contract work for the foreseeable future, so we should have real money coming in again, and I no longer have to work like a...well, a three-legged frog..trying to sell enough art to pay rent (although I still will, 'cos it's a matter of pride.)

And life is good.

And I was thinking vague, satisfied thoughts about how much I liked my life at the moment.

And then the toilet backed up, sending a wash of...err...stuff...and stuff-contaminated water across the bathroom floor, while I squawked and plunged frantically, as unspeakable things drifted about my ankles. And then spent half an hour with handfuls of paper towels and the mop.

So really, it just goes to show.
  • Current Mood
    cheerful despite it all

(no subject)

I have a problem.

It's a weird problem, but I have this feeling that it's probably a problem lots of people wrestle with, and don't say anything about because it's a weird, awkward, uncomfortable sort've thing.

Whenever I paint someone of another race--I'm a nondescript white chick--I worry that I am doing some horribly stereotypical carictature that will someday go down in history alongside "Song of the South" and the crows from Dumbo. And so in panic, I tone down any parts that might possibly be overexaggerated in any way, with the end result that they all look like a buncha white guys in tinted pancake makeup.

For example, right now, I have to do character illos for a sourcebook on the Yakuza. They're black and white, so I don't get to be saved by skin tone, and they gotta be Japanese guys, because--well--they're the Yakuza! And so I'm going through, ref in hand, carefully drawing the epicanthic eyelid folds and the somewhat narrow chins that half these guys glaring out of the Yakuza group shots seem to have, (and the glare, lord, the glare. Nobody can glare like a dozen Yakuza) to try and express that these are lean, mean Japanese guys, damnit, and then I stare at what I've done and go "Lord, I've drawn slanty eyes. I'm going to hell for drawing this, and someone's gonna accuse me of hate crimes as soon as it hits the shelf."

The last time this came up, I was trying to draw a black woman, and she wound up with lips approximately a micromillimeter in width because I got so damn neurotic about any possibility that I was playing into a racial stereotype.

The hell of it is, I'm delighted we don't all look alike. I used to work with this guy from Nigeria who had skin that spectacular so-black-it's-purple shade and I regret terribly that I never got a chance to paint him, because he was gorgeous. But at the same time, it's such a terribly charged issue that I find myself choking whenever I portray anything along these lines, even if my refs are insisting that this is TOO the way it should be. I am homogenizing out of guilt. And that can't be good.