Saturday, December 27, 2008

My recent work with Journal of Visualized Experiments

“This procedure begins by removing any debris from the Influenza A viral solution by centrifugation. The viral membrane is then disrupted with eggnog, and tiny Santa hats are introduced to the solution….”

Note: JoVE may have received a version without Santa hats.

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Gingerbread houses and Spore critters

Back from visiting Kate and the cousins. The tree was bought; the gingerbread house was a triumphant and yet oddly tame victory; and the dog was (briefly) decked with bells and ribbons.

Here's some comparison photo from last year, to explain what I mean:

Two hours of battling bad gingerbread architecture, paste, bonbons and gravity.... The second photo shows our expressions only 20 min into it. Needless to say, the fate of the gingerbread house was doomed, as you can tell from the closeup of the house and its already gently tilting wall.

Since this year's gingerbread house is in fact decorating the dining room, as opposed to getting thrown off the deck, I suppose it wins in something.

And here is the dog.

Also, Alex showed me how to mess around in "Spore". Below is the critter I designed.

Here, the larger creature is playing around with its young. Or... Her young? Since the larger creature laid an egg?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Snow. Also a lab mouse.

Boston is still cold, but at least it's snowing. (I think it's the first snow this season.)

Unrelated, but here's a graphic I was working on for freelance work.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Q: Do you know what's cold?

Answer: Boston.

Boston is cold.

Boston is far, far too cold.

Most of my thoughts this week were, "Aaaargh! Boston! Cold!"

There should be a law against Boston being this cold.

On other news... check out this new billboard spotted on Peachtree! (Georgia)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Conversation with my Housemate

"Hey Sam, thanks for letting me draw your feet last night."
"No problem."
"I've created my schematics graphic directly from sketches of you and Lauren's feet, actually. So your foot is going to be on the internet!"
"Also, I had to study images of feet with symptoms of gangrene, and recreate those symptoms on the foot graphic. Want to see what your foot looks like with gangrene?"
"Um, maybe sometime later."

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Toppling books and wave o' Obama heads

A bookstore in Salem, MA.

Oh and congrats, President Obama!

Also -- normally I don't post things like this, but this was just such a strange, strange photoshop picture. (From Nov. 4th 2008 issue of the Boston Metro.)

Update! Kate has simultaneously put this thing on her blog as well (I sent it to her earlier), and is is doing an impromptu caption contest. (click)

And while I'm reveling in the weirdness --

(Originally from Pundit Kitchen.)

see also...

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Comicon, Salem, and VOOOOTE

(Quick update: here's another blog entry about the 24 hour comic. That entry has more accurate details on why we got kicked out at 3am. The blog entry also has the one group photo we snagged, before the police told us to seriously get out.)

The Boston Comicon was today!

A handful of Boston Comics Roundtable people were there, including Charles S., Dirk T, Jay, Lindsay and me. I shared a table with Lindsay, and once again I was across from Jay. This time there was something about "blood flowing" and "babies" in his spiel. Lindsay was selling these funky cigar boxes decorated with old comics.

I like selling minis, because now and then someone will come by, look at your mini, start reading it, and something in their expression says that this mini was meant for them.

Also, when people buy my minis at conventions, I like to draw insane, non sequitur doodles in the inside cover.

On other news, I recently visited Salem with a friend. It smelled of rain and autumn; a blustery wind carried fire-colored leaves tumbling along the cobbled walkways. All very pretty, and also cold to point of misery. So we ducked into a thrift store, where I bought a bathrobe. I wore it under my sports jacket for most of the trip.

The bottom half of the robe was pretty visible. However, this was Salem during the week before Halloween. Not only that, but the robe material was a dark color with snowflakes on it, so the robe looked it was pattered with stars. As Julia sums it up, "You look like the sorcerer's apprentice wandering around with a sports jacket!"

But I was a cozy, warm sorcerer's apprentice/lunatic in a bathrobe, I can tell you. I was especially glad for that robe later that evening, when we went on a ghost tour during the chilly Salem night.

Finally: as the voice of civic duty (in a ghostly manifested form)... You! Vote! Voooooote! I am rattling chains, wooo, Vooooote!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

24 Hour Comics Day: Kicked out by the Fuzz at 3 AM

So last weekend was 24 Hour Comics Day. All over the world, people challenged themselves to draw a 24 page comic in 24 hours.

In Boston, a bunch of comics-loving people got together at Hub Comics, where we scribbled comics, ate chocolate, drank tea, watched sci-fi movies, argued about Spider-Man, Harry Potter, Nutri-grain bars and other topics, and generally had a merry time.

Around 3 AM, we were starting to mellow out, and quietly work on comics.

Then someone knocked on the door.

It was the police.

To make a long story short, they told us to leave the store. The store had people in it at 3 AM, but no such hours were publicly posted on the outside of the store. So we had to leave the premise. A store associate (not owner, corrected) of Hub Comics, who answered the door, explained that he had called city officials the day before to make sure he was set for hosting the event. The police told the owner that he and everyone had to leave.

"Out-of-control troublemaking punks" does not really describe the atmosphere of a 24 hour comic-making marathon. Our dangerous, edgy activities included to drinking Mountain Dew, trading bad jokes, and drawing comics. (As you can tell, I'm still not sure what the fuzz busted us at 3 AM for.) But either way, we reluctantly began packing up. Actually, first we started taking one last group photo. Then the police knocked again, to tell us we seriously needed to get out. So we abandoned the group photo and quickly packed up. We left the store under the watchful eye of the police.

So there we were at 3 AM, huddled on the street corner and trying to keep warm. (Being Boston, the temperature had unexpectedly dropped 15 degrees in the last hour.) Some people had rode the T from MassArt or Allston, and -- since the T stops running by 3 AM -- they had no means of getting home.

However! Luckily, one Mr. Little from the group lived nearby, and graciously invited everyone to crash at his house. So a few people parted ways with the event, and the rest (8 or so?) got ourselves to the house and spend the rest of the event watching animations, eating apples and drawing comics.

All in all, though, I had a fun time! And despite the unexpected 3 AM relocation due to police, I'm happy to say I got 24 pages of comics drawn.

Here are a slew of photos, chronicling the event. (No photos of the police, sorry.)

(Around 9 pm, I finished penciling 24 pages.)

At 3AM, we relocate.

I continue to ink my comic....

(Below: Spot the differences!)

11 Am Sunday. After staying awake for the whole event, some people suddenly crash.

I continue to work on my comic.

Some of the survivors of 24 Hour Comic Day, 2008!

Below -- cover and first page of the comic I drew.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Apple picking and Limulus polyphemus and 24 hour comics!

Apple picking in New England!

Above: the author of this blog, trying to sneakily snitch an apple from the pile. Unbeknownst to her, the person behind her has just put an apple on her head.

~ Update! My aunt Kate has posted a blog entry about the apples too! (Click to read). ~

And now, for something completely different.

So I previously mentioned making graphics of horseshoe crabs and amoebocytes. And now I can officially say that it's for the Journal of Visualized Experiments. JoVE is sort of a scientific YouTube (with an editorial board and peer review) -- videos for scientists trying to do lab experiments. Or for anyone who wants to know how to window a chicken egg, or in this case, how to properly bleed a horseshoe crab.

Click here to see the JoVE video where my graphics are used: "Blood collection from the American Horseshoe Crab, Limulus polyphemus"

And finally --

Next Saturday (Oct 18) is 24 hour comic day! Draw 24 pages of comics in 24 hours! Local art museums and comic stores across the world have registered as hosts; one can also try the event solo.

Anyway, I will be at Hub Comics at Union Square around 11 am or noon or whenever it starts. Come by and draw comics or share the madness.

And I leave you with this photo, from the farm we visited:

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

SPX 2008: House of Potato Gormandizer

Small Press Expo 2008!

Below: set-up time early Saturday morning, and a later shot.

On the first day, I saw no less than three people wearing Tintin t-shirts!

I was pretty excited. Then someone pointed out to me that a Tintin movie was in the works, which would account for the shirts. That made it less coincidental, but it was still cool.

Dirk and I carpool'ed to SPX. Here, Dirk risks all to unveil the "Pope? Yes!" conspiracy.

Below -- Alex and Jaime staffing the BCR table!

Anyway, SPX was a lot of fun. I traded for a bunch of mini's, including "10 Things To Do With a Fake Moustache".

On other news, last night my housemates played presidential-candidate bingo during the debate. Sam won within the first 9 minutes.