Since my regular feature, the daily sketches, have been on hiatus for a couple of days, I thought I'd keep you guys updated on my recent goings-on. In less than a month, Ill be starting my working sabbatical, during which the dirty work on Astoria will be done. I am trying to get my stuff at Gimle Studio packed and put into storage while I'm away at Serieskolan (the Malmö Comic School), where I'll be hanging my hat for the next year or so.
I have prepared a little something for the 50th issue of Danish
monthly soon-to-be quarterly Free Comics, and that will likely be my last recess before I've finished Astoria. Sketches of the FC50-short may be up soon, or not. Depends, whether I'll have time to scan them.
The kids are vacationing with their grandparents for the next week and a ½, and I try to make the best of the extra time that affords me, work-wise and off duty. I get a lot of reading done, and I think I've reached the bottom of my accumulated comic pile. Finished Kirby's Kamandi recently (a patchy collection of the original magazines, but all goodness), and will soon be digging into a 1875 book by Kersey Graves, entitled "The World's Sixteen Crucified Saviours" that I found on Sacred-Texts.com. That is research for "Passion" that will be a (brainier) part of Astoria. In short, it treads the same path as Joseph Campbell's "Hero with a 1000 Faces", only focusing on the common traits of, well, sixteen different deities that have suffered on crosses, poles, trees, etc in a rite of transcendence.
Further Astoria research, specifically, for the segment "Great Old Ones", was my attempt to read Edward Tufte's "Envisioning Information", which slowed to a halt after a frustratingly chatty first chapter. Tufte is a widely learned gentleman, to be sure, and his writing (in "Envisioning…") is anecdotical, starting way off center, probably to narrow in on the subject at hand. In my case, looking for hard fact, instruction, and guidance, that method was a bit of a turnoff and ultimately left the book collecting dust on a shelf. I figure his "" may be the actual motherlode that I'll turn to eventually.
For recreation, I am reading the first book of the Danish "Erotikens Historie" by Brusendorff and Henningsen. I'd translate the title, but it hardly seems necessary; it means exactly what you think it does. This short volume tackles eroticism in ancient Greece and Rome, as handed down in prose, poetry, and art, delivered through the culturally (and sexually) liberated intellectual circles of Europe in the 30ies (1st edition) and 60ies (2nd ed.). A little reminder that the current, Puritan era has only lasted for a couple hundred years; before that, sexual 'politics' were not only less restrained, but also wholly different from what is generally accepted today.
And the music, not to be ignored! Lately, I have been listening A LOT to "The Bees Made Honey in the Lion's Skull" by Earth, who inspired the mighty SunnO))) as wellas a dirge of less inspired drone/doom-bands. On this and previous album, "HEX (or Printing in the Infernal Method)", the band have taken on a much "cleaner", more melodic sound, painting a prairie of resounding experience with their instrumental compositions. Quietly, calmly psychedelic, like eating sweet peaches in the sun.
Also playing are Gallhammer, the evilest little Japanese girls I have yet to hear, and Black Dahlia Murder, who just kick ass, and don't mince words about it.
That's it for now – I'll get some sketches up again once I've accustomed myself to being temporarily without children