Monday, December 23, 2013

Have a Happy Merry!

To all my friends...this year's Christmas card in a strip format! Cheers!

Thursday, November 28, 2013


It is time for the bestest of holidays. A celebration of friends and family and togetherness and ... pies!!! The Pie Mistress, Nico, has been hard at work preparing for tomorrow.
She has made so many pies each person will probably have their very own!
We also get up early to watch the parade. It's a tradition! Mostly because we LOVE Broadway!
And, of course, the main event. The turkey. And with that in mind, don't forget to gather around the computer, tablet, or what have you and enjoy the Thanksgiving Holiday classic: The Turkey Prince! Here is a link:
 And in further are a few Thanksgiving cartoons from past Thanksgivings:

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

"Skull Beneath My Skin" Video by Mike Marlin

I don't remember how I first came across Mike Marlin on Youtube...but he has a very haunting and compelling voice. This song also makes me think of Erik and Christine from Phantom. Anyway, I love his voice and the video is quite dark and creepy. See for yourself:

Check out his website for more videos and music.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

"Whistle Down the Wind" The Book, the Movie and the Musical!

When I was a kid I was a fan of Hayley Mills. She was brilliant especially in her two early British movies Tiger Bay and Whistle Down the Wind. I especially loved and still love Whistle Down the Wind filmed in the early 1960s in which three farm children in the English countryside discover a man hiding in their barn whom they think is Jesus returned. Alan Bates played the man, an escaped convict, and he was also quite remarkable in this, his first lead role (and pretty gorgeous, too!) as he tries to comprehend the actions of the three children and their friends as they try to help him.

The book this exceptional film is based on is charming in its own right. It was written by Hayley's mother, Mary Hayley Bell, and the edition I have, which I came across years ago in a used book shop, has lovely pen and ink drawings by Oven Edwards (line over the O in Oven which I couldn't figure out how to do!).

When I read that Andrew Lloyd Webber, who is one of my most favorite composers (thank you, thank you Sir Andrew for Phantom! Also Jesus Christ Superstar and Evita (NOT Cats, though, except for "Memories", sorry!) I was excited but then I saw he was setting the musical in the USA in the 1950's south. So, I was disappointed he didn't adapt it to the original setting of Lancashire, England. I never heard the soundtrack until only recently, when I was thinking about the book and movie and was curious to finally hear it. It was actually wonderful with lyrics by Jim Steinman. Now, I'll have to break down and buy the CD!

So it made me want to post scenes from the original film, and from the musical all through the miracle of Youtube and thanks to those who posted everything there!

(Trailer for the original film)
(scene from the musical)
Lots of info on Wikipedia
And this, on the Mills family
And, if the musical still hasn't made it to Broadway (or NH!) why not release it to DVD? How about it Sir Andrew?

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Happy Halloween!!!

It's been quite a while since I posted here, partly because we were away and then, partly because I lost my beloved cat, Big Eric, whom I will be writing about soon. This cartoon is dedicated to him.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Renaissance Girl

 Some people game to relax, some play cards... I look at art! A year or so ago I was looking on Deviantart at Phantom of the Opera art. There are a lot of very good artists on that site. I noticed that I was attracted by these certain drawings that I'd click on and after a while I realized they were all being done by the same person. They were beautiful, and funny and completely original and also dark and romantic and I completely fell in love with this portrayal of Erik and Christine.
So, I had to know all about the artist who created them. That artist is known on Deviantart as Muirin007 and in real life she is Casey Eade, a college student. Not only is she a brilliant artist whose work is a cross between cartooning and fine art...
  but she is also a funny and engaging writer and blogger, speaks French and really knows her stuff when it comes to the Victorian era and the writers and artists who defined that time period and hopes to eventually become a Professor in this field.
Plus... her phantom stories are wonderful takes on the characters.
She was taking a few commissions last year and I was incredibly lucky that she accepted mine, because, not only is she flat out taking courses, but she worked at a college radio station and took classes throughout the summer. When she asked what I would like... I had to think, because I LOVE her cynical Erik:
 But then I thought I would love a romantic image and told her to go with anything she was inspired to do...and she created this, which is so stunning in real life I feel like my wall should be part of a museum exhibit!
She is working on a book collection of her Phantom art (which I must own immediately!!!) and I, personally, would love to see her illustrate Leroux's classic, and would love, love, love her to illustrate Susan Kay's "Phantom". Meanwhile, I'm saving up for if/when that small window of commissions opens up... I'll be ready!

(she doesn't just do Phantom art...check out her site to see more of her work!)

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Connections: Edward Gorey and Paul Giambarba

As a child, I was captivated by the work of Edward Gorey as soon as I saw it. My parents were great readers and frequenters of book stores new and used and somewhere along the line I found his tiny, dark and mysterious paperbacks like The Hapless Child.
I also had a book called the Haunted Looking Glass which he illustrated.
I was sure Edward Gorey was a long dead Victorian era artist and writer like another of my favorite pen and ink artists, John Tenniel illustrator of Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. I was a kid. What did I know?  As I got older and continued to find new works by Mr. Gorey... a lightbulb went off. He's ALIVE! This was waaay before the internet when you had to realllly do research and scrounge around for information so, eventually, I found my way to the Gotham Book Mart in the city...

 and went to every signing they held for Mr. Gorey and I also managed to infect my dear friend Anthony with Goreymania and we two teens discovered he was in the phonebook! So was his address!  We would make the occasional pilgrimage to his NY apt. and sort of linger around. I guess this would be considered stalking, but we were young and cute back then and being young and cute you can get away with a lot!
(me and Anthony in our cute years)
A year or so later, I was selling clay sculptures and art in galleries around NY and LI and made a Christmas present I wanted to leave on Mr. Gorey's doorstep. My ex and my brother were obliging so we drove into the city and there was no place to park, so my brother circled the block and I went up and knocked on the door... not expecting any answer, but...the door opened and there was Edward Gorey, who said "Why, hello there"... or words to that effect. I was speechless... "Uh...I made this Christmas present for you...". ""Come on in!"
I glanced around for my brother who was still circling but we went inside. He was delightfully gracious and charming and offered us tea, which sadly, we had to decline because of my brother, but he did give me a copy of the Lavender Leotard, his latest book with a hand colored detail:
(the skirt of the leotard is hand colored)
He also told us some stories about his cats before we departed. I will always remember his apartment filled with books. Every space had stacks and stacks. His fireplace had stacks of books in it (I assumed NOT for burning) and we did see a couple of his cats lurking behind the books.

(his NY apartment looked pretty much like this)
This was an amazing day because Mr. Gorey was famous for not answering fan mail. He was always nice at the signings, too. This was all long before Dracula (which I saw with the dashing, young Frank Langella!) PBS and Mystery helped bring his work to national attention.
I also knew, from my extensive research, that Edward Gorey attended all of the NY City Ballet's performances and loved George Balanchine and stated if  Mr. Balanchine ever died he'd leave NY and move to Barnstable, MA.

Which brings me to why I am writing this now. It was a sad occasion when  Edward Gorey passed away. Later, I read about his house in Yarmouth   Port, MA, had been turned into a museum.

Paul Giambarba is an illustrator, cartoonist and designer of the iconic Polaroid box designs:
He is also a member of the NCS and the Wisenheimer online cartoon  board, which was started in the early days of the internet and is still run by the amazing Ted Goff. I have corresponded with Paul and been an admirer of his work for many years. He started an early blog about the history of illustration and knowing how much I liked Edward Gorey he sent me a link to a story he did that was an interview with  Gorey and included photos he took! What a connection! (Paul's interview with Edward Gorey).
(Edward Gorey photo by Paul Giambarba)
This year, we were looking for a getaway that wouldn't be too expensive and I said to John, there are two things I've always wanted to do, go to the Edward Gorey museum and meet Paul and his wife, Fran, in person and meet them for lunch! In looking at the Gorey House website it said plan your stay. It mentioned the Colonial Inn which was right next door! I booked a room and we ended up having one of the best times, ever!
We stayed at the Colonial Inn which turned out to be a charming old inn with a lot of personality and great food.  Dinner and breakfast are included in the price!
Colonial Inn
The Gorey House was fantastic!
  John and I ended up spending two hours  with the docent and would have spent another two except they closed and we were already there past closing. They had a lovely exhibit of  the originals of "The Gashlycrumb Tinies" :
and many other originals and items from his own collections of things and his coat, which was a bit sad to see behind glass
and there were dolls (the Black Doll!) and puppets and all sorts of posters and our guide was very knowledgeable so we enjoyed all his insight and stories I completely forgot to take pictures except for a couple outside and had to go back the next day for the gift shop. We both loved it and would definitely go back!!!

We met Paul and Fran for lunch at a local pub and had the best time talking cartooning (and politics!) and it seemed like we'd known them for ages, which, online, anyway, I have known and admired Paul for ages!
(Paul and I)
Paul and Fran
We ended up going back to their lovely home and talking and talking in between espresso and dessert and a tour of their beautiful garden. Paul's brilliant work was hung on the walls and it was such a treat to see his beautiful silk screens of the seasons and original drawings.
So, Yay! We had a most fabulous time and will look forward to making another trip to the Cape sometime in the near future!