Jenni Gregory's Comics, Art and Stuff

The digital home of cartoonist Jenni Gregory

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

January 30, 2008

On This Day:
Wednesday January 30, 2008

This is the 30th day of the year, with 336 days remaining in 2008.

Fact of the Day: jazz and blues

Jazz is a musical form, often improvisational, developed by African-Americans and influenced by both European harmonic structure and African rhythmic complexity. It also is often characterized by its use of blues and speech intonations. Blues denotes a secular folk music of African-Americans. It has origins in the Mississippi Delta in the early 20th century. As a musical style the blues are characterized by expressive pitch inflections (blue notes), a three-line textual stanza of the form AAB, and a 12-measure form. Typically the first two and a half measures of each line are devoted to singing, the last measure and a half consisting of an instrumental “break” that repeats, answers, or complements the vocal line. Blues and jazz are closely related; such seminal jazzmen as Jelly Roll Morton and Louis Armstrong employed blues elements in their music.

I’m still digging on my Vision M player. I’ve been listening to the soundtrack from “The Wire”–you watched it yet???–and there’s some cool blue stuff on it. I’m surprised too at how much dialogue samples from the show turn up. It’s cool. Can’t help but feel the chill up the spine when you hear Omar whistle of “A Hunting We Will Go”. You best be watchin’ your back. Anyway, it’s kinda fun when Rene’ and I get together. We talk about music like we’re back in high school! She’s got me listening to FlyLeaf, 30 seconds to…something. All good.

Time is tough but Barry and I negotiated a schedule. Wednesdays (for the most part) will be strictly our family day. We’ve had to make a schedule of who will be were working where, what times that person will be leaving to make it home, pencil in personal time, etc. It’s been tough not seeing each other for more then a couple minutes a day–literally. I’ve been invited to work for an art company which would give me more time with the family but there’s still things I’m working out. It’s a scary, exciting time. I’ll get to draw and work at my leisure (ha! Like I know what that is!). So today both Barry and I shoved it all away, took the kids, loaded up the Chloe-mobile and we got out for air.

Today we went for a nature walk with the kids. We went to just a local park called Lake Louisa (which is HUGE, btw). I certainly don’t fancy myself a city girl, but take away buildings, people, strip away the background noises–cars, lawn mowers, dogs barking, and put me outside, I kinda get mighty nervous.

That all aside the woods were beautiful. Huge live oak trees that must have seen a lot of stuff. I love live oaks. These had Spanish Moss hanging down from them. The area we ventured to was more swamp then forest. Huge Cedar trees. Quite a Thoreau-ian moment. Everyone needs to read more Thoreau.

We bought the kids Taco Bell (Barry and I ate ham and cheese–we are recommitted to Low-carbing again. More later). Chloe ate hers up–Fox didn’t really care although HE’S the one who wanted it! Molly took a couple of 3 bites.

It felt good to be with the family all together. Really good. It felt good to be going something active and I think the kids all enjoyed being exposed to something they’d not really seen before. They played in the sand and we walked quite a bit. I took lots of photos. We must have stayed there 3-4 hours if not more. Then we went shopping a couple places. Then home we came–to find out drains all backed up! Barry’s got this sewer drain opener thingie poured down the drain and we can’t flush for 7-8 hours. Thankfully we’re doing it while we mostly sleep.

This weeks Toon Weekly theme was ZOMBIES!!! Does it get any better then that?? I couldda done a bazillion designs but I went simple…family.

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The color is pretty much exact–I didn’t desaturate it at all. I finally got some pretty good reds. Reds and blacks are hard to paint and harder to scan.

Chloe wanted to do a Zombie as well. She did a Daddy Zombie. I love it!! I got her singing The Cranberries “Zombie” as well.

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I’m finished the flats of Wombless!! Woohoooo! Join me in a brief happy dance!

Happy thoughts.

Yes, we really do have Homer Simpson shoes…

posted by admin at 9:51 pm  

Thursday, January 24, 2008

FX convention Orlando, FL

Just to let everyone know this weekend (Jan 25-27) Barry, Thomas and I and the whole Ka-blam crew (err…ummm….which IS Barry, Thomas and I) will be attending the FX Show in Orlando, FL
www.fxshow.com

Lots of wonderful guests. I can’t wait to see Brad Beyer from Jerricho
Nathan Fillion (Firefly, Serenity)
Greg Grunberg, Stephen Tobolowsky
and George Takei from Hereo’s.

Yes, while it’s nice to slave for the kids and at the drafting table, sometimes it’s really nice to let your inner geek out.

Come by our booth and say ‘hi’. Oh…and bring chocolate. Or Dt. Mt Dews.

posted by admin at 8:26 pm  

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Send in the clowns

Here’s this weeks post for TOONWEEKLY.com. See, I’m really liking these guys. They choose cool things to draw. Well, except for the fact that I hate clowns…yes I do have a weakness and clowns really do make me hinkey.

I love to get going on watercolor. So I did the last couple weeks’ submission in watercolor.

I scanned in the original…

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and then sucked all the color out, lol! Barry laughed at me. I’m just in a place where I don’t want a lot of color. I like it coooooooold.

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Here’s the two versions. Not THAT big of a difference, but I like the desaturated one better. I pimped the kids in there. Well, just Chloe and Fox. Molly didn’t make an appearance in this one.

Work on Womblees progresses EXTREMELY nicely. I’m thrilled, pleased, tickeled and excited. Here’s another page that’s all colored up.

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I’m totally doing flats first and then the color mojo begins. 6 pages are colored, I’m up to 26 on flatting. It really is a better way to work.

posted by admin at 1:02 pm  

Friday, January 18, 2008

Hell? Thy name is Ikea

WE SAW MARILYN MANSON AT DISNEY!!! And the place didn’t burn!!

No serious. We did see Marilyn Manson. Friday, Barry, the kids and Thomas and Rene’ decided we all needed to get “dusted” (our term for the cure to the stress, anxiety, and doldrums that we often get). We pack up and headed off to Disney for a day and received a big dose of Pixie Dust–hence the term “dusted”.

Anyway, we were just about to leave Magic Kingdom when Barry went to use the rest room. He came back and had this quizzical look on his face and asked if we’d seen Marilyn Manson. We all thought he was kidding with us so he made us wait until the guy came out. It was HIM!!! Dressed in black, wore big shades. If you just past him, you’d assume he was just another goth. But once you really LOOKED…it was Manson! It was funny. Love the music. Did you know he has no chin? No kidding. I’d never noticed it before.

Rene’ got pictures so I’ll have to see if I can nab any from her.

Anyway, we kinda watched to see what he and his body guard would do. They walked past us a bit then met up with some other people and a Disney escort. Hmph. Who’d a thunk Marilyn Manson has to pee?

But that wasn’t our only celebrity siting of the day, either. While we were at The Grand a group of 5 people walked past us. One guy said hello. I kinda half heartedly answered hi back. Then once again Barry asked…You know who that was right? It’s the guy who played Veronica Mars dad! His name is Enrico Colantoni.

Barry’s got this unique gift for seeing and remembering people. Warning: Never, EVER play any type of trivia game with Barry unless you want to get your feelings hurt. He stores all these facts and data up just waiting for something.

Anyway, we had a wonderful, if not tiring, time and I think we all feel the better for getting “dusted”.

Ah! Ikea!

I keep telling myself this place is a wretched place. Children don’t belong here…I don’t belong here. By all rights I should hate this place. Yep, Ikea has come to Orlando, FL.

This store actually opened up in mid-November here. Of course it had to cash in on the Christmas rush. My first awareness of Ikea came as I was trying to make my way to a local huge, rather exclusive mall. It JUST happened to be on the day the dreaded store was opening (I Later found out as it was explained to me by a Ikea junkie friend). Traffic cops were at the ready at all surrounding stop lights. It was as if a President were visiting and they were awaiting the motorcade. Folks around here whisper with reverent voices anything having to do with Ikea. What was the big deal???

A week or so later I took the 3 kids and went to see what was so special about Ikea. Well, it’s huge.
2 stories.
Did I mention it’s huge? And blue?
And huge. And way cool looking furniture. And what’s this? Not too badly priced!?!? Cool beans! I can even leave my kids (provided they are housebroken and over a certain height–so Chloe is in, Fox and Molly are out) in a kiddy care facility while I shop (get this part)for FREEE???!!! I

And it’s huge. HUGE I tell you!

Chloe can’t wait to go into the child care area (hell, from the looks of it *I* wanted to go into the child care area!!)

Chloe is ensconced in the play area and Fox, Molly and I bravely set off on adventure.

Ikea is rather like an uber-conformist Wal-mart on steroids. Seriously. Upon entering you are handed a brochure/map. The floor plan is laid out (even arrows on the cement floor to encourage your conformity just in case you get sassy and want to freestyle your own path) so you pretty much have to follow one serious traffic flow or risk the glacial stares of staff and customers alike. Yes my pretties, conform!

The kids and I wandered around and quickly the time went. Before I knew it, an hour had past and I had to go spring Chloe from her play area and then we continued on gawking.

Then we came to their cafeteria (one of 2 it turns out). Even the food is cheap!! They serve this salmon dish that looked divine, and cost under $5.00. I just kinda glanced over at the eating area and we moved on to perusing mode. We came to the bed area, and the cabinet area and I came to the most startling of realizations.

IKEA IS PRESSED WOOD FOLKS! Pretty, yes (if you like that Euro style) but it’s JUST PRESSED WOOD!!!

AND YOU PUT IT TOGETHER!!! YOUR OWN DAMN SELF!

I’ve been back many times. The kids absolutely love to go there. Chloe loves to go to the play area and run around for her hour with other kids. Fox loves to go play with the wooden toy train sets that are set up in the kids area. Molly just likes to chill.

As bizarre as I find it I am always amazed at the people that I’ve met while there. I’m always running into people that are in Orlando JUST to come to Ikea. This time I met the coolest man from Miami. He’d fought in WWII. He’d traveled over 3 hours just to see this store. But then we were talking over cheap hot dogs, so I’m betting he came up for the food.

Then we all go and get cheap kids meals (they have hot dogs for fifty cents!!!) The kids yesterday got a full on mac n’ cheese dinner for $1.00! I just watched not believing I’ve drunk the cool-aide as well. sigh.

We go back to Ikea at least twice a month now. I still think it’s a gyp. The furniture IS just wood particles glued together, not some sort of exotic wood, mind you. And you have to pick up the stuff and put it together. The prices are nice, but they ain’t all that.

Fox has built up his collection of toy trains (kids obsessed) to mammoth proportions. I have to admit, playing with this train set it pretty darn fun. It’s cool to make patterns and connect lines and to see if you can make two paths conver…damn. I do get carried away. I see where the kid gets it from.

But I’ll still be there feeding my kids Mac n’ Cheese or Hot dogs SOMETIME this week.

Ya Damn Creepy Kids!!!

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So the kids have taken to sleeping in our bed. Well, they start out in their beds but soon they migrate. I try not to let them scare me, let them know they have power. But do you know how damn creepy it is to wake up only to find these two kids standing beside you…staring? Gah!!

Their eyes really don’t glow at night. Mine just glow red from lack of sleep.

Things I’m into at the moment:

Fiction Plane:
My man Sting has spawned a hell of a singer. Maybe I’m biased because his boy sounds just like him. I love this band. Give a listen to ‘Two Sisters’. Funny, well written and led by the son of one of the most important musicians of our time.

White Stripes
Icky Thump.
I got the kids to love this song because it actually has the word Icky in it and there’s one hell of a beat. Great music.

Jerricho Season I DVD
It’s coming back!! The series that made me extremely happy is back in February. Go. Buy this DVD and get caught up. And don’t forget your nuts.

NOW!

The Wire
It’s the fourth and last season for this incredibly fantastic, and far too overlooked series. The Wire is about Baltimore cops. Wonderfully acted, wonderfully written. EVERYONE should be watching this series.

Go watch it!


Speed Racer

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Is it me or does that tasty hunk of man meat also known as Mathew Fox look like a gimp in this flick??
As a kid I had a SERIOUS thing for Racer X. Maybe it doesn’t translate to real life, but I’m kinda not feelin’ this Racer X costume thing.


Breaking Bad

I should be distressed by the over abundance of drug themed shows at present: Weeds (I want to like this show, but I’m just not into it) and AMC’s new makeover includes exclusive network programming starting Breaking Bad. Bryan Cranston plays a chemist who has X amount of time to live and opens up a meth lab to make $ for his family. I LOVE Bryan Cranston and while I didn’t have a chance to watch the show tonight, I have it DVR’d for my viewing pleasure tomorrow. Yes, I realize I should be outraged over the drug theme, but I want to give it a shot and who knows, maybe this will bring needed attention to meth and treatments or maybe it will just be another great show.

Cool Stuff

Get touched

There are few people who follow and love gadgets as much as me. I LOVE them. From Digital cameras, to bluetooth headsets, to MP3 players, to massage chairs– I love GADGETS!!! My best friend got an Ipod touch and I think it’s the coolest thing out there.

Wi-fi enabled, sleek, oh so slim, it rocks. I still hate that it’s I-tunes exclusive. But I do hear that you can crack that.

I still absolutely LOVE my Creative Vision M (60Gigs o’ joy) but I gotta admit that Touch is one FINE looking toy.

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I got to go away for business last week. I had a wonderful, creative, and enjoyable time. I got to take LOTS of photos of cities and buildings. I love high rises. They creep me out, and my anxiety and fear that SHOULD something happen and I need to leave a building quickly and can’t because I’m on the 30th floor of some freakin’ building … was sometimes manageable.

Womblees

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Here it is. Page one colored and unlettered of my new series Womblees. I am thrilled and utterly happy over this book. It’s coming along and I can’t wait to have it finished in time for Megacon!!!

posted by admin at 10:49 pm  

Monday, January 14, 2008

Children of the corn

Molly has totally gotten into eating corn on the cob. All the kid wants to do. It’s really cute when she’s got the kernels all over her puss.

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We are really happy that she can eat most everything right now. We did get her last phe results: Molly’s Phe level for Jan were 3.9, and tyrosine was 1.4, very good levels. Next test will be in Feb. The next doctors visit in Tampa will be in April which is when the doctor tells us if she needs to be seen continually or if her mild Hyper-Phe will only be something to worry about when she decides to have children.

I got to go away for business this weekend. I guess it’s rather like a good enema–getting away kinda cleans out the system. I needed the break. Good god I needed the break. Will post some photos and write about it later.

Here was this weeks Toonweekly.com entry. The category was Sea Creatures!! Love that! I chose the Green Leafy SeaDragon. The guy really exists and is the coolest thing to see. We always go to the shark exhibit at SeaWorld and that’s were they keep this critter.

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Happy thoughts everyone.

posted by admin at 8:33 am  

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

The update

Welcome to 2008. Damn glad to see the end of 2007.

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Here was this weeks toon challange for toonweekly.com

Rock Stars! Mine was kinda 80’s inspired. Kinda? It was 80’s inspired. Thew in some Devo, Van Halen, and bubble gum pop. Can’t get must better then that…unless a piano keyboard tie is involved.

I had fun with it. I just can’t stand computer coloring. I’m so much more at home watercoloring.

Our Christmas was wonderful. Odd..but still nice. For some stupid reason, Barry and I agreed we’d not get each other gifts this year. There were a myriad of reasons why we didn’t exchange gifts. None of them right. Dumb thing to do.

We also agreed that we’d not go nuts on gifts for the kids like we had in years past (we only got a couple more years to still be able to do this, and then the kids are onto us and we’re catapulted into the Wii’s and Ipod buying realm!).

We’d had a “Day or Reckoning” shortly before Christmas got here. Our “Day or Reckoning” are these periodic things we hold where we go thru drawers, closets, shelves whatever in the vain hope of cleaning and organizing things. I think we just make a bigger mess over in a different corner. We figured we’d go thru toys and games and set aside things we don’t use or play with anymore and give those to either a charity or needy family.

Still all the crap sits in a corner on the kitchen floor. I think we’ve now decided to have a yard sale. Just need to find time to do that.

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I tool the kids earlier in the week to Prime Outlet Mall. They had the place decorated really cute. Chloe and Fox wanted to pose for picts by every deer they came across. I LOVE Foxes pink sunglasses.

Anyway, we told the kids we had a surprise that we were going to take them to Christmas eve night.

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This is how Chloe gets dressed when we tell her she needs to dress warm because it’s cold outside. Floridians have no idea about cold. While we loved the sandals, and the new born baby bonnet (Molly’s) we had to do some redressing.

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Barry had to work that night so the kids and I drove him to work and met our bestest friend Rene’ to hang out together for the evening.

We also met up with Santa! Chloe and Fox were so excited to see Santa. Molly was petrified so she’s not in the picture. She ended up clinging to me like velcro!

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Chloe fell in love with a totem pole at Wilderness Lodge (mainly because it had a dolphin carved into it) but she also liked the frog.

Far too often Chloe freaks me out by how old she looks. I have to keep reminding myself she’s still a baby. Well, my 4 year old baby.

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Christmas morning was awesome. Kids jumping up and down…granted they woke up at 9:30 am because they wouldn’t sleep Christmas eve night.

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Here’s Fox not looking his absolute best, but it pretty much sums up the morning!

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This one is a little better. He looks a little more awake. Sorta.

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Whistful looks like these are what it’s all about. I must have been dangling chocolate or something because I usually don’t get looks like this.

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Chloe loves opening presents!

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Molly was more interested in playing with ornaments then presents.

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Turns out that she LOVES to tear things up. We thought she’d be absolutely bored and not old enought to open things. Turns out she’s feisty enough to just LOVE to tear up stuff!

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Fox LOVES his Martian Manhunter. His favorite superhero is Flash.

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Chloe only asked for a couple of things. Orcas. Dolphins. More Orcas. Maybe a Barbie or two, but mostly dolphins.

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I think we’ve read this book a dozen times.

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Playing with some of her goodies.

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Chloe pokes around the big tins of popcorn.

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Molly snacks on a candy cane. She LOVES those things! That hat? Not so much.

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She was kept busy while the other two openned presents by eating popcorn. She particularly liked the carmel corn. Well, duh!

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Fox goes nuts over his Cars slippers.

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Molly playing around.

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Poor Fox was all tuckered out! We had to try and dance around him while we fixed breakfast.

Tradition in these here parts is that after you open presents you go to a park. We live a hop, skip and a jump from Disney (duh), Sea World and Universal. We went to Sea World. Mainly because we live at Sea World due to Chloe’s obsession with whales and dolphins.

They had the most beautiful Christmas tree set up. We took a few snaps.

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I think this photo of Chloe is Soooo sweet. She looks so happy.

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Shes trying to hug him. He’s trying to escape. Looks like she’s choking him.

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A few drops of rain and they both freak out.

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Chloe’s Christmas Zombie

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One of the coolest creatures there is…a leafy sea dragon. Yep…it’s a real animal!

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I steal a smooch with my li’l gal

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Daddy dons his hat and steals a kiss, too!

NIght Terrors

Seems like more and more the kids are sneaking into our bed. We had a good run there for a while when they actually stayed in their own beds. I think it’s because we used Santa and presents as a bribes. They fall asleep either on their bed, the tent in their bedroom or…just on the floor. Fox has thing THING for sleeping on floors.

Go figure.

But before you know it–they stand there.

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Do you know how disconcerting it is to be sound asleep then feel a presents by your bed, staring, watching? Damn freaky, let me tell ya.

Happy New Year!!

posted by admin at 11:59 pm  

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Christmas cards!

YEAH! I just got my Christmas cards out!!! YIPPEEEEEE!!!

What was that? I was supposed to do that BEFORE Christmas?


Damnit.

posted by admin at 11:03 am  

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Toon cyborg

Here’s a cyborg chic I did for a nifty web site.

I’ve never colored metal before. It’s a bitch. I’m much more comfortable with paints, but I gotta learn to color with the computer.

She was really fun to do.

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More about Christmas soon.

The site is toonweekly.com
There are some really creative artists there! I’m starving to do new stuff so this seemed like a good thing to jump into.

posted by admin at 2:09 pm  

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