It’s been on “the list” for a while, we need to update our website. If you’re interested in nudging us in the right direction, please let us know what this thing looks like from your perspective.
In preparation for this task, I’m now going to talk to myself a bit. Feel free to follow along…
Websites are a bit like a homestead or a tree fort. You imagine something fantastic, scribble down a rudimentary plan and then maybe, if you’re lucky, end up with something close to what you wanted… in a handful of browsers.. for a few years. Then you start over again when your needs (and technology) change.
It’s a lot of work. I can see why some artists and businesses would want to just exist on Facebook but that’s a bit like building on sand. The community is great but the ground will eventually shift, the rules will change, and your home will be swallowed.
Alaska Robotics was originally created as a label for our personal projects. We do a lot of work-for-hire and we wanted our personal work to be something separate. Right now it’s a bit of a snarly mess, here’s how we’re probably going to sort it out..
LRCD.COM – Lucid Reverie, LLC is our media firm, we specialize in website design, video production, and pick up a lot of random work-for-hire. Unfortunately, people have trouble spelling and understanding the words Lucid and Reverie so LRCD is a handy shortcut. (L)ucid (R)everie (C)reative (D)esign if you like.. or perhaps, (L)ucid (R)everie, some (C)ool (D)udes.
So yeah, we’ll remove the store and rebuild the lrcd.com site as a basic information site for our media business.. it might need a squid illustration.
ALASKAROBOTICS.COM – Alaska Robotics is the label we use for all of our personal projects, things like short films and comics. The main URL used to be akrobotics.com but that looked too much like a bad play on the word acrobatics and we also learned that a lot of people don’t know AK is the abbreviation for Alaska… solution.. spell it out. It takes slightly longer to type but is much much easier to remember.
We recently opened The Alaska Robotics Gallery, a physical location in downtown Juneau where we sell our favorite art, graphic novels, shirts, local music, and cards. The online store that currently lives at lrcd.com will get rolled into the Alaska Robotics site as an extension of our new gallery.
Some of the content is going to shuffle as well. The comics are occasionally hard for people to find and we’ve got a wonky setup for the films as well. I’m going to put a lot of effort into smoothing those bits out and making the text on the front page more readable.
Ok. So it’s not a precise vision, more of an opening statement. I’m going to get to work on it this week and I apologize in advance for transitional bumps.
I was traveling through England with Marian and we ended up in Birmingham for a meetup with her fans. Birmingham, as it turns out, is where J.R.R. Tolkien grew up and where he saw the pastoral lifestyle of his youth trampled by the industrial revolution. This immediately got me thinking about drawing orcs in business suits.
I love the idea of orcs in suits.
So here are a few comics that loosely inspect the pastoral/industrial conflict in the Lord of the Rings through the all-seeing eye of Mordor Unlimited Finance.
It’s kind of a Bane Capital meets The Office meets Sauron thing.
The latest gallery newsletter is about four miles long due to an overly windy holiday shopping pitch and several glowing reviews of local artists. Enjoy!
Also, a reminder — Gallery walk is tonight — Friday, December 7th. Mitch’s artwork looks great and he’s got the original pencils on display as well.
Hope you make it!
Happy Thanksgiving! I just sent out the latest gallery newsletter and it’s stuffed with news you may or may not be interested in, here’s the executive summary:
Sarah’s new book arrived, life drawing on Tuesdays, we’ll be at public market this weekend, call for submissions for the 6th-12th grade student show of comic arts, roller derby calendars are here, recommended reads and something about a moose…
“There’s the famous cook coming down the street!”
I recently completed a mini-doc on Little Mikey, a former resident at the Glory Hole Shelter in Juneau who now works there as a cook.
The Glory Hole Shelter is a grungy, heartbreaking window into a reality we often ignore. There are alcohol problems, crazies, and a lot of hard luck. I’d been led to believe that I would find a bunch of sneaky communists milking the system but that wasn’t my experience. These were genuine people with genuine needs helping each other and helping themselves in the process.
I tried to fit as much as I could into this two minutes and may do an extended cut if that’s something people are interested in seeing, let me know.
This was a project commissioned by the Rasmuson Foundation, the same organization that hired me to create a mini-doc on Kes Woodward last spring.
If you’d like to make a donation to the Glory Hole Shelter, just stop by and drop off some food. Better to do it later in the winter when all the holiday goodwill is buried in three feet of snow. They had plenty of mustard when I was there, I don’t think they’ll need mustard for a while.
.. and for those outside Juneau, the Glory Hole shelter is named for a mining term meaning a surface depression (or big hole) caused by underground mining. Not the other thing.
This comic was inspired by the past few weeks of traveling through cat infested homes with an allergy stricken guitarist. We were wondering what the world would be like if we shared it with cat people. Probably more sneezy.
Lou points out that cat people would require a tail hole in their pants which would mean inevitable breezy moments for we, the non-tailed bipeds.
I thought I’d include one of my pencil sketches for the comic, I usually scan or photograph these and then work over the top. There’s something about the clean edges on the new lines that steal some of the life from the initial sketch, I’ll have to figure out a way to better retain that voice in my lines.
I suppose this one is fairly similar to my other comic about flying, there’s just something magical, inspiring, and terrifying about floating through the sky in the belly of an aluminum tube… even if the math does work out.
I’m told the math works out. It does, right? It’s sure going to be awkward when someone actually checks the math and discovers giant metal birds really shouldn’t be able to soar across the Earth.
Here’s a picture of me with a ton of camera gear strapped to my front, a bag of perpetually dirty clothes on my back and a couple giant boxes full of CDs and miscellaneous gig equipment. Escalators are easy. The fun part is when we hit a narrow stairwell or an overcrowded train.
Home soon. Loads of photos and sketches to share when I get back.
Rule 1: We do not think about Philosophy Club
I made this comic because I thought it would be fun to draw René Descartes, he just looks like a total bad-ass French dude. Kant makes an appearance as well, playing the part of the stuffy philosophy club president.
I haven’t studied much philosophy, maybe one class somewhere along the trail, but I sure do think it’s a romantic pursuit. I’m not sure if being a philosopher is a profession these days or if it’s just a collateral occupation to anyone who thinks about the world.
My favorite contemporary philosophers have mostly disguised themselves as comic creators – Bill Watterson, Randall Munroe, Kazu Kibuishi. I also like Malcom Gladwell and Michael Pollan. Bob Ross. I think he counts. Yeah, Bob Ross definitely counts.
As it happens, I’m writing this from France, just a few blocks from Voltaire’s house. It’s nice outside. I’m going to go explore, that’s what a philosopher would do.
Some days that coffee table is a mile wide and you aren’t even sure who’s sitting across from you. Other days, it’s hardy even a splinter.
I’m not sure what causes human connections to ebb and flow.. probably a small wood sprite takes up residence in your spleen and slowly turns your heart to oak. A good dose of hot soup should cure the problem. If there’s one thing wood sprites hate, it’s warm and nourishing soups.