Sun 5/20/2007

All I want to do is sit in my room by myself and be sad. But that's pretty much all I did this week anyways, so I forced myself to get out and do some stuff this weekend.

On Friday I went to the big Stuck In The Middle book release party at Rocketship. I got to see some Comics friends which was nice, but it was SUPER crowded and I had this mini panic attack, so I left early, without watching the reading.

Then on Saturday I went to this opening for a big art show that one of my Pratt instructors had curated. Again, it was crowded, again I left after about 10 minutes. I ended up walking the width of Manhattan from West to East along Bleeker street in the rain, to go see Once. It was a strange walk, passing all these rich New Yorkers eating at nice restaurants, shopping in pricey boutiques, hopping in and out of cabs. It couldn't be more different than my experience here.

The movie was good (I really liked the music) but it made me uber-notstalgic for my busking days. I've been playing my guitar some recently, so I thought maybe I'll record some stuff? It's been a while, but I think it might feel really good right now...

Anyways, through some top-secret connections, I got to read an advanced copy of John Porcellino's "Thoreau at Walden" this weekend. It's one of the Center For Cartoon Studies books being released through Hyperion. It'll be out in April 2008 and everyone should check it out. It was just fantastic. John's drawing style matches the simplicity of Thoreau's writing style perfectly. A match made in heaven.

I've never read Walden, but the whole idea of Thoreau's experiment really struck a chord with me. I think spending most of my time in isolation, working on creative projects, living simply and off the labor of my own work sounds just about right for this summer. Also, this was encouraging:

"However mean your life is, meet it and live it... I am convinced, both by faith and experience, that to maintain one's self on this earth is not a hardship but a pastime, if we will live simply and wisely."

And this made me yearn for the day when I am older and calmer and not feeling everything quite so sharply and painfully:

"October answers to that period in the life of man when he is no longer dependent on his transient moods, when all his experience ripens into wisdom, but every root, branch, leaf of him glows with maturity."

Oh, and that's a discarded phone card I found lying in the street last night. "CRAZY CRAZY CRAZY New York" They got that right!

6 comments on this entry

did you happen to see the 'colored' version? it feels weird to color john p.'s art. still not sure how i feel about the whole thing.

glad you liked the book though!

jp May20

JP - the galley cover was colored (YOURS I assume! I saw you in there as a "production assistant" :) but the rest of the book was with tones, in grayscale. Did you do those too? It looked great!

Alec May20

yeah. it will be a single color in the final book, but that's what i meant by 'colored'.

i haven't even seen the cover. last time i did james was going back and forth between the designer and the hyperion people. this whole process is crazy! have you experienced any of it yet with aaron's book?

jp May21

Yeah, the cover didn't quite look finished (the text placement specifically: crowding the figure on the left with huge blank areas on the top and right???)

Aaron has started working on the cover (which looks AWESOME) but we haven't gotten into too much production stuff yet. I'm sure there will be a lot of back and forth. We gotta please those suits! :P

Alec May21

Sorry to hear about your struggles against sadness... I can relate as I often find myself anxious about life... the trick is to live in the positive as much as is possible. I have much to be thankful for but that doesn't stop me from occasionally being selfish and wallowing in the poor me moments. I also picked up my guitar for the first time in months last night... it was refreshing just to mess around for a bit, of course I had to play semi-quietly since the kids were in bed. Chin up man, you have many things to be thankful for... but as always I appreciate your transparency. Hope this finds you well.

Jewett May21

i did that same thing last week and it's continuing a bit this week, but the week is still early. i got really sappy and had candles going and listened to the smiths, "i know it's over" over and over and over again. and "if i ever feel better" by phoenix. knowing someone else out there is also going through a thing somehow makes me feel less alone in the universe.

and i read walden in high school and i too thought, what an amazing idea! but i know i'd last 20 minutes in the woods before i was eaten by badgers or something. i'm a wuss.

erica May22

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