Sunday, December 27, 2009
JUST A'WAITING FOR THAT NEXT DROPLET OF MILK...
That's how life is, sometimes, ain't it? Just when you're ready to make some life-changing decisions, some force of nature grabs your testicles and gives a hard yank. My plan to flee Philadelphia has been crushed, and the necessary funds are now depleted. A car accident (in which nobody was harmed, thankfully) is to blame. I will spare you the details...
Nonetheless, I count my blessings and attempt to persevere. Page four of Ectopiary is now posted. Although it is unremarkable, I am rather pleased with the 3rd panel. Also, don't believe what the woman says in the last panel...
By the way, pages of CHLOE are still for sale! Curiously, none of the more explicit (i.e. "pornographic") pages have sold yet. Jump on this opportunity to seize a piece of unique "erotic art" to adorn your hovel or conceal under your mattress!
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Until I devise the correct programming to include a Message Board/Forum page for the Ectopiary Website, I will try to conduct such business on this blog. I very much encourage any and all (positive and negative) observations regarding the Ectopiary webcomic here.
I may attempt to write my own commentary about each page in this space. I will try my best not to point out the many flaws in the art that painfully apparent to myself. I leave that to you, my faithful vultures!
Caleb Goellner wrote a generous notice about the website debut at The Comics Alliance. I am grateful for the exposure. However, I must correct the otherwise astute Mr. Goellner about the feature's title. "Ectopiary" does not refer to ghosts or ethereal gardens. (Although this possibility is not ruled out.) This peculiar nomenclature sprouts from a hybrid of sources. The initial source is from an astonishing artifact currently being preserved by The Empire S.N.A.F.U. Restoration Project. According the website there, the word comes from a peculiar vocabulary base called "lxt'lot'l" : "This language of the deceased is communicated via pure sensory dilation. Ixt'lot'l is a precision tongue of immaculate vagary, and misappropriated recollection."
Also, it stems from the medical term "ectopia" which is "the usually congenital displacement of an organ or part." For instance, consider the plight of the youngster below who was born with his brain outside his skull.
I hope you will agree,as the webcomic progresses, that this title appropriately reflects its tone and general nature. After all, my fellow creatures, aren't we all displaced organs from our mothers' wombs?
Saturday, December 12, 2009
ECTOPIARY is a graphic novel in the making. I expect it will be about 600 pages in length when completed. Currently, I plan on posting a new page once a week. Hopefully, in the future, I will be able to increase the updates to twice a week. The first two pages are now ready for viewing.
ECTOPIARY does not fit neatly into any known genre. At the moment, I fancy calling it "science fiction." I may change my mind tomorrow. Readers familiar with my other comics are encouraged to suggest other categories to file this critter.
The story, like most of my other comics, is cumulative in nature. Patience is suggested for the casual reader, as the speed of narrative is prodded by the needs of the story and not by the dictates of weekly installments.
Webcomics are a new territory for me. I am hopeful that my efforts are well-met.
REMINDER: Pages of CHLOE are still for sale. Please help me raise funds so I may have a roof over my head this winter when I make my escape from Philadelphia! Spread the word!
Saturday, December 5, 2009
EMERGENCY FUNDRAISER SALE
CHLOE ORIGINAL ARTWORK FOR SALE
In a desperate effort to raise funds to escape Philadelphia, I am now offering the original pages from my 2001 Xeric-Winning graphic novel, CHLOE for purchase. (I am also using this as an opportunity to try out PayPal.) The pages are listed HERE and are priced accordingly. Each page will be mailed to any area within the U.S.A. in a flat cardboard envelope with no shipping charge. Adorn your home with a unique piece of cartooning perversity, or conceal your newly-obtained treasure in your precious vaults! Frame it or deface it with your own doodles! Give it as a gift to your stranger relatives or discerning friends! Don't delay: they are available only first come - first served basis!
(Note : Those unfamiliar with the book can obtain a copy here.)
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Issue 96 of RUE MORGUE (an excellent horror magazine out of Canada) features an interview with me. It should be hitting stands in a few days. I haven't read it yet. I fear I may have revealed some embarrassing personal information amidst my stammerings. Am I an erudite craftsman or a babbling pretender? You be the judge.
In the meantime, here is a sample image from my current work-in-progress. The working title of the comic is ECTOPIARY (which I stole from Empire S.N.A.F.U.)
Sunday, November 15, 2009
"Youth is a blunder; Manhood a struggle; Old Age a regret. "(Many thanks to E. Stephen for providing me with the handy quote.)
-Disraeli, Benjamin, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield
This being my seventeenth posting, I've decided to revisit my personal history from when I was still an adorable semi-virginal seventeen-year-old Hans Rickheit. The above photo was taken in 1989. I did not develop facial hair until I was well into my twenties.
Below are samples of the sort of thing I was drawing from that time period. I have many hundreds of pictures like these. Feel free to make your own judgments and write them in the comment section.
Sunday, November 8, 2009
In further efforts to expand the multi-sensory goals of this blog, I have included a link to yet another video. (The video in question is about 16 min. Therefore it is too large for YouTube. I hope the Facebook link works for all my blog readers. If not, drop me a line. Perhaps one of my more technologically-capable comrades can help me upload it up on this blog properly.)
This short video documentary was made in the winter of 2005 by Wolf Gang Productions. The excellent music is provided by Katt Hernandez. The director of this project requested to visit my Allston Mass. apartment and film me drawing a page of comics. He wanted me to explain the creation process for the benefit of an unfamiliar audience. The results (or consequences) are a little painful for me to watch. Some embarrassing things to take note: Early on in the video I am bragging about having my comics submission accepted by Serializer.net; one week later, their website went down for an extended period of time and my submission was completely forgotten. There is a somewhat tedious interview of me discussing getting the Xeric Grant for CHLOE in my unfortunate lime-yellow kitchen. I also cringe when, near the end, my voice is heard saying "and that's a completed page", the camera pans down and the viewer can clearly see that it's only half a page. What a ripoff!
Nonetheless, it's a fine production and still reasonably entertaining for people interested in that sort of thing. More stuff next week, I hope.
Monday, November 2, 2009
I am taking a brief break from the drawing board to post this. Future projects still in progress.In the meantime, I command you to read this, the best dang review I ever got for The Squirrel Machine. It is written by one of the most revered cartoonists in my personal heroes list, Mahendra Singh. This individual has only a small output of comics material to be read; a four-page feature in #4 of Prime Cuts (August, 1987) and The Adventures of Mr. Pyridine. He is currently illustrating an adaptation of The Hunting Of The Snark; or in his own words, "busily fitting Lewis Carroll into a protosurrealist straitjacket with matching dada cufflinks." (Note: When linking to the review, please scroll down for the bit regarding The Squirrel Machine. However, I highly recommend the rest of The Snark Blog to all curious readers.)
Hopefully, in the next week or two, I will be able to post yet another video regarding The Squirrel Machine. In the meantime, I've posted a very early and erroneous version of Cochlea & Eustachia.
Sunday, October 25, 2009
I am also working on a comic strip that will be a collaboration with violinist Katt Hernandez. Conceptually, it requires accompanying music to tell the story. It will be presented via projection with live performers, and hopefully can be enjoyed at home in DVD format. This one will take time:
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
I have finally returned from traveling the East Coast to promote The Squirrel Machine! Many thanks to the many fine people who graciously hosted the signings and helped me on my journey! My hope for humanity is restored!
The above photo is of me (relatively groomed) at my appearance at SPX. I had a fantastic time there. I got to be seated next to Gahan Wilson during my book-signing at the Fantagraphics table and chatted with him for most of the day. I also had the pleasure of meeting many other cartoonists (too numerous to list here) that I hold in very high esteem.
Other highlights of the book tour: Unexpectedly joining up with Ken Applebaum and attending a Comic Jam with The House of Twelve in New York. Having an informal round-the-table discussion with a polite (perhaps confused, nonetheless very pleasant) gathering at The Rabbit Hole in Fitchburg. MA. Encountering some impossibly talented artists at Casablanca Comics in Portland, Maine; they're a formidable force up there.
Also, during this time, The Squirrel Machine has gathered up considerable amounts of attention with the press. The reviews and interviews are simply too many to list here. To read them all, just click on the links provided here.
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Whether or not you will be able attend any of the scheduled book-signings, please succor yourself with the following scans. These pages are from the earliest known version of The Squirrel Machine, drawn in 1999. It only lasted eleven pages before I gave up. Also, note the primitive and clumsy artwork. It is somewhat reassuring that I've demonstrated some modest improvement since that time. Oh, what the future holds!
Sunday, September 13, 2009
I just left the Philly Alternative Comics Con. I had a surprisingly good time. I was seated next to Charles Burns, (famous for The Black Hole, Big Baby and Dog Boy) a very gracious and talented individual. I sold every copy of The Squirrel Machine I brought with me. I have now graduated from being someone who draws comics that no-one reads to a person that draws comics that no-one comprehends!
To supplement this supposition, I have links to two kind reviews from The Comics Reporter and Wednesday's Child. Also, here is Part 2 of my interview with The Daily Crosshatch. Unfortunately, in this section of the interview I occasionally lapse into incoherent babbling; please accept my apologies.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
I had a fine chat with the good folks at The Daily Crosshatch. The first part of my interview can be read here : http://thedailycrosshatch.com/2009/09/01/interview-hans-rickheit-pt-1/
Also, The Squirrel Machine got a very generous review written by Rachel M Rollson at Panel to Panel : http://paneltopanel.net/shop/article_info.php?tPath=2&articles_id=39
In the meantime, here are some doodles and an old flier for a currently-defunct arts & performance space.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
In the meantime, here is a sample from an ancient, uncompleted project. It may have been another early version of The Squirrel Machine. I don't really recall. It is possibly the only time I ever attempted drawing a comic strip with a brush.
THE SQUIRREL MACHINE BOOK TOUR 2009
September 26th & 27th
The North Bethesda Marriott Convention Center
5701 Marinelli Road
September 29th (6-7pm)
709 S 4th Street
(215) 592 1207
October 1st (6-7pm)
(212) 473 1576
October 3rd (2-4pm)
Million Year Picnic
99 Mount Auburn
(617) 492 6763
October 5th (4-6pm)
244 Park Ave
(508) 755 4207
October 6th (7-8pm)
805 Main Street
(978) 345 0040
October 7th (4-7pm)
151 Middle Street #2
(207) 780 1676
October 10th (7pm)
1854 W North Ave
October 11th (2pm)
Vault of Midnight
219 S Main St
Ann Arbor, MI
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Searching through my many piles of papers, I've unearthed a real oddity. Here, for the patient reader, is the first chapter of a primordial version of THE SQUIRREL MACHINE. It is fourteen pages long. My artistic limitations from that time period are fairly evident. It is a strange thing that bears only a superficial resemblance to its superior successor. In this premature version, I clearly shot my wad too soon. Sorry about the mess: