hahaha via buzzfeeed
hahaha via buzzfeeed
Bart n Lisa...or the other way around....
Bill Watterson is the artist and creator of (in my humble opinion) the greatest comic strip of all time, Calvin and Hobbes. I was a bit too young to appreciate it while it was originally published from 1985-1995, but I started devouring the book collections soon after. I think my brother had a few of the treasury collections and I must have read those dozens of times. I was hooked, and I remember copying Watterson’s drawings relentlessly as a kid (Calvin’s hair was always the hardest to get right).
To me, Calvin and Hobbes is cartooning perfection – that rare strip that has both exquisite writing AND gorgeous artwork. A strip that managed to convey the joy of childhood, absurdity of humanity and power of imagination all through the relationship between a boy and his stuffed tiger. And most importantly, a strip that was consistently laugh-out-loud funny. I flick through my Calvin and Hobbes books a few times a year, not to read them cover to cover anymore, but just to get lost in Calvin’s world for awhile and to remind myself what comics are capable of.
Besides the fact that Calvin and Hobbes is the comic I cherish above all others, Bill Watterson is my biggest creative influence and someone I admire greatly as an artist. Here’s why:
• After getting fired as a political cartoonist at the Cincinnati Post, Watterson decided to instead focus on comic strips. Broke, he was forced to move back in with his parents and worked an advertising layout job he hated while he drew comics in his spare time. He stayed at this miserable job and submitted strips to comic syndicates for four years before Calvin and Hobbes was accepted. About this period Watterson wrote: “The only way to learn how to write and draw is by writing and drawing … to persist in the face of continual rejection requires a deep love of the work itself, and learning that lesson kept me from ever taking Calvin and Hobbes for granted when the strip took off years later.” (Also see the Advice for Beginners comic.)
• Watterson sacrificed millions (probably hundreds of millions) of dollars by never licensing and merchandising Calvin and Hobbes. He went through a long and traumatic fight with his syndicate over the licensing rights, and although he eventually prevailed, Watterson was so disillusioned with the industry he almost quit cartooning. “I worked too long to get this job, and worked too hard once I got it, to let other people run away with my creation once it became successful. If I could not control what my own work was about and stood for, then cartooning meant very little to me.”
• Luckily Watterson didn’t quit and took a sabbatical instead. Eager to reinvigorate his creative mojo on his return, Watteron proposed a radical new layout for his colour Sunday strips. For those not familiar with comic strip lingo, each week a newspaper comic will have six ‘daily’ strips (usually black and white, one tier, 3-4 panels) and one ‘Sunday’ strip which is larger and in colour. Previously, the Sunday strip was comprised of three tiers of panels and looked like this. The layout was restrictive and the top tier had to be completely disposable because a lot of newspapers would cut it and only run the bottom two tiers in order to save space so they could cram in as many comics (or puzzles, or ads) as they could.
Watterson was sick of the format restraints and wanted more space to experiment and push his storytelling ability so he (with his syndicate’s support) gave newspaper editors a ballsy proposition. They would have to publish his Sunday comics at a half-page size with no editing, or not publish it at all. By this time Calvin and Hobbes had been running for over five years and was extremely successful so Watterson had the clout needed to pull this move off. Despite fearing many cancellations, he was pleasantly surprised that most newspapers supported the change. Free of the shackles of tiers and panel restrictions, Watterson gave us visually exciting and beautiful strips that hadn’t been since the glory days of newspaper comics in the 1920s and 30s. He was free to create strips like this, and this and this. “The last few years of the strip, and especially the Sundays, are the work I am the most proud of. This was close as I could get to my vision of what a comic strip should be.”
• After working on the strip for 10 years, when Calvin and Hobbes was at the height of its popularity and was being published in over 2,000 newspapers, Watterson stopped. He had given his heart and soul to one project for 10 years, had said all he wanted to say and wanted to go out on top. “I did not want Calvin and Hobbes to coast into half-hearted repetition, as so many long-running strips do. I was ready to pursue different artistic challenges, work at a less frantic pace with fewer business conflicts, and … start restoring some balance to my life.” Since retiring the strip, Watterson has pursued his interest in painting and music.
It’s pretty incredible when you think about. Could you say ‘no’ to millions, I repeat, MILLIONS of dollars of merchandise money? I don’t know if I could. Would you stop creating your art if millions of people admired your work and kept wanting more? I don’t know if I would.
Reprints of Calvin and Hobbes are still published in over 50 countries and the strips are as fresh and funny as they were 20-25 years ago. It has a timeless quality and will continue to entertain comic fans for generations to come. Great art does that.
- The quote used in the comic is taken from a graduation speech Watterson gave at his alma mater, Kenyon College, in 1990. Brain Pickings has a nice article about it. The comic is basically the story of my life, except I’m a stay-at-home-dad to two dogs. My ex-boss even asked me if I wanted to return to my old job.
- My original dream was to become a successful newspaper comic strip artist and create the next Calvin and Hobbes. That job almost doesn’t exist anymore as newspapers continue to disappear and the comics section gets smaller and smaller, often getting squeezed out of newspapers entirely. I spent years sending submissions to syndicates in my early 20s and still have the rejection letters somewhere. I eventually realised it was a fool’s dream (also, my work was nowhere near good enough) and decided webcomics was the place to be. It’s mouth-watering to imagine what Watterson could achieve with webcomics, given the infinite possibilities of the online medium.
- My style is already influenced by Watterson, but this is the first time I’ve intentionally tried to mimic his work. It’s been fun poring through Calvin and Hobbes strips the past week while working on this comic and it was a humbling reminder that I still have a long way to go.
- The quotes I’ve used in the write-up above are taken from the introduction to The Complete Calvin and Hobbes collection, which sits proudly on my desk.
- Thanks to Marlyn, Emily, Joseph, and Suchismita for submitting this speech.
The idea that words cannot always say everything has been written about extensively – as Friedrich Nietzsche said:
Words are but symbols for the relations of things to one another and to us; nowhere do they touch upon the absolute truth.
No doubt the best book we’ve read that covers the subject is ‘Through The Language Glass‘ by Guy Deutscher, which goes a long way to explaining and understanding these loopholes – the gaps which mean there are leftover words without translations, and concepts that cannot be properly explained across cultures.
Somehow narrowing it down to just a handful, we’ve illustrated 11 of these wonderful, untranslatable, if slightly elusive, words. We will definitely be trying to incorporate a few of them into our everyday conversations, and hope that you enjoy recognising a feeling or two of your own among them.
A feeling of solitude, being alone in the woods and a connectedness to nature. Ralph Waldo Emerson even wrote a whole poem about it.
The mark left on a table by a cold glass. Who knew condensation could sound so poetic.
The feeling of anticipation that leads you to go outside and check if anyone is coming, and probably also indicates an element of impatience.
This is the word the Japanese have for when sunlight filters through the trees – the interplay between the light and the leaves.
Someone who asks a lot of questions. In fact, probably too many questions. We all know a few of these.
Spaniards tend to be a sociable bunch, and this word describes the period of time after a meal when you have food-induced conversations with the people you have shared the meal with.
Their slang for someone who tells a joke so badly, that is so unfunny you cannot help but laugh out loud.
You know when you forget where you’ve put the keys, and you scratch your head because it somehow seems to help your remember? This is the word for it.
The feeling that comes from not being in one’s home country – of being a foreigner, or an immigrant, of being somewhat displaced from your origin.
Urdu is the national language of Pakistan, but is also an official language in 5 of the Indian states. This particular Urdu word conveys a contemplative ‘as-if’ that nonetheless feels like reality, and describes the suspension of disbelief that can occur, often through good storytelling.
The word for the glimmering, roadlike reflection that the moon creates on water.
This post originally appeared at MAPTIA.
“i made these”
The colors that surround us have an impact on the way we feel, and anyone who's ever studied or worked in art, design, or marketing knows this. This chart breaks down some of those connections between color and emotion, and shows you which colors to choose for the overall atmosphere you're going for.
I can see uranus hahaha
they seem like they're smiling....
Shoebills look very scary from the front
But from other angles…
the human body for kids...neat!
Everybody thinks. Everybody has heart.
I love these, I bet you will too.
Chimamamda Ngozi Adiche, We Should All Be Feminists
После серии обуви «со своим лицом» итальянский художник и дизайнер Фредерико Мауро взялся за оружие. Никто не пострадал :)
Бонни и Клайд
Ли Харви Освальд
Гарри Кэлахан «Грязный Гарри»
«Человек с золотым пистолетом, 007″
Рик Декард, «Бегущий по лезвию»
Хи-Мэн, «Повелители вселенной»
Охотники за привидениями
Джон Макклейн, «Крепкий орешек»
Винсент Вега и Джулс Винфилд, «Криминальное чтиво»
Люди в черном
Чери Дарлинг, «Планета террора»
Рик Граймс, «Ходячие мертвецы»
Антон Чигур, «Старикам здесь не место»
My thoughts exactly...lol
image by Amanda
I totally agree!
Oh, I forgot to add celery sticks to the list! Man, I hate celery sticks.