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winter storm

Wednesday, February 11th, 2009

It’s been freezing here lately, but I know other parts of the states have it worse, thus the winter / snow haiku comic.  Thankfully, today was absolutely gorgeous and a reminder to why I moved here in the first place.

So, before I link you to the greatest art exhibition I’ve ever seen, let me say a quick, ‘yay for me’ and link you over to an article about GingerDead and Friends that appeared this weekend on Comic News.  I’m honored to have the comic covered in Richard Caldwell’s new segment on webcomics.  It has some interview questions answered and stuff that might interest you, but if you’re ‘not really that into me’, just move along to the next paragraph which will lead you to a most worthy link, I promise.

This weekend I went to Sarasota’s Shelby Gallery, part of the Ringling College of Art and Design‘s campus, to experience a jaw-dropping, eye-popping, heart-fluttering, mind-boggling exhibit called the Freak Parade.  The Shelby Gallery describes it like this (I’m not even going to try) –

“The Freak Parade features a series of 34 large sideshow-banner like paintings of fantastic characters, bizarre animals, magical insects and strange plants by the postmodernist artist-illustrator, Thomas Woodruff. Working under the influence of the frescoes of Pompeii, the mind-boggling paintings of Arcimboldo, Baroque religious paintings, Victorian calligraphy and theatrical posters, fanciful parades and his wonderful imagination, Woodruff began this project in late 2000 as a reaction against the global standardization of culture. Each image has a caption, title or poem included. Written by the artist, these texts add another level of meaning to the pictures. They are deliberately subdued and darkened, and subvert the viewer’s usual response—so conditioned through advertising to image and text.”

I have swiped a few images from his site and made a little photo montage to further entice you into checking it out or buying the book.  It’s really meant to be seen altogether as most of the images link to one another.  On his site, you get to view them all in one long line which I imagine is how he intended.  The images are great, but quite honestly they pale in comparison to seeing them live.  Unfortunately, this exhibit seems to appear in one city each year, so it’s likely you may never get the opportunity to witness it in person.  I knew it could very well be a once-in-a-life time thing for me and I was so blown away on Saturday that I returned on Tuesday with Jim and our friend Dylan in tow.  Tomorrow is the last day and then it will not appear again until 2010 – here’s the tour schedule.

Okay, here’s your teaser, but please take it all in on the official Thomas Woodruff website (much larger images there!) or get the Freak Parade book.  The insanity of the details and wit of the text is such a huge part of the experience.  These little pics only hint at Woodruff’s genius.

thomas woodruff's freak parade

Before I go, I  have two short announcements.

Friday Feb 13th I’ll be painting on a human canvas with my friend Demi and I’ll have two new paintings as well as a couple of skulls and greeting cards on display at the Muse show at ArtPool, St. Petersburg FL.  Do come by if you are local.  It should be a freaky fun inspiring night.  🙂


On Valentine’s Day, I’ll be posting one of the paintings as a bonus comic this week, so check back Saturday.   Celebrate love and passion this week.  It doesn’t matter if you have a partner or not.  There’s plenty of things to love and be passionate about in this world and if you dare to look… inside of you as well.

<3 calan

10 Responses to “winter storm”

  1. justme Says:

    jagged crystal shards
    driven by the howling wind
    bringing children joy

    GingerDead and Friends next to Family Circus in the local paper? It’d never happen–any paper that had enough taste to run GingerDead wouldn’t have Family Circus in the first place.

  2. Ellie Says:

    i giggle at snow.
    seventy degrees today
    let’s go to the beach.

    gotta love global warming.

  3. Seraphine Says:

    “celebrate love and passion… it doesn’t
    matter if you have a partner or not.”
    haha, are you exhorting us to…uh…
    engage in festivities with ourselves?

  4. Seraphine Says:

    the freak parade exhibit is awesome! it’s very cool how he “links” the images from one frame to the other. it’s hard to pick a favorite, but i rather like pete kaboom (the boy in the barrel).

  5. calan Says:

    justme – lol, i know! i mention it because i find sometimes people assume that’s the big goal of someone doing comics – appear in newspapers across the country…but honestly i can’t stand the majority of the newspaper comic strips and certainly wouldn’t want to write to appeal to the people who decide what the masses will enjoy. they seem to think flat jokes that deal with the same stupid references over and over will amuse folks. i like to think most people are a little deeper and more intelligent than that.

    welcome ellie! thanks for the haiku. it’s got to be in the upper 70s here today too. yay for us!

    sera – um, yes actually i am. it’s only natural! 😀 hehe we should start up a national love thyself carnally day. i wonder what our little cherub would shoot at people to inspire? oh my. let’s not go there! i loved pete kaboom too! in the next picture is the spark to ignite pete’s rocket. so clever. 🙂

  6. matthew Says:

    Finally my lunch break! 🙂

    WOW! is all i can say of Thomas Woodruff. That is amazing work. I just wish i could have read the panels. The images were too small. Maybe at home i can. My favorite two pieces are the blind ballerina, i can’t read the panel for the proper name, that’s holding the snail candles and the Reaper Sweeper. But every panel has something really cool and interesting about it. I am buying that book. Every time i see those images i see something new. Love it.

    Total exhaustion
    falling snow my burial
    beauty my last sight

    cold numbs my fingers
    hardship just to move my legs
    i love snowball fights

    Congrats on the article. Quite a good endorsement. Just goes to show how far a “lark” can go hehe.

    The snowflakes speed down
    Filled with an evil purpose
    to freeze and oppress

    Their mischievous grins
    become puzzled expressions
    as awareness dawns

    Despite their efforts
    the fiendish children play on
    Was it all for not?

  7. ford Says:

    Dayumn, good haiku’s this week, nothing i can compete with.

    all i wanna say is that this reminds me of this piece of art i did about 3 weeks ago, of a man running in a blizzard, and on the sides it says
    “people who take the snow for granted
    dissapoint me”

    not at all directed at you all, but to my friends back in the states who simply bitch about the cold weather and 3 feet of snow they get and how they ALMOST couldnt make it to the ski resorts that they all were going to.

    sound miserable.
    although calan, i do know what u mean about lving the good weather, its about 70 where i am, and beautiful, i can’t beliee my eyes

    much love everyone

  8. GL Says:

    Super duper write up!

    delicate crystals
    claim the hearts of laborers
    when gathered as one

  9. Matthias Says:

    Beautiful icelings
    Drifting softly through the air
    Way too fucking cold

  10. unconscious ink Says:

    i miss the snow! 🙁

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