Thursday, March 29, 2012

One fat cat

This drawing stood out to me this week because it I find myself always yelling at my cat to get off the counter when I'm cooking or making food. So this relates to the many people who also have cats and have this problem which makes this annoying habit comical. Along with that you also get the sense of how cats have this attitude to not listen to their owners and do what they feel like. What also comes to play within this image is the typical woman telling a people what to do. For example " get off the couch" is replaces with "Get off the counter" you hear these kinds of things with couples and this playing on the relationship of man and woman. This comic also replaces the typical man and woman with the use of animals. How the use of gossip and talking about people behind their backs seem to be what people do these days. Which unfortunately is problem with todays society. It is almost that people don't have anything better to say than to talk about others, which in my opinion is sad to see. This image relates to what we have been discussing in class about how animals can be seen to replace humans for a comical twist on situations. In the essay we had to read last week it goes along with how the artist used animals to discuss the issue. Which is what you see here the emotion of the humans portrayed within the cat. You also begin to pick up on human traits such as the cup of fish and talking on the phone. You could also bring into play with the sense that the cat is also lazy and overweight two other attributes of todays society. So this goes hand in hand with what the artists in the readings were playing off of when using animals within their own works.

Monday, March 26, 2012

The Stolen Scream

I've been thinking about using this photo ever since we read about  The Yellow Kid, and how a comic's meaning can change depending on the reader's background.  This self-portrait was taken by Noam Galai in 2006.  It has been used without his permission all over the world (hence the name).  He meant it nothing more than just a photo of him screaming, but he soon found out that people all over the world were using it for different reasons.  Some were using it in their art and and making a profit from it:
It's more famous use, however, is when his face is used as a sign of revolution and change:

National Geographic used his photo in one of their magazines (the only time he got paid for the photo) with the title "Power to the People?"  In countries such as Iran, his face has become a symbol of just that.  His face is graffitied every where and is used as a symbol against the government.  This is image is a perfect example of how an image, comic, cartoon, etc. can have so many different uses and interpretations.

Bobby Chiu

While surfing the web I came across this artist who used animal images and human emotions and figures to caricaturize a situation or character. Bobby Chiu creates these fanciful images of people or these clever creatures he’s created. All of the creatures have a human quality to them that you can relate to, whether that is in their face or body language. I have found that many artist use animal images because it is easy for people to relate to them.
In the image above you see a boy dressed as a fish or a whale dragging around his pet fish. This image is ironic because the same thing the boy inspires to be is the exact thing he is killing, which could become a huge commentary on our lives as we grow up but never mind that. Between the boy and the fish I would say they have the same type of mouth with the teeth out and the drool. Also all the eyes look really similar, kind of glassy and vaguely looking somewhere but maybe not at anything particular.
In terms of last week’s discussion, these images aren’t portraying a historical event but actually more of a commentary on evolution perhaps? The closeness between man and creature.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Hot Topic is not punk rock, Edward Koren does not make comic

I hate the Edward Koren comics.  Let me defend myself here.  I feel like he has good insight into comics- I love a lot of his commentary however dry, yet his work irks me in plenty of ways.  He uses animals but seems to fail at provoking a sense of critique through their use.  In the Beard and Nast writing that was assigned last week both artists use the animal as an analogy between the beasts they portray and the humans they represent.  In Koren’s comics I feel that he is hardly making any similar commentary, rather substituting animals for people in order to invoke a sympathetic view of the analogous human that the beast represents.  It’s a kitsch use of the animal rather than a symbolic substitution.
 I think Koren’s comics remind me of an internet meme that was recently really popular. 
   In the Koren article two separate pieces relate to the theme of ‘being misunderstood.’  In one two beasts stand on the edge of a cliff watching the sun over mountains, the other shows a man looking out a window as his wife talks on the phone about his “rage.”  In both of these pieces a character is preoccupied by a phenomena while another character is addressing the distant character.  I’m frustrated at the humor because I don’t find it funny.  There’s an awkwardness that the preoccupied character has that makes me uneasy.  Why can’t he just enjoy the company he has rather than be preoccupied with a window?  Why’s he so angry? 
While I do not find Koren’s comics funny I do however find Doug Stanhope to be extremely funny.  I would relate the preoccupied character of Koren’s comics from the article to something he says at the beginning of his comedy stand-up special No Refunds.

            New York is baffling in that it's a city that prides itself on being an absolute shit-hole. It's like — there's nothing good here, people are proud of that, they're happy, "Oh, it's overpriced, and it's overpopulated, and it stinks like piss, and comics! — comics film specials here!" And they all open with a joke about, "Yeah, you spend 8 thousand dollars a month for 9 square feet!" And you go, "Well, why do you fucking live here?" Why do people stay here?.. But unfortunately, this is where comedy works — where people are the most miserable. Like, I'd rather be filming a special on a beach in Costa Rica in a tiki bar right now, but they don't need comedians, they're already smiling, they're already happy — naturally! So that's why I'm doing a special here — cause it's the last fucking place I wanna be.

            This makes a retarded amount of sense.  Humor is born out of misery, but miserable characters are not inherently funny.  I think Koren has some good illustrative ability and a well-known style, yet the comics included in the article are not comic. 
 This here is funny and miserable:

I chose this image because last class we spent a fair amount of time talking about graffiti in Alfred, Harder Hall and even within the bathroom stalls of Harder. This image was appropriate on this topic, because I think that this is probably how the janitors, or whoever is hired to repaint the bathroom stalls-or over any graffiti for that matter- probably feel. I know that this is how I would feel if I had to keep doing the same job over and over again. The bathroom walls don't stay clean for more than a day before more graffiti is added over the freshly painted stalls. This image is playing off of that, in the way that the architect did such a great job with the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, just to have somebody cover it up and become more famous than him, who did the real work. Who should be praised in this case, the architect who created the ceiling, or Michelangelo, who painted over something that was already existing but got all credit for it? Who should be praised in the case of graffiti in the bathroom stalls in Alfred, the janitor that repeatedly paints over each stall, or the student who repeatedly draws or writes nonsense in them? And is the graffiti considered art like the paintings of Michelangelo are?
In my search for a good political cartoon, I came across this St. Patrick's day inspired cartoon from the Augusta Chronicle. Rick Mckee designed this particular cartoon to express the hardships and struggle people of the united states have endured with the current worsening recessions. The leprechaun in the cartoon is bringing his secret pot of gold to a cash for gold store, in hopes that it will bring him back into a state of financial well being. It is interesting how, they depict the workers of the store in the window being shocked at what they see. You would think that with all of the hardships we face in the 21st century, business owners, especially cash for gold employees would have seen it all.
I thought it was very clever that Mckee utilized the upcoming holidays of the time to represent the struggles we face weekly. Using such a well known topic makes the reference relatable to the people who are viewing it.

Obama man! Away!-Derek Georgia

I was viewing some cover art and some comic titles the other day and had come across this image. There is a series of Barack Obama comics that are released to the public. I feel like the whole concept behind this image is quite funny and hysterical. The concept behind a political comic is quite weird to me. The politics general only pick newspapers for the adults to see whats going on in politics. Now it seems like they're targeting younger and younger ages. Just the aspect of creating a comic illustration of Barack Obama seems very awkward in a way. Obama is not a super hero, he doesn't fight crime, anything. In my opinion I depict Obama more bold and bulky if he were to be in a comic book, simply exaggerate his features a little more than already done.Many depictions are of him in a small superman suite tall, skinny and awkward. I would like to know what the class thinks about the caricature of Obama.