Book Haul #39.5: I did good…at Small Press Expo

Earlier this week, I posted the first part of this haul showing books and comics I bought since my last haul. Since that post ran a bit long because I talk too much, I decided to break up the haul into two posts. This one will focus on the loot I got from the Small Press Expo, which is an indie cartooning and comic book event that takes place in September. As I said in my first post, I was on my best behavior this year and kept my purse in my bag so I wouldn’t buy everything I saw, and boy did I see a lot and love them all!

Comics & graphic novels

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Book Haul #28: Comics! the books

And now for the second part of my comic book haul. In the first part, I showed the awesome art on the posters, bookmarks, and post cards I picked up at the Small Press Expo. Now I’ll show the comic books and graphic novels I picked up.

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Book Haul #28: Comics! posters and such

It’s time for another book haul. I went on a comic-book-buying craze recently that started with me listening to Season 2, Episode 28 of Writing Excuses where the hosts of the podcast discuss Watchmen, a graphic novel written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Dave Gibbons with colors by John Higgins. By the end of the show, I wanted to read Watchmen so I took myself to my local comic book shop, where I not only got Watchmen, but also picked up a book I’ve wanted ever since featuring it in a Wishes for My TBR post.

bookhaul-20-1

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Captured Moments and Richard Estes

I’ve been a slacker. Back in 2013, I vowed to improve my knowledge of art and art history because they are subjects I love. I wish I had studied them while in college. Unfortunately life and procrastination has caused my efforts to self-instruct to dwindle.

In October 2014, I decided to push myself harder in my independent artistic studies. This new fervor was ignited by an article on Richard Estes on Smithsonian magazine’s website. I had no idea who Richard Estes was but the photo of his painting was enough to convince me to visit an exhibit of his work at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. The photo of his painting seemed to be a photo of a photo, and I disbelieved that it was of a painting. Hence my decision to visit the exhibit was more for proof than to gain any sort of artistic instruction.

After showing up at the wrong museum, I finally found my way to the Smithsonian American Art Museum and slowly browsed other paintings before visiting Estes’ exhibit. All the while, my music blasted in my ears (something by Jamaican dancehall artiste Vybz Kartel, which is probably highly out-of-place for a museum excursion) and I slowly danced from one painting to another until I danced up to the entrance to Estes’ exhibit.

I actually read this time. I usually don’t read much at museums, which means I miss a lot of useful information. Usually, I dance from painting to painting (I always have music blasting in my ears while at a museum), lingering over the ones I admire while wondering what drove the artist to create the piece, how did the artist apply his medium, and how long did it take to complete, amongst other thoughts. But this time I paused my music. I was enraptured by Estes’ work. The reason being that even with his huge canvas of the Brooklyn Bridge in front of me, I still found it hard to tell that his piece is a painting rather than a blown-up photo.

Richard Estes is a photorealist painter. He was born in Kewanee, Ill., and studied fine arts at the Institute of Chicago. After graduating, he moved to New York, where he worked as a freelance illustrator and graphic designer at various magazines. At night, he would work on his paintings, which later became his full-time career.

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a note on the Familiar from Alexa Meade

Alexa Meade quote

…you can find the strange in the familiar. As long as you’re willing to look beyond what’s already been brought to light, then you can see what’s below the surface, hiding in the shadows, and recognize that there can be more there than meets the eye.”

—Alexa Meade, from her TED Talk, “You Body is My Canvas.” Meade is an artist who paints on living subjects. She takes a three-dimensional creation and makes it appear as two-dimensional by collapsing depth and making her models appear flat.

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