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I’ve been cleaning out my studio. And filling the recycle bin. Filling and refilling the recycle bin. Wow.

Animation timing sheets and countless reams of old drawings have been collecting dust for too long. I saved a few things and scanned a few others. I spent hours going through character designs from old animation projects, odds and ends from sketchbooks (I was keeping way too many old sketchbooks for some reason), life drawings and random pieces that were no doubt the start of something great, 18 years ago…. I pulled out a book dummy or two. But I must have thrown out at least 80 pounds of paper. It will take two or three weeks to get it all in the recycle bin.3

You can’t keep it all. You just can’t. As I finish all my work digitally now the only physically tangible aspects of a project in progress I have are sketches and roughs. These past 10 years I have held onto way too much.

1

I’ll post a few scans of stuff along the way.

 

hmikb

Are there REALLY hidden, deep messages in kids literature? Are they intentional or are they brought to the work by adults accustomed to looking for meaning? You can read the article on hidden messages in kids books by Hephzibah Anderson online at the BBC.

It seems to me the more explicit the intention of a kids book the less intriguing the book is. And yet everyone LOVES a kids book with a message. Tastes change through the years and the overly moralistic tomes I ran across as a kid are definitely out of favor. And yet the vey best books in kids lit can always be read on multiple levels. But that’s not just a sign of a good book. It’s a sign of great art.

When it comes to fantasy books another interesting question is how important is the delineation of good vs. evil? How much real world nuance does a reader of any age want? George R.R. Martin (decidedly NOT a children’s book writer) enjoys setting his characters up to face decisions where there is seemingly no RIGHT choice and the results are always unexpected (impossible to clearly foresee) much like the twists and turns of our lives – although these days our life decisions usually involve less swordplay and dragons (unfortunately).

Check out the article. It’s a short read and interesting read.

Grab the Cave Bear and Duck, iPad read-along comic book – one last week for free!! Share with friends and enemies alike! I’ll be taking down the iPad app next week. Get it free on iTunes now.

It’s a read-along comic book with great voices from Tom Kenny and funny sound effects. The comic book tells the story of how Cave Bear and Duck stopped the first forest fire started by humans. Or maybe they didn’t stop it, but they tried!

cvr_duk_25

cvr_duk_26

Read more about it or download it here. 

mfearing:

A great POV. Letting kids find a place by having them share an interest or ability.

Originally posted on Kindness Blog:

the problem child

Source: themetapicture.com

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Starbucks part 2

I received a lot of emails from people about my previous Starbucks post oddly enough. What I was trying to say is- with all the hoop-la we hear about social media and technology tracking consumers, most of the time they still don’t get it right in any meaningful way. And that may be in part because we are all just humans after all.  Awash in data is no different from being awash in chaos until someone has the reasoning power to make sense of it. Obviously Starbucks spent a bunch of money to get customers to register and use their cards ETC. And I think too many companies  are all stary-eyed over just getting the data. After all that’s why the IT departments are as big as marketing departments now. But no one has the time to figure out how to make all the chaos into something useful. Or meaningful for a customer.

Are you alive?

life

I’ve always harbored the notion that Life is a byproduct of matter + time. But recently I haven’t been so sure about the Matter part – given the massive amounts of Dark Matter in the universe. Anyway, this Op-Ed from The New York Times by Ferris Jabr is a very intriguing read that purposes that our definition, even our notion of life is simply a construct of our mind.

And you get to watch spellbinding videos of Dutch artist Theo Jansen’s obsessive creations wandering beaches.

Read it here.

screen

I will be pulling my all-ages friendly Cave Bear and Duck app from the iTunes app store in a month or so. It’s a read-along comic book (you can turn on page-by-page voice acting and sound effects) staring Cave Bear and Duck (two smart animals trying to survive in the early Cenozoic). The voices were done by Tom Kenny – he who does the voice of Spongebob!!

In this story Cave Bear and Duck have to try and put out a forest fire started by those pesky, and always hungry humans.

You can find it here and download it from the App store by searching for Cave Bear  and Duck.

It’s a free download and should work on all iPads. Not iPhones. Only iPads.

cvr_duk_9

I’m taking it down as I don’t have the time (or energy?) to upgrade it to higher-res graphics and make sure that the way it was designed and built stays current with the changes to iOS. It still works fine and I’ve been amazed by the tens of thousands of downloads it has received (passing 37,000 shortly I believe). I’ve never marketed it one bit. Except a mention on this blog when I released it. But as a free App I don’t want to spend more money getting a programmer to work on it again. The guy who helped me originally was awesome and really good. And thus is so busy he can’t find time to sleep!

Anyway, if you or anyone you knows wants a funny comic book, with a soundtrack that you can turn on or off, download it soon!

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