Monday, June 19, 2017

The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue

Heeey look at this special thing on the blog today! My lovely friend, Mackenzi Lee,* is publishing her second book, The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue, NEXT TUESDAY and to celebrate, I could think of nothing better than throwin’ that cover up on the chalkboard wall.

Usually I do my drawings in hermit-like solitude, but this time Mackenzi was kind enough to sit on my floor and wait patiently for the three hours it took to draw this.** Luckily, this is a NEW CHALKBOARD WALL! the old one being now stuck behind my husband’s desk, and since I have a small person in my life who also enjoys drawing on the walls, I decided to also paint the section below the chair rail into a mini-chalkboard. This meant Mackenzi could doodle to her heart’s content, and you get two-two-TWO drawings for the price of one!

I really enjoyed this one! I don’t usually do too many faces these days (I think the last ones I did were way back in the first Christmas run. Hello, horrifying Bill Murray), so it was fun to break out my portraiture skills. This fetching fellow on the board is named Monty, and he is a delightful rapscallion who looks like a young Ryan Phillipe. On the chalkboard, he looks a little like Vigo the Carpathian from Ghostbusters 2, on account of Mackenzi accidentally bumping the projector early on in the drawing and stretching out Monty’s face, but hey, what’re you gonna do?

My biggest concern going in was that I didn’t have time to run to the art supply store before drawing, so I was a little worried I wouldn’t have the right colors and/or would run out halfway through, both of which did happen. Those green letters, man. They almost killed me.

When I told Mackenzi I wanted to do her book cover on my wall, I suggested we make a video of the process so that people could watch along. This turned out to be a terrible idea, as it consisted mainly of us making fun of each other, going on very long tangents about Twin Peaks***, and knocking over glasses of water (2. They both landed on the dog.). And yet, Mackenzi bravely edited three hours of nonsense into four and a half minutes of nonsense, which if not any more sensible is at least much shorter. I’ll post the video as soon as it’s online.

Having Mackenzi over also meant that I got to sort of glimpse my process from an outsider. Things I was surprised Mackenzi was impressed over:
-how long it took to set up the projector
-how difficult it was to draw without blocking the light from the projector
-how important it was to color match
-how much effort one of these damn things actually took

I let her draw one part of the picture. Then we both agreed it was terrible and I erased it. I’m a good friend!

Soooo many more pictures after the jump and DON’T FORGET TO ORDER YOUR COPY OF THE GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE because it is a delightful historical romp and you will love it very, very much.

Dave's first-view reaction: Oh hey, that's so cool! [Me: Don't you think it looks like that Ghostbusters villain?] What? No. ... Okay, yes.

Iris's first-view reaction: WOOOOOWWWW mommy! You drew that? ...For me to color??

*She's going on tour! Go visit her, meet her, wear your best and most moddishly-cloth clothing
**Later when she said she couldn’t believe it took so long, I pointed out that I had told her each mural takes at least 2-3 hours. “Yeah,” she said, “but I thought you were kidding.” She left my house at 1:30 in the morning.
***Mackenzi swore no one gives a shit about what I think about Twin Peaks, but I think she's wrong, so here we go: I am both frustrated and charmed by Dougie, every time someone talks backwards I can only concentrate on how hard that must be to do, every episode has at least one thing that disturbs me so deeply I swear I will never watch this show again, that shadow breaking out of the empty box was the most frightening thing I've ever seen. 9/10 would let David Lynch mess with my psyche again.