September 17, 2006

Cartwheeling down the back steps...

Finally it's rained again in Seattle! I know how ironic that must sound to anyone who probably thinks of this town as the rain capital of the world. In fact it rains as much in New York as Seattle... it's just here it takes all winter long and in the summer we often never get a drop.

This has been the driest summer on record here, with just 1/4" rain between April and the middle of September. In other words it only rained once all summer. The lawns turn brown and crunchy and no one bothers to water them. Even some of the old maple trees on my street looked like they were drying up and dying.

I find my brain cannot connect two consecutive thoughts when it's over 80 degrees in the dog days of late summer. Summer was great but thank gosh it's raining again. Rain = Life for me.

I've recently proven out a theory I had that all an illustrator needs to continue working are eyes to see with and just the drawing arm from the elbow down on one's drawing hand.

I've been recovering from a backwards cartwheel down the kitchen steps and landing on the concrete walkway. And no, it wasn't a fall off the ladder pictured in last month's blog, in case you're guessing. Amazingly I didn't break my neck and even more amazingly I could still manage to do illustration, since my right arm still worked. That's all we really need to keep working, after all... eyes to see with and just from the elbow down on our drawing hand.

My body throbbed with pain for about a week. I could only hobble up and down steps one at a time. But I could still draw. But now I'm almost all better. I read that Dylan Thomas always needed to have something wrong with him... a broken foot, a cane to walk with, anything so that he had limits.

This month's illustrations are from a magazine piece I did for Highlights.

I recently found out through on an online friend that these little spots had been turned into an online animated poem with music. People seem to enjoy what Highlights did with it... they must have clipped out the main piggy character and added in the missing bits of the background, and then used a program to add the motion and music and voiceover.

If that link doesn't work, you can just Google the term 'Squealy Scholar' and that brings up a link.


June said...

Hope you feel fully better soon John, look after that drawing arm.

John Nez said...

Almost all better... now it mostly just hurts when I laugh. Good thing I could keep on working while the rest of me recovered though.


John said...

Nice stuff John.. I'll come back and have a better look one day soon.

PG said...

ooh, poor you John, but lovely pics! I love the expressions you give your children. Hope you're mending nicely.

Anonymous said...

Hey John! Love the piggy illos.I am sorry about your tumble and am glad you are doing ok. I know exactly what you mean about the rain. I was happy to see it again, kind of like an old friend. I know alot of people think that it rains here all the time (I live in Tacoma) and are shocked when they find out it doesn't.I think better and have more creative energy and it's a heck of a lot cooler to work in my upstairs studio.Anyway, just thought I'd add my two cents worth .

Anonymous said...

John! I just saw the animated spot on Highlights for Kids....this is so cute!

Sam said...

I love your illustrations!!!
The pig is very cute - almost (but not quite) cuter than the little girl, lol!