Friday, December 31, 2010

Quality Zombie

Aside from Garfield, another major influence in our oldest's cartooning life is Dilbert -- merely because I"ve got several Dilbert comic books that he enjoys pawing through. So here's our oldest's renditions of Adams' famous Quality Zombies.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Alas, Poor (Elder) Yorick

Missionary Mayhem, the caption says. Inspired by his cousin's mission presence currently in Mitchell, South Dakota, and the film "Quest for Camelot," our oldest turns out yet another odd work here, including a bug-eyed door opener and a modern incarnation of William Shakespeare. Where does he get his ideas?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas, from Santa and Bob

Here's one of my drawings, inspired by the following song written by Jeff MacNelly and based on Lawrence Marks' Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer:

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
had a very steady job
Santa had hired a new guy
flying mule whose name was Bob.

All of the other reindeer
used to wonder what Bob was.
"He'll make us miss our deadline,
ploddin' on the way Bob does."

Then one foggy Christmas Eve
Santa made a call.
"Rudolph with your nose so bright,
won't you guide my sleigh tonight?"

Then how the reindeer loved him.
He got them out of their mess.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
flies a plane for UPS.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Jesus and Heavenly Father

Church doodles today. This one, from our youngest, kinda looks like a hippie Jesus. I think it's the big lips and boots that does it.

A more reverent montage here from our daughter. Aw bless.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Daddy and Baby

Suddenly our daughter is catching up to our oldest in her realism in her drawings. Here's baby and daddy -- daddy, I believe, is holding a can of root beer.

Sunday, December 19, 2010


So we've got some guys in loincloths. Someone's just told a whopper of a story and the other just can't believe what was said. But we've just come into the room and we have no clue as to what has happened here. And we're likely to remain in such confusion, too. Oh well.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Shapes and Colors

I remember doing things like this: Doodling to make math more interesting. But not as interesting as this. I'd experiment with other geometric shapes, but not our oldest. Scooter is now intruding on math homework. And I'm just fine with that.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Channeling Mr. Bean

Fans of Mr. Bean may find this drawing familiar, as the original appeared in "Mr. Bean's Diary," written by Rowan Atkinson in the early 1990s. Our oldest found the book and devoured it. Then, in his own inimitable fashion, decided to make one of Mr. Bean's drawings his own. Goofy kid.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

A Little Perspective

Once again, a curious bit of art from our oldest. He hasn't taken any art classes. No one has told him what perspective is. Yet he figures it out, just, I think, by looking at things. He hasn't drawn many things like this, which tells me this isn't something he's learned in a school art class. Art class things he produces by the gross. So it'll be interesting to see how far he wants to go with his art. I love it.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Pretty Penguins

All the penguins are happy. All the penguins who want a fish have a fish. And that sunset, well, it's to die for.

While our oldest is going to be the comic book artist, our middle child is going to be the artist. Can't wait to see her working in chalks or watercolors.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Ryan and the Classroom of Doom

The dead, tongue-gaping, X-eyed smiley face on the wall I think is what did it for me. And I have to wonder where he's seen images of the Grip Reaper, let alone the Grim Reaper doing the "come here finger."

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Farewell to Summer, Part II

Ordinarily, I might save drawings like this for the dregs of February, when spring seems too far off and fall is only a distant, snow-covered memory. But winter came early and often this year, so it seems apropos to post them now.

First, a calm summer scene from our daughter who, ironically, is scared to death of dalmatians. Not that I blame her. The only dalmatians I've ever met were barking brutes full of teeth.

Now a very serene scene from our oldest, who, ironically, doesn't mind a walk in the woods if we give him very specific goals to accomplish. Just telling him we're going for a walk just sends him into a frenzy.

I'm feeling better about winter now.

Friday, December 3, 2010

You're Late

Once again, a subtle comic from our oldest boy. Not quite sure where it all came from, but I'm glad it arrived.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Unshaven Daddy

I know as a kid I was much more used to seeing my Dad with a mustache than without. On the rare occasions he shaved it off, I felt like I was in some kind of Fred (Flintstone)/Frederick pod person type moment, and really didn't feel completely at ease until the mustache grew back.

Now I realize, with as many drawings my kids have made of me with a three-day-old five o'clock shadow, I probably disturb them as much when I give myself a full shave.

I will continue shaving, however. After three days, a beard really gets itchy.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

And . . . Then . . . Kaboom!

Once again, something unexpected from our oldest child. I'm amazed at how he can see a scene in his mind and then put it on paper. I can't do that, at least with pictures (with words, the jury is still out). But I can see that poor limp figure being dragged from the plane and know he's being dragged, not that he's just swooning. And he's also off in his own little world, as is the guy with the binoculars. So much like our oldest kid.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Who doesn't enjoy all the cliches of Thanksgiving! Turkeys! Indians! Turkeys gobbling! Followed by a cute little girl standing under a smilin' sun in a flowery field. Just in case you're tired of the cliches.

Soooooo looking forward to the day.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Little Details

As a student of "The Great Escape," I know that it's often the tiniest little human frailty that can unravel even the best-laid plans.

Our oldest son knows this as well. Behold:

And the detail shot:

I just taught him the intricacies of Pig Latin a few weeks ago. I'm glad to see the lesson sank in.

I'm also pleasantly surprised at how easily he gets his characters to emote. You know the guy on the left is disgusted. You know the guy on the right is trying to fix things. You know the colonel is aghast. And you really, really know the guy in the middle has to go ottypay.

The drawing is incomplete because I fished it out of the trash. He decided he didn't like the picture, so not only didn't he finish it, he tossed it. I'm glad I rescued it.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Wo ist Jones?! Part III

Indiana Jones and his corral of friends and enemies certainly keeps our kids occupied. I present here tonight an eight-page illustrated story our middle child and youngest wrote earlier this week. Hope you enjoy it.

"Indy works in Barnett College," their story begins. "One day while Indy was teaching, some bad guys came into Barnett College. They wanted to kill Indy. But before they could, Indy killed the men that were bad."

"All of the children cheered for Indy. A boy said 'We should give our hero a hug.' Then all of the children lined up to give Indy a lot of hugs. Then after all the hugs, Indy went to teaching the children."

"Then after Indy was done teaching the children, he diecieded to go on a adventure. But Indy didn't know where to go. Then Indy's friend Marcus came running up to him. He said 'Indy, there is a hidden grail.' Indy said 'That's a perfect adventure for you and me.'"

"Then they packed up there bags. And they also bought tickets. Then they went to the airport where they would be tooken to where they wanted to be for their adventure. But the didn't know they were being spied on."

"Then three bad guys jumped right in front of them. Indy pulled out his gun and shot the bad guys. Then they climbed on board the airplane. They were arrested when they were they saw . . . "

". . . Kuzim. He said 'Show the right grail for me instead of you, Indy.' Well, Indy did but it was a death grail. Then Marcus and Indy had to find the right grail. Then Elsa picked out a grail."

"It was the right grail!' Indy grabbed the grail out of her hands. Then something started to rumble. Then a cracked showed. Finally Elsa fell down that crack! Indy loved her. But she was an enemy."

The End.

I have no idea whom Kuzim might be, but it's fun to read their re-telling of the story, even if they're getting their information not from the movies (they can't make it through that Benji film where he gets lost in Greece for heaven's sake; they're not ready for Indiana Jones) but from their Indiana Jones Lego games.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Puppet Master

I'm not sure I really understand this one. There's some puppet mastery going on, with hilarity ensuing above. I'm just going to roll with it.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

We're In the Army Now

We have many, many drawings of army guys. I'm not really sure why. They have an uncle who served in the US Army, but that was before they were born. Their Opa served in the Dutch army in Indonesia in 1948, but about all he did was eat food, try to ford a river while wearing a big backpack and holding his rifle over his head (he sank like a stone and had to swim to he opposite shore) and play pranks with the other country boys on the city kids.

We do watch some army-themed TV shows, notably MASH and Hogan's Heroes. That's got to be where it comes from.

Here's another. The first is from our oldest. This is from our youngest.

I think this one's either African or Russian, given the number of decorations he's got on his uniform. And before you ask, I have no idea where the bow tie came from.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Behold the Much-Vaunted Art Portfolio

With the posting of Liam's Webelos art portfolio, he has completed the final requirement in his Artist pin, and the final award he can earn as a Webelos Scout. He'll get his Arrow of Light on the 23rd of November, then have two whole months to work on Boy Scout stuff before he officially becomes a New Scout. We're proud of him. And also glad the portfolio is done.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Surgury Guy

We watch a lot of MASH at home, so I'm surprised this guy isn't dressed in white or olive drab. Not sure where the bright light blue came from, but you know what, maybe he's been more observant on our few trips to the hospital than I give him the credit for. This is from the oldest, of course, another bit of computer art.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Optical Illusion

When we first started having kids, one of my vivid first parental fears was that, when my kids were old enough to draw, they'd hand me a picture that I was supposed to admire. And I'd admire it while holding it upside down, much to their chagrin.

That happened tonight, minus the chargrin part. Here's the picture.

When I saw it, I instantly knew what it was: "Oh, son, what a nice pig!" I said.

"It's not a pig," he replied.

"It's not? Then what is it?"

He took it gently from my hands, turned it over, and handed it to me again. "It's a bunch of smiley faces," he said. Indeed it is:

Thursday, November 11, 2010


Here's another of our oldest's computer drawings, this time of a caveman. He's drawn cavemen before, so this is a recurring theme with him. That we've visited caves and talked about cavemen probably has nothing to do with it.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Neighborhood Cliche

Yes, square houses with the four-paneled windows do certainly exist in the neighborhood of our childrens' imagination. Though I think the door-high sunflowers on this house, and the round window, are a nice touch.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Mummy Walks

Our oldest is working on his Artist pin in Cub Scouts, and one of the requirements is to use the computer to produce some art. So here's the first installation, which he calls "The Mummy Walks." I like the red eyes. Nice touch.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Grown-Up Scooter

Grown-up Scooter is finding out, cryptically, that being all grown up doesn't mean you get to sit in front of the big-screen TV in your shorts all day long.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Anvil Time

Oh yeah. Oldest joke in the book. I'm sure he got this from poor ol' Wile E. Coyote. Super Genyusss.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Subtle Humor

As much as my son mimics the styles and stories of comic strip creators like Scott Adams and Bill Watterson, once and a while he comes up with something pretty original. Like this:

My wife and I are pretty amazed that he came up with something so subtle.

Scooter, by the way, is a recurring character in our oldest's comic strips. We'll see more of him in the days to come.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Front and Back

Honestly, I don't know where he got this. Especially the Asian masseur, of whom I had to ask: Is he wearing a shirt with a dragon on it, or is that dragon tattooed on his chest? Answer: shirt.

But looking at this drawing, I simply have no idea where it's come from. These appear to be two characters straight out of a P.G. Wodehouse novel, though I'm not sure which one. I'm doubly sure my son has no idea who P.G. Wodehouse is, either. It's got to be something he picked up at school.

Friday, October 29, 2010


I'm not sure if this is a one-footed clown, or if I just snagged the picture before it was done. But I like it. Kinda reminds me of Binky the Clown:

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Thanks for the Update, Sallah

Once and a while, one of your kids' drawings will just up and surprise you. That was my reaction when I saw this one sitting on the kitchen table amongst the detritus of homework, backpacks, empty lunch boxes, and a gigantic spilled box of crayons.

I have to emphasize again that they've not seen the movies. The closest they've come is playing a DVD Indy game in which clips from the movies are played. And he runs out of the room when they play because "they're scary." Still, he's fascinated with the characters and situations. If it weren't for Lego Indy, he wouldn't know them at all.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

I Don't Remember Drawing This

I know I drew these two pictures. I just don't remember when. Nor why. Probably to entertain Isaac at church, as it was in the church notebook.

Why I drew the invisible person singing in the shower, I don't know. But I kind of like it.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Diary of A Wimpy Kid

Our oldest has a lot of artistic influences: Garfield. Dilbert. Indiana Jones. And, particularly at the moment, Diary of A Wimpy Kid:

At this point, I'm not worried that he's just copying. I think it's fun that he's seeing the possibilities of the form, experimenting a bit. Getting the idea down is great now, and the original ideas will come if he sticks with it. He does get a bit more original on the next page:

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Da Mansion

It's the kind of house I could live in. Right down to the all-important, storage-studded Lego Room.

Not really sure what inspired this one, but I'm glad I found it before it got stashed away in a drawer or stuffed into a garbage can -- our oldest tends to be pretty fickle with the stuff he makes.

I also like that there's a Vending Machine Room. As kids, we all have slightly twisted ideas about what the wealthy do and enjoy, so I suppose a room dedicated to vending machines is probably not outside the realm of possibilities.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Bad Kitty

Our oldest child has a new obsession: Nick Bruel's book "Bad Kitty Versus Uncle Murray." If you haven't read it, well, you should. It's a hoot. It is, of course, about a Bad Kitty who terrorizes poor Uncle Murray, who is called in to cat- and dog-sit while the family is away.

Witness this drawing, which takes the story of the kitty and transplants it into a rather posh mansion with a butler, who is terrorized by the cat. Maybe it's an amalgam of the book and of Disney's "The AristoCats."