Monday, November 29, 2010


As I mentioned over HERE, soopuh star artist Rebecca Guay was soopuh star kind enough to send me a pile of signed Magic: The Gathering cards.


Well, back when I was visiting Mr. Willems at Knuffle Manor he decided to throw a party in anticipation of me going away
(which you can read about over HERE if you missed it).
As he rattled off the guest list, he mentioned Rebecca Guay. And the conversation went kinda like this:

Me: Hey, I know who she is!
Mo: Really? How do you know Rebecca?
Me: She illustrates Magic: The Gathering Cards. There was a huge stink when Wizards of the Coast stopped using her. Tons of fans rose up and demanded they bring her back-- and they did!
Mo: How do you know all that?
Me: Um... some nerd told me. And then I beat him up for being a nerd.
Mo: Who was it?
Me: Uuuuuuuuuh... me.
Mo: Nerd.

Yeah... it's no secret I like the trading card games. So I was excited to talk to Rebecca at the party. And I was bummed I didn't steal this sketch she did on Mo's table:

But I think I made out even BETTER. Along with the cards, Rebecca offered to send me a sketch. Because she doesn't just do nerdy card games, ya know.

Wanna see it?

You do?




Meet awesome new artwork that's getting hung on you!

Wanna see some more of Rebecca's work? Go on over HERE and browse to your heart's content!

Monday, November 22, 2010


See this picture?

That's EXACTLY what my lunch was like the other day.

Mr. Kazu Kabuishi was there.
His lovely wife Amy was present.
And there was food.

There was also a lot of other stuff.

Like their sooper mega kawaii baby Juni.

And Clio Chiang.

And Martin Hsu.

And everyone in the Disney commissary.

But other than all that stuff...

(which I found on the internets)

See, many thousands of years ago I just up and e-mailed Kazu to tell him how much I loved his work. You know... stuff like the Flight comic anthologies he put together and contributed to:

And his Daisy Kutter graphic novel:

And, of course, his sooper smash hit Scholastic graphic novel series, Amulet:

I told him that if he ever was in NYC
I'd love to buy him some lunch and hang out.
Well, would you believe that he e-mailed me RIGHT BACK and said he was visiting the East Coast and would be in town the very next week?!?
Which was AWESOME!

Except that I had to find enough money to take him to lunch.

So we ended up meeting up and having lunch. He even brought along his fiancee Amy!
(Fortunately i planned for just such an emergency by borrowing enough money from my mom to cover THREE people for lunch. I'm smart like that.)

We had a great time and chatted about all things comics, animation, friends-in-common, and eleventy hundred other things. And afterwards we kept in touch here and there over the years. But once I moved out to his neck of the woods, it was only a matter of time before we got to hang out again.

And hang we did!

And since we was kind enough to meet me at Disney, we decided to dine with some more of his friends who work at the House of Mouse.

First up was Martin Hsu... who I already knew because he works on Fish Hooks as a soopuh star character designer. He also does some sooper triple beautiful painting of his own, too. Like this unbelievable puppy he did for Sanrio:

Click on his site up above and order up a print NOW before they're gone.

But guess what?

Clio Chiang was also there!

I've always totally enjoyed her work in the Flight books and elsewhere so it was a pleasure meeting her. She's working over in development at Disney features.

And obviously... the minute people finished their lunch I dropped the ol' sketchbook in their laps:

Here's a drawing Kazu and Amy's adorable 1.5 year old son Juni did and then Kazu added to:

And here are some fun creatures by Mr. Hsu:

And lastly, I looooooove this drawing by Clio:


I love when awesome artists draw in my sketchbook!

So there you go.

Now you know what I did for lunch on Monday.
I'm a lucky guy to get to hang with such sooper talented artists, right?

Saturday, November 20, 2010


Yeah, I saw it.

And I'd like to say I rocked it...

But this year I was only able to attend for one day.

So I semi-rocked it.

I'm talking about the second annual
Creative Talent Network Animation Expo, of course.
Perhaps you remember me harping on about how fun it was last year over HERE?

And for all intents and purposes it looked like its awesomosity levels were equally off the charts this year. But I can't really prove it. I only got to go to one panel called SMALL SCREEN WONDERS which was about TV animation.

I mainly went to heckle Maxwell Atoms, but it was interesting to hear Mark McCorkle (Kim Possible, Penguins of Madagascar), Pendleton Ward (Adventure Time), Sandro Corsaro (Kick Buttowski) and Rodney Barnes (The Boondocks) talk about their adventures in TV animation.

After that, me and Mr. Atoms wandered the floor to check out the artists selling their wares.

Storyboard sooper genius Sherm Cohen was hawking his 10 DVD set, Storyboard Secrets to a curious public. And while I haven't seen the videos, I HAVE seen the man do butt-kicking work since he's one of the Fish Hooks crew! In fact, if you watch the show, you might recognize Sherm as the face of Bud, the guy in the pet store at the beginning of each episode:

You and I could learn a TON from this guy (Sherm, not Bud). Hit up his blog for more info over HERE.

As I meandered around, I bought this adorable squid from Blue Sky character designer Marceline Tanguay:

You tell me where else you can get a beautiful drawing of a cephalopod so beautifully framed.

I had to stop by and see Phil Rynda-- he who designs characters and makes those awesome title cards for Adventure Time. He was selling art and handing out his latest comic:

And while at his table I TOTALLY mugged Adventure Time creator Penn Ward and made him draw in my sketchbook.
And then had Mr. Rynda join in...
And then fellow Adventure Time designer Andy Ristaino got involved.
The result was this:

And as you can see, the result was... how do the kids say, awesomesauce?

And speaking of amazing, check out this sketch Pascal Campion did for me.

I can't shout loud enough about how much I love this guy's work. His line. His sense of color. The mood he sets. I literally swoon when he posts his daily "warm up" drawings on Facebook. I should hate him... but he's too sooper triple nice.
So I'll just keep drooling over his paintings.

And then, check out this totally sooper cute sketch card by Louie Del Carmen. He's all sorts of rockin'.

Obviously, other stuff went down including chatting with the fine folks from Titmouse, some lunch time chat with character designer Chris Battle, and getting to watch a live drawing demonstration by one of my mega-favorite illustrators Tadahiro Uesugi.

Phew... and that's a taste of what I did in just a couple hours.
Can you imagine all the awesomeness I would have witnessed if I had got to go every day?!

If you can make it next year, you gotta hit this event. It's getting bigggerer and betterer every year!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


I came across an early dummy of 1000 TIMES NO the other day and was sooper happy to see this spread:

Yup... that's 50 NO's on one page!

Originally there was a lot more set-up to the book before we got to all the NO's in different languages. But when my editor, the mighty mighty Laura Geringer, saw this spread, she said, "THIS is the book!"

So we went with it!

But unfortunately, many NO's got cut out.




Ugh... I'm still bummed we couldn't use Klingon.

Monday, November 15, 2010


When I'm not working on Disney's sooper mega rockin' new show
Fish Hooks

Or on my own sooper secret projects...

Or trying to keep my kids from destroying the universe...

Or out crime fighting vigilante-style...

I try to squeeze in some drawings for my sooper pals out there.
So I thought I'd share some recent examples for ya:

Here are a couple puppies I did for some friends of my sister-in-law:

Sooper pal and even more sooperer artist Rebecca Guay was nice enough to send me some signed Magic: The Gathering cards she illustrated so I sent her a couple signed cards from the long dead Codename: Kids Next Door TCG:

Next up, sooper fan Emma decided that for her birthday present she would like to send me some of her awesome Kids Next Door art!
Which is TOTALLY awesome! Check this one out:


Buuuuuuuut I'm not sure where she learned about birthday's from. You're supposed to GET presents on your birthday. So she's getting this:

Aaaaaand then... Mackenzie's parents told me she was a sooper triple huge Numbuh 362 fan (who says all adults are bad, right?).
And I just KNOW that the leader of the Global KND would want her to have this:

And lastly, this was a sooper fun Halloween surprise! A couple months back I met a family that lives down the street whose two boys are sooper mega KND fans. So I invited them over to the Treehouse to draw some pics and bestow some swag upon them. It was good fun--- these guys knew EVERYTHING about the KND!

So on Halloween night when I was out trick or treating with my little maniacs (doing our best to avoid Stickybeard and his Candy Pirates) we happened upon their house. Their mother beckoned me inside to show me the "shrine" the boys had set up.
Check it out:


So there ya go...
After working on a Cintiq so much these days, it's nice to rock some drawings on good old fashioned paper!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


You all know Mr. Dee Bradley Baker as the voice of
Codename: Kids Next Door's Numbuh Four.

And the Toiletnator.

And Perry the Platypus in Phineas and Ferb.

Klaus in American Dad, too.

And yeah... he's ALL the clone troopers in the Clone Wars.

But did you know that he's THE go-to guy for monster sounds?


Pretty much any show that needs a creature, monster, mutant,
robot, or wolf fish hires Dee Bradley Baker to make awesomely awesome sounds.

So, for your entertainment, here's Mr. Baker rockin' a wolf fish for a future episode of Fish Hooks:

Sunday, November 7, 2010


Approximately twelve million years ago in LA, I had JUST finished up the pilot for Codename: Kids Next Door and lay on the floor in my office, phone in hand, talking to sooper high powered Cartoon Network Executive Linda Simensky. The conversation kind of went like this:

Me: Can I have a series?

Linda: No.

See, Cartoon Network was making TEN pilots that year and mine was the first done. Absolutely no decision was going to be made until all of them were finished so I basically had to sit on the pilot for a year. So the question was:

What was I gonna DO?!

The answer came relatively quickly in the form of a Sheep.

A Sheep in a Big City.

Yup... Mr. Mo Willems was in need of a director for 2nd season of Sheep in the Big City. So, was I in?

Well, kind of.

After working on Kenny and the Chimp, Pepper Ann, and KND, I hadn't actually worked in anyone else's style in a loooong time so I was a bit scared. But then again, I desperately needed the production experience if I was ever going to get my own show.
And Sheep DID look like fun to work on.
Oh, and they were paying money, too.

So yeah... I was in.

And it turned out to be one of the best things I ever did.
I worked with an awesome crew...
I learned a ton about tv series production...
And I really liked working with Mr. Willems.
(but don't tell him I said that)

Unfortunately, the show got canceled after second season.
Fortunately, the show got canceled to make way for Codename: Kids Next Door.

And after much deliberation, it was decided that the Sheep production model would become Kids Next Door's. So we flipped the production staff, switched up artists, and to punish Mr. Willems for bossing me around so much, I hired him as the head writer. Good thing, too since it was his architecture that helped solidify the KND's world.

So why am I taking this trip down Sheepy Lane?

Because Mr. Willems just reported that last Thursday, November 4th was the 10th Anniversary of Sheep In The Big City's premiere. If you're a fan, definitely go check out his reminiscing over HERE!

And just for fun, here's one of the 'bits' I directed:

Thursday, November 4, 2010

OTTAWA (belatedly)

I know ...
I know...
Everyone has been like,

Dude, where WERE you from October 20th to approximately October 25?!

And I've been all like,

DUDE... I was TOTALLY in Canada for the 2010 Ottawa International Animation Festival!

And they were like,


And I was shakin' my head like,


Because the animated short we did for 1000 TIMES NO that's been airing on Nick Jr. got into the festival so I went to represent! And as ALWAYS, I had a blast. Ottawa is STILL my favorite festival. I mean, it's got EVERYTHING!

First off, Ottawa is a beautiful city. It's got that old world European flavor mixed in with awesome modern culture. There's great architecture, tons of public art, tasty restaurants, and of course...

Beaver Tails

Secondly, you get to watch a TON of films from all over the world. And yeah... a good portion of these films aren't for everyone. In fact, as I get older I'm finding that I have even LESS patience for stark, suicidal, misery-inducing, artsy fartsy films that run on for 25 minutes.
But there's almost always something you can take away from every film.
(A good nap, oft times)
In general, I find the children's films to be the most satisfying since they involve the most storytelling blended with interesting new (and sometimes old) techniques.
And there are usually a couple fun features to check out as well.
This year I was psyched that the 10th feature-length One Piece movie was playing:

So okay then...

Great town

Great films

And, of course, great friends!

I spent most of the trip hanging with fellow decommissioned KND operative Numbuh of the Beast (aka Andy Rheingold to you adults out there) and a guy I had only met briefly many many years ago but now know WAY too much about:

Mr. Craig Kellman.

Aw, you know-- the guys who designed characters on Dexter's Laboratory?
And Powerpuff Girls?
Samurai Jack?
Foster Home For Imaginary Friends?
You KNOW... the guy who designed the characters for MADAGASCAR?!
Maybe you'll recognize Craig from this picture of him eating bread budding:

That guy.

Mr.Kellman also designed and directed The Ricky Gervais Show for HBO, which had the honor of being accepted into the festival.

Andy, Craig and I spent most of the trip going to screenings, drinking root beers, seeing films, eating lunch and drinking root beers while comparing animation war stories, watching cartoons, and scarfing down dinner and root beers before attending parties where we ate hors de oeuvres and drank MORE root beers.


I know... rough life, right?

And while NO didn't win the sooper big prize for Best Children's Film, it was awesome to be included.

So thanks Ottawa, for another ROCKIN' trip.

Can't wait to see you again!