Saturday, November 14, 2009

I Just Can't Stop Loving You

For a relatively unknown stretch of woodlands, my home, the New Jersey Pine Barrens, has a decent share of folklore. Most famous is the Jersey Devil, a.k.a. any one of the mutated animals that the nearby Fort Dix army base releases into the woods after military biological warfare experimentation. There's also the legend of Ong's Hat, which is not only the name of a diner that employed me as a dishwasher/busgirl/waitress one summer, but is also the location of a fabled portal to another dimension. Wikipedia is there for you if you wish to explore these so-called myths further, but in this blog entry, I will perpetuate an urban legend far more chilling in its subject matter -- it's about those insane Pine Barrens girls, of which I am one. You've heard the expression, "You're out of your tree," as a metaphor for craziness. But the thing that makes us crazy comes out of the trees. Read on!

"Tales from the Stix" by Chrissy Spallone
Does this cartoon look even a little bit cleaner and more slick than my usual fare? Perhaps that's due to my purchase of these neat, convenient, India-ink filled pens I purchased at Syracuse's Art Store (located on the corner of Crouse and Erie Blvd.). In the past, I always used "loose" Higgins India ink and Hunts nib pens. For the lettering, I couldn't write steadily enough with these tools, so I used regular black felt-tip pens filled with some non-India ink, which isn't as dark, and also fades in bright light and doesn't write over China White (a superior Wite-Out like substance).

I still use the quills and some watercolor brushes with the Higgins ink, but it's nice to have these pens to use as an option for areas where I want more control and fine detail -- for example, it's nice to be able to draw people's faces in a less gruesome way. Gruesome is good sometimes, but not all the time.

The cashier at the Art Store asked me if I found everything I needed, and when I said "Yes," she replied, "Good deal!" What a pleasant lady.

After awhile, bibliophile.

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