Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Up with Figs: Put a Wig on it

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully

Times, Nita mused, always change. Stuff you love dies. Stuff you hate thrives. And sometimes it works the other way 'round. Circle of life.
But no matter what life hands you, you always need a good wig. A wig with character. A wig with stamina. A wig that makes you feel like a movie star or a captain of industry. Nita knows that a wig can make you feel whole again, if only for a night. 
Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.




Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Up with Figs: The Birdlady of Knoxville

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.




It started a few months ago, first with one little birdie. He (or she, it’s hard to tell with birds) landed on my hand when I pointed to the hole in our backyard where I found the buried plastic saint. At first I figured that one of our house’s previous owners was a firm believer in the whole St. Joseph can sell your house thing. But then there were more birds. And more. And I took a closer look. Whomever had buried the plastic saint either a) grabbed St. Francis rather than St. Joseph or b) was trying to lift her own bird curse by giving a St. Francis icon a dirt nap.

Whichever, however, matters not. All I want right now is to get all of these dang little birdies to fly away home before my dry cleaning bill equals the GNP of several small nations.


Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.





Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Up with Figs: Le Sigh

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.

Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.



Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Up With Figs: Mr. Peepers

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.


Carl Sagan—and now Neil DeGrasse Tyson—love to go on and on about those billions and billions of stars. I want to feel that wonder, that mind-boggling immensity. 

But whenever I look about my window, I just see Steve, the pervert next door. 

Way to ruin the universe, Steve. And, no, I won’t be taking my clothes off anytime soon. Jerk.

Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.



Tuesday, October 7, 2014

What's She Building In There Now?

Dave gave me a really fantastic birthday gift this year. 



That's just one piece of what I had yet to assemble. See if you can guess what it is before the big reveal.

Problem: the assembly directions were only in Japanese,



leaving Za Za a little perplexed, even with my Smart Lady ™ glasses on.


Good thing the illustrations were fairly clear.

Parts is parts.



More mysterious parts and thinggumies.


Have you figured it out yet?



How about now?


Lucy appears to approve of the gramophone.


It's lovely, even if it's mostly made of plastic. 


This is the Gakken Premium Gramophone. It's completely mechanical and plays 33, 45, and 78 rpm records. Just crank that puppy up and get those discs spinning. You can also etch your own records with it, which I haven't tried yet. 

The parts to the kit are incredibly well-designed and a pleasure to put together. Someone did manage to make a rough translation of the instructions from Japanese to English and make them available online, which helped clarify some puzzling assemblage moments.

So, how does it sound? I pulled out an old 78, given to me by my friend Sara from her dad's collection. If you ever wanted to hear "The Man With The Weird Beard" by Arthur Godfrey, well now, here's your golden opportunity.


video

Kind of cool, no?





Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Up with Figs: He Says Hi.

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.





So, there’s like, this guy who lives in a house a block or two from mine. I see him, like, every other day or so when I, like, walk past his place, you know, that narrow, dirty white one with the aluminum siding? He’ll be in the mini vestibule, bent in half, with his elbows on his bent knees, like his back makes a perfect right angle to his legs. His greasy black and gray hair dangles nearly to his, like, toes. Smoke—it’s not, like, cigarette smoke—curls up and gets trapped in the entry way. You know? That guy? Yeah. He always says to tell you “Hi.” 

Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.



Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Up with Figs: Sticky Hand™

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.






How many times have you dropped your beloved phone into the toilet? Or onto a tile floor? Or under a passing bus? Do you know the heartbreak of being out of touch for endless hours because your precious device is in pieces? 

With Sticky Hand™, you need never let go of your phone again! No matter how sweaty your grip or shaky your hand, Sticky Hand™ ensures that your device stays secure. 

Sticky Hand™. For when you absolutely, positively need to look at cute cat videos no matter what.

Sticky Hand is not responsible for users hit by cars, trapped in open manholes, or beaten to death by domestic partners. Sticky Hand encourages responsible mobile usage and denies any knowledge of the incident in Chicago two weeks ago. 


Text ©Adrienne Martini; illustration ©Lisa Horstman. Until the end of time. Or something.







Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Up with Figs

Up with Figs is back after a hiatus!

Once upon a time, Lisa and Adrienne worked for the same alternative newsweekly. Now, both spend their respective lives mining their creative souls and leading hermit-like lives. And so an idea was hatched. Every week, one would send the other a sketch—either in illustration or word form—and the other would make a companion to the sketch. The result would be posted on both their blogs every week, just for grins. Even if the result isn't award-worthy, the exercise makes both minds more nimble. Hopefully.



Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Balance



Why it's good to have cats and dogs.





Friday, August 22, 2014

Put Your Records On

So the 78 rpm record collection is coming along nicely, thanks to a recent trip to Nashville and digging around in Knoxville. I love jazz and blues from the 1920s and 1930s, but I'm also having fun finding old cowboy music records. I'm not really particular about what shape they're in as long as they're playable and not terribly expensive. I've not reached the obsessive collector phase of hunting for rare, pristine records. Yet. I have plenty of this music on CD, but there's something about hearing it on these old shellac records that I love. It's like being in a time capsule.

It's a joy to find the records I love—I found a couple of Billie Holidays, not in great shape, but listenable—and it's a joy to make discoveries. And since these records don't have printed sleeves, I decided it would be fun AND A JOYOUS WASTE OF TIME to research who these artists were, create a portrait of them, and make a simple record sleeve, of sorts, with their bios. That way each time I pull out a record I'll have something to read while I listen.

The first one I've made is for one of my favorites, Henry "Red" Allen. Have a read.


I wanted to create a sleeve that slips around the generic 10" record sleeve so you can still read the beautiful old record labels with, more importantly, the artist and song information. There's still an area on the upper right side for collector's details about the record (some chipboard-style sleeves have printed boxes located there). The clear plastic sleeve encases all of it. So I came up with something like this:


With the bio information on the flip side:


I need to mess with the design a bit more, but Lucy seems to approve. She likes licking plastic. It's creepy.

So I suppose now and then I will post new sleeves as I create them.

Up next, a new discovery for me: Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys! Get ready to cowboy swing!

For the uninitiated, here's a beautiful bit recorded by Red Allen with Coleman Hawkins back in 1933.






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