It Was A Graveyard Smash!

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Hey, all you Boils and Ghouls!

This week I will be at Monsterama! I usually go to comics conventions to unleash GOMP onto an unsuspecting public. This will be my first monster convention, so I’m rather excited about it!

This will also be my last convention for the summer. I won’t attend Dragon*Con, Atlanta’s infamous pop culture spectacle, because I decided to take a break from it. I need to recuperate from a very hectic June and July and catch up on my GOMP pages. So to all my local fans, this weekend will be the time to get a sketch from me. Hope to see you there!

Take care,
Steph

Here’s My Fist, Where’s The Fight?

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Hey Y’all,

Whee, I’m back again!

For the past two weeks, I’ve had various family members visit me. Although these visits cut into my drawing time, I do enjoy catching up with my family and checking out the more touristy stuff in Atlanta, like the Georgia Aquarium, World of Coca-Cola and the CNN tour in the Omni Center.

Speaking of the Omni Center, it features prominently in a crazy movie I recently saw called “The Visitor”(1979). The movie itself is a fascinating mess, but it was all shot on location in Atlanta, allowing me a glimpse into the city’s more recent past. I didn’t grow up in Atlanta, so I’d forgotten the Omni Center once housed an indoor ice rink, a basketball arena (which still remains) and the ill-fated World of Sid & Marty Krofft amusement park. There were also once grassy knolls surrounding Atlanta’s highways, instead of all the concrete there is now. Aaah, progress!

Take care,
Steph

How Long You Wanna Live, Anyway?

5 Comments on How Long You Wanna Live, Anyway?

Hey Y’all,

Man oh man, it’s been a long time between posts! But that’s what happens when friends and family decide to visit ol’ Action-Packed Studio (although why anybody would want to come to Atlanta during July is a mystery to me!).

So what have I been up to for the past few weeks? Well, besides attending HeroesCon (which was an excellent convention as usual) and cleaning the house for company, I’ve been helping out Cartoon Network in designing their booth for Comic-Con! Sadly, I won’t be in San Diego to view my handiwork, but if anybody out there is brave enough to fight the crowds, please send some pics my way 🙂

Take care,
Steph

We Could Be Heroes Just For One Day

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Hey Y’all.

Well, it’s mid-June and you know what that means! That’s right—it’s time for HeroesCon! If you’re near Charlotte, North Carolina this weekend, do yourself a favor and drop by one of the friendliest comics conventions in the Southeast—or in the whole US, for that matter!

Not only will I have a table this year, but I will also be participating in the panel about all-ages comics. There will be many talented creators discussing the genre: Mike Maihack, Chris Schweizer, Andy Runton and Thom Zahler. If you’re around on Saturday, come by and check it out!

Take care,
Steph

I Love The Sound of Breaking Glass

4 Comments on I Love The Sound of Breaking Glass

Hey Y’all,

I apologize for the less-than-timely update. I’ve been making up time at work since my visit to San Diego. It may take a while, but I hope to get back on track later by mid-July. Darn these jobs that pay my bills! It keeps me from drawing what I prefer—girls and monsters!

Speaking of San Diego, congratulations to Jeff Smith for winning the award for the Long Form Webcomics division! And how about that news of Bill Watterson’s brief return to comics? Stephan Pastis really played that close to the vest—no one at the Reuben Awards had a clue!

Take care,
Steph

Havin’ Some Fun Tonight

5 Comments on Havin’ Some Fun Tonight

Hey Y’all,

No Monster Paradise this week, because I am in San Diego for the National Cartoonists Society’s Reubens Awards! I haven’t been to San Diego since Comic Con 2007, a mentally exhausting affair.

I’m really looking forward to this trip! I’ve been working hard lately, doing a LOT of contracting work for Cartoon Network. While challenging, my day job consumes a big chunk of creative energy and cuts into my precious GOMP time. So I hope to fire up that creative spark by communing with my fellow cartoonists and return home rested and excited to draw more girls and monsters! And, of course, some refreshment at the infamous Bali Hai won’t hurt, either. 🙂

Oh, and for those wondering just what the heck the girls are doing, they’re imitating the Reubens statue, as designed by Rube Goldberg. Maybe someday GOMP will get a nomination! *sigh* A girl cartoonist can dream…

Wishing you all a happy and safe Memorial Day weekend!

Take care,
Steph

How Nature Points Out the Folly of Men

8 Comments on How Nature Points Out the Folly of Men

Hey Y’all,

As you can see, I decided to draw something different for the GOMP page this week. But I saw Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla last Thursday night and I just gotta talk about it. This isn’t so much a review as it is a collection of my thoughts about the film. No spoilers here, just disjointed commentary from a rambling cartoonist.

First off, I should point out it took me a long time to get into Toho (and Toho-inspired) movies. I didn’t see them a lot as a kid, and when I did watch them, I felt annoyed about how obvious it was that Godzilla was just a guy in a suit. I much preferred the stop-motion magic of Ray Harryhausen’s monsters instead. It wasn’t until I was in art school and learned about kabuki theater that I “got” Kaiju films. Suddenly I developed a great appreciation and enjoyment for them.

So how did I like the new Godzilla movie? I didn’t just like it—I LOVED it. In some ways, there’s a feeling of Edwards thumbing his nose a bit at more recent Kaiju movies, such as Cloverfield, Pacific Rim and the abysmal ’98 Godzilla. In full disclosure, I was intrigued by Cloverfield and really enjoyed the campiness of Pacific Rim (I’ve blocked out ’98 Godzilla from my memory altogether), but Edward takes elements from movies and does them right.

I also really love the editing and pacing of the movie. So many recent FX films have a more chaotic, or video-game vibe to them. And I can’t name how many times I’ve seen the camera POV following monsters and characters running around in long, swooping shots. While it’s fun to look at, a lot of action doesn’t register (at least not with me). But with Godzilla, I felt as if I were truly experiencing the movie along with the characters. Of course, this could also be because I saw the film in IMAX 3D.

I can’t get into other points without giving the movie away. But suffice to say, this is easily one of my favorite Godzilla movies and I highly recommend it.

Also, I’m looking at my Godzilla design and thinking it might make a nice T-shirt. What do y’all think?

Take care,
Steph

Jump Into The Fire

7 Comments on Jump Into The Fire

Hey Y’all,

So did you call your mummy to wish her a Happy Momster’s Day?

Lots of stuff happening here at Action-Packed Studio. I wish I could say it was all good stuff, but it wouldn’t be life without the drama, would it?

Man, am I looking forward to the end of this week! Why, you ask? Why, because GODZILLA, of course! Apparently, this one’s gonna be good—it even has the approval of director Joe Dante. But really, almost anything will be better than the awful ’98 remake with the giant iguana.

Take care,
Steph

Two Pints Of Lager And A Packet Of Crisps Please

7 Comments on Two Pints Of Lager And A Packet Of Crisps Please

Hey Y’all,

Sorry for the delay—I thought I’d have the page ready for you yesterday, but best-laid plans and all that. It must be this beautiful weather distracting from my drawing board.

Which makes it ironic that I’ll spend this evening in a darkened movie theater! Husband and I plan to see the documentary Jordorowsky’s Dune. Such a shame it was never produced! You can read more about Jordorowshy’s vision here. I vaguely remember seeing David Lynch’s Dune back in the day, but I didn’t find it particularly memorable. And for pure rock pretension, I’ll take Mick Jagger over Sting any day.

Oh, and check out the CAPS auction set up to benefit the great Stan Sakai! I don’t often sell my artwork because my Dear Husband tends to hoard it. But now’s your chance to own an original Gladden page! Be sure to check out the other pieces up for auction as well—many comic greats have contributed. And it’s all for a good cause!

Take care,
Steph

A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall

10 Comments on A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall

Hey Y’all,

Ahh, it’s nice to have Volker back. He really livens up the place.

Man, I dunno what’s going on with me lately. It’s been a real hard-luck week. There’s been a myriad of small irritating inconveniences (like my contact lens going up underneath my eyelid—while I’m driving in rush hour traffic) and some unexpected stress-outs (like my car engine light coming on and a pipe to the freezer’s broken ice maker suddenly leaking). Oh, well—I didn’t need that tax refund money, anyway. It’s almost as if Volker’s luck is rubbing off on me. Knock wood I don’t get attacked by crab monsters!

On the plus side, though, I’m planning my convention trips for the summer. One will be to the NCS Reuben Awards in San Diego! Sadly, GOMP didn’t get nominated for the Reubens Online Comics-Long Form Division this year, nor did it get a nod from the Eisners for Best Digital Webcomic, but there are plenty of deserving nominees this year for both awards. And there’s always next year!

Hope Ya’ll have a great holiday weekend!

Take care,