Sunday, January 23, 2011

An Uncomfortable Evening with Lulu Eightball

Emily Flake who has a weekly cartoon called Lulu Eightball in the Orlando Weekly, was going to sign books and was going to offer "PowerPoint assisted hilarity and general hijinks." I had several hours to kill between 5pm when I got off work and 7:30pm when Emily was supposed to speak at Park Avenue CD's. I decided to ask Terry out for dinner at Stardust Video and Coffee. She at first refused saying she had work to do and wanted to go home when she was caught up. She called right back however and decided to join me when she was done. At Stardust I ordered a humus plate and sat down to enjoy Doug Rhodehamel's "Sea of Green". The corrugated green fish with large plastic cup top eyes were suspended everywhere, some swimming just above the floor. As I sketched one twirled slowly right beside my head. The sun set and the darkening dusk sky made it harder for me to see what colors I was using. Ironically I often like sketches I do in the semi-darkness since I am unable to focus on minor details and the colors become richer since I can't see what I am doing. By the time Terry arrived I was finished with the sketch. I put the book away and focused on her.

She agreed to join me when I walked across the street to Park Avenue CD's (2916 Corrine Drive). She drove her car over and I walked. There was a crowd of maybe 15 to 20 people passing the time flipping through albums and CD's, waiting for Emily's talk, I set up my stool and started sketching in the stage which had rows of tiny drink umbrellas hanging above it. There was a cute young woman standing beside a projector and I assumed she must be the cartoonist. I was pleased that my artist radar had been eight. When she got on stage I was happy that she faced me rather than the people out among the isles since she needed to glance at the screen behind her.

What followed was a very humerous account of her dashed expectations of luxury when she was asked to cat sit in uptown NYC. I am not sure if what she read was fact or fiction, but regardless it was very funny. It is a shame she is from Canada because this was someone who's brain I would love to pic about publishing and syndication. Her second story had to do with horrific places she had pooped. When she was finished she hurried off the stage probably sure she must have offended people. Instead there was applause. She sheepishly climbed back on stage to take questions. When asked to name a favorite contemporary cartoonist, she she loved the work of Sherri Flanigan.

When the event was over, the screen was quickly rolled up along with a mat on the stage. Calvin who was the one taking care of all this, introduced himself to me. He asked, "Aren't you that artist who always is sketching and has work in the Orlando Weekly?" he was right on one hand but the Weekly doesn't publish my sketches, so I had to correct him. Regardless he said he loved my work which is always heart warming to hear.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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