Joe Alterio's blog on illustration, comix, design, animation, and other bouts of total awesomeness.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Robots and Monsters RELAUNCH

From our little press release:

"Joe Alterio is proud to announce the reopening of Robots and Monsters: A Charitable Menagerie. Launched in 2007 in order to help raise funds for a marathon to benefit the SF AIDS Foundation, Robots and Monsters is an effort that trades original commissioned art for donations to a good cause. Last time, we had outstanding success due in no small part to postings on blogs like Boing Boing, Drawn!, and Uncrate, which helped us raise over $10,000 in the space of 36 hours. Besides the amazing amount of money raised, almost 200 Robots and Monsters were drawn by Joe, with some help from Special Contributors Adam "Ape Lad" Koford, D. Emory Allen, Michael Gabriel, and Lawrence Yang.

We had so much success, in fact, that – well – we got a bit overwhelmed, and had to close down, so we could fulfill orders.

However, Robots and Monsters is now re-launching, and we're excited to announce our new beneficiary of heady, creature goodness: the Electronic Frontier Foundation. For almost 20 years, the EFF has been on the good side of 1st Amendment fights on the web, and considering that R and M couldn't happen without this amazingly wonderful and scary tool that we all use now, we figure we owe them one.

Fifty dollars gets you a custom-drawn and painted robot or monster, defined by three words or phrases you provide, sent to your door. What's more, your creature will get added to our ever growing menagerie, for everyone to enjoy.

In a few weeks, we'll also have some great merch, like a cool teeshirts and a limited edition poster of 48 robots and monsters from the the first wave, so be sure to check back regularly.

Thanks for all your support, everyone."

Hooray! We already have orders pouring in. Even in the face of The Greatest Depression Evar, people are stilling willing to donate money to a good cause. man. You know, humans may just make it off this planet and into our monkey-piloted space zeppelins, yet.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Paranoia 1

(click to enlarge)

The above is my first study I've down on paper of my first planned solo show, in 2009. These are images and ideas that have been rattling around in my head for about 9 months now, after a particularly intense and heart pounding dreaming I had, that left me in a cold sweat and terrified.

The odd part was how much of this is really straight from my dream, especially the skeleton and ghost boxes: those sprung, fully formed, from my mind one night, and I don't really know where they came from.

I'm trying to work out exactly what this all means. The show and pieces in it are, clearly, going to be devastatingly lonely, which is weird, because I'm not really a lonely guy. Upon further introspection, I notice now much of the imagery is child like, and bringing in some old school computer game imagery into it makes me think this is my brain burping up a very lonely period in my life when I was younger.

I've always found the scariest thing to be the absence of anyone at all: a recurring nightmare I have is finding that no one is around anymore. Not by nuclear apocalypse, or zombies, or murders: just gone. I wander from room to room, house to house, field to field, and everyone has just vanished. That, to me, is the ultimate terror.

Stay tuned with me, as these studies develop.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Not There Anymore

Amazing set of photos of New York City by Bruce Barone, from what looks like the late 70s through the early 80s.

(Thanks, Luc!)

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Quirky and Fun!

I was at the video store with Molly last night, and I saw this:

It's a DVD cover for a new indie flick entitled "The Go-getter", and allow me to point out a few things.

1.) This movie is clearly aimed at the 24-40 year old This American Life-loving, Decemberists-listening, vegan-eating, guiltily-two-car-owning yupster set.

2.) The car apparently so prominently featured in the movie is an 80s Volvo 240DL, a car which I not only owned and loved for quite a while, but a car that speaks to a greater truth about the owner: that s/he has parents that bought the car, and gave it to them to it's waning years, which pretty promisingly puts the family into the East Coast/West Coast liberal leaning college- educated electoral demographic.

3.) Hollywood's decision to appeal to that (my - oh, god, so embarrassingly so - my) demographic has revealed a pretty steady formula. To wit:

I'm kind of torn about this: as an illustrator that would love to do a movie poster, I'm encouraged to see comic-style drawings and hand lettering on a poster. But, for the love of Tom Brady, surely we're in a rut. It looks like there's a InDesign plug-in for this type of design now. So, it is with a heavy heart that I say:

You designers, STOP IT. STOP using blockhead font, stop using slightly sloppy hand drawn illustrations, stop using bearded motherfuckers to portray to the potential audience that this about people who read Sarah Vowell and wear tweed jackets. STOP IT.

Please, surely there's another way.

In other news, you can see why I'll be launching a new look for my website next week. I'm guilty of the same design crimes above, and someone's gotta say something. It might as well be me.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Koko the Clown and the Cures

We Wuz Robbed

Yo, check out the comic I just finished for Mark Kingwell's new book on the public space, tentatively titled 'Open Spaces', and due out to 2009. I also uploaded an alternate last page in the photostream, if you're interested, and care give your feedback. Thanks to Glaser for the copy-editing, and to Mark, for giving me such a great opportunity.