.. and when I say LOVE you best believe I'm in LOVE L-U-V. A one-color poster design for the Oakland Museum and Oakland Pride. I'll be with the OMCA's "mobile unit", teaching folks how to screenprint their own take-away posters at the Pride festivities. We'll be close to the intersection of Broadway and 14th. Come say hi!
Oooh, Sheila E. Love her.
Dear Friendlies, I had the pleasure with working with Ron Rifkin at the Design Office and Daniel Swafford from the Montclair Village Association in creating street banners and this mural dedicated to sweet little Montclair Village in Oakland, California. Yesterday was the dedication ceremony. More about the mural (and the kind folks who made it happen) here.
Here's the completed illustration. This image was used for banners that were (and are!) flying over Montclair.
This is Pam Consear from Rare Bird and the Skyline High Art Club, who spent weeks and weeks painting the mural.
Guess who came to the Dedication Ceremony? That's Daniel, Ron, and I, plus Oakland Mayor Jean Quan and Councilmember Libby Schaff.
My Darlings, my presence has been requested as part of the All of Us or None poster show at the Oakland Museum, and I'm eager (yet full of trepidation). A good friend recently pointed out that my current level of neurosis is rather high, and I think it's because I keep on making public appearances in very public places. Like, for instance, in museums and bookstores. And I don't just appear, darlings, I do things in public. Like sing, or, in this case, pull screenprints that will be given away to the gathered masses for free.
I usually spend a good deal of time by myself with just a pencil and some paper and my dog to talk to, so you understand. Things could go wrong. Terribly wrong. My good friend (and collaborator*) Jim Winters will be there to help out if we have to clean out a screen or extract a squeegee from my eye socket, so that's good.
I'll be pulling (about 50) prints in the gallery from 5:00-6:30 pm on Friday, April 27, 2012, in the galleries of the Oakland Museum. It's free, I think.
Here's the mantra for the evening : IMPERFECT = REAL. Write this on your hand with a sharpie, and come on down to the galleries to see me pull prints. Directly afterwards, I'll be signing the large Peace Sign OMCA Prints at the OMCA Store. See below.
Hope to see you there!
Here's a preview of the print I'll be pulling:
Here's the OMCA Peace Sculpture Print:
Here's me mixing colors for the OMCA print:
* Plus the guy is an amazing artist, and got me on the road to silkscreen - I should be there supporting him, not the other way around.
Kids (and those of you Kids with Kids), Dog Dreams is like The Little Kid's Book that Just Won't Go Away!
We're excited to invite you all to the re-grand-opening of Dog Dreams (v.2) brought to you by the kind folks at Gingko Press and The Oakland Museum. This is the second printing of Dog Dreams. The first printing was only 100 copies and those sold out, like, RIGHT AWAY, so I was more than thrilled when Gingko Press offered to do a second printing. This is the same book, mind you, we scanned in the letterpress prints and used those to construct the pages for the new book but this one was printed 175% larger (it's 7" x 7"!) and is has been pre-tested to work beautifully as both a board book and a chew toy.
Apparently, it tastes delicious.
Here's a sneak preview of the new version.
And a video of me talking about this thing:
You might ask: "Michael? Will you and Andy and Suki be getting up in front of the gathered to embarrass yourselves again with tiny drums and a ukelele and badly-sung novelty songs about dogs?"
The answer, my friends, is blowing in the wind. And that answer is YUSSS.
What: Dog Dreams v.2 Opening! When: Sunday, December 4. Starts at 2pm, ends when my pen runs out of ink. Where: OMCA Gift Shop. The Museum is FREE that day. The address is 1000 Oak St. Oakland, CA 94607, and it's very close to Lake Merritt Bart. Who: YOU. Why: BECAUSE WE LIKE YOU.
So. Come see us, grab a book, laugh at us. We don't care. We like it. In fact, it's 'free day' at the museum, so you can just come and laugh at us without buying a book and the whole thing will cost you NOTHING. Hey, it's hard times! We understand! If we can momentarily distract you from the constant buzz of police helicopters overhead, then we'll be happy campers. If you're looking for a giftie for the holidays (I started to itch all over while typing that last bit), these puppies are priced to move. I will be signing books as well.
Another question: "Will this event be kid-friendly?" Yuppers. Most of my kid's book events thus far have been in the evening, when our precious little darlings turn into flesh-rendering wildebeasts, so here's your chance to bring 'em out when it's not dinnertime. Plus, you can take them to the museum and the cool gardens and let them run around. BONUS.
See you then?
Hey kids, It's been a busy summer in the silkscreen studio, and finally I can share some of the work I've been producing. There's a mess of new stuff to peruse on the shop page: the collaborative book by Mister Jim Winters and myself, Queen for Two Weeks, numbered and signed and packed up pretty in a cellophane wrapper. The super-tall-and super-fifties Sutro Tower screenprint. The longer-than tall Lake Merritt (featuring the also-longer-than-tall Lake Merritt Monster). There is also a photograph of an attractive young man modeling the t-shirt design (it looks just like the Sutro Tower print) I did for therethere.
Frenz, I'm totally overwhelmed by the positive response - we packed Diesel Books! It was SRO! We also sold out of copies of A Dazzling Display of Dogs (but not to worry - if you want a copy, you can order one here).
For those of you who braved the rainy weather and [maybe even] came out with your kids on a Wednesday night - I thank you! I hope you had as much fun as we did. Thanks also to Tricycle Press (this is, sadly, one of the last books they will publish), Suki and Andy for the music, and Loriana and Carolee for helping out and setting up. Thanks to Betsy Franco for making the trip to Oakland, and to Diesel Books for being so accommodating. If you're in the Bay Area, go buy your books there! It's a great shop.
Here's a little video that Michael Zelner shot (thanks Michael!):
What's next for the book? Well, The Mutts are going to be recording these songs for real sometime soon. Betsy and I are going to be making a book trailer or two for the two books we've published together thus far. There are also rumblings about another collaboration. Stay tuned.
Friends to the Four-Pawed: my second picture book, A Dazzling Display of Dogs (written by Betsy Franco - yes, that Betsy Franco), has been released and is available at your local bookstore and online. We're super excited about it over here, and hope you'll get yourself a copy!
The book release party has been set for March 23, at Diesel Books here in Oakland. Andy and I will probably, as with the Curious Cats opening, embarrass ourselves in front of you. Just to let you know.
Here's a great review from School Library Journal:
Starred Review. Grade 1–5 - This follow-up to A Curious Collection of Cats (Tricycle, 2009) is dazzling indeed. Each of the 34 poems features a different animal, most of them engaged in true dog behavior. From farting in the car to wheezing and snoring while sleeping, these pups are funny and lovable even when they're being annoying. The verses and the book's design are beautifully matched. In "Emmett's Ode to His Tennis Ball," the text is enclosed in a circle held firmly in the dog's mouth. It begins, "Slobbery, sloppy, slimy, sphere—oh, tennis ball, I hold you dear…." Like the poems, the pictures are funny and dynamic. The pages are definitely full, yet careful use of color, typeface, and detail means they never look chaotic. A note says the pictures were started in pencil and then finished using monoprints and Adobe Photoshop. Overall, a delight for kids, their adults, and maybe even their beloved canine companions.—Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL
Sadly, 'A Dazzling Display of Dogs' is one of the last books that Tricycle press will publish. I am so grateful to my editor Abigail Samoun for making this book happen!
I AM SO EXCITED. The Halloween posters are done, and they look great! Thanks to Nat Swope at Bloom Press for another amazing print job. 18 x 24", blue, orange, and GLOW IN THE DARK inks! These posters commemorate yet another fabulous Driveway Follies in the Glenview district of Oakland, CA. Do you want one? Yes you do! Go directly to the Wertzateria shop and buy yourself one. As soon as it arrives, put it under some bright light and then get in a totally dark space. Say "Bloody Mary, Bloody Mary, Bloody Mary" in a spooky low voice, then open your eyes to see the Magical Glow of this poster!
BWA HA HA HA HA HA!
If you're in Oakland for Halloween, join Aunt Grandma and Jitters, won't you?
Celebrate Halloween with Aunt Grandma and Jitters, Hosts of Driveway Follies 2010! Glenview's Free Marionette Show and Yard Haunt! 3854 Greenwood Avenue, Oakland.
October 30: 7-10 PM: Puppet Show Only.
October 31: Show begins at Nightfall and repeats throughout the evening.
Adults without children welcome after 9 pm.
See you there!
(a hairball? no, not a hairball...) Friendlies,
we had such a marvelous time at the book launch for A Curious Collection of Cats. Many, many thanks to Diesel Books in Oakland, thanks to Abigail and Hayley at Tricycle, thanks to my sweetie who set three of the poems to music so we could sing 'em. There were about 60 people in attendance, and we sold out of books! If you want a book, call Diesel (510-653-9965). They are ordering more books (and doesn't it feel good to support the indie bookstore instead of the nameless behemoth bookstore?) and should have more copies soon.
For those of you who came to the Launch, thank you so much! If you couldn't make it, we're scheduling a few more "singings" for the book: Betsy Franco and I will be doing a talk and signing at Kepler's Books in Menlo Park on June 28th at 11:30. I am also scheduling a singing for San Francisco - stay tuned for that info!
In the meantime, here's some video my brother Tim took of us singing: