From the artist...
While some people believe cartoonists somehow magically produce their creations out of hollow trees (like the Keebler elves produce their cookies) or at least would like to think the process was somewhat even a little bit enchanting--their efforts are really a lot more mundane than that. Unless you hit the commercially-successful jackpot like cartoonists Charles Schultz (creator of Peanuts), Matt Groening (Simpsons) or Scott Adams (Dilbert) most other cartoonists have what some people refer to as "real" jobs, in which most of their illustrative ideas never make it past a ledger pad. I think that's where the expression "frustrated artist" comes from. Like a plastic surgeon working at a butcher shop or a Shakespearean actor working as a rodeo clown--the reminder is constantly there that your days could be better well spent. I work in a utility art department where cartoons are seldom needed. So when the opportunity came along to create some cartoons for Streetplay I thought, hey--this could be a pleasant distraction from the every day!
But what did I know of "streetplay?" Although as a kid I had my fair share of whippin' ass with "Hot Peas and Butter", and got as far as my friend's garage roof a block away playing "Lava Leap." I was the quiet kid who sat on the park bench with a drawing pad in my lap at the other end of the playground. My younger brother Vinny was the very type of kid you'd see playing these games every day. If my dad wanted to punish him he'd make him stay inside. If he wanted to punish me, he'd force me to go outside! (And without the drawing pad!)
So you see I've been drawing all my life. I went to the High School of Art and Design, attended the N.Y. School of Visual Arts studying film and animation, worked for quite a few years in various animation studios creating commercial spots and half hour TV specials, and eventually ended up working in Brooklyn. As a hobby I've published my own Beatles-fan publication, F.A.B. (Fanatic About Beatles) for a successful 10 year run, I enjoy collecting vintage puppets and toys from the 60s and 70s, and I've created and maintain www.outofbodies.com, a site devoted to The Out Of Bodies, a band I've been a part of with four other friends for about 20 years.
When I'm not on the computer peddling ventriloquist dummies on eBay, I can sometimes be found strolling around Soho with my wife Lori--checking out the record stores and coffee shops, and scouring the comic book bins with my 16 year old son Craig--looking for Zen, the Intergalactic Ninja. Oh yeah--occasionally I'll emerge from my hollow tree with another drawing or two.
Also, don't miss Donald's comic strip The Koncrete Kids, exclusively on Streetplay.
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