On Black Friday: The Extendable Fork in Action…and an Unexpected STAR WARS Tee

Here’s Jack deploying a new holiday tradition–the extendable fork trick I mentioned in yesterday’s post. I decided to pass down the torch, since my cousin Jeff read my blog yesterday (D’oh!) and was prepared to expect my hijinks.

I've Passed On the Torch of the Expandable Trick Fork to Jack.

I’ve Passed Down the Torch of the Expandable Trick Fork to Jack and the Kids’ Table.

And here’s the Diamond Comic Previews ad posted by one of Dave’s fans today, advertising a new t-shirt (hey, it’s ONLY $50) featuring Dave’s original STAR WARS artwork, LORD VADER’S PERSUASION of THE OUTER RIM. To understand how stuff like this happens, and how the artists get paid nothing for it, nor are even aware when their artwork is being used for fun and profit, you might want to revisit my previous post, “The Blessing and Curse of Work-for-Hire Illustration.”

$50 Lucasfilm STAR WARS tees featuring Dave Dorman's Artwork

$50 Lucasfilm STAR WARS tees featuring Dave Dorman’s Artwork

I’m so glad Disney/Lucasfilm is able to continue healthfully profiting from Dave’s work-for-hire artwork with $50 t-shirts, making it ever so much more puzzling to me that his artwork wasn’t chosen for inclusion in STAR WARS CELEBRATION 7.

This particular piece of Dave Dorman Star Wars art is so wildly popular, one dedicated European fan, Tomi Demolka, even had it tattooed on his back (as seen below). If you are interested in buying this print, or any of the Dave Dorman Star Wars Artist Proofs still available, here’s the link – on sale now through Dec. 31st with FREE worldwide shipping: http://www.davedorman.com/2014swprintsforsale.shtml

Dedicated Fan Tomi Demollka, with Dave Dorman's Artwork Tattooed on His Back

Dedicated Fan Tomi Demollka, with Dave Dorman’s Artwork Tattooed on His Back

Since I’m posting this on #BlackFriday, if you’re in Chicagoland and looking for something to do, check out Dreamland Comics in Schaumburg, IL today before 3 p.m. Dave is there today signing #comics and five 501st members are there in costume–the world’s largest #cosplay organization, of which we are honorary members–posing with families for photos and supporting the cause, which is building a solid food pantry for the hungry, so bring your canned goods!

Dave at Dreamland Comics today.

Dave’s signing at Dreamland Comics on Black Friday.

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Thanksgiving: Some Random Thoughts

For many of you, today is likely one of your favorite holidays. While I love a spirited, marathon game of Euchre with my cousins as much as the next person, I sure wish those pilgrims had kicked off this family tradition with a Chicago stockyard prime rib rather than a turkey. There’s not enough alcohol in the world to entice me to insert my hand in that turkey’s pink, slimy, gut-filled pit of hell. Cue up Alice Cooper’s Welcome to My Nightmare…this is the holiday where my bird phobia is front and center. I can handle popping a boneless, skinless turkey breast into the oven, but that horrific headless bird corpse stays outside of my line of sight.

Courtesy of my horror writer friend Steve Niles, the stuff my nightmares are made of.

Courtesy of my horror writer friend Steve Niles, the stuff my nightmares are made of.

And then there’s dessert. Pumpkin pie? Meh. Not in my Top 10 List. Not even close. So here’s how I propose we eat it:

Pumpkin Pie, Denise Style.

Pumpkin Pie, My Way.

My favorite Thanksgiving memory was the year I had just returned from the greatest practical joke shop in Key West, armed with my new expandable fork. It looked like a normal fork, but it could extend to two feet in length. I patiently waited for my kindred spirit cousin Jeff, sitting across from me, to load his plate with stuffing–one of the few things I like about Thanksgiving. Jeff got distracted by an oncoming platter of turkey and I made my move–in one fell swoop, my expanding fork reached across the table, plucked that ball of stuffing right off of his plate, and made it mine. The shocked expression on Jeff’s face when he looked back on his plate and did his double-take is something I will never forget. I still get the giggles every time I think of it. I recently rediscovered that fork, and it just so happens that Jeff’s coming over today…hmmm….

Last night Jeff posted this sentiment on Facebook from one of our favorite comedy writers, Jack Handey, and in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I share this with you today:

More Brilliance from Jack Handey

More Brilliance from Jack Handey

Today I’m thankful for my family, our health, great comedy and laughs, my favorite new earthling Baby Gemma, my friends (from the Shenanigans, Hijinks, Immaturity and Tomfoolery Club to the Sister Wives to my vast, ever-expanding, quirky “Collection” of everyone in between), Jonesie the cat (whom I’m still trying to forgive for spilling that full cup of coffee on my computer yesterday and ruining my laser mouse), my clients who keep life interesting (especially the engrossing fiction novels of uber-talented author Mike Baron), the growing stack of unread books awaiting me, for tennis (on TV and in real life), and for what will probably be remembered as the greatest era in cable and network TV entertainment, from Downton Abbey to Gotham to Homeland, and too many more to mention.

I hope you all have a memorable, Happy Thanksgiving. As for me, I’ll be occupied with removing pickles from the White Castles (Dave forgot to buy the pickle-free kind) for the stuffing, and averting my gaze from that bumpy, pink meat puppet.

Baby Announcement: Jonesie, the Hairless Cat Has Arrived

My sister-in-law called just now. She was the first to point out to me that an old episode of “FRIENDS” (apparently I haven’t seen ALL of the episodes after all–who knew?!?) featured a hairless Sphinx cat (clip here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fl6Ke0I5gGA) with more than a passing resemblance to our new cat Jonesie…

Jonesie, the new baby.

Jonesie, the new baby.

who arrived here on Wednesday night. Apparently, Rachel got a little scratched up, as have I (see my collarbone below)…

Cue Up a Little Nugent: CAT SCRATCH FEVER

Cue up Nugent–CAT SCRATCH FEVER 

By 10 a.m. on Thursday, the school had already called. Jack’s left eye had swollen closed and the swelling was traveling down his cheek (and I had swollen right eye to  match), which is how we typically react to cats. By the time Dave hand-delivered Jack a Benadryl, he was already over it. So Jack and I are still allergic to the enzymes in Jonesie’s saliva, but washing our hands frequently seems to be staving off more attacks. Jonesie has been sleeping with me, and aside from being awakened by her need for petting every 3 hours, it’s been going smoothly.

We can’t help but think of REN from REN AND STIMPY every time we look at her:

REN of REN & STIMPY, who bears a striking resemblance to Jonesie.

REN of REN & STIMPY fame, who bears a striking resemblance to Jonesie.

But Jack is in love…and that’s what matters the most to Dave and me. Here’s hoping we’re in for a happy ending with Chapter 2 in our quest for the purrfect, allergy-free pet. (Yes, that misspelling was intentional.)

Jack's Constant Companion

Jonesie, Jack’s Partner in Crime

DAVE DORMAN STAR WARS PRINTS SALE – Last Time Many Items Are Available for Sale

Star Wars Fans and Loved Ones of Star Wars Fans – Here’s Your Holiday Shopping Opportunity!

Dave Dorman

Dear Friends,

One of many DAVE DORMAN STAR WARS ARTIST PROOFS ON SALE NOW. One of many DAVE DORMAN STAR WARS ARTIST PROOFS ON SALE NOW.

For those that responded to my last blog and Facebook posting, I appreciate your kind words and support. While it was disheartening to get that news, it will not be my last opportunity to create new Star Wars art. Keep your bookmarks here for coming news of more projects ahead!
As most of you know by now, I will not be attending SW Celebration 7 next year. I had planned on having a sale at Celebration of what was left of my Artist Proofs of previous year’s Celebration prints, along with the new exclusive print. Since that isn’t happening, and I’ve had a lot of fans and collectors asking if I was going to have a Holiday Print Sale this year, I’ve decided to hold it now. Here is the link to my Star Wars Holiday Prints Sale:

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Star Wars Celebration: Dave Dorman Artwork Rejected

In case you were wondering…

Dave Dorman

Hi All.

Well, now that Lucasfilm has announced the artists selected for the SW Celebration 7 Art Show, I can publicly confirm that I was notselected to participate this year. It is with great sadness and disappointment that I am now announcing this, but the judging has been made, and there is no reversing that.

The judging was done differently this year, asking for comps of the art proposed, then submitted anonymously to be judged. There was no respect for the reputation or the years of good will put in by any artist–just the comp, rough, or finished art submitted for approval.

So…here was my piece–a color rough featuring Vader continuing to pursue the genocide of the Jedi after Order 66. I guess I missed the mark in idea… or perhaps not doing a more finished rough..it’s not EU… ties directly into the gap between EP3 and 4…

The Path Not Taken: Rejected Dave Dorman Star Wars Celebration Concept Art The…

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Today Marks A Decade of Jack-ness

Ten years ago today, 16 days past my due date, Master Jack arrived at Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola. Jack rather enjoyed his own personal swimming pool, and no amount of Pitocin was persuading him to leave it, so a c-section it was. He was born at 4:23 a.m., and he’s still an early morning person.

Those were crazy times for us. Our home was half-destroyed in Hurricane Ivan on September 15th, so we were trying to rebuild our house with a shady contractor (who regaled me with his tales of prison life and the finer points of cooking crystal meth) while also working full time as two freelancers, and mentally preparing for life with a newborn. I’m glad it’s all in the rearview mirror, but I’m still awed by how this Decade of Jack-ness has whirled past me like the Tasmanian Devil on a tear.

I can still remember how Dave was taken aback by Jack’s bad horseshoe arrangement of frizzy orange hair, which reminded Dave of his least-favorite relative. My friend Denise Daughtry was taken aback by Jack’s strong neck muscles–at 12 hours old, Jack lifted his head up off of my shoulder to watch Denise walk across my hospital room to greet him. His intense gaze never left her, and he held his head up insistently, minus any neck support from me, for several minutes. I had zero experience with newborns, so I had no context for how weird this was at the time.

Jack’s light blue eyes couldn’t handle the fluorescent lights above his crib in my hospital room, so he grabbed his bassinet blanket and pulled it over his eyes with intention, creating a sleep mask. I knew he meant business, because I tried pulling it off of his face, fearing SIDS, and he just grabbed that blanket in his tiny fists and pulled it back over his eyes. It was our very first battle of the wills. He won.

At age five, Jack sat down at my piano and began playing what sounded like New Age music. His music kept evolving with each passing day. I was brimming with ideas that Jack might have some innate musical talent, since Dave’s Russian grandmother was a professional violinist. I signed him up for piano lessons. In no time, those lessons erased any joy Jack ever felt for playing piano. Even now he refuses to play the improvisational music that was so effortless for him five years ago. I beat myself up over the fact that I’d ruined him for music, but then a glimmer of hope arose. This past six months, Jack started asking for a guitar.

One-Half of the Band, "Strings of Lightning"

One-Half of the Band, “Strings of Lightning” with one of his birthday gifts

 

I asked Jack his plan for learning guitar. “YouTube,” he replied. Tonight over birthday cupcakes, Jack divulged that he and his friend have already formed a band, Strings of Lightning, despite having almost zero musical prowess. I have a soft spot reserved for ambitious earthlings. We talked through his logo design–a zombie fist holding a guitar, as lightning strikes it, forming an “X” pattern. In my mind’s eye, the t-shirt design is already being worn by an amphitheater full of adoring fans holding lighters, beckoning an encore during Jack’s first world tour. (There’s a little Beverly Goldberg in the heart of every mom, isn’t there?) Of this I’m certain: This next Decade of Jack-ness will whirl past me lightning fast–like the Tasmanian Devil on yet another tear.