Mighty Muggs Show: Pics!

This weekend was also the Mighty Muggs Charity & Art Show at The Labyrinth in Toronto.  Here are some pics of the show from The Labyrinth’s blog:

The customs on display look awesome.  Two of Spades is happy to hang out with Hellboy. 🙂  On a side note, check out all the art books in Dan’s shop!  Can you see why it’s the best art book store in Toronto?  If you’re in Toronto, check it out and donate some cash to charity by voting for your favourite Mugg! And then go buy some books! 🙂

Munny Grubbers Show: Video!

From what I’ve heard, the Munny Grubbers show at Just Blazed this past weekend was very successful. On Friday I found an article about Munny Grubbers published by the Phoenix New Times and they mentioned my name and Brigitte in the article (and us shaming Barbie)!   LMAO.  How rad is that!  I’m still waiting for someone who attended the show to post pics, but for now there is a video showcasing all the pieces in the show. You can see Loved Unloved and Brigitte’s awesome yellow Slade custom in the video too. 🙂

Munny Grubbers Show is this Saturday!

Just Blazed is hosting the Munny Grubbers show tomorrow night from 8pm-11pm! There will be giveaways, prizes, a raffle, and a contest judged by the crowd!  My custom Loved Unloved will be on display and for sale, and there will be lots of amazing customs there too, so definitely check it out if you’re in the area. They are located at 1740 East McDowell Road in Phoenix, Arizona.

I’m happy to say that Loved Unloved has been getting a bit of love this week! ♥ He was featured on the awesome toy blog Tomopop.com!  You can read the article HERE.

He was also featured on my favourite urban toy blog SpankyStokes.com.  You can read the article HERE.

Mighty Muggs Show is this Saturday!

The Labyrinth is hosting the Mighty Muggs Art show tomorrow from 6pm-9pm! The show is free and everyone is welcome. There will be lots of custom Muggs both on display and for sale.  They will also be raising money for World Vision by voting on their favourite Mugg custom via money donation.  There will be a Character Design Showdown event (which is like a drawing improv).  Everyone who participates in the improv will get a little something for their efforts.  They will also be running a special book sale on select titles, with a portion of profits going to charity.

The Labyrinth is the best art book store in Toronto, specializing in animation, illustration, and manga books. I try to visit this shop every time I’m back in Toronto, cause they have tons of awesome stuff that you can’t get anywhere else. The Labyrinth is located at 386 Bloor Street West (2 blocks west of Spadina Station) in Toronto, and their regular hours are Mon-Tues: 11:30-7:30, Wed-Sat: 11:30-8, and Sun: 12-7:30.

I was so happy to see Two of Spades proudly announcing the show over at The Labyrinth‘s blog. 😀

Loved Unloved: Custom for Munny Grubbers show @ Just Blazed

Here is my finished 7 inch Munny custom “Loved Unloved”.  He was made for the Munny Grubbers show at Just Blazed in Phoenix, Arizona. The show opens this Saturday (August 8th, 2009), and he will be for sale along with lots of other awesome customs (like Brigitte’s Slade)! 🙂

I took a few days to sketch out lots of different ideas until I settled on this final design for my custom (now I have tons of other ideas for future customs — score!).  Since the show is being held at Just Blazed (a graffiti store), I wanted my custom to have a clean graphic look and use lettering of some sort.  I wanted him to have dripping hearts for eyes, an x-ray’d style skeleton body and I wanted him to have text across his forehead.  I also wanted him to give him a sort of a tattooed/graffiti look.  Before I started to sketch out my design on the blank Munny, I printed up a page of my favourite fonts for reference and sketched the initials on his head.  (You can see the page of fonts in the before pic).  I used the font “Dearest” which I also use for the banner of blog and my Etsy shop. The initials “WR” stand for “White Rabbit”. 🙂  I REALLY enjoyed designing, painting and creating this custom.  I’m almost sad to put him up for sale, but I hope he finds a nice home.  🙂

So here’s the part where I geek out and talk about lettering…

My Grandfather was a Linotype Operater.  He printed newspapers, books, etc, using a Linotype machine.  The machine was HUGE and had to be constantly lubricated and maintained because of the 2000 working parts.  Each Operator had to know how to take apart their machine and put it back to together quickly so they could fix it and get the job done.  Apparently he was really good at it because he won several competitions!  The keyboard on the Linotype is different from the one we have today — it has 90 keys with both upper and lower case letters, and there were areas to swap in letters with italics, different fonts, different sizes, etc.  When he would set up the text for printing, he lined up the letters by hand and had to spell each word backwards (that’s how you would print letters the right way).  There was no spell check back then, so he had to get each word right and work fast.  I think that’s an amazing accomplishment for someone who’s second language was English!

My Father was a Hand Letterer/Sign Writer.  He taught himself how to hand-paint letters, and started out painting signs for businesses, trucks, buildings, etc.  He used a mahl stick to make sure his hand was both steady when he painted, give him precise curved edges, and also it would prevent him from accidentally touching the wet paint.  He’s so skilled that he doesn’t need a mahl stick anymore.  I remember when I was a kid he got this commission where he had to paint logos on the sides of a bunch of white vans in a short amount of time.  There were a ton of white vans parked outside of our house, and he was there just painting and painting for hours. He was so focused and spent so much time perfecting his skill, that I grew up with the same love, passion and focus for my own artwork. My Dad taught me about typefaces (I knew the difference between Serif and Sans Serif lettering at like age 10) and letter spacing (each letter generally has the same space, but there are some exceptions to the rule).  When computers were introduced sign writing was then mainly done with cut-out vinyl lettering.  It was still a ton of work because he had to measure and line up the letters just right before he stuck them on the sign.  He made festival and street signs for the city of Toronto for years.

And to top it off, my parents met in a silk screen printing shop!  So as you can see, the appreciation for typography runs through my blood.  I came into lettering when I was doing graffiti back in 1996, and had my chance to create stylized letters (which I will save for a future post!). 😉  For those who love lettering too, visit LetterCult, a blog for lots of awesome typography.

Okay, back to the custom…

I named him Loved Unloved because of his eyes.  (I always start painting a custom starting with the eyes because I think they are the main captivating element, and the rest of the design just follows.)  One eye/heart is untouched while the other eye/heart is broken.  Either way, love sure hurts this Munny.  Not much is known about Loved Unloved because he was written out of the Alice In Wonderland series.  What really happened is Loved Unloved also followed the White Rabbit down the rabbit hole like Alice did, however he did not have a soft landing.  Unfortunately he broke his neck and died, and his ghost has been haunting the rabbit hole ever since.  His soul is not allowed back up into reality or through the keyhole into Wonderland.  So he is forever roaming the hallways that are not quite part of either world.  The good thing is that there are lots of bookshelves lining the walls in the rabbit hole, so he has plenty to read.  Poor little sad roaming ghost spirit boy who was completely forgotten about. 😦

Finished: Mighty Muggs Custom for Charity Show

I finally finished my Mighty Muggs Custom for the Charity Show at The Labyrinth! 😀
Introducing… Two of Spades!

Two of Spades is a Card Soldier who works for the Queen of Spades in Wonderland. If you thought the Queen of Hearts was nasty, you’re in for a surprise! Like the Hearts, the Spade clan is also known for beheading except they don’t play a game of hedgehog croquet with flamingo mallets to pass the time before killing you, they just simply behead you on the spot.  This Two is particularly deadly, and gets called for execution duty quite frequently since he is “good at it” (whatever that means… ask the Queen of Spades, that’s what she said!).  When he’s not beheading prisoners, he tends to his small 2 x 2 garden plot that is filled with the most beautiful and fragrant purple roses.  Who knew Two had a sensitive side!

Once again I was inspired to create something in the theme of Alice In Wonderland.  🙂  I wanted this design to be really bold, since the Mighty Muggs figure stands so proudly and confident as if he’s going into battle. I immediately thought of a card suit soldier, and to me the Spade suit seems like the strongest design. At first I wanted to recreate the “painting the roses red” scene and I was planning to sculpt a paintbrush in his hand with dripping red paint, but I didn’t have enough time to do that.  And red drips without a paintbrush would have looked too much like blood (not paint) which would have been cool, but not the look I was going for so I scrapped that idea. I still wanted to make a Spade Soldier, but I decided to just go for the black & white colour scheme instead.

“Two began, in a low voice, “why, Miss, the fact is, this ought to have been a red rose tree, and we put a white one in by mistake, and if the Queen was to find it out, we should all have our heads cut off. So, you see, we’re doing our best, before she comes, to–” At this moment Five, who had been looking anxiously across the garden called out “the Queen! the Queen!” and the three gardeners instantly threw themselves flat upon their faces. There was a sound of many footsteps, and Alice looked round, eager to see the Queen.”
~ Alice’s Adventures Under Ground, Chapter 4