The Home of the Creative Mind

Welcome to PooBahSpiel, the online voice and home of the creative mind of Mark Monlux, Illustrator Extraordinaire. Prepare yourself for an endless regaling of art directly from the hand of this stellar artist. And brace yourself against his mighty wind of pontification. Updates are kinda weekly and show daily sketches, current projects, and other really nifty stuff.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Return of Stickmnan #1462

I was wondering if donkey cheese was truly the rarest cheese there was and went searching on the Internet for the truth. I did not expect to find this. I'm let wondering if the three different varieties of cheese offered are something like soft, firm and hard or if the varieties are named after the individual cows.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1461

I'm not sure what it is about cheese I find so interesting. I do like trying different batches of cheese and I have a preference for the softer cheeses. But I also like a very nice sharp cheese, or a really funky moldy cheese. It was only after I started to draw my stickman strips that I was forced to recognize my love for cheese. For instance I wrote nearly a dozen strips in my last sitting that were cheese related. It seems I can write and endless supply of cheese themed strips. My readers will no doubt be thankful that I limit my strip's subject themes to a week.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1460

One of the topic that keeps popping up on this strip is cheese. I've been hearing some interesting stories and facts about cheese. I think I will share them with you this week via the strip.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Comic Critic Reviews Shrek

I’m amazed that Shrek even got made. Not that Shrek isn’t good. It’s just that this movie of a fantastic journey went on its own amazing journey to get created. First the children’s book was picked up and went through a rewrite. Then Chris Farley’s untimely death meant that his nearly completed dialog had to be scrapped and a new voice lead brought in. After completely recording his role, Mike Myers asked if he could do the reading again, this time with a Scottish accent. The result was so promising that the script went through another rewrite, improving the material. The completed audio was then sent off to the animations team. The first animation tests took a year and a half to complete and weren’t satisfactory, so that version too was discarded and a new approach looked for. This would require new software to be written for things like hair—and different codes for different kinds of hair. When Shrek was finally released, all that hard work paid off. It proved to be a strong performer in box offices all over the world. But I didn’t want to put all of that history into the strip. (And I’m saving the topic of how working on a movie is a big gamble for another strip.) I did want to touch on the fact that the humor in this movie has a slight cutting edge in places. I wanted viewers to back up and see with fresh eyes that, as in many a fairy tale, there’s a lot of really dark stuff happening in Shrek.

 On Saturday, January 26th at at the Seattle Design Center, I had the great pleasure of moderating a panel of talented artists as they discussed and answered questions about graphic novels. This is the third year that the SPGA Seattle Chapter of the Graphic Artists Guild has put on this event. I'm looking forward to seeing who will be in the line up next year.
From left to right: Allen Gladfelter, Stefano Gaudiano, Michele Gagné, Ellen Forney, David Lasky, and Frank M. Young. David and Frank filled in at the last minute for Phil and Kaja Foglio, who had a bug.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The Comic Critic Reviews The Blob

The 1988 version of The Blob is much-overlooked. The cult status of the original Blob appears to be unshakable. It would appear that anyone familiar with the title is also familiar with its star being Steve McQueen, even if that person had never seen The Blob (or any Steve McQueen film for that matter). They’re joyously shocked to find out that there was a remake. My only guess about the source of that joy is that they are pleased they don’t have to watch a movie quite so dated (if they want to see a large jellied mass eat people). While 1958’s special effects can be easily replicated with a camcorder and a jar of jam, 1988’s special effects suffer from early CGI. What is great about 1958’s Blob is its cast of overqualified actors (even if they seem to change clothes between scenes). What is great about 1988’s Blob is the practical special effects used for close-ups and quite grisly scenes of the Blob grabbing and eating people. These are the scenes eager movie viewers of 1958 wished they could have seen (and which made the 1988 version my personal favorite). Still, I do suggest that you see the earlier version to fully appreciate how well the second one follows it and provides a twist to pay homage to the Cold War Era.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

The Return of Stickman and New Year's Resolutions

The first strip of these two was inspired by my very good friend, Kevin Boze. Kevin is probably one of the cleverest gentlemen I've ever met. He has a lightning fast wit that, when deployed, hits with the grace and accuracy of a drone missile. I'm confident the strip will leave him with a chortle.

I love New Year's Resolutions. I like to think up new ones that nobody has ever thought of before. Frame five of the strip refers to an actual New Year's Resolution that I kept - much to the amusement of my wife. I think during the entire course of the year I only forgot to go "Arg!" at a waitress only a handful of times. The key I have found is to do it just before you launch into your order. And sometimes you get a waitress who is a quick witted as Kevin. Here is how one exchange went...

"Arg! I'd like to have the catfish with red potatoes." I ordered. "What is the soup of the day?"
"Arg! That be Minestroné." the waitress replied. "We be fresh out of Clam Chowder."

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1456

I spent yesterday recovering from New Years Eve. I didn't think I was tired when I got home that morning. In fact, I was wired from drawing so many caricatures down at Tacoma's First Night celebration.

 Last one of 2012
If you would like to see more drawings go to my flickr set.