Nevin sez, "To drum up interest in my forthcoming book "Looking for Calvin and Hobbes: The Unconventional Story of Bill Watterson and his Revolutionary Comic Strip," I am offering interested readers a sample chapter from the book, which comes out on October 1 via Continuum Press. If interested readers send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org they can request their very own free copy. Here's a brief overview of the book:
For ten years, between 1985 and 1995, Calvin and Hobbes was one the world's most beloved comic strips. And then, on the last day of 1995, the strip ended. Its mercurial and reclusive creator, Bill Watterson, not only finished the strip but withdrew entirely from public life. There is no merchandising associated with Calvin and Hobbes: no movie franchise; no plush toys; no coffee mugs; no t-shirts (except a handful of illegal ones). There is only the strip itself, and the books in which it has been compiled - including The Complete Calvin and Hobbes: the heaviest book ever to hit the New York Times bestseller list.
In Looking for Calvin and Hobbes: The Unconventional Story of Bill Watterson and His Revolutionary Comic Strip, writer Nevin Martell traces the life and career of the extraordinary, influential, and intensely private man behind Calvin and Hobbes. With input from a wide range of artists and writers (including Dave Barry, Harvey Pekar, Jonathan Lethem, and Brad Bird) as well as some of Watterson's closest friends and professional colleagues, this is as close as we're ever likely to get to one of America's most ingenious and intriguing figures - and a fascinating detective story, at the same time.
Your readers may also be interested to know that I interviewed almost 50 cartoonists for the project, including Berke Breathed (Bloom County/Opus/Outland), Jim Davis (Garfield), Lynn Johnston (For Better or For Worse), Nicholas Gurewitch (The Perry Bible Fellowship), Keith Knight (The Knight Life/K Chronicles), Bill Amend (Foxtrot), Mort Walker (Beetle Bailey), Stephan Pastis (Pearls Before Swine), Michael Jantze (The Norm), Mark Parisi (Off The Mark), Hilary Price (Rhymes With Orange), Dave Coverly (Speed Bump), Jan Eliot (Stone Soup), Jeff Smith (Bone), Brad Anderson (Marmaduke), Jef Mallett (Frazz), Mike Peters (Mother Goose & Grimm), Steve Troop (Mayberry Melonpool), Craig Thompson (Blankets), Pulitzer Prize winning editorial cartoonist Patrick Oliphant, Jim Borgman (Zits), Mark Tatulli (Lio) and Jim Meddick (Monty).
I read the excerpt this afternoon -- fascinating stuff. Looking forward to the book!
Looking for Calvin and Hobbes by Nevin Martell (Facebook)
Looking for Calvin and Hobbes: The Unconventional Story of Bill Watterson and His Revolutionary Comic Strip (Amazon)
The Nightmare Machine is an MIT project to use machine learning image-processing to make imagery for Hallowe’en.
The Stormtrooper Decanter is on back-order, but you can pre-order one from the next batch for £22 — it’s based on Andrew Ainsworth’s original movie helmet moulds from 1976, and will provide endless opportunities to point to lowball glasses and say things like “aren’t you a little short for a Stormtrooper drink?” (via Bonnie Burton)
Yahoo has released a machine-learning model called open_nsfw that is designed to distinguish not-safe-for-work images from worksafe ones. By tweaking the model and combining it with places-CNN, MIT’s scene-recognition model, Gabriel Goh created a bunch of machine-generated scenes that score high for both models — things that aren’t porn, but look porny.
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