Friday, May 29, 2009

Pheaturing Nate Piekos


So, if someone asks you to sing a song on the spot, don't start singing, then jump on a table, breaking it, landing on your ass, with the table giving you a bump on the head and making the safety record go from 100 days to zero. Just sing the damned song. Just saying, that's all. Okay, I got that off my chest, hello, and welcome to the Phile, the most updated blog, and sponsor of and tacanow.orgNight at the Museum made a bazillion dollars over the weekend. There's a sex museum in Amsterdam — I hope that's where they make the next one.
I would hate to actually spend a real night in a museum. All those ancient fossils and dusty old bones... if I wanted that I'd watch "60 Minutes." The museum I do like is Madam Tussauds Wax Museum in London. There's a figure of Sean Connery that's very lifelike. You can tell it's fake only because he's holding a drink that still has some left in it. North Korea detonated an underground nuclear weapon. So I guess they'll be ready if they're ever attacked by gophers. Speaker Nancy Pelosi is going to debate climate change with the Chinese. She'll do fine — these negotiations always come down to whoever blinks first. Honolulu just conducted the first-ever, all-digital elections. No voting booths. People cast their votes online or by phone. Everyone should congratulate Honolulu's new mayor — a piano-playing cat. President Obama has nominated Sonia Sotomayor as the first female Hispanic justice on the Supreme Court. Obama said it will help keep the court from leaning too far to the white. She grew up in the Bronx. She said, "Don't be fooled by the robes I got, I'm still Sonia from the block." In West Virginia, a clown returning from a kid's party was arrested for drunk driving. Police say he tried to turn the breathalizer into a giraffe. One other thing, after running out of options, Chrysler headed to bankruptcy court the other morning. And — this isn’t good — it headed there in a brand new Mitsubishi. 

Here's a top ten list for my friend Pete and my sister Leila and her husband.
Top Ten Signs You're Obsessed with "Lost". 
10. When leaving an airplane you ask the flight attendant for the local time... and year.
9. Walking backwards thinking it might change time.
8. Inexplicably fearful of polar bears while on Hawaiian vacation.
7. Refuse to ask for directions... ever!
6. You have an uncontrollable urge to punch anyone named Ben.
5. You're deeply saddened when your transpacific flight lands safely in Los Angeles.
4. For Halloween, you gained 500 pounds and went as Hurley.
3. You frequently blame work absences on the smoke monster.
2. You've been wearing the same clothes for 4 years now.
And the number one sign you're obsessed with the greatest show ever to be on TV...
1. You refer to your in-laws as "The Others".

Set in the year 2018, Terminator Salvation fleshes out what had previously been glimpsed in passing in the original Terminator trilogy—the war between man and machines and the birth of the resistance behind a haunted man named John Connor (Christian Bale). Compared to the original trilogy, Salvation feels like a completely different movie, and that's a good thing. Comparisons are inevitable, so McG wisely sets his take apart by making it more of a war flick than a technological cat and mouse game. The script plods like a rusty T-600, but the action scenes (in particular a sequence that starts out on foot, becomes an intense truck-vs-motorcycles road chase, and segues without stopping for breath into an aerial dogfight) are impressive and, honestly, what you're in the theater for in the first place. And the story problems are part and parcel of the Terminator timeline—anyone who claims that Salvation lacks continuity is clearly viewing the older movies through rose-colored memories. This story has had gaping holes long before McG came along. And there's no need to overthink this. The original Terminator was a well done B-movie. That's all. This is an enjoyable sci-fi action flick. That's all. Isn't that enough? It was never going to top T2, but then again, neither did T3. But... like I said, the script is fucking dumb (Moon Bloodgood suffers the worst at its hands, and someone forgot to even write a character for Bryce Dallas Howard), but most of it can, and should, be shrugged off. Hell, it even has a climactic "villain monologue" where the nefarious plan is explained in great detail to the hero—it would have seemed right at home in a word bubble above Dr. Doom's head. But, again, it's all in good fun. The movie is loaded with nods and winks, which range from cheesy (Guns 'N Roses' "You Could Be Mine"?) to fun (a nicely timed "I'll be back") to really impressive (Watch T2 and note the scar above Connor's left eye in the opening flashforward sequence. You actually see how he gets it—McG did his homework on that one). Go see this in a theater, because it is LOUD in the way a good summer action flick should be. Don't nitpick. Just enjoy. From 1 to 10, I give it a 7. 

A major earthquake accompanied by a fire destroys the city of Antioch, killing perhaps a quarter of a million people. The rebuilding efforts are wiped away two years later by another major quake.
Constantinople is taken by Ottoman Turks, after a fifty day siege led by Sultan Mehmet II. The city defense of 10,000 men was no match for a force of 100,000 armed with heavy artillery. It is the final gasp of the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire.
Dueling over a horse racing wager, future President Andrew Jackson takes a bullet in the chest from fellow lawyer Charles Dickinson. The slug shatters two ribs and buries itself near his heart. Then it is Jackson's turn to fire, which manages to sever an artery and kill his opponent.
Two hours before kickoff of the European Cup Final, a riot breaks out in the stadium between supporters of Liverpool and Juventus at Heysel Stadium in Brussels, Belgium. 39 soccer fans are killed and more than 350 injured on live television.
Hikers discover the skeletal remains of Philip "Taylor" in his Ford Aerostar at the bottom of a 200-foot ravine in Malibu, California. The onetime bassist for the band Iron Butterfly had disappeared four years prior.


Alright, today's guest is the last of the Artist Month interviews for now. He's a comic book artist, and font maker who has his own company called Blambot. Phans, please welcome to the Phile... Nate Piekos.

Me: Hello, Nate, welcome to the Phile, sir. So, how are you?

Nate: Groovy! Thanks for having me!

Me: Your work is amazing, creating all different fonts. I didn't think anybody did that... I thought maybe computers did or they just became magically. LOL. This is something most people don't think about. So, how many fonts have you created and do you think of new ones every day?

Nate: Thanks. I've never actually counted, but a rough estimate would be around 200-300 fonts. I create 2 new fonts every month, and I start 3-5 more. Some get finished and some just aren't good enough to make the cut.

Me: Ever wake up with a new font in your head?

Nate: No, not yet. I usually get inspired by doodling in a sketchbook or having a specific goal in mind before I start (if I need a specific look or feel for a project...)

Me: Some fonts are over used, right, like the Indiana Jones font for example. Are there any fonts that you really like or any you can't stand.

Nate: Comic Sans is over-used. There's one they use for a lot of movie logos too. Trajan, I think. I like a lot of Ray Larabie's fonts over at Typodermic.

Me: What's your favorite font you saw on TV or the movies? The "Lost" one is cool, but basic. And I loved the ones they used on "Alias".

Nate: To be honest, I've never watched either of those shows. I don't watch a lot of TV and when I do it's the History Channel, Discovery Channel or Travel Channel... with "Family Guy" mixed in there. My favorite show is Anthony Bourdain's "No Reservations" on Travel Channel. I see a lot of my fonts on TV now. Do those count? :)

Me: Do you draw by hand or use computers? If you use computers I am guessing you're a Mac user. The Phile is done on an iMac.

Nate: I do everything. I draw by hand and I use computers. I have 2 Macs and 3 PCs in my studio. I use them interchangeably.

Me: When did you start drawing, and where did you go to school?

Nate: I started drawing when I was a little kid. I went to college at Rhode Island College. I majored in Graphic Design and I minored in History. I got my degree in 1999.

Me: Tell the readers about your company Blambot Comic Fonts & Lettering, Nate. When was it formed, and do most comic book companies use it?

Nate: I started making my own fonts in college and a friend taught me some HTML so I built a website for them. As the years went by, I got better at it and eventually I started getting work with indie publishers and then with Marvel Comics and Dark Horse Comics. offers free fonts for indie creators and affordable pay fonts if you want something a little nicer. My portfolio of custom fonts, lettering and logo design is there as well.

Me: You also have done stuff for TV and Movies, right? What is curretly shown or out that a Phile reader can spot your work on?

Nate: Let's see... one of my fonts was used in the movie Secondhand Lions... another is used on "Robot Chicken" on Adult Swim. They're in magazines all over the place and I've even seen them on billboards on the highway.

Me: You worked with Mike Allred, who created "Madman". How was he to work with, and what did you do for him?

Nate: Mike is the best. He brought me on board for my first job at marvel. I designed a whole bunch of fonts for him and I lettered the majority of the books that he drew for Marvel. I'll be working with him again soon on a project for DC. I think that's still top secret though.

Me: And you worked on my favorite comic recently "The Umbrella Academy." How did you enjoy that job and did you get to meet Gabriel and Gerald?

Nate: I did! We hung out a bit at San Diego Comic Con. Both great guys. Gerard is very down to earth and a great writer. Gabriel is a genius artist and a humble guy.

Me: Not only do you draw, Nate, but you also play instruments, right? Are you currently in a band?

Nate: No bands currently. I play guitar, primarily. But also bass and a little drums. I built a mini music studio in my basement with all the instruments and amplifiers, drumkit, etc. For friends to come over and jam.

Me: Have you ever done work for any bands? Some bands have some cool fonts. Like Foghat, right?

Nate: Yeah, I've done work for Killola out of Los Angeles. They're awesome. Check them out.

Me: You also did some writing I believe. You have an online book called "Dead Ends". What is that about and where can someone check it out?

Nate: You can check it out online. It's a zombie horror novel that lets you choose what the characters do. I haven't been able to get back to writing it in a while, though.

Me: Have you ever written comic stories? I think you wrote a Spider-Man one off.

Nate: Yeah, I wrote a Spider-Man story for marvel, a Hellboy story for Dark Horse and a completely original story for MySpace Dark Horse Presents.

Me: Nate, do you have any websites you wanna plug? Also, what do you think of the Phile's logo and lettering?

Nate: http://www.blambot.com (which I write and draw!)
Give me a link to the logo and lettering and I'll check them out.

Me: Thanks for taking time out to do this interview. I hope it was fun. And if you ever want to send me a Peverett Phile font, I won't say no. ; )

Nate: HA! Thanks for having me. It was a pleasure!


Thanks to Nate for a great interview. Go ahead and check his work out. Well, that's it for Artist Month. There's still some artists who want to be interviewed so I have a feeling there's gonna be another Artist Month real soon. Thanks also to Wikipedia and Jimmy Fallon, and to you the readers of the Phile. The next entry will be on Monday with an interview with a band called A Fragile Tomorrow. Man, I hope I don't have a fragile tomorrow. So, until then, spread the word, not the turd.

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