Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Pheaturing Stephen "Zomboy" Harris

Hey, kids, welcome to the Phile for a Wednesday. It's talk like a pirate day, and no, I will not talk like a pirate.  So, last night I went to see the Go-Go's on their We Gotta Eat tour. I should be nice, I am trying to get one of the Go-Go's on the Phile. I am tired as hell, worked a long shift, went to the concert, came home, slept three hours and went back to work... and now then did this little blog. All because I care.   According to the Labor Department, unemployment fell from 8.3 percent to 8.1 percent last month. But that's because 368,000 Americans gave up looking for work.  President Obama said that's a step in the right direction, and he is encouraging more Americans to give up looking for work.  Anti-American crowds have been protesting and burning American flags over that anti-Islamic film. And the U.S. is now bracing for more protests next week when the film comes out on Blu-ray.  I'm watching the news, and I see these protesters in countries like Egypt, Afghanistan, Tunisia. They're all burning American flags. Where are they getting all these flags? If you hate us so much, how do you have a large supply of flags on hand? All over the world people are chanting, "Death to America." Except in China, where they're chanting, "Not until we get our money back."  This is great news that I forgot to mention over the weekend... an Italian magazine published 26 pages of Kate Middleton topless. I hope Elton John doesn't write a song about it. TMZ says more Kate Middleton and Prince William pictures are coming soon. Apparently the pictures are intimate. Keep in mind that intimate for the Royal Family is holding hands.  So, have you seen the new Mitt Romney ad? I don't think his campaign people want him elected.

I am not a vodka drinker, but I think I might wanna try this. 

Well, as I mentioned the other day, Pixar's Finding Nemo is out in 3D, and I was surprised at this poster they are selling in the Disney parks.

Did I tell you I was tired? Well, I am also very lazy, so excuse the lack of comedy here. And now for some sad news...

Steve Sabol
Oct 2, 1942 - Sep 18, 2012
The guy won 40 Emmys for making movies about football. Not sure if that means he was great at it, or the Emmys are stupid.

Well, a few weeks ago I think it was I introduced a new friend... or phriend of the Phile to you readers. He is a singer, surfer, patriot, renaissance man, and Phile reader. Please welcome to the Phile once again Laird Jim in a pheature we call...

I hate election year... you all get slightly batty and friends that I love turn on each other like New York vs. Boston sports fans. But... here goes... ah-heh-hem... I've hated both sides for nearly 30 years, they both suck. The whole concept of "Of the people, By the people and For the people." waved bye-bye to the people a loooooonnnng time ago. We stand a better chance letting some garbage man from Brooklyn run the country. By the way... I'm NOT fuckin' kidding. On election day, I'm going to be screwing, surfing, flying my kite or eating soup at the duck pond. I'm not wasting my vote on either of these two clowns. And the first of you who utters the words "third party".... Hittin' the sheets, goodnite.... my freaky little darlings.

Thanks, Laird. Speaking of politics... Over the year or so I have had these political people on the Phile one of the hottest I ever had here was Campaign Manager for Obama, Stephanie Cutter. I am so freakin' pleased she wanted to come back on the Phile to talk about something stupid Romney said. She could come back here anytime. So, please welcome back to the Phile... Deputy Campaign Manager for Obama for America... Stephanie Cutter.

Me: Hello, Stephanie, welcome back to the Phile. So, what did Romney say, and where did he say it?

Stephanie: Hello, Jason. A leaked video from a closed-door fundraiser showed Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney telling a room full of big-money donors that Americans who don't support him think they're "victims" who don't "take personal responsibility and care for their lives."

Me: This is a big surprise, or is it?

Stephanie: So rarely over the course of this campaign have we gotten to hear Mitt Romney say what he believes in such a revealing, unfiltered manner. This is one of those moments.

Me: This is very important you tell the voters this, right? I am glad you are using the Phile to spread the world, Stephanie.

Stephanie: It's important that we make sure that the people in our lives who are just tuning into this election know what disdain and contempt Romney has for half of the citizens of this nation he wants to lead.

Me: So, break it down for us, Stephanie, what does Romney believe?

Stephanie: He believes nearly half of all Americans won't take responsibility for their own lives and don't pay taxes.

Me: Okay, so, who Romney is writing off?

Stephanie: Some of the people who make up the nearly half of the country...

Me: Who exactly are these people?

Stephanie: The overwhelming majority are seniors, students, people with disabilities, or working families. They pay payroll taxes, property taxes, sales taxes, and more. Those working families include U.S. soldiers in combat, receptionists, firefighters, and clergy, just to name a few.

Me: Certainly, those folks aren't short on personal responsibility.

Stephanie: Romney's responsibility map Romney has said that "my job is not to worry about" the people who don't support him. But America needs a president who will stand up for all Americans, not just the half of the country who agrees with him.

Me: Stephanie, thanks so much for being on the Phile. I know you are busy and have to go. Please, please, come back again.

Stephanie: Thank you, Jason.

Today's pheatured guest is the head of his own company Blue Butter, and is the 24th artist to be pheatured in the P.P.A.G. Please welcome to the Phile... Stephen "Zomboy" Harris.

Me: Hello, Stephen, welcome to the Phile, how are you? Should I call you Zomboy or Stephen? Where did that nickname come from?

Stephen: I'm fanttittytastic thanks. Zomboy was a character I created back in the 90s, he is a boy that got hit by a bus and became a zomboy. Since then I used him as an artist alias. Now there is a some musician in New Zealand who has taken the name Zomboy as his his own, I am the orginal Zomboy folks!!!

Me: I first discovered your art when I saw the robots playing poker painting you did. I have a picture of it here.

Me: That was brilliant. Where did that idea come from, Stephen?

Stephen: It came from my love for the original painting and my lust for robots. I friggin' love robots man, what can I say!!

Me: You even put in AIBO... that robot dog from Sony. I used to have to work with the fucking thing at Disney. When you finished that project did you think, "I forgot to add so and so dog". I was trying to think of a robot dog you didn't use but couldn't think of any. How long did it come up for you to think of them all?

Stephen: It did not take long at all, whenever I get a flash of inspiration, I research lists on the internet. Sometimes Yahoo Answers comes up with the goods, but in this case it was Wikipedia. Search for robot dogs and you will see a huge list of robot dogs in TV, film, gamer history. From there I just tried to choose the ones that resonated with me.

Me: How long have you been an artist? You must've of been drawing all your life.

Stephen: Yup, I have always been an artist, and I always will be. I used to work in post production and design doing 3D graphics, but these days I stick to the t-shirts, simply because I love it :)

Me: I love to doodle, but never was a great artist. What is your favorite tool or medium to use? I love drawing with Sharpies myself.

Stephen: Sharpies are great pens, I used to draw using pens, but these days I stick to the computer graphics, I use a Waccom Tablet with Illustrator mostly.

Me: I am guessing you are a big Star Wars fan, sir. You have made a lot of cool Star Wars art. I work at Star Tours at Disney's Hollywood Studios, you should being your family if you haven't. So, I have to ask, what is your favorite Star Wars movie?

Stephen: Oh wow, that sounds cool. If I ever come and visit from Australia... I will certainly look you up. My favourite Star Wars movie would have to be one of the classics, Return of the Jedi.

Me: Your company is even named after a Star Wars reference... Blue Butter. You did know that was a Star Wars reference, am I right?

Stephen: Yes, it is a Star Wars reference to a type of soft butter made from blue milk I believe, not many people pick up on this so I congratulate you on your knowledge. The main reason I chose blue butter as my brand is that I like the way the words resemble each other.

Me: What is your favorite Star Wars piece you made?

Stephen: I would have to say Droid Jump. R2 is doing a flip and whistling his praises as he reaches the apex of his jump ...doesn't get much cooler than that!

Me: I have a picture of it here, and it is cool.

Me: I am guessing you are a big Calvin and Hobbes fan as well. You put those two (or characters similar to them) in every movie or TV show possible... Back to the Future, Star Wars, "Battlestar Galactica", Batman, Ghostbusters and even "Breaking Bad". You never did a "Doctor Who" one though... or did you? Do you have any new Calvin and Hobbes paradies coming out?

Stephen: Loved Calvin and Hobbes as a kid. I often use my childhood as a source of inspiration for my work. I haven't done "Doctor Who" ... maybe I should... nice idea! I have a few Calvin and Hobbes parodies in the works, but they are way back in the queue behind a few other new concepts I have bubbling in my brain for now.

Me: Have you heard from Bill Watterson on what he thinks of the parodies? I have to admit, they are more creative then the Calvin pissing on the Chevrolet logo, or whatever Ford.

Stephen: Ha ha ha... yes, Calvin pissing on Ford logo is not that clever. Although, every Ford I have owned has been a total disaster!!! Not to mock an American icon of course!! No, I have not heard from Bill Watterson, I suspect he would be happy to see that his work is reflected in parody, then again I could be totally wrong, he might hate them... Bill?

Me: Stephen, where are you from, sir? Australia, right?  Do you have kids and do they draw as well?

Stephen: I am from Australia, in a city called Melbourne... awesome creative place!! Yes, I have a son, he is 15 months old, to be honest I haven't sat him down with paper and pen yet. Reminds me, I must buy him a roll of butcher paper and crayons very soon :)

Me: I also like your human silhouette pictures you do. Those seem like they have a lot of thought going into them. When did you start doing those?

Stephen: Yes the silhouette designs are probably the ones I put the most thought into. I started doing these very early on, as they were easy for me to draw up. But what I discovered is that I love silhouette art, it has a mysterious feel about it, and also stands out in a 'logo' type fashion. I enjoy it because the images I make are symbolic of joyful moments in life. I think it is important to communicate joy in t-shirt art.

Me: You also have quite a few pieces with monkeys. Are monkeys your favorite animal? They seem pretty easy to draw, right?

Stephen: Monkeys, ahhh, yes, monkeys. I'm a huge fan of monkeys. From Ham the space monkey, to Donkey Kong and everything inbetween. They are us man, in a simpler form. I loved the Planet of the Apes, and even more the prequel Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

Me: You even did a Nirvana parody with a monkey. That was pretty funny.

Stephen: A: that's just how friggin cool monkeys are, you replace a human with a monkey and its instantly funny, add a banana and you got a riot!!!

Me: Is there anything you don't like drawing?

Stephen: I try to steer away from negative or dark artwork. It does have its place in the t-shirt world, but its just not what I feel comfortable communicating to the world.

Me: You worked as a 3D animator or TV and film in the past. did you work on anything I would've seen in the States?

Stephen: Probably not, I worked on Australian films, TV series and commericals that do not get aired in the US. Friggin boring answer to that question, huh?

Me: No, it was okay. Okay, Stephen, I have to ask you, if you were gonna design the Phile's logo, how would you design it?

Stephen: A filing cabinet (philing cabinet?) opening up with a bunch of pop culture icons leaping out in weird and wonderful revealing ways... like skeletons leaping out of a closet ;)

Me: Thanks for being here, and I will have you back, your art is really cool. Go ahead and plug your website and keep drawing, sir.

Stephen: Cheers!! My brand is be sure to drop by kids!!!

That's about it, kids. Thank God, I am so tired, and can fall asleep right now. Thanks to my guests Laid Jim, Stephanie Cutter and Stephen Harris. The Phile will be back on Saturday, not Sunday, with the kids from The Breedings. Spread the word, not the turd, don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.

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