Sunday, May 12, 2013

Pheaturing Chris Hamer

Hey, kids, welcome to the Phile. I'm your host Red Five, and I'm going in. Actually, I'm more like Strawberry Blonde Five. It's Star Wars Month on the Phile if you didn't know, so all this month there will be Star Wars related stuff on the Phile.  Today is Mother's Day. I have to say my son has one of the best mother's ever. Happy Mother's Day to all you mom's out there. For Mother's Day, Hooters is giving away free wings to all mothers who come in. Eating lunch with your mom at Hooters... I guess some guys never get tired of their moms saying, "Look at me when I'm talking to you!" Americans will spend between $17 billion and $20 billion on Mother's Day. The average spending is about $169 per mom... which is the reason NBA players need so much money.  According to researchers, people in the 25-to-35 age group are now experiencing mid-life crises. Who thinks the best years of their lives are behind them at the age of 25? Besides the cast of "Jersey Shore," of course.  The Senate is now taking a look at the immigration bill and will provide sweeping changes if, in fact, the bill is passed. Passed? Tim Tebow's got a better chance of passing.  NASA is taking applications for people who want to live on Mars. Now here are the requirements: You have to be between the ages of 18 and 40 and insane. I know it sounds like a lot of fun. But the flight alone is six months to Mars. It's eight months if you leave from Newark. Mars is a frontier. It's wide open.  This coming Saturday I'm gonna see Paul McCartney in concert. I hope it's going to be a better show then the show he did in Brazil. During a concert in Brazil, he got attacked by a swarm of grasshoppers. That's a very unusual thing to have happen to you. But it didn't faze him at all. He just thought he was having an acid flashback. Police arrested 31 people involved in that big jewel heist in Belgium. That's a lot of people. Now $50 million worth of jewels sounds like a lot, but split 31 ways, it hardly seems worth the effort. One of the jewel thieves they captured yesterday was also a lawyer. That’s a shame. Now lawyers will get a bad reputation. Imagine being a jewel thief by night and a lawyer by day. You go from one job taking all that money and wrecking people's lives, and then onto being a jewel thief.  A giant African land snail was found. Authorities are worried there could be more. They carry potentially deadly meningitis. So far the snails have been found in Florida, Texas, and in the meatballs at IKEA. The snails have no natural predators. In fact, city officials are considering bringing in giant French people to eat them. So if you're in Houston and you see a giant snail coming toward you, walk slowly for your life.  This week marked the 10th anniversary of the professional networking site LinkedIn. Which is weird, because on LinkedIn it says it has 15 years of experience.  A new study found that women think men holding a guitar are more attractive, even if they’re not playing it. In a related story, guys with an accordion will die alone.  A new iPhone app can actually figure out how happy users are. Although if you need to download an app to tell you if you're happy, you're not.  The other day when I was playing on the internet I saw a picture from Iraq or some other third country of a camel, and I couldn't help to think of something else. Here is the picture I saw...

And this is what I thought of.

I must have Star Wars on the brain.  Disney revealed the poster for the Episode 7, and I don't know what to think. It looks very scary.

Star Wars: The Rise of the Greedy.  I'm just kidding, Disney is not greedy at all. They are a very generous company. Whew! Dodged that bullet.  Now a lot of people think the creatures and aliens in Star Wars are all fake, but that's not true. For example, Bantha's are real, and I have proof.

That is a real photo. I'm not lying.  One of the things I do in my spare time, which I don't have to much of, is get on Twitter and look up certain different words to see what people are talking about. One of those words I look up is Star Tours, the attraction I work at at Disney. This is a recent Tweet I found.

Jaymz is a wimp. LOL.  Well, this year is the 30th anniversary of Return of the Jedi, which gave us the death of Yoda, the Ewoks, Jabba the Hutt, and most of all... Slave Leia. So, for Star Wars Month on the Phile we are honoring her. Why not?

And now, for some sad news...

Ray Harryhausen
June 29, 1920 - May 7, 2013
Motion stopped.

If you spot the Mind Phuck email me at Before we continue, a good phriend of the Phile wanted to come on today and give a special Mother's Day message. He is a singer, patriot and renaissance man. You know what time it is.

Good morning, humans. Honor your mother today. That's an order! Happy Mother's Day to my friends who are great moms... mine wasn't up to the task. C'est la vie. But I have you guys watching over me. NOT an easy task, I might add. So, here's to great moms! You ladies fuckin' rock!

Today's pheatured guest is the 30th artist to be pheatured in the Peverett Phile Art Gallery. He will be appearing next at Wizard World Philadelphia from May 30th to June 2nd. Please welcome to the Phile the very talented... Chris Hamer.

Me: Hello, Chris, welcome to the Phile. How are you?

Chris: Top notch my friend, top notch!

Me: So, I met you though a Phile Alum named Michael Banks, Chris, at MegaCon this year. Do you do conventions often?

Chris: As much as I can, I love 'em, so much so I spend the majority of the year at comic, horror, sci-fi conventions around the US and the other half at Craft and Music Fest peddling my art.

Me: Do you ever show your work in real galleries, and exhibits?

Chris: I try every year to do a solo art show or at least take part in a few gallery shows, because they are a different animal that the conventions. This year, I have already done 3 gallery shows, and I have another 3 planed and in the beginning stages.

Me: Are you from Florida?

Chris: Nope- I'm a Georgia native, but as long as I have been around, my family has gone to Florida at least once a year, so I consider it a second home.

Me: Where did you first meet Michael Banks and how long have you known him?

Chris: A few years back at MegaCon I believe... but just in the last year, me him an Sara, his lady, have become super close buds. Good people.

Me: He's gonna be back on the Phile soon. Is there anything you think I should ask him?

Chris: How it was working on the illustrated comic.

Me: Alright, let's talk about your artwork and stuff. Your website and business is Urbnpop. Chris, did you leave out the 'a' in urban on purpose?

Chris: Yes, I wanted it to be something that you could visualize an idea of the style of art, but not stereotype it. When you add the 'a', at least to me, a whole new level of what kind of art it is comes to mind, but when you leave it out, it seems to change things. Maybe I'm basis, but... When the name Urbnpop came about, I was just starting doing art full time with out any other source of income, and I did not want to have a website or be know as just me, I wanted to have something that in my head would allow me to go crazy with trying new things, so I came up with a moniker for me and that is where the name Urbnpop came from.

Me: I wonder if anybody goes to your site looking for Keith Urban pictures. That'll be stupid, it would be Urbncountry, not Urbnpop. Anyway, how long have you been an artist, Chris?

Chris: I should write Keith and ask him to change his name. I have been drawing all my life, but just in the last 6 years have I become a full time artist.

Me: I love your style and art. How long did it take you to define your style?

Chris: Thanks. I think it has been a natural progression over the last 6 years. I went from drawing just a little bit each day to drawing all day, and the more you practice your craft I think the better you become.

Me: A lot of artists use computers for their work, but I prefer Sharpies. Not like I am an artist. Do you use computers a lot?

Chris: I really got in to Photoshop and learning how to digitally color drawings, so yeah as of late, I have been a bit consumed with the computer... hahah. But I still love to get messy with paints.

Me: Some of the art I saw you did at MegaCon was with wood and paint. Was medium do you like to do best?

Chris: It's more of a style than medium. I would consider my self an assemblage artist, because I love building on top of pieces with found or vintage items. I love using wood, mainly because it allows me to keep building on it with layers of found objects. Because wood is much more sturdier that canvas I know I can keep building on it and will keep its shape and allow a strong platform to work with. To go back to your computer question, as much as I love using them for art, I will always love getting my hands dirty with paint and the application of assembling a piece of art.

Me: I wish I would of bought that TARDIS piece you did which is the TARDIS painted on some wood. Anyway, you do so many different genres, which one do you like best?

Chris: I love pop culture in general, its what help shape me as a creative person, so just when I say I'm the biggest fan of... I find holes in that statement, and change it to I'm now the biggest fan off...

Me: I saw that you get old magazine covers, or photos and draw over them in your Recycled Art series. Where did you first get this idea to do that, Chris? Do you just use a pen?

Chris: It is one of those ah-ha moments that hits. I found a tattoo artist in LA that was painting on old family photos, and moved me in such a way that it now I look back on those days as a huge inspiration, I feel silly, because I know he influenced me, but I can not remember his name, it was something random I found in the old Myspace days. I just remember loving it so much that I wanted to try my hand at it, and from there drawing on a photo's became picture, which became old magazines, comics... Over the last few years, I have just about drawn on everything kind of thing. One year I posted on my Facebook page that I would do a free drawing on anything that a person brought me to a convention, that was a weird year for sketches... haha. I mainly use microns and sharpies for random drawings on things, but the majority of the recycled art is done with acrylic paint.

Me: Where do you find those magazines? They look vintage.

Chris: They are, I have a routine that once a week. I scout out thrift stores, antique store and the interwebs for stuff to buy to make art out of. I have stocked piled so much stuff I could stop shopping now and make another 150 pieces... hahaha. But I won't its the adventure in the search that inspires the pieces I make out of the stuff I find.

Me: A lot of your characters that you draw have one big eye and one small eye, very Berke Breathed Bill the Cat. What made you decide that's they way they'll look?

Chris: Maybe its his fault. I love that comic strip as a kid. My approach creating a drawing, is to invoke confusion, and wonder in the characters face, some folks have said they look stressed, but I think they are more surprised. Or maybe they are stressed... who knows. I never really sat down, and said this is how I was going to draw, it just kinda happen.

Me: They look a little like Gary Busey, who also seems to have one big eye and one small eye. Did you ever draw him?

Chris: No, that is one dude who scared me, in that clown sorta way. I had a friend in Florida tell me she met him at a convention I did and that when she went to say hi, just just licked the side of her face from the neck up to the forehead. She was mortified and I would be do... hahaha.

Me: Speaking of eyes, you drew this furry blue character a few times with one eye, like a cyclops. Is he your own character and does he have a name?

Chris: That guy is my main dude, his name is Byron and he is the icon for Urbnpop.

Me: I could easily see plushes of him, Chris. Does he have a back story?

Chris: I have had a few of my more craftier friends make me some Byron plush toys, and they are awesome, so one day I would love to have a whole mess made but nothing is in the works right now. His back story is, he is a bit like me, the out spoken one, the one who wants to be the center of attention, loves to be involved with everything, but also has to deal with the daily grind and remembering he is just one monster... and can't do everything.

Me: Do you have any more characters?

Chris: You know I do, what artist would just stop with one. Another lil buddy I have drawn a few times is Oswald, he is a manic rabbit that is full of stress and anger, but loves to be loved. Pretty much I think I have drawn my personalities in the form of cartoons over the last 6 years... hahah.

Me: I like the stuff you did that is Star Wars themed and a few Marvel ones as well. I take it you're a Star Wars fan. A lot of artists do Star Wars themed stuff, Chris. Why do you think that is?

Chris: It's such a iconic movie, for me it was and still is one of my favorite movies. I remember being a kid and loosing my mind over it, and still to this day, get so excited and giddy, when I hear the them song. For me that is why I love to draw those characters, but then on the dark side of things. Sorry for the pun. Some folks draw them, because there is a million other folks that get just a excited as I do for it, that it is a easy sale at a convention.

Me: I mentioned your TARDIS piece. Do you do any other "Doctor Who" themed stuff?

Chris: I use to hate "Doctor Who", the old version, but over the last few years, I started to warm up to it, now I would consider myself a newbee fan. I'm still learning, so cut me some slack. I have a friend name David, who every year at MegaCon has asked me to draw a different Doctor for him, and after the first few, I started to want to do some more fan art, so I did a Doctor print of David, and then the TARDIS, but it is still something that I'm learning, and I have this thing where I will not draw something for me to have for sale that is not a commission that I do not know a little bit about, so as I learn more Who stuff. It is quite possible I will be doing more and more.

Me: You have done more Marvel themed pieces then DC, so are you like me, more of a Marvel fan?

Chris: I do lean more toward Marvel, but in the last year, the new "Batman" comic has change the playing field for me. So it's starting to sway back and fourth.

Me: Do you read comics? If you do, what do you read?

Chris: At one time, I collected comics, now I just read them, which is a huge sigh of relief, to know that the bag and board is not the be all to the comic... I loved Iron Man from the early 80s on, but beside that I have been reading a lot of IDW stuff, like "The Rocketeer" comic, and "Mars Attack" and "Tank Girl". I love the new Marvel and DC relaunches... but I also love a bunch of indy books. So the list could be huge if I kept thinking about it.

Me: I thought you must read comics, as you have your own comic out called "Pink Noise". What does that mean? What's pink noise? I heard of white noise, but not pink.

Chris: When I was looking for names for my comic, which is music based I found the term pink noise and being a novice to recording. I took it to mean, when the frequency reaching a level where it is pushing the sound harder and faster. But here is the official internet description... Pink noise or 1/f noise (sometimes also called flicker noise) is a signal or process with a frequency spectrum such that the power spectral density (energy or power per Hz) is inversely proportional to the frequency. In pink noise, each octave carries an equal amount of noise power. The name arises from the pink appearance of visible light with this power spectrum. Within the scientific literature the term 1/f noise is sometimes used a little more loosely to refer to any noise with a power spectral density of the form. That at least is the recording nerd version.

Me: Interesting. I was thinking it was something sexual, if you know what I mean. LOL. How long has the comic been out, Chris, and how many issues have been printed? It is printed, right?

Chris: It just came out in March of this year, and it is printed and only on issue one, I have issue two started but as of now, no set release date, just a plan to have it out by June.

Me: I have a picture of it here.

Me: So, tell the readers what "Pink Noise" is about. It's very original and cool.

Chris: It's the journey of this character named Jonah who has a TV for a head, that is told 100% thru lyrics from songs. So far many of the songs are old punk rock bands that inspired me and helped me thru alot of those years, where I was figuring out who I was a person. Music is such an important gift I think we take for granted some times, because there is so much garbage out right now that it is easy to give up and stop wanting to buy music or go to concerts. But if we look deep, it has always been there for us, when we find the right song or band. It's like an old friend that has always been there to help answer questions. I know music has helped me thru so many things.. The list goes on and on. When I was picking the songs, they in a way drew themselves.

Me: I take it you get permission from the bands you choose the songs off, am I right?

Chris: I did, I would have not done it if I could not have gotten it. it is very important to me that every band I picked understood what this project was about, before they gave me their blessing to use their song. I wanted to let them know, that "Pink Noise" was the fan in me wanting to do this, and not some business guy looking to make a buck. I have been very fortunate to have had the blessing and support from so many great people.

Me: What bands have you used, or what songs?

Chris: The first issue is Rob Huddleston from Ann Beretta, Tim Barry, it's a solo song, but he was the singer for a band called Avail, Damion Suomi and Strike Anywhere. The next issue is going to be Saves the Day, William Elliott Whitmore, Sleeping At Last and Hot Water Music. As for the songs, that is where picking up a issue or checking out the fan page on Facebook would be super rad.

Me: How about any Foghat songs? Whatcha think?

Chris: Not my speed, but I'm sure that it could work for someone else's comic... heheh.

Me: Where and how did you get the idea for "Pink Noise", Chris?

Chris: Music is another one of my loves in life. It's hard when your brain runs all the time thinking of creative things you want to do and not see stories in lyrics, and since I'm not much of a writer, I thought this was the perfect way for me to do a comic. I do want to thank Rob Huddleston from Ann Beretta for all his help with this project. Rob was one of the first folks I wrote to, and the first to jump on board, and has to this day, been a huge supporter of the comic.

Me: I like to ask artists that appear on the Phile what they think of the Phile's logo, so what do you think?

Chris: I think its pretty cool. Not sure what you were going for, but I like the retro look of the file cabinet like a rocket!

Me: If you were going to design a logo for the Phile, what would it look like?

Chris: Messy, creepy, fun. Hell, you have seen my art?

Me: I have to ask you about your tattoo's. What are they of, and how many do you have?

Chris: As long as you never call them sweet tat's are cool too' and end it with a brah, I'm okay with that... heheh... They are my reminders of places, and people and bands and nerdy moments in my life. I always say four. One on each arm and one on each leg, but now that is changing since tattoo my feet, neck and chest, so I guess alot is the best answer.

Me: Michael Banks probably has more then you I am guessing. That boy is covered in tattoo's. He used to be a tattoo artist, did you?

Chris: He does, I have yet to see him naked, but its looks like he does. No, I never did tattoo-in. Some days I want to, other days, I think its best I don't... haha.

Me: Alright, so, on the Phile I ask random questions thanks to Tabletopics, so here is yours. This is a good one. Have you ever had an experience that led you to believe in angels or ghosts?

Chris: Okay, angels, just out of high-school, both my grandfathers passed away, and they were my best friends in the whole world and we were super close. I was driving to work one morning when my brake cable snapped on a sharp turn and my car rolled a few times in to a tree. I did not have a seatbelt on and I walked away from the wreck with only a few bruises to a ladies house to call my folks, when the cops showed up they were surprised that I was not dead, the cop actually said that looking at the crash, I should have been dead. Then last year, the 14th Street bridge sign fell on to I 75 in Atlanta, and we felt some debree fall on my van, and then looked in the rear view mirror and saw the sign hit the highway, we no more cleared under the sign 30 seconds before it hit. So, I believe in angels, I think I have two guardian angels that are with me all the time. I believe they are the folks who love us the most, who want us to succeed in life and long as we are good people and are trying our best to make the most of what we have.

Me: Wow, Chris. Chris, thanks for being on the Phile. Go ahead and plug all your websites and I wish you continued success. I hope to see you at a convention again soon.

Chris: Thanks for having me on the site. Folks can always go to my website and say hi. But if you search Urbnpop you will find all the other great social media sites like Instagram, Twitter and Tumblr, to say hi to me on. But outside Urbnpop here is the fan page for "Pink Noise" and for another comic that me an Mr. Banks worked on together called "Illustrated Comic".,

Me: Thanks, Chris, and I so want to buy that TARDIS piece.

There you go, that about does it for this entry, kids. Thanks to Laird Jim and of course Chris Hamer. The Phile will be back tomorrow with singer songwriter Stephanie Sayers. Spread the word, not the turd. Don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye. Strawberry Blondes Forever!

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