Mar 29, 2009

Photos From Autism Charity Events

Enjoy these pictures from a huge autism event, Autism Walks, held at the Museum of Science and Industry in Tampa, on Saturday, March 28, 2009. The 501st Legion was well represented, with Darth Vader, R2-D2, Imperial Stormtroopers and officers. We were able to contribute to raising awareness and over $600 for a great cause, while having fun doing it.
(Click on the pictures for larger views)

Showing the softer side of the Galactic Empire... bunny ears for everyone!! The character in the center is a female Sandperson, seen in the film when young Anakin Skywalker slaughters the Sandpeople for what they did to his mother.

Stormtrooper pranks

The huge crowd gets ready to begin the walk, with the 501st in front, greeting the crowd as they walked by. I was given the opportunity to talk to the mayor of Tampa, and we spoke out the events that the 501st does for veterans at the VA hospitals in Pinellas County.

The happiness we bring to kids makes these events so much fun, and so rewarding, you ought to need a license! Kids are huge Star Wars fans, and the way their eyes light up when they see us makes all the effort worth it!

Tampa Mayor Pam Iorio, posing with members of the 501st Legion

The second event that I participated in was another autism event, Relay For Life, in Lithia. We collected a dollar per picture for this cause, and as it usually the case, R2-D2 was the star of the show. Marc, the Jedi who looks almost exactly like Ewan McGregor, built R2-D2 himself, and it looks, sounds and acts exactly like the movie version. It makes the R2-D2 sounds, plays music and has all the blinking lights.

It's a privilege to be able to have so much fun while supporting great causes. If you have never participated in charity or fund-raising events, I encourage you to do so. They are very rewarding and fun, and you may even make some new, lifelong friends!

Mar 23, 2009

Is Being An Artist For You?

The comedian Father Guido Sarducci has a fun little video about the benefits of being an artist. The video quality isn't great, but it's something that will give you a smile.

Mar 10, 2009

Cartooning Links To Check Out

Here are some more fun links to check out, to broaden your mind, enhance your artistic spirit, and further your development as artists. Settle back and enjoy!

The Stripgenerator site is a fun site to quickly create some comic strips, regardless of what talent (or not) you may have. Got a funny idea, but don't feel like spending hours drawing it? The Stripgenerator has a lot of pre-rendered characters, objects and shapes that you can click and drag into the boxes. You don't have to register, but if you do, you get access to a larger group of clip art to use, and your creations get entered into your own blog. You can also check out other users' strips as well! Below are two strips that I created using this site.

Scott Campbell - Inside The Shape

Scott Campbell creates engaging, whimsical paintings of things happening inside all sorts of shapes, like a cutaway illustration. The detail is impressive, and what seems like a very simple idea is done with a lot of skill and style. So the moral of the story, is think out of the box! Check out his work by visiting this link.

This site was inspired by the realization that people like to watch artists create. When someone is drawing in a coffee shop, restaurant or waiting room, people always want to know what you're drawing, and watch you create. This website has videos of artists drawing, and discussing their creations as they draw. Check it out HERE.

(If the videos below are not working, it is because of a server issue with the hosting site from which they are embedded)

The Sweater

Ahh, you're in for a treat!
This is one of my very favorite animated shorts. Based on an acclaimed Canadian children's book, The Sweater is about life in rural Quebec, Canada in the 1940s, and a little boy who has to deal with disappointment. Read by the author in a charming French Canadian accent, this is a very entertaining little film, sponsored by the Film Board of Canada. The Film Board of Canada is a government agency that fosters art and entertainment in order to preserve and protect French Canadian culture. Sit back and enjoy this animated short, and let me know what you think!

The Cat Came Back

Also from the Film Board Of Canada is this hilarious, Oscar-nominated short about a cute kitty-cat that just wouldn't leave (my girlfriend has three cats; I know how this character feels). This one is guaranteed to put a smile on your face!

The Big Snit

Another from the Film Board of Canada, The Big Snit is a both funny and touching animation about a silly argument between a married couple who make up just in time.

Mar 9, 2009

The 501st At Megacon

Saturday, February 28, 2009
The 501st was heavily represented at Megacon in Orlando February 28; there were over one hundred members from 501st Garrisons all over Florida and some from Georgia as well. The 501st had one of the more popular tables, showcasing home made props and costumes from the films. That afternoon there was a large group picture taken, which attracted quite a lot of picture takers! After Megacon was a 501st dinner, and joining us were several actors from the Star Wars films, including Peter Mayhew, who played Chewbacca. Click each picture for a larger view.