“Aliens among us!”

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I call this the “Killing them with kindness” version of this story starter! As I’ve been looking back at the starter panels from Watusi’s first few years, I couldn’t help but tackle this one, especially when I noticed the serendipity of its upcoming anniversary. I guess either this silly talking dog idea has had more longevity than I ever expected it to … or I haven’t had a fresh idea in 20 years!

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“D– T– of the Month Club”

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Yep, it’s another “done in one” episode, this time killing two birds with one stone for me: I tried to shoehorn the ending panel from my “backwards” jam (where I started with the ending, and participants built the story backwards) with a starter to another strip. Not sure how successful this mashup worked, but it was fun to try. The “backwards” starter was the last one (if I recall correctly) I made back during Watusi’s collaborative comic era. Others who’ve attempted it had their comics printed in Watusi # 29 & #38, if you’re curious as to how it worked out for them…

“There’s no bizness like snow bizness!”

Holiday34
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2022 was kind of an oddball year for me, in that I focused much more on fine art and prints than on comics. It’s been satisfying in many ways to change gears for a while– especially since it resulted in a 10-week show at a local theatre’s gallery! “Beyond the Emerald City” was a feel-good collection of comics and other artwork from my multi-year visit to Oz in the pages of this very webcomic. If I do say so myself, it looked good up in the space, and I got positive responses at the opening. That said, I do miss creating comics to share with you on a regular basis …

I guess I need to turn that around for the new year, don’t I?

“Curse of the Mummy”

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Guess I’m still a little under the influence of the Halloween spirit*! I hope you had a fun/spooky/terrifying Halloween, depending upon your personal taste!

By the way, you may be interested to know about a gallery exhibition I’m staging featuring art and comics from Watusi’s epic comic adventure set in the Land of Oz! “Beyond the Emerald City” is on display at Playhouse on the Square thru December 28, 2022; you can read more about it here!

(* and, no, that’s not just some clever way of saying I have a hangover!)

“The late show”

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Long-time readers may recall that my Watusi comics began as jam comics created in conjunction with my fellow cartoonists. While I’m on my break from the weekly deadline merry-go-round (and doing a little retooling of Watusi’s cast while I figure out the next continued storyline), I thought I’d challenge myself to see where these vintage starter panels would lead me today. I’m trying to keep in the spirit of the early jams by writing each of my panels a few days apart, to force myself to approach it with fresh eyes each time…

Hope you’ll enjoy this run of “Done in one”s!

“Greetings from Winkie Country”

Another year, another “Watusi in Oz”-themed holiday piece! As many of you know, at the end of every year I send out a holiday piece to friends and family who have had an impact on my life that year, but as my audience has grown to include readers (via my website, FB, Twitter, & Instagram) I don’t know personally, I wanted to share the joy with my “virtual” friends as well. Thanks for taking the time to follow Watusi’s adventures every week. It’s much appreciated!

This year’s piece gives a peek at some of the adventure that occurred here in 2019. My Baum-length epic is entering its final phase (new episodes every Wednesday); I’d love to hear what you think about it, especially if you’re a fan of the original Oz books!

Besides this comic’s weekly presence in my schedule, I published seven other comics (including a collaboration with my friend Tom Cherry), helped kick off the Mid-South Cartoonist Association’s new ongoing comic series, made a dozen new prints, seven new paintings, and shared a gallery show with my friend Julie Nouwen. All in all, it was my most successful year as an artist yet, and I’m glad that comics can continue to be a part of my working life.

I hope you all have a happy start to your 2020! See you back here next week as we return to Winkie Country & “Watusi in Oz”!

“The barking contest (Summary judgment)”

This week’s comic is from Watusi #23 (Aug. 2007), part of a two-part double-blind experiment where I finished a batch of jam comics for #22 & Tom Cherry did the same for #23, both unaware of how the other was finishing them. The paired strips turned out to showcase the contrast in our styles which, while compatible, are very different. I tended to have overly-wordy solutions, while Tom’s were direct and punchy (and IMO, funnier)! You can see my take on this strip by scrolling down to last week’s episode, but if you want to see more of our contrasting styles playing well together, I recommend getting a copy of our new comic from 2019, Double Dip #2. It’s still my favorite single issue of all the comics I’ve published…

About the contributors: Dan Lauer is one of my APA-5 compatriots from back in the day; I love his mix of cartoony & action-packed artwork. Keith O’Brien makes wonderful postcard comics and blogs about life in Forbidden Falls, Maine. Even though Tom Cherry is a writer & actor appearing on stage, screen, & radio, he still finds time to be a cartoonist. And the world is a better place because of it!

(“Watusi in Oz” resumes in just two weeks– Wednesday, January 1, 2020!)

“The barking contest (Fine Print edition)”

This week’s comic is from Watusi #22 (Aug. 2007), part of a two-part double-blind experiment where I finished a batch of jam comics for #22 & Tom Cherry did the same for #23, both unaware of how the other was finishing them. The paired strips turned out to showcase the contrast in our styles which, while compatible, are very different. I tended to have overly-wordy solutions, while Tom’s were direct and punchy (and IMO, funnier)! While I’ll show off Tom’s take on this strip next week, if you want to see more of our contrasting styles playing well together, I recommend getting a copy of our new comic from this year, Double Dip #2. It’s still my favorite single issue of all the comics I’ve published…

About the contributors: Dan Lauer is one of my APA-5 compatriots from back in the day; I love his mix of cartoony & action-packed artwork. Keith O’Brien makes wonderful postcard comics and blogs about life in Forbidden Falls, Maine.

(“Watusi in Oz” resumes in three weeks– Wednesday, January 1, 2020!)