Doot Doot Garden: The Blog of Craig Thompson
Doot Doot Garden: The blog of graphic novelist Craig Thompson
thank you chunks August 18th, 2011

Cleaning out the drawing studio in preparation for book tour, I excavated copies of thank you cards drawn for four cartoonists who endorsed
the first edition of GOOD-BYE, CHUNKY RICE way back in 1999. Can you identify those authors and/or scenes mashed up from their own work?

“the severed branches were still reaching for air” August 6th, 2011

Writer Elif Shafak: “In Istanbul, you understand, perhaps not intellectually but intuitively, that East and West are ultimately imaginary ideas,
ones that can be de-imagined and re-imagined.”

Meanwhile, my friend Kazim Ali is traveling through Jerusalem and Palestine and blogging at the Huffington Post. Please, check it out.
Below’s another peek at our collaboration for the CBLDF Liberty Annual (colors by Dave Stewart).

scrolls and slumgutso July 28th, 2011

At the Shanghai Art Museum, I nerded out over the 320 meter “Scroll of Taiwan Scenery” by Taiwanese artist Hsu Wen-jung. In Wisconsin
(visiting family a month ago), I excavated from the attic a scroll I drew during Mrs. Kamenick’s fourth grade class. It puts HABIBI to shame.
It’s 77 pages taped together (70 feet!) blending text & visuals, and tackling every genre of boyhood fantasy — including race cars, fighter jets,
spaceships, monsters, and destroying the USSR! (I was ten…) Wish I could scan and share the insanity with you… instead, here’s a couple of slices.

And here’s some snippets of complex narrative from pages I don’t have room to show:
“Soon we were on our way to another universe to free the humans that were being held prisoners on the planet Slumgutso. But we cancaled [sic]
our trip because we found out that the humans were dead. We got back to earth just in time, because we had to spy on the USSR’s underwater city.”

Also this:
“We took the hottest quickest and slickest cars, to get away from the coppers faster. We were going 950,659 mph.”
My comics career could have careened off an entirely different trajectory. Speaking of which, thanks to you who said HI at San Diego Comic-con!

summer storm July 19th, 2011

Today launches www.habibibook.com. It’ll expand as reviews, tour dates, and my own contributions pour in. Check in to christen it now.

Tomorrow, departing at the earliest hour for the San Diego Comic-Con. Here’s my signing schedule to the best of my knowledge:
Wednesday, July 20th • 6:30-8PM Top Shelf Booth #1721
Thursday, July 21st • 11AM-NOON and 3PM-4:30 Top Shelf Booth #1721
Friday, July 22nd • 11AM-12:30 Pantheon Booth #1515
Saturday, July 23rd • NOON-1PM Pantheon Booth #1515 … 2:30-4PM Art of the Graphic Novel panel Room 24ABC
Sunday, July 24th • 10AM-11AM and 1PM-2PM Top Shelf Booth #1721

Top Shelf will have new hardcover and softcover editions of BLANKETS. Pantheon will have the Comic-con exclusive tri-fold poster and
some extra HABIBI goodies. In addition, I’ll participate in impromptu/casual signings across the street at TRICKSTER. That Art of the Graphic
Novel
panel includes cartoon luminaries Chester Brown, Seymour Chwast, Eric Drooker, Joyce Farmer, Joëlle Jones, and Jason Shiga;
and is moderated by Tom Spurgeon of the COMICS REPORTER(original stormtroopers photo presumably attributed to Michael Neel)

backyard blankets July 10th, 2011

The new editions of BLANKETS are here in time for San Diego Comic Con (in stores in August). The hardcover is the exact same dimensions as
HABIBI so they’ll mesh nicely on bookshelves. Check the stamped gold foil and spotgloss. They both have fancy smyth-sewn bindings to sprawl
open in the sunny backyard. And that’s the trifold poster lounging with them. Hope you all are enjoying the summer. Thanks for checking in!

progress June 23rd, 2011

While you’re all being patient for the HABIBI release, here’s some progress updates on slightly smaller projects.
The trifold poster is being colored by the Eisner award-winning Dave Stewart! He’s also coloring the Kazim collaboration for CBLDF.
(For TRICKSTER at ComicCon, we’re planning a B&W screenprint version.) And the BOLSTER mural is not yet finished, but getting close.
Here’s the scaffolding chaos from a couple of weeks ago…

Also, we had a first contest of sorts on the facebook page. Of course, it’s impossible to choose from so many moving stories from you readers.
Thanks for being in touch. More soon!

tri-fold June 14th, 2011

Happy summer, Blog-friends! My publisher has set up a Facebook page for me. I’m not directly posting there, but I can check in daily on your
generous comments. They’ll be up-to-the-moment news and a few contests and giveaways. Perhaps I’ll dabble in personal posts, but I don’t
want to neglect the DOOTDOOTGARDEN blog any more than I already do. The garden needs weeding, watering, and few more flowers planted.

At the drawing table, I’m juggling a handful of projects. Including:
a.) A collaboration with poet Kazim Ali for the CBLDF‘s Liberty Annual.
b.) Edward Lear’s “The Owl and the Pussycat” in comics form for the upcoming NURSERY RHYME COMICS from First Second Books (October 2011).
c.) And a tri-fold poster for San Diego Comic Con. (Chunky, Blankets, and Habibi merge)

Thanks to all of you for your patience. The HABIBI tour will be here sooner than later.
And an update for fans in the Philippines: It looks like I’ll make it to Manilla early next year. See you all soon!

bolster beginnings May 18th, 2011

My little bro Jon (“Phil” in BLANKETS: see pee fight) runs a brand management design firm named BOLSTER with two biz partner buddies.
They’re moving into a swanky new studio space, so about a month ago, I flew to Minneapolis to help decorate one of the walls with a mural.
I caught a nasty flu, but managed to brainstorm ideas with my bro, and knock out a proportional paper version of the mural on his dining room table.

The REAL work — the tangible, sexy work of putting paint to wall – was handled by the talented Andrew Young.
Here’s Andrew solo, and then with my brother, in the earliest stages – projecting and tracing the drawing to prepare for painting.

As BOLSTER’s grand opening, Andrew’s birthday, and the mural’s completion approach, I’ll post more. (Next week, I’m in NYC for BEA.)

easy cheese May 11th, 2011

Quick heads-up to locals that I’m appearing at a Portland comics show this Saturday, May 14th. Wondernorthwest @ Crowne Plaza Hotel,
1441 NE 2nd Ave. At 3 o’clock, I’ll give a talk, signing at 4, and then a discussion panel titled CUTTING THE CHEESE with long-time Wisconsin
pals Kurt Halsey and Tim Seeley. Excited to discuss beer-cheese soup, protesting Imperial Walker, and the Packers!

Also, while I’m at it: here’s a glimpse at confirmed tour dates. More to follow, including the Eurotour!
May 24th • Book Expo America, NYC
July 21st – 23rd • San Diego Comic-Con
September 10th&11th • SPX, Bathesda, MD
September 15th • Center for Cartoon Studies, Vermont
September 27th • Powell’s Books, Portland
September 30th – October 3rd • APE, San Francisco
October 5th • Seattle Public Central Library, Fantagraphics
October 8th • Wordstock & Live Wire Show, Portland

paint brush hill May 6th, 2011

Fresh home from China, An amazing experience impossible to sum up in a handful of images. I didn’t do as much drawing as I’d like,
but I was inspired by exhibits at Shanghai Art Museum (including the cartoons of Hua Junwu and scrolls of Hsu Wen-jung), the outdoor “opera”
Impression Lijiang directed by Zhang Yimou, and most of all by the old men who practice calligraphy with water every day in the park.

Personal highlight was bamboo rafting near Yangshuo. I slipped while moving the raft over some rocks and sprained my wrist (why I quit skate-
boarding) and was looked after by a group of coworkers/friends traveling from Guangzhou. Thanks, guys, for the tandem bike ride and amazing feast.
And thanks most of all to S & J for making the trip happen.