Insult School Episode 451

Dr. Brian’s ‘Learn to Layer Your Insults’ quote out of context #451:

“Second only to overcoming a scent best described as ‘backed-up sewage near a wharf’, the hardest part of doing your mom was training my penis to ignore its own gag reflex.”

Just Great. No, Really.

“The first-ever BMW 2-series.”

Just great. Now we can have people with even lower credit scores driving like complete fucking assholes. At least the Mini Cooper owners will have some competition.

On a much more positive note, I imagine a future where the leading Kickstarter campaign utilizes alien-level tech to siphon some of that perpetual right-turn signal energy from every Toyota Avalon to allow a percentage of Infiniti and Lexus drivers to experience the thrill of illuminating at least one blinker bulb at some point in their vehicle’s life cycle.

Cat Videos and Murder

This month marks twenty-five years of the web.

Enjoy the FIRST-EVER cat video, from nearly one hundred years before the web. A film recorded in Edison’s office of boxing cats, which neatly ties together the history of a place that has become a bastion for thieves, Copyright infringement and other debauchery, via a motion picture, which Edison stole the patent for by murdering Louis Le Prince.

Hooray progress. Thanks, Al Gore.

Olympic Innovation in Solo Events

Conversation in Some Sort of Context, Could have Been an Olympian or Even a Porn Star Edition:
“That Old Spice guy is pretty buff. He could have been an Olympian.”
“Perhaps he’s not an athlete. Simply being all ripped doesn’t necessarily mean that you have the coordination and whatnot.”
“But he’s like more muscular than some of the people in these events. Well, not more than these Russian chicks, but overall.”
“With that logic, I could have been a movie star.”
“I mean I have the equipment, I just never could polish the technique.”
“There are a lot of solo events. in the Olympics. You could have tried that. I mean those do involve a lot of tossing of things.”
“Imagine it… ‘Jim, we’ve seen a lot of innovation at the games over the years, from Fosbury’s flop to those weird bubble people in Albertville, but never anything quite like this.'”
“‘I agree, Bob. While many competitors would stick to the tried and true thrust-and-release technique, he really hangs in there and gives it his all, really working that thing.'”
“‘It hasn’t been an easy ride for him to get here. There is a lot of controversy regarding his use of questionable supplements, his taping of a photo of Bea Arthur inside of his sunglasses, questions of whether he’s been hypnotized to only think about Baseball stats… Not to mention the overt sponsorship from the Shake Weight people.'”
“‘Good thing for him that there’s no time limit. Unfortunately there is no dedicated clean-up crew either, so we’re seeing a lot of the guys having to alter their approach and foot plant angles.'”
“‘There have been complaints as well about him leaving sandwich crumbs behind, falling asleep during interviews, using an exorbitant amount of talc in the later rounds…'”
[family member who asked not to be named but plays part of Wife enters room]
“What are you guys talking about?”
“Innovation in the Olympics… More specifically how the Javelin throw could benefit from a partnership.”
“We didn’t get that far. We’ve only really discussed it as a solo event, but I do like the way you think.”
“I may just go back in the other room.”
“Hey, what’s a Shake Weight?”
“I’m definitely leaving.”

It’s No Econo-Lodge, That’s for Sure

Olympic Village

Speaking of the Olympics, it would seem as though things are worse than the media would lead you to believe in Brazil. Take the Olympic Village for example. Granted, one doesn’t come to expect five-star accommodations in a third-world country, but the lack of reliable Wi-Fi (and en-suite plumbing… and a roof), but you really begin to see how bringing in Venezuelan decorators may have been a mistake.

On the bright side, however, it’s nice to see Motel 6 upping their game on the international stage, and hiring what appears to be at least one part-time maid for the duration of the event.

Miming Towns of the Old West

If you’ve ever abandoned all fear and simply wanted to know the thoughts that go through my head, here’s a sample from the “Television in BrianLand” File:

“Tonight on Miming Towns of the Old West, Marcel Montana. We’ll visit a place where the winds rip so violently through the main square that residents have evolved to walk at a near sixty-degree angle.”

[cut to scene of cowboys leaning against non-existent boxes while one pulls on an imaginary rope to lead an equally imaginary horse – VOICEOVER: “Yes, it’s never a dull day here in Marcel, sister city to Paris, France. Here we see Bose ‘Mr. Pockets’ Ketchum wrangling some lunch!”]

“We’ll visit the high-security prison [wide shot of three men “trapped” in an imaginary cube], and get to know a four-hundred pound local known only as ‘Tumbleweed.'”

It’s Not My Favorite Film

After avoiding it for twenty years, I made the mistake of watching the movie Swingers.
What an utter pile of dog shit. If you’re a fan, please, for the love of my fragile sanity explain to me just what the draw is. I mean, outside of the fraternity “Bro” crowd, I cannot see how anyone could find anything redeeming in that disjointed, poorly-written film. Had they simply taken the film from the tin and wiped it WITH that dog shit mentioned a couple of sentences back, the flow would have been more enjoyable and logical to follow.
“But it’s a nineties CLASSIC!!” these bearded, man bun-wearing hipsters will cry. I can only reply to that with a dose of reality:
No matter how you try to sugar-coat it, the 1990’s were garbage. Take off those blue mirror-tinted Gargoyles (or Heaven forbid BLADES, you moron) and turn down the Fugees, and wake to realize that films like this are worse than a splash of mustard on your Hypercolor t-shirt; a big disappointment.
Then again, I don’t like the movie Scarface. I cannot begin to put into words just how much I hate that fucking film. I can recall when it was on SpikeTV nearly every four hours, and probably goes a long way in explaining why that network sucked balls in nearly every respect outside of MXC, which should put things into perspective, having been simply an over-dubbed edit of the show Takeshi’s Castle. Say hello to acting school, you dwarf-ass guido shitbag. I don’t for a minute buy that you’re a Cuban. If you’re going to remake a film, at least do it some justice. The Pacino version is like the new Ghostbusters of remakes, only instead of being a bunch of man-hating hacks, Tony is a film-hating spaghetti bender playing a laughable Latin. Speaking of which, they’re talking about RE-remaking it. Yeah… the guy who just remade The Magnificent Seven is going to remake this slimy turd. Such talent, Antoine. You should go on a cooking show and serve leftovers. I’ve nearly gotten off track here. Where were we? Oh yeah, the LA cocktail scene of the 1990’s as seen through the eyes of a half-wit.
Swingers may have been the film that “defined” Vince Vaughn or whatever some idiots claim, but the thing is aggravatingly drawn-out and sheer and utter bromance bullshit. I really don’t want to sit there for the duration of the movie feeling embarrassed for this group of self-important failures. The entire thing feels like a rip-off of Clerks, but with characters you just wish would drop their showbiz dreams, exit the film and move back to wherever they fucking came from in the first place. You know when you watch something and root for characters to be offed? That gun scene had be thinking “well it’s about fucking TIME!!” And then in true 1990’s fashion, it turned out to be just a bunch of candy-ass parking lot posturing with a feel-good ending wherein they all get together to play video games. How dare you bring Hockey into this. IS NOTHING SACRED?!
I blame this film for the influx of douchebags and their ilk trying to be Mickey Rourke caricatures and running around quoting movies in the late 1990’s, and that crime can never be fully apologized for. Oh, you come close with the first Iron Man,  Johnny-boy. Hell, even Cowboys and Aliens or Elf to a point. But watching you in Swingers?! Fucking fuhgeddaboudit.
Like I said, Favreau went on to do some pretty good things afterward… So sitting around blaming this movie for everything is a crime tantamount to disregarding the shoddily-designed catapult that launched Wile E. Coyote into a cliff wall; sometimes you can forgive and even overlook the poorly-designed vehicle that got you to where you needed to be, even if that destination was splattered against a cliff wall in he desert. In that light, I’ll stick to implicating the film in having influenced a generation of weak-minded frat boys running around calling things “money.” And yes, if you’re quoting a Spike Lee-directed Nike commercial via a poorly written, lit and presented “movie,” well, you’re relatively weak-minded.
Short version, I fucking hate the movie Swingers. Ask me anything.

Behind the Scenes Again

behind the scenes illustrator

Having gone well off of the beaten path again lately, I thought it would be nice to revisit the original theme of this blog for a bit, and look behind the scenes of some renderings. What do you say?


A peek at the process:
Starting with the tried-and-true box method to nail perspective and proportions, I sketch the essential shapes and components (taking time to design a wheel, too!), and then scan the sketch, and begin the heavy lifting in Illustrator. Around forty-nine layers in total, this one is relatively straightforward, with only minor custom changes, allowing for a little more time to play in the details.

No presets, meshes or brushes, just paths and pen tool. There’s a lot to be said for using the basic tools, and I find it to be a very Zen experience; it becomes the art of massaging your brain while working. It can get tedious, but the key is in finding a rhythm, wherein you can alternate between left and right brain, solving little design and engineering issues as you make everything look “right” or “cool.”

My goal is a smooth, clean piece which retains some of the raw lines, but with a heavy focus on getting the little stuff in all of the right places:


Speaking of playing in the details, lets’ take a peek at the hundreds of paths that sometimes need to be squeezed into a fraction of an inch with some custom ‘Cuda tail lamps. In this case, we were looking at creating the concept art to show the customer what ’71 Charger lamps would look like in his ’70 ‘Cuda (see here for more on that!):

vector paths

From paths upon paths to a detailed illustration:

detail of vector illustrtion

A behind-the-scenes look at the rendering for the project, working from a loose box guide to sketch, and then into Illustrator for around forty hours of pen tool work, this time strictly using the mouse as my hands weren’t cooperating:

behind the scenes illustrator

One more piece for this installment, and a rendering that was a big challenge and a ton of fun at the same time, as it required creating something that didn’t yet exist, and finding a way to create a unique spin on the classic belly tank-based land speed car:

conceptual art

Working with just the basic plan, it was a matter of packaging everything neatly and orderly, and then making the aesthetic work. Starting with the tried-and-true box method, I git the perspective working in my favor, and worked to get the parts and pieces that my client wanted showing, and then built upon that foundation once the loos sketch was scanned and in Illustrator. The post work in Photoshop brings the whole thing to life, and it took  lot of restraint to avoid losing the original hand-drawn feel. I think it worked out in the end:

land speed car rendering

Dinner Conversation Gone Below the Belt: Busting a Drupe

“I’d really like to try a coconut that’s more solid inside… You know how coconuts have like different periods of development?”
“Like puberty?”
“That’s why they’re hairy.”
“This is why we can’t have conversations at the table; immature comments like that.”
“Perhaps it’s the subject matter.”
“This isn’t immature. It can be scientific. For instance, the coconut’s scientific name is ‘Cocos nucifera.’ See? Not immature. Educational, in fact, dare I say enlightened, dropping science-y words and stuff.”
“Now it has an international flavor about it; historical if you count the whole ‘dead language’ thing. This just went all Mensa. And ‘Cocos nucifera’ translates literally to ‘nut bearing.’”
“Which explains why you want one in your mouth. NOW it’s immature. See what you brought upon yourself?”
“I’m done.”
“You were done when you chose to talk about solid, hairy nuts.”
“Drupes, to be technical. A drupe has an outer skin with a semi-solid shell and a pit or seed inside. A coconut is a drupe… and technically, your nuts are closer to drupes.”
“And even more so as you get old, and they touch the toilet water.”

The Inner-Spring Workings of a Killer

Conversation Gone Awry: Dinner With the Youngest/Vocabulary Skills Edition:

“So how was school today?
“OK. We talked about a lot of stuff in Technology.”
“Like what?”
“Do you know what ‘patricide’ is?”
“I’m not certain that I like where this is headed.”
“It’s when you kill your Dad.”
“You want dessert? Maybe a car?”
“…and there’s matricide.”
“Or mattress-cide. But that takes a lot of planning and upper body strength. I mean you can’t be too covert carrying around a California King… or better, a QUEEN-SIZE, and then snuffing someone with it, and running away. That would really confuse the cops, though. ‘Detective, we’re stumped. All of these victims appear to have been suffocated by something heavy, but soft.'”
“OOH! ‘But they look comfortable. No pressure points.'”
“Yes! We need an ’80’s cop one-liner… ‘I guess his sleep-number came up.'”
“‘The best AND worst night’s sleep EVER.'”
“BETTER: There’s a copy-cat murderer who is dragging around an old Craftmatic Adjustable bed. He gets caught quickly, though. Those are heavy, I’d imagine.”
“Why not just use a pillow?”
“This guy is too crafty for that. He tailors the mattress to the victim. ‘This bastard here… He’s getting futon-ed.’ Maybe his grand finale is dropping a sleeper sofa from a roof…”
“You’re weird, Dad.”

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