A few days ago I started using a fresh Copic marker and today as I was warming-up I saw a little thread hanging from the tip. I pulled it, thinking it was lint, and it turned out to be the nib itself. It was damaged and I made it worse by yanking it. I was pissed off at myself. I tried cutting with an X-acto knife what I had pulled but I couldn't get it back to normal. Afterwards I didn't want to use the marker anymore and I didn't have any extras. I thought I wasn't gonna be able to work on my piece for a few days till I got new markers delivered. When I went on Michaels.com I saw that the store closest to me had black Copics in stock, and was doing curbside pickup, and had a coupon for 20% off the order. I ordered a couple Copic markers and a Pentel brush pen and they were ready to pick up in less than 30 minutes. I lost a couple hours, total, trying to fix it and picking up a replacement it but it was better than losing a few days waiting on a delivery. I don't know if Michaels stores have been doing the curbside pickup the whole time during the pandemic, or if they just started doing it, but it saved my ass today. And this is not an ad or endorsement, shopping at Michaels is usually pretty disappointing.
That half a house key I pulled out of my tire yesterday wasn't what caused it to go flat. Today I removed the tire, put some air in it, sprayed it with soapy water (where I pulled the key from) but there were no bubbles. I was confused till I looked on the other side and saw the nail head. I videotaped myself pulling it out with pliers. It was a big fucker, as you can see. I had a tire plug kit in my car so I was able to plug it up quick, put the wheel back on, fill all the tires to the recommended tire pressure, then went out for a spin. It was a beautiful Saturday so I drove up the hill and back. Not a smart idea, incase it went flat again, but luckily nothing happened.
This is kinda what it looks like when you go to @sanjoseday on Instagram and scroll to my post. It's one long seamless image broken down into 10 slides. I laid out a bunch of different digital drawings & designs I've made over the past few years. It was fun making this and participating in the virtual art show since we're all still sheltering in place. The actual San Jose Day event has been postponed to July 18. Hopefully we'll be over the 'Rona by then. Fingers crossed.
No one's buying t-shirts anymore so I've introduced two new items to my online store:
Frankie Mcfly's Reusable Face Mask & Frankie Mcfly's Reusable Toilet Paper Roll. For cooties & poops during this Covid-19 pandemic.
Both items are available now (find them under t-shirts) *Remember to wash before you wear or wipe!
I shot my first Instagram Live video today. I built a rig to hold my phone over my desk to record myself drawing. I made an hour long playlist on Spotify of 80s music because I read Live videos go up to 60 minutes but my video got cut off around the 30 minute mark. I freestyled the pencils then inked it with Sharpie and Copic markers. I finished it by coloring in the inside shape with a yellow highlighter but no one got to see it. Next time I'll plan for a half hour video.
Follow me on Instagram to catch the next one @frankiemcfly
Today I and counted all my shirts after the Local Color Daytime Market on Sunday and updated my inventory online. This is the part of the job that sucks the most so I'm always trying streamline and improve the process to make it faster and easier to do. Everything from the way the shirts are folded, stacked, stored & logged has had some thought put into it. I recently made changes to how I log the info so I can see how many total shirts I have in stock per design/style and made it so I can quickly figure out how many of each size & style has gone out. Making those little tweaks are fun and the data it provides is valuable.
I'm getting ready to file my taxes so I went thru last years tax stuff and found I picture I drew of myself. It was my first year filing business income & expenses for 2018 and it took me a few weeks to go over all my records and file. It sucked while I was doing it but felt great once I finished. I think I did better job at keeping records for 2019 so it shouldn't take as long as last year.
I came up with the paintbrush holder (the M shaped one with the two feet) a few years ago when I was working on a canvas. I needed something to set my brush down and not get paint everywhere. I don't know how I got the idea to bend a paperclip but it worked out great. Recently, while working on Head Thing 2, I made another brush holder then came up a second design (triangle base) that was a little easier to make. Super simple and practical. I love that shit.
I am tired of staring at spreadsheets. The whole reason I started doing this now, instead of waiting till February, is because of Covered California. I have to update my information before the end of the year so I can continue getting healthcare coverage. I went and figured out how much money I made from DJing, t-shirts, murals and graphic design work. Then figured out my business expenses and how much I can deduct. Once I got those numbers I went to the Covered California website but kept getting stuck. I spent a couple hours trying to figure it out till I got frustrated and decided I'll just give them a call on Monday. At least when this is all said & done filing taxes should be a breeze.
Today I finished going thru all my credit card transactions from 2019, till now, and made sure they were all properly logged and categorized on a separate spreadsheet. After every purchase, I'd log the date, dollar amount, who I paid, how I paid, category, and notes on the doc. A lot of damn work. I made a Google Form and saved the link on my phone to make it easier. I mostly pay everything with credit card so this took me a very long time to go thru. I've already logged my business debit & checking transactions, all I have to do is go thru my personal checking transactions and make sure they're all been entered properly. Once I'm done I can start figuring out what's tax deductible and have a head start when I file taxes.
I kinda got forced into starting my taxes a couple months before I originally intended. I'm not filing yet but I do have to figure out all my income and expenses asap. Figuring out the income was easy but going thru all my receipts, invoices, bank & credit card transactions, adding up my business expenses, is taking a long time. Once I gather up all the expenses I need to figure out what can & can't be deducted.I gotta come up with a better way of managing and logging all these transactions for next year.
8 years ago I joined my buddies non-profit group known at the time as Mexico Extravaganza. The year before I joined they put on a theater production called "Monarca" and they were gonna do it again. One of the scenes involved a large tree in the background. Someone had built them a tree the year before but they needed something bigger so they asked for my help. We went to the hardware store and bought two or three 2-inch thick 8'x4' styrofoam panels, paint and supplies. I think I shaped it with a knife and boxcutter then cut the grooves with my Dremel. I brushed on a lighter shade of brown inside the grooves then rolled on a darker brown on the surface to highlight the texture. When it was done it was 16' tall and about 10' wide at the bottom. In the end I think it was too tall so they had to chop off a few feet. I only built the trunk and someone else made the top. I don't remember if I got a chance to watch the show. I might if had to work that day. I think all I saw was the picture below.
I changed the oil in my car today and rotated the tires. When I went to drain the oil I found that the metal plate covering the drain plug & filter was bent. If it ain't one thing, it's another. The plastic it was bolted on too, part of it had been pulled off the metal frame as well. I can probably clip the plastic back to the frame if I find replacement clips and then bend the metal plate back into place. Wish me luck.
I've been cleaning house these last few days. Knocking out some to-dos, clearing out email and deleting old shit. Today I came across the flyer for my first, and only, solo art show. (October 1st, 2011 at 8:00 PM,) an animated gif I made from a drawing (Plantimal,) and a crappy picture of the Hoverboard prop I made for my Marty Mcfly Halloween costume many-many moons ago (that's where Frankie Mcfly came from)
And in other news:
I fired up After Effects tonight after watching some tutorials and made this little turd. It looked all crispy & clean before I exported it. Apparently there's a lot I gotta learn.
I watched a few video tutorials today on how to use After Effects and InDesign. I want to create animations with After Effects for fun and to promote my brand online. InDesign is perfect for putting together zines or books, which I want to do with my Inktober drawings. Tomorrow I'll fire up After Effects and try to create something cool. I'll get to InDesign later. The Inktober zine/book project is on hold till I get the proper gear to take good photos of my drawings.
Today I packaged and sent out some online orders. I've listed the process below.
There's plenty of room to simplify the process but the truth is currently don't have a lot of online sales going out the door. I'm hoping to change that!
Since all I do is complain about how long it takes to create new things, I thought I'd talk about the Inktober zine I've been working on. I've taken pictures of all the Inktober drawings I did in 2017, processed them and laid them out so they're ready to print. Now I need to come up with art for the front cover and few other pages. Here's what I've done so far. I'm not crazy about any of them. I hope I can knock this out soon because I still have to do Inktober 2018.
Holy crap! I've been working all day on making zines of my Inktober drawings from the last two years. I procrastinated and, as always, it's taking way longer than anticipated. I wanted to have a few available for the Sofa Street Mrkt Friday night but that's not going to happen. I took pictures of all the drawings with my phone and processed them using Gimp on my laptop. I then brought them into Illustrator to lay them out and resize them. All this after making a mockup zine by stapling papers and writing notes & page numbers on them. I have all the images for 2017 finishes I just need to design a cover and a few inside pages before I can say it's done. I had to stop working on the zine so I could draw my Inktober drawing for Day 3 and write a blog post before bed.
Earlier this month I designed & printed 100 flyers with my website info to hand out at the First Friday Art Walk. Last weekend I gave away the last flyer at the Viva Calle event. This week I worked on a new flyer to give away Sunday at the SoFa Street Fair. Like last time, I folded a sheet of paper into quarters and sketched ideas on each one. I took a picture of the one I liked most and digitally inked it in Adobe Illustrator Draw on my iPad. The last bits were exporting the drawing to Illustrator on my laptop to add the text and laying out the 4 copies to print. After making sure it looked good I printed 25 sheets at home and took them to Office Depot to get them cut. I'm happy the way they came out. Tomorrow I'll be putting them inside people's bags when they buy a shirt or hand them to people who come into my booth. I still have to design a new business card but I think these are a fun alternative in the meantime.
Last year, before I first went out to sell my t-shirts at an event, I had made two t-shirt displays from a long sheet of two-inch gray foam. I only had one t-shirt design, the 1.0, and it came in black or white. I didn't print any Smalls in white so when I went to go make the displays I was forced to use Mediums. One year later I'm still using the same displays but with more t-shirt styles. All is well until I realized that the Medium sized shirts sell faster than the Smalls. A couple times I've had to pull the Medium shirt off the display because it was that last Medium in that color. Now that I'm running low on inventory I thought it would be a good time to finally cut the foam displays down a size. If only dropping a shirt size in real life were that easy.
I hate folding shirts, it's one of the suckier parts of this job. At first I was folding my shirts by hand and you could tell because they all came out looking different. Then made my first Folding Thingie out of a thin piece of cardboard. All my shirts now looked uniformly stacked on my table. Everything was good until I bought plastic bags to ship online orders and the shirts needed to be opened and refolded so they would lay flat in the bag. I also bought paper shopping bags for events and the shirts didn't sit quite right in them either. I needed a more elegant solution. I made the Folding Thingie v2.0 out of thicker cardboard and made it just wide enough to fit my folded shirts perfectly into both bags by just folding them in half once. I take it to events to refold shirts that people pick up and I use it again when I count my shirts afterwards. And although I hate folding I do want people to touch the shirts, hold them up and try them on if possible. Making sure the t-shirt is a good fit is far more important to me than how they look on a table.
Since taking these photos I've cut the Official Frankie Mcfly T-shirt Folding Thingie and made it shorter. It needs to be relabeled as v2.1
They just need to be printed & cut. I'm going to hand them out at the Street Mrkt this Friday. I spent more time on it than I intended and I'm still not 100% happy with the result. Maybe next time I'll do more pen & paper work and less digital.
Check out the side by side comparison and fuck-ups below