Saturday night's Cartoonistas meeting (actually, party!) was just what the doctor ordered after a rather sobering post I made earlier that day.
This momentous event was hosted by Cartoonista RAUL AGUIRRE JR. Yep kids, that's right, the host of the very lively MAN VS. ART podcast!
That's Señor Aguirre, in the red shoes, sitting comfortably under one of his lovely paintings. Raul is in fact such a whirlwind of artistic energy that my camera can only capture him as a blur even as he's sitting still!!
Raul and his lovely wife Hortencia were more than generous to host us at their wonderful home, which seems more like an art gallery and working studio space. Surrounded by all kinds of artwork, you really get a feeling for the love this couple has for art.
And another thing you get at Casa Aguirre is food. Lots of great tasting food!
Hortencia told us she was up til 2:00 AM earlier that day prepping all the food! Her homemade chicken parmesan pasta was especially exquisite, as was the one with ground beef. Cartoonista Grasiela Rodriguez, who by the way is one of the super troopers of the group, enjoyed one of Hortencias homemade brownies.
(You can see a bit of the dispenser in the foreground that was filled with several gallons of Hortencia's homemade horchata!! Man was that delicious!!)
It's a Cartoonista tradition to eat and eat along with all the art that gets created. Although that evening, even though we brought our sketchbooks, some of us didn't crack them open (I'm one of the guilty ones). What we did do was talk about comic artist's Neal Adams 'Expanding Earth Theory', Frank Miller's fall from grace (although some of us are hoping he actually starts making great comics again!!) and why the Godfather films are so &*^%$* great! I also shared with the folks why I first saw the EXORCIST on a sunny Saturday afternoon with all the living rooms curtains open (and yeah, I was in my 20s!!).
Some important business was conducted. We crowned two new artists into the Cartoonista fold.
. The man in the middle is Geo Brawn IV, comic book creator and artist, and to his left is an animator and cartoonist who came to us very highly recommended by Raul Agurrie, Mr. Luis Escobar.
I had actually met Geo on a few previous occasions, and took a liking to his get-up-and-go attitude. Luis I had never met, but found him to be very approachable and I think he'll be a great addition for us. Glad to have you two gents aboard.
Here's Co-Founder Jim Lujan looking satisfied with the festivities.
When Jimmy approached me about the idea of Co-founding the Cartoonistas with him, I'm not sure either of us truly expected how enriching this would be for us. Certainly I've made some new friends and associates in the group. And all the artists over the last two years have shared great experiences with one another. The live art shows we perform, many for young audiences, have been the things we're most proud of, and pretty much all the Cartoonistas feel the same way. Jim and I have talked about continuing to make the Cartoonista brand even better, and working alongside all our talented members, I think we're heading that way.
Another highlight for me last night was receiving a very special gift from Hortencia:
She made me a trio of sugar skulls, customized for El Muerto! I was floored by this wonderful surprise. Her creative talents, and generosity, are not to be overlooked. Not only are these sugar skulls labor and time intensive (made from scratch, naturally) but what a great idea! She truly earned my deepest gratitude, and I was flattered to have received these.
It's gonna be hard to top this Cartoonista get-together, but we like a good challenge!