Notes From Quarantine

With nearly everyone confined to quarters for the foreseeable, everyone has a quarantine story to tell. This is mine.

I was leading pretty much my normal life up to the week of March 9th. On Wednesday the 11th, I had lunch with my publisher- ordering actual food from a restaurant- and had a studio visit from a friend’s high school-age son in the afternoon. Thursday I had a date to go to the theater to see a performance of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time with my sister Teresa, but had one wary eye on the headlines- schools had already been closed, and the governor had banned gatherings of over 250 people. I checked the theater’s website that morning to see if the show was cancelled, and saw that a planned matinee was going ahead, but that the status beyond that was uncertain. A few hours later they cancelled the rest of the run.

I had my usual Friday visit on the 13th with my hangout buddy and sometime assistant Jacob Mercy, in which we were careful to avoid standing too close or god forbid, shaking hands, but that is the last social interaction I have had with anyone not in my immediate family. The store my wife Eve manages was slipping into closing by degrees- first, closing one day a week, then taking a planned two week holiday, then shutting until further notice.

Our daughter Rebecca flew home from LA on Tuesday the 17th- classes at UCLA had gone online, but she had intended to stay in the dorms through finals week, but we were worried that flights might be cancelled altogether. The three of us stayed in the house together, apart from a two-day trip to the coast, for the next ten days.

David Chelsea is reading: The Last Cruise
by Kate Christensen

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Two Modern Love Illustrations For February

 

I had two of my old Modern Love column illustrations from the New York Times repurposed for the podcast in February. From the website:

“How do you fall in love again after loss? How do you feel with all the complicated, conflicted emotions that come from grieving one person, and also opening yourself up to loving someone else?

That’s what Brendan Halpin explores in his essay. It’s called “Dedicated to Two Women, Only One of Them Alive.”

It’s read by Terry Crews. He stars in “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” which returns to NBC on February 6th.”

David Chelsea is reading: She Said: Breaking the Sexual Harassment Story That Helped Ignite a Movement
by Jodi Kantor & Megan Twohey

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Stuff I’ve Been Posting On Patreon

I haven’t written here for a while, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been busy. I’ve been posting content regularly on my Patreon page, which of course you would know about if you were one of my sponsors. My main effort has been going to instructional perspective videos created in Adobe After Effects. Since the last time I wrote about this project, I’ve posted three more:

Drawing Perspective with David Chelsea: Simple Two-Point Perspective

Drawing Perspective With David Chelsea: Simple Three-Point Perspective

Drawing Perspective with David Chelsea: Three-Point Perspective Axioms

David Chelsea is reading: Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me
by Mariko Tamaki and Rosemary Valero-O’Connell

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John McWhorter Gives You The Dish On “Ish.”

To be a freelance commercial artist can be an isolating experience, and one way I pass the lonely hours is by listening to lots and lots of audio books and podcasts. I listen to a number of podcasts under the SLATE umbrella, and one my favorites is Lexicon Valley, the language podcast hosted by linguist John McWhorter. In one of his programs a few weeks back, John made passing mention of a new word, “ish”, which he defined as a truncated sort-of-adjective, used thus: “Is your car green?” “..ish.” This piqued my interest, and I wrote in to point out that “ish” has a history predating that use.

David Chelsea is reading: Dreyer’s English
by Benjamin Dreyer

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Round Black Glasses: The Morph

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The other day I blogged about the first Adobe After Effects project I posted to YouTube, a morph video of my son Ben’s Presidential portraits. Today, it’s another morph video, a survey of famous Round Black Glasses wearers both from history and popular culture, including Harold Lloyd, David Hockney, Sigmund Freud, Barton Fink, Mr. Peabody and Sherman, Edna Mode, Poindexter, Simon Chipmunk, and MTV cartoon star Daria. The video can be seen here.

David Chelsea is watching: Ruby Sparks
starring Zoe Kazan

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Belated RIP, Joe Erceg

Joe's House. Acrylic on world globe by David Chelsea, 2008. Not for sale. Photo by Tom Lechner. tomlechner.com/
Joe’s House. Acrylic on world globe by David Chelsea, 2008. Not for sale. Photo by Tom Lechner. tomlechner.com/

2018 is winding down, and I have some unfinished business. The graphic designer Joe Erceg, a longtime friend, died this past June. From the Oregonian obituary:

David Chelsea is reading: Carrying the Fire: An Astronaut’s Journeys
by Michael Collins

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RIP, Steven Abrams

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I have sad news to report. My old friend Steven Abrams died late last month of a heart attack at the age of 54. I first met Steve in 1992 at the San Diego Comics Convention when he was an intern with my first publisher Eclipse, and when he moved to New York shortly afterwards he became my assistant and letterer on Welcome To The Zone. After I moved to Portland and Steve moved to LA, we kept in touch by mail, even when everyone else had switched to pixels, and actually Steve was my last regular snail mail pen pal.

Steven Abrams, date unknown
Steven Abrams, date unknown

David Chelsea is watching:The Little Hours
starring Kate Micucci

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Holiday Shopping List

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In doubt about what to get your loved ones for the holidays? Who isn’t? Well, here are some timely gift suggestions to fill those empty stockings:

David Chelsea is reading:The Clancys of Queens: A Memoir
by Tara Clancy

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