Sunday, January 25, 2009
Neil Diamond turned 68 yesterday. "Cracklin' Rose" was glued to my brain for most of the day after working on this, and it's still there right now. I believe I might do a velvet painting of this. It simply feels like the right thing to do.
And now for the best rendition of the National Anthem I've ever heard. Why on earth did Arethra Franklin get to do the Inauguration?
On Friday, January 23rd, Richard Dean Anderson turned 59. This is the prototype for a birthday card I gave to my brother, because the lucky bastard shares a birthday with MacGyver.
Here is the best piece of MacGyver memorabilia I have ever seen. I'll be keeping my eyes peeled on ebay.
Hard to believe this show lasted 7 seasons, and even harder to believe that I actually watched all 139 episodes, or that I would even share that (but hey, I have always been well aware of how bad the show actually was). Here is by far one of my favorite moments on the show, even though MacGyver never makes an appearance.
"Here comes one now!"
Thursday, January 22, 2009
John Hurt is 69 today. Not only did he get to play John Merrick in David Lynch's The Elephant Man, but he also had the honor of starring as the victim in this unforgettable staple in Sci-Fi history:
Piper Laurie is 77 (aka Catherine Martell in David Lynch's Twin Peaks)
Balthazar Getty is 34 (aka Pete Dayton in David Lynch's Lost Highway)
Jim Jarmusch is 56
Linda Blair is 50
Diane Lane is 44
Steve Perry (singer of Journey) is 60
D.W. Griffith would have turned 134
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
I'm pretty sure Bill Maher is one of those guys who people either love or hate. I've seen his stand-up show twice, and last fall a third opportunity to see him landed in my lap when someone on Hollywood Blvd. was handing out tickets for a rehearsal of his HBO show Real Time. It was cool to finally see him in his own studio. He was running through a bunch of jokes to see which ones would bomb, so he could weed out the flops before the live taping the following night. I also met him twice, so I guess that makes me one who might "love" him.
Here's a brief clip that even though is a year old, I thought was timely enough.
My first love with David Lynch was when Twin Peaks first aired, long before I actually knew who he was. I was only 9 or 10 years old and never really knew what was going on, but my parents followed it so I enjoyed watching it whenever I could.
And in case you haven't seen this, here is a brief clip of David Lynch on the iphone, followed by an interesting (to say the least) public service commercial he directed for the city of New York.
Rainn Wilson turns 43
Paul Stanley turns 57
Buzz Aldrin turns 79
George Burns would have been 113
Monday, January 19, 2009
This is the second day in a row where I only know the actor/actress for the one Hitchcock film I saw them in. Tippi Hedren is 79 today.
While digging up reference photos, I came across a pretty awesome Barbie doll. I mean, if I ever had to purchase a Barbie and my life depended on it, I would definitely buy this one:
Interested? It can be purchased here: http://www.entertainmentearth.com/prodinfo.asp?number=MTL9663
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Cary Grant passed away in 1986 and would have been 105 today. Despite his long resume, all I've seen is Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest. I think I made him look like a product of George Clooney and Sean Connery, if it were possible for them to have a baby together.
Saturday, January 17, 2009
WAY too many good birthdays to choose from today. There's Andy Kaufman, Jim Carrey, James Earl Jones, Michelle Obama, Muhammad Ali, Al Capone, Benjamin Franklin, Kid Rock and Naveen Andrews (Sahid from Lost). The Maury Show will always hold a place in my heart, so I had to go with Maury.
This might be one of the most redundant day-time TV shows, but for some inexplicable reason it will never stop amusing me. A few years back I knew it was time to take a little break from my morning routine when they did one of those clip shows highlighting past guests. It was titled something like, "The 10 Most Outrageous Cheating Couples Ever!". By the end, it turned out that I had actually seen each and every one of those when they originally aired. Yes, I am admitting this and sharing it with everyone.
A good 85% of the show consists of paternity test or lie detector test results, while the rest is made up of oversexed teens who want a baby and/or the abusive boyfriend episodes. 2 things they don't cover nearly enough are the phobias and obese babies. Those never let me down. And for any skeptics who want to say that the guests are all acting or making up their stories, I really don't think so. Maybe once in a blue moon, but most of these guests look too stupid to lie and/or act. Now Springer on the other hand, is definitely BS. I even know someone who was a guest because she and some friends made up a story to get on. They'll take anyone.
Anyway, Happy Birthday Maury. You're looking damn sharp for 70. And a big applause to you for outliving your former peers' shows (Jenny Jones, Sally Jessy Raphael, Geraldo, Donahue, Montel, etc.). By the way, Maury has been renewed to go on at least through the 2010 season!
And now I will leave you with some classic Maury moments. ENJOY!
*Note: The best part on the last video is around 4:07 in. Classic.
Friday, January 16, 2009
Wow, 16th day of the year and this is already the 7th person I've drawn who is in their 60's. Probably most famous for Halloween, filmmaker John Carpenter turns 61 today. He has directed several horror/sci-fi greats, but as far as his best work is concerned, my votes will have to go to The Thing and They Live.
FUN FACT: Not only is John Carpenter a fellow Elvis fan, but in 1969's Change of Habit, Elvis played a character named John Carpenter. A few years later, Kurt Russell played Elvis in Elvis, a TV movie directed by Carpenter.
Back to They Live, not only does it star who I always believed to be the WWF's (now WWE) most lovable wrestler Rowdy Roddy Piper, but it gets my vote for Carpenter's best film for this classic scene alone:
Thursday, January 15, 2009
It's also Martin Luther King Jr's birthday, but it's never "observed" on the actual date, anyway. Unless it happens to fall on the third Monday of January, commonly known as National "Why is the post office closed?" Day.
Besides, I was more interested in the fact that 2 deceased actors who starred in the great Airplane! share a birthday in the same week. Father of Beau and Jeff Briges, Lloyd passed away in 1998 and would have turned 96 today. Here's a short clip of his running gag from said movie.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
This evening I was strumming through the website for the newspaper from my hometown of Appleton, WI. I killed almost too much time looking through a huge archive of pretty neat historic photos of Appleton, in celebration of the city's 150th anniversary. There was a whole section on Bart Starr, legendary quarterback of the Green Bay Packers, the man responsible for their wins at Super Bowls I and II. This is where I noticed that he had a birthday LAST FRIDAY, and I had no idea! The couple sources I've been using for famous birthdays did not list Bart Starr anywhere. How shameful.
Had I known this, I wouldn't have drawn Richard Nixon. And it's interesting they share a birthday, because among the photos I found was THIS:
FUN FACT: Bart Starr was the first famous person I ever met (as far as I recall). It was on my 7th or 8th birthday. Pretty cool.
ALSO, when the first George Bush made a stop in Appleton during his presidency, he visited a print company that produced sports cards. During his speech, he was naming off various sports legends on the cards, and I remember seeing him on the news saying, "...and of course, here we have the legendary Bart Staff." Schmuck.
Robert Stack died in 2003 and would have turned 90 today. I went through the trouble of coloring everything in, but once I converted it to black and white in Photoshop, I was a little more pleased.
Robert Stack starred in several older films I have never seen, but I will always remember him as the host of Unsolved Mysteries. I was in love with that show throughout elementary school and would watch it every Wednesday night. They were all based on true stories, covering everything from murders, kidnappings and the missing; to ghost stories, UFOs, bigfoot, etc. Kind of a non-fiction version of X-Files.
I will also remember him for his great role in Airplane!. Here's a scene where he narrowly escapes an army of soliciting missionaries.
Monday, January 12, 2009
Sunday, January 11, 2009
This is kind of a boring subject. I know nothing about her other than she is the mother of 2 other famous Judds and she turns 63 today. It was a toss up between her and Mary J. Blige. But that's part of the birthday challenge. There's no guarantee that each day will offer me a fun subject, while other days might have TOO many good ones to pick from (like tomorrow!).
Saturday, January 10, 2009
The whole punching the tooth out idea was a complete afterthought. I know I should have tilted Rod's head and made his mouth and facial muscles more crooked to better sell the gag. That's what I get for being a wuss and being too comfortable with the likeness in the sketch phase and unwilling to erase.
Friday, January 9, 2009
Thursday, January 8, 2009
I toyed with the idea of birthday cake sharing, balloons and hats, but I'm pretty sure this juxtaposition is interesting enough without the help of any gags.
I'm having a few issues with proportions and an over all claustrophobic feeling (mainly because I was trying to cram this on an 8.5" x 11" sheet of paper), but that can all be fixed if and when I turn this into a full blown painting (and I think I might like to).
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
A big fan of Elvis in real life, he also plays one in Wild at Heart. In 2001 Cage got the best Elvis souvenir a fan could possibly ask for. A short marriage to Lisa Marie, making him Elvis Presley's son-in-law.
So here he is from his role in Wild at Heart as Sailor Ripley, in his snakeskin jacket. "This here jacket represents a symbol of my individuality, and my belief in personal freedom."
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
I have seen one too many caricatures of this guy (who turns 54 today) and I tried my damnedest not to be influenced by them. I kind of see Mr. Bean as the cop-out caricature (like Keith Richards or Michael Jackson), in that most artists can put little effort into the drawing, yet almost anyone will still recognize who it is. I kind of struggled with this one, because he has almost TOO much to work with.
Monday, January 5, 2009
Sunday, January 4, 2009
Happy Birthday to Matt Frewer who turns 51. A name that might be unfamiliar to most, he is better known to me as Max Headroom. He's been in dozens of feature films, with the bulk of them falling into the sci-fi/horror genre (my favorite being the 2004 version of Dawn of the Dead). He can be seen in the upcoming Watchmen (same director as Dawn of the Dead).
Max Headroom started as a science fiction television show (set "20 minutes in the future") in the mid to late 80's, and shortly after moved on to sell Coca-Cola and do his own talk show on Cinemax. If there is one non-human celebrity emblematic of the 1980's, he is the first one who comes to (my) mind.
Between all of the retro, pretend "vintage" shirts with that manufactured weathered look and the garish 80's colors (neon pink, yellow and teal) that seems to have become so fashionable with kids and teenagers, I am very surprised I have not yet seen Max Headroom sported anywhere. Maybe in the next 20 minutes?
I think we're close enough to the post-Christmas season that this video is appropriate to share. It's almost as amusing as it is unsettling.
Saturday, January 3, 2009
One of several people younger, richer, and more successful than me, NY Giants quarterback Eli Manning turns 28 today. They entered the playoffs as a wild card team with a 10-6 record last season. The bastards defeated the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship. But it was for a good cause, as they went on to defeat the undefeated Patriots in Superbowl XLII. As a result, Eli was named MVP of the Superbowl and would no longer be doomed to live in the shadow of his older brother, Peyton Endorsement Whore Manning.
This is one of those drawings that I wasn't too pleased with when I sketched it out, but for some stupid reason thought that it would look better once I rendered it. I don't know how many times I have to remind myself that no amount of rendering will disguise crappy, lazy groundwork.
Yesterday televangelist, adulterer and fraud Jim Bakker hit the ripe old age of 70. In the 1970's Bakker and his then wife, the late great Tammy Clownface Faye, began the PTL (Praise the Lord) ministry and started their own cable Tv show. They built a theme park in the early 80's know as Heritage USA in South Carolina. Complete with a 500 room luxury hotel, it was the third most successful theme park at the time, topped only by Disneyland and Walt Disney World (hard to compete with the hammer of God!).
It eventually all fell apart after a scandal involving an affair and numerous counts of fraud that lead to a 45 year sentence in prison. He was released after only 5 years for reasons I will spare here. He is now back on TV with The Jim Bakker Show, live and daily! See http://www.jimbakkershow.com for information!!
On a side note, years ago I watched a documentary called The Eyes of Tammy Faye. It was fascinating, effortlessly hilarious and borderline exploitative (but seemed unintentional) . It covers much of the Jim and Tammy Bakker story. If you ever have the opportunity and/or need some cheering up, by all means, watch it!
And here's a clip I found about televangelist scandals that features Jim Bakker's story.
*Honorable Mentions: Tia Carrere turned 42 and Cuba Gooding, Jr. turned 41.