This past Thursday–Nov 17th, 2011–the MINNEAPOLIS INSTITUTE OF ARTS asked the CARTOONIST CONSPIRACY to take part in their monthly “Third Thursday” series. We led an open to the public comic jam as all sorts of other events were going on (including drinking and thumping music. RYAN DOW thought it sounded like a prom was happening, and he was pretty spot-on with that assessment).
The jam was a total success. In addition to a high number of Conspiracy regulars showing up to draw, several cartoonists who rarely make it to jams and events showed, and (best of all) CIVILIANS showed up to do jam drawing too! Here’s a jam I did with a lil’ kid:
In addition to the drawing area, the MIA also set up a couple “Reading Lounges”:
How classy looking is that?! Also, the sign by this lounge area made myself and Altered Esthetics’ founder JAMIE SCHUMACHER silly with giddiness:
Speaking of silly with giddiness, there was an official MIA photographer documenting the evening. I just checked their FLICKR account and this the album cover for the evening:
Ok, so that looks staged as hell. But this one doesn’t:
I dunno. I just think that’s cool. I’ve never seen someone reading one of my comics in the wild before. (FYI: If you want to read it you can buy it online here.) Anyway… The night was super fun all around, so lets end this with some of the actual drawing I took part in. The first thing I drew was this:
Which eventually evolved into this:
One guy was just penciling panels and asking others to ink them, so here’s one I did:
MIKE TOFT started this jam that (following what I did) became a pretty fun daisy chain of violence:
Take it from someone who has done more jam comics than I can count, if you have a chance to work William S Burroughs in, DO IT!
I did several more drawings, but the following is maybe my favorite sequence I took part in. It all started when my friend and longest-time collaborator DAN MURPHY worked one Mr George Lucas into a strip:
So I couldn’t help myself but to follow it up with:
Confession Time: The Conspiracy is about to celebrate its 9th birthday. There have been something like 150+ jams done in that time (between the Minneapolis and St Paul meetings and other various events in-between), and frankly I’ve felt quite burnt-out on them the last year (going so far as to not even really participant in them for the last 6 months). The MIA event totally resparked my interest though! I don’t know. Maybe it was the fact I haven’t done jams in a while. Maybe it was the surroundings. Maybe it was the hushed, actually conspiratorial talk I was having with some people about…something. Maybe all that art concentrated in one area physically affects a person. Who knows?! All I know is I had a great time, and I thank the MIA for the opportunity and hope they ask us back some day.
Ok…one more photo before I go. The official MIA photographer was going around and noticed I’m a drunk…errr…that I had a beer. The beer was from one of the big sponsors of these Thursday events, so she REEEEEEALLY wanted to get a shot of me drawing with the beer in a prominent position in the photo so as to appease the sponsor. She took like 3 or 4 photos, moving the beer each time to different sides of me so it was in the best place possible. I was all good with this cause secretly I hoped it would result in a life-time supply of free hooch. So…imagine my surprise to see the following is the only published picture of this massive photographic undertaking: