Recently we picked up the new Giant Robot from the San Francisco store. When I got asked to do the cover I was like, "Sweet". Then they informed me that I had to do an interview, and then I was like, "Not So Sweet". Cause, yeah, considering I really don't do anything I wouldn't really know what the interview would consist of.
I did the headers for all the different sections in the magazine. In the other issues most of the other artist just sent in little clips of art they already made, but I decided to draw our something on paper. And then I told Martin that he could make them hot pink instead of black, and it'll match the magazine better. And that's what he did. There was one mess up, where I think they used a lower resolution image and it didn't really print out okay, but yeah. I don't really think anyone looks at that.
This is one of the drawings I used for the headers.
They also interviewed my old roommate, Ryohei Tanaka. He mentions the Big Longs in Oakland as where he got his favorite pair of scissors. I lived with Ryohei for about two years on 54th and San Pablo. He worked at a sushi restaurant on College, and his room was actually a walk-in closet and kind of looked like mini-Japan. When you'd walk in, he had a small hallway with bookcases completely filled and his walls and ceilings were covered with posters and magazine clippings. His space was so small he had to roll in and out his bed, and he had a table that he compacted to save space, too. But at least he had a window. It was kind of like living with a cool Japanese grandfather. Only he was 24. He was always kind of grumpy with me, and he breathed heavy sometimes, and dranked a lot tea. His films were so awesome, and he also drew and later got into paper cutting.
When his student visa ran out and he moved to Japan, our new roommate Kishi took his room, and then the sushi restaurant job, just cause he knew they needed a new Japanese guy to work the register. When I lived with Kishi all he ate was a bean and cheese burrito and 2 red bulls each and every day and he rode a track bike that looked like it weighed as much as him. He was a pretty sweet roommate. Actually that whole house was full of interesting folks.
They also had a little write up of Kozyndan and what they did for Puma. Kozy and Dan introduced Eric to my work. I think I was still in college when I was corresponding with Dan. A random thing that's pretty sweet about the Kozy & Dan Combination is that Dan's last name is is "Kitchens", So Kozy's name is "Kozy Kitchens". I don't know. I wish I had a cool name.
Pretty much there really isn't that much in the interview. I tried making myself as unquotable as possible, but yeah. It's kind of weird, cause there's some stuff left off to certain answers, and so it seems like there's some random half-answers (but I guess only to me). But yeah. What are you going to do?
They started doing these GR Black Book surveys a few issues back; I totally read them before I decide if I'm going to read someone's interview. I like to pass judgments on their handwriting cause I'm shallow like that. It's weird that they ask for your blood type, but Asian cultures have a thing about that stuff. My mom's a universal donor, and donates blood regularly, so the only reason why I know my own blood type is cause I participated in some blood drives. They never paid you, but one of my favorite shirts was a blood drive shirt that was black and had a panda on it and said something about the San Diego Zoo. I remember one time they couldn't find my vain, so they popped me twice. That totally sucked. I had to walk home with my arms up in the air cause blood would leak out if I didn't. Or maybe they didn't and I just felt like they would. It was kind of a long time ago. They don't send you letters of who gets your blood, but I like to think mine went to a badly burned Albanian boy they found in a cave somewhere in Lemon Grove. But it probably went to some dude who cut himself open in a kitchen accident.
I remember reading through the paperwork to donate blood while in college and they listed a bunch of places that if you've visited in the past year or so you can't donate blood, and then I was like, I'm never going to any of these places, which was pretty much Mexico, and like anywhere in South America, Africa, and South East Asia. Then for a while anytime anyone would tell me where they would be going on vacation, I'd be like, "You won't be able to donate blood for 3 years if you go there". Yeah, why go to fucking Costa Rica when you could be donating blood? Costa Rica doesn't have free t-shirts with pandas on them.
I avoided saying as much "bad" stuff in the interview as I possibly could so I could send a copy to my Mom. I didn't use any cuss words, but I did mention ditching church when I was young. But hopefully she doesn't read it all the way to the end or anyone else in her circle of friends. When I gave her a copy of my book, I went through and uh, white-d out all the bad words in it. To tell you the truth, I do a lot of art projects that my mom never sees, and somehow I kind of mentioned the book, and she asked if I could send a copy her way, and then yeah, I didn't expect that.