I don’t trust people who don’t have a sense of humor. I know, hard to believe such creatures even exist, but they do, poor feckless slobs. A person without a sense of humor, I have discovered, in addition to being unutterably excrutiating to be around, is a person without a sense of perspective, a person who lacks the ability for self-reflection (and thereby lacks the ability to hold him or herself accountable or to apologize), and a person who is ultimately incapable of real compassion. So say I. And another thing about those hoodlums on Wall Street…
…just kidding. I’ll save the Wall Street crowd for another diatribe. Back to the subject of humor. My best friends are all people who are capable of sillyness. They are people who have not forgotten what it is like to be a child and to laugh so hard, you spray milk out of your nose. There are many types of humor that I greatly enjoy, but one of my favorites is the sort that derives from a well-developed compassion for the human condition and displays a genuine good-heartedness and affection for one’s fellow travelers upon the Great Blue Marble.
Combine the above qualities with artistic ability, and I am transported into veritable throes of joy and appreciation. Which brings me to a couple of art geeks I wanted to share with you. If I had had kids back in the day, it’s fairly safe to say that if they’d turned out like their Mom, they’d be art geeks today, which is a special breed of people who like to draw and draw and draw — on the computer. Not that Crayolas have never figured in their lives. But Adobe Illustrator has all these new swatches and you can import your layers as frames in Adobe Flash and import your Flash animation into Dreamweaver and……well, you get the idea. So, assuming I’d done the motherhood thing in my twenties instead of going to art school and hanging around with pot-smoking Viet Nam vets who were going to art school on the GI bill and wearing a lot of black with their army surplus fatigues, I might have a couple of strapping sons in their thirties now and they might have turned out like Christoph Niemann or Chris Georgenes. So, if you promise to come back, I’ll tell you who these boys are and how to visit them.
Chris Georgenes is a Flash Animator who lives in Boston. His website is mudbubble.com. When you click into his portfolio (after you’ve finished playing with the flying dog and mousing over the text links to make those really cool shooting and clinking sounds), you will meet perhaps my favorite monster on the web, who sits in the upper left hand corner of his portfolio page. Be sure to poke him with your mouse and wake him up from time to time. Chris has children (which means I’m a grandmother!!) and because he is, like many a father, completely infatuated with his darling daughter, the unsinkable Andrea, he has created one of my all-time favorite bits of web animation, which you may visit here: “Twinkle, Twinkle”
Christoph Niemann is a graphic designer who is perhaps best known for his wry and wonderfully executed covers for The New Yorker Magazine. He also maintains the Abstract City Blog at the NYTimes.com, which contains some characteristic examples of his art-geek humor, trained lovingly upon such subjects as urban living, fatherhood, home decorating and art itself. His latest blog entry includes Lego representations of the things he misses about the Big Apple, now that he and his family are living across the pond. You can visit his website here.
There is a certain irony in the fact that I might actually have raised a few art geeks of my own had I not spent so much of my youth hanging out with their Baby Boomer predecessors way back when, who were fun and everything, but largely unsuitable as husband/parent material. Oh, well. I like to think that I helped pave the artistic way for my adopted art geek sons and daughters, who can now actually find gainful employment drawing on their computers all day thanks to us old artsy hippie chicks who played with our Etch-A-Sketch’s for hours on end and drew flip-books by hand to make mice chase cats and dreamed of things that would later be invented by Adobe and Auto-Cad and Wacom.
I hope you enjoy visiting my boys. So clever, such talent, such humor. I’m kvelling! You have to come back to Momma, though. You promised……
Please click on the post title or the comment link below to post a response.