Behind The Page #004
Updated: Nov 2, 2021
"Don't skip around! Finish this first and then move on to the next." Wise words from a great Man. I'm asked, quite often, where do I get my ideas for stories from? Truth is, the ideas come from somewhere inside as well as somewhere outside. What I mean by this, is part of my youth experiences have often stayed with me. And, among those experiences, some outside influences have also made a lasting impact on me. While, the inside experiences are often very clear and to the point, the outside ones seem to show up in the process. For example, I knew right away that I wanted to write a story that centers around a pair of 'buddy characters' and I also knew that I wanted to dedicate it to people in my life that impacted me with their teachings. So, it was from my heart and from inside that really inspired me to write and draw "Neal and Stan- Build a House." Outside of this, where the story would take me, was sort of an experience that came out of just being fluid and fast and really not thinking too much about it, but rather getting it done the way I know how to get it done. Confused? I guess, in short, the people that taught me the way to do things, who gave me the right tools to get things done, in turn, allowed me to learn as I went along. Thus, it was their outside experience and patience that inspired me.
It's funny where life takes us. We start down one road, it forks into two, we choose another path and then that path becomes a highway! Then, we find ourselves speeding down that highway until an oasis sucks us in or an exit comes along. It's here, that life allows us a moment to reflect and then get back on to the road. Only question is, which road now? When I reflect on my roads traveled, I am forever grateful for many of them; some I would travel again any day and everyday while others have been closed, in some ways, for good. And, this is where the drive gets tricky. You see, I want to skip around, I want to go back and I want to move ahead. The highway is zipping by again and it's zipping by me! WAIT, don't close that road!..
Reflect... that's right, maybe just stay at the oasis a little longer, "finish this first and then move on to the next." Do you get the idea, yet? I did. When I finished "Neal and Stan- Build a House," I knew that it was dedicated to my Grandpa, the architect and to my Uncles who, among them, were builders, framers, painters, architects and tradesmen. They taught me as I was growing up. What I didn't know right away was that I was also dedicating the book to The Man- Jim Makris. Jim taught me more than just spackle and paint, plaster and tile. On the road of life, he helped teach me how to drive. The illustration above looks fast and out of control, but it's also about sharing the road and enjoying the ride of life. The page above is only a metaphor, a foreshadow, an homage... but behind the page is a road that is well traveled, it's one filled with great memories and it's one that I would love to ride all over again.
"Hey, Jim, watch out for the big bird!"