journal page 18

july 10, 2001
headaches and odd hours
wrapped up a sequence that had been driving me up the wall for the last few weeks, a pair of characters onscreen probably not for more than 10 seconds but doing really intricate things that took forever to get right. happy to see this bit finally nailed after so long, probably no one will notice all of the tiny care and details going on with any of this animation but it's satisying for me to watch anyway. i really wish it didn't have to take this long. i don't think i'm slowing in my old age, i think i'm getting better at this sort of thing and in turn i'm not as willing to settle for less. also this is just a monstrous load of work. so now that i have just these two fellows finally interacting and choreographed properly i have to go all the way back and composite all of the other elements of stuff going on simultaneously in the moment. skreeeee

between the new film and these other projects i'm also slowly plugging away still at this maybe sort-of book project that will hopefully finally see the comic strips revived and fleshed out to everyone's satisfaction. that thing will take forever to see the light of day i promise, but rest assured i haven't forgotten.

meanwhile wondering what is left of life to live when there are zero free moments and when you find one it's by yourself at 4 in the morning taking a break drinking a pint of mysteriously blended fruit juice. and then i realize that all of my moments are by myself, they are just not free


june 28, 2001
9:30pm, animation slowly continues and it seems my apartment grows more hot and stuffy every night.

been trading notes with bill plympton and we're going to team up a little bit this summer and play a few art house theaters together - 45 minutes of his stuff, 45 minutes of mine. it should be a fun program and a convenient way to see all the films on the big screen again. i think it is going to kick off at the laemmle in santa monica and then we'll play the program at any theater that will screen it.

one of you muppets has uploaded "ah l'amour" and spammed it as an attachment to everyone with an e-mail address. three friends have been randomly forwarded it already. though this is the first time this has happened i'm sure it won't be the last and would it have killed you to at least scan the video properly? you are all going to prison.

june 18, 2001
inked all weekend and had to begin putting ice on my arm again. i can pencil for days on end but i can't help but grip the ink pens really tight for all the detail work. that plus furiously erasing the pencil lines from each page knocks out the drawing arm after several hours. i took a break from all that today to restart work on a side project, and am also gearing up for this class i am going to teach in less than a week. which is a little strange because i don't know what i'm going to do in there. we may all just go to a bar. but the best thing about teaching a class is that it will give me a reason to leave this room for a few hours of sunlight every day because i am turning into a potted plant clutching a little pen. i've already forgotten what i was going to write about but i guess you're all used to that by now. i thought about investing in a fire-proof safe yesterday. every time about now through the end of each production i get more worried that my two-years-and-growing stack of tens of thousands of finished drawings will be lost or destroyed, incinerated before i can shoot them. every time i hear sirens when i am out around town now i am convinced they are rushing to my burning room, and it doesn't even seem paranoid.

june 9, 2001
"are you guys winners?"
took the day off to go see r.e.m. play an acoustic radio show then got sucked into watching the basketball game, so not much work today. must get re-motivated... somebody better bring over the cattle prod and the caffeine IV. this is really like animating 7 films at the same time and progress is always painfully snails-pace. i'm not sure how demoralizing it is doing to get to spend several weeks just getting through a handful of pictures, as opposed to prior film's rates of progress. moreover i am still not sure how well the animation paper will actually hold up through the end of all this layered work. each page has to go through so many different passes and composites of actions that they're getting manhandled and wrinkled to pieces. totally unavoidable, will have to use that and i sort of saw it coming. when you work on a piece of paper long enough, it sort of turns into cotton and grows veins.

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