Thursday, July 22, 2021

Seth's Birthday 2021

 The other day I was going through a box of stuff looking for a particular letter about Seth, and came across this charming doodle.  

My own doodling is more self-conscious than this, and has pretensions to beauty.  He had no such pretensions.  He loved beauty, but he could draw just to amuse himself.     
Probably he had pretensions, but from this distance I can't think of them.  He was willing to be wrong.  He was willing to look foolish.  He was willing to laugh at himself.  

One of my favorite incidents with Seth happened one day when I was visiting him and Hisako in Japan.  I am very awkward in Japan.  I am always knocking down something, and making people wait, and generally doing stupid things.  So one morning, having already done more than my share of bumbling for the day, I was in a bad mood, and said something grumpy to Seth.  Then I felt bad and apologized, "I'm sorry; I guess I am a little testy today."  Seth answered, "Yeah.  I'm a little testy too.  I guess we are just a pair of testes." 

Which made it all right again.  

Happy birthday Seth!

Friday, January 29, 2021

Floweringnose Day 2021

We have all this artwork that Seth has done.  He was so good at what he did that it is possible to just indulge in baths of Seth art soup and fill yourself with it, slurping up all kinds of  pictures:

elegant drawings for Myst 3 Exile--  
comical, clever art with his signature perspective genius, coupled with great visual storytelling in the two part Doom Patrol series,
his own designs for weird spacecraft,

a museum full of art lovers,

the weirdest of all his weird drawings: a scene both horrific and comical, where Our Hero has no chance whatever to escape (even the sun has it in for him) but he remains serene as he contemplates it all,

an absolutely fabulous fight scene, involving four people, where the action is completely clear, in which there are no right angles

a calm scene of fishing from a rock in Japanese waters,

or many others.  

In his pictures there are many different life perspectives, different styles, different moods, different 

speeds, different attitudes.  He was able to immerse himself in any of them, and enjoy them.  It was all Life, and that was what it was all about: Life.  

His artwork is so compelling that now we may be tempted to say that it is enough.  And of course, it has to be.  The man is gone.  But I'd like to offer a link to a conversation he had with interviewer Mike Jozic in 2004.  It gives a little flavor of what it was like to be with him:

Mike Jozic interview from 2004



Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Seth's 48th birthday July 22, 2020

Perspective.  Seth was SO good at perspective.  He studied it of course, made a point of learning how it works, and how to use it.  But then he owned it, and he could play with it, as in the top page from WillWorld.  

Perspective gives me fits.  Seth recommended a book by David Chelsea, PERSPECTIVE FOR COMIC BOOK ARTISTS  which I am reading and trying to use, but I don't understand what he is talking about a lot of the time.  So it feels a little bit as though I am trying to read it in a foreign language.  

But especially today, thinking of Seth, I am persevering.  

Friday, January 31, 2020


Here are some of Seth's drawings for Myst3: Exile.  Little sketches for places on the main island, or world.  Very Art Nouveau elegant.  I don't remember exactly if these got used or not; it's been a few years since I have played the game, and now the technology has changed and I can't get it to run.

Monday, July 22, 2019

It's Seth's Birthday today

I have probably posted all these before, but time goes by and it's nice to see some of the stuff we thought we knew all over again with new eyes.
Doom Patrol was not an Important Work, but it is endlessly creative, every page filled with interesting and amusing details, and beautiful layouts.  I get a kick out of it every time.  Even the pages that are only what in opera is called "recitativo"--the daily conversations that have to be shown in order for the big events to make sense--like this first page, are a delight to look at.  Seth did nothing in a commonplace way, as he had seen it done before.  No artist invents everything himself; they all stand on one another's shoulders, but Seth did not take for granted perspectives, layouts, how a particular emotion is depicted, or how a particular character needs to relate to his/her environment.  He started from scratch every time.

It's a lesson for anyone who wants to create.

Just another reason to say, "Thank you Seth." 

By the way, the kanji on Vic's T-shirt on the first page is "Heaven."

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

FloweringNose Day

We have come to celebrate this day:
It's a day to Draw, Paint, Carve, Sculpt, Sew, Knit, or use whatever is your preferred medium, or--maybe this is even better--to choose a new medium that you are uneasy about, to create Art.
It is a day to celebrate and encourage other artists to go beyond what is safe and easy, to do what their soul yearns for.
It is a day to take the necessary risks in order to get to the place you have seen in your heart.
It is a day to be grateful to Seth for having made the world a bigger and more joyful place than it was before.

Seth I love you.

Lucky little Tofu gets a pants ride!

Seth in high school

Sculpey creatures.  The one on the right is Seth's; I think Hisako did the other one.

in the arcade at Osu Kannon in Nagoya

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Seth's Birthday, a couple of days late

You can tell which of these two grave markers is Seth's.
I spent Seth's actual birthday (Sunday the 22nd) at the abbey where he is buried.  I tidied up his grave & visited with him, which I can do anywhere, but there at the grave is the designated spot.  The cemetery is rather austere; all the graves have the same simple concrete cross and a plaque that tells his name and dates.  Hisako and Sarah and I couldn't leave Seth's grave QUITE so plain; it just wouldn't express Sethness that way.  So his particular spot is recognizable from far away by the brightly painted rocks on the arms and top of the cross.  Who knows what HE would have done, had he been available to put his mark on the site?  Now he has to rely on other people's response to his life, people who are not so wildly creative as he.  So we take our cues from him, but do it our way.

Since it IS (or rather it was just a couple of days ago) Seth's birthday, I thought it would be good to post a couple of images of his work that maybe had not been posted before--or at least not for a long time.  The joyful madness of these images just reaffirms the Life beneath the surface of his life.  May his joy keep resounding in the lives of those who love both his person and his work!
Big in Japan, issue 2 page 15

Big in Japan, issue 2 page 16

Big in Japan, issue 2 page 17