Sometimes, even over a holiday, you still have to keep the hands moving. As I get older, I’ve come to realize just how much of a physical act drawing really is, so even in some downtime, I try to sketch and study a little every day so that when I’m back at work, the hands haven’t started getting rusty. Here are some of the results of studies of my character “Apocalypse Girl”. -Les


AG_FaceStudies1 AG_Studies ApocalypseGirlPracticePortrait

The Passing of Wes Craven, and a challenge…


With the passing of Wes Craven, we’ve lost an absolute legend, a true titan of storytelling. In his memory, I would ask that every one of us who writes, draws, films, animates, or creates, in particular things that are beautiful in their ability to scare and use our most fearsome emotions to illuminate aspects of life, double down. Set your jaw tight, grit your teeth and double down. We have work to do. A legend has left us, and there is a massive hole to fill. He can never be replaced, but it is up to all of us honor him with stories, art, movies and anything else that carries on that legacy. Wes Craven was the gatekeeper of horror for me, a genre of film, art and literature that has always been about far more than just blood, guts or cheap thrills. All of us, we have to double down on our creative work, bring more stories, more characters, more art into this world. Juxtapose the darkness of this world against things we can dream up, set the horrors we see for real against ones we can imagine, and through it, craft works that perhaps show us something more. Wes Craven’s work always had far more thought to it, far more conceptually and philosophically than what many would get from it, and certainly far more than critics ever stopped to notice. My favorite of the Nightmare series, probably the one generally liked the least, actually, is “Wes Craven’s New ¬†Nightmare” wherein we’re treated to a story that features layers upon layers of reality, mind bending blends of fiction and true life, all presenting a concept of how our own minds shape the reality we live in, and thus, create our own monsters. His work often carried what I think of as the depth of a poet in the hands of a horror master. So, in his honor, I promise to make more stories. I promise to do my best to scare the hell out of you, to excite, to challenge and entertain. And so, to all my friends in the arts, in literature, illustrated and traditional alike, I challenge you: step up. Double down. Skip the game this week; put that trip to the movies on hold; stay up a little later, get up a little earlier; pass up some overtime at the day job, do whatever it takes to set aside more time to be devoted to your craft. Draw. Write. Film. Animate.¬†A titan has left us, and there is an enormous void. And while nothing can replace such a legend as Wes Craven, it’s up to us take that void left by his passing and fill it with new works, new stories. Honor him, and others like him who have gone on: fill the world with stories of wonder, fear, heroism, thoughtfulness, reflection… this is what we do. Now, go. Do it. For Wes.

-Les Garner
August 30, 2015