‘Daymares’ characters

DAYMARES CHARACTER DRAWINGS (1976)

#4 Daymares char drawings  pig  '1'

#4 Daymares char drawings  WD, Bolbo  '2'

#4 Daymares char drawings  Whistlin' Joe, Lepke, Benny  '3'

The character drawings sent to Joe Kubert as my ‘portfolio’ in part, in 1976.

Artwork © 2010 Rick Grimes

GRIMES: Top: The pigheaded character never had a name that really stuck. {Or three that never stuck}.

“Around 1975 I made up a story about a pig/human born in a sty and raised by a hermit, (not altogether unlike in the novel Frankenstein), who, having learned to read and speak, would grow up to be rather arrogant and full of ham-self. He was to go on to lead some rabble to the inevitable ‘revolutionary’ ruin. I still have the notebook page of it. Have sometimes, depending on the type of story, considered ‘updating’ him to a biker jacket. Tho’ I still like the ‘papal guard’ look.

“I have always had a sense that, with ‘Whistlin’ Joe’ , (bottom, left), these were the two frustrated figures in a dream I had, when I was six years old, about a huge baby sitting in some flat landscape. The two were made skittish because it needed ‘changing’ and they did not know what to do. In view, forty years later, of taking care of my broken mother, quite the bit of prescience.

Middle: Weird Dick, of course, in his earlier smaller ‘light bulb’ shape. And note the closeness of the eye lines/boundaries. Initially, I pictured him as seeing through these lines. Until, once, at the school Steve Bissette said he’d always thought the eyes were like an insect’s. Like with one of those optical illusions, I instantly clicked into seeing them the other way. And have ever since. Like a praying mantis’ eyes. The lines are boundaries–that still taper off before reaching the back of his head. (How else to tell him front from back??).

Weird Dick himself, however, is categorically Uncategoric and not an insect.

“The clown character, (who does have a name), is, strictly speaking, not a ‘Daymares’ character. Tho’ his triple twists of hair, only one of his ‘looks’ —(intentionally) violating ‘clown rules’—were likely rips of Winsor McKay.

“He emerged instead from a different story reality. But, he would know Weird Dick, who occupies more than one story plane.

Bottom: Skipping to the antlered Benny the ‘Boo, (as in caribou). His feet and body a ‘steal’ from Bullwinkle’s. And, again, not really a ‘Daymares’ character. Never used in a story, but what’s left of him appears on the scrap from my old, school art table slopsheet that Larry Loc laminated.

“The woman I called Mrs. Lepke, after the criminal and mid ’70s movie poster seen at a downtown theatre. She, too, has not appeared in anything, tho’ a modified version of her is only some 3 or 4 pages away in my Weird Dick and the Professor stories. Surprisingly, in some early(?) issue of Howard the Duck, becoming overly popular amongst comics fans at that time, an ugly woman with shopping bags, (not an uncommon sight) appears. As well as a giraffe man in clothing. (See my giraffe man, dubbed, then, The Sycophant, for his potential to slobber—[previous page]). Both of them also in proximity to or aboard a bus. (How mine arrived). What were the odds??? Another rather deflationary irk.

“The little bearded chappy of more than one name, too. For this, will use Whistlin’ Joe (no relation to Joe Kubert, of whom I had no thought of yet). He’s an obvious ‘owesy’ to the Captain in the Katzenjammer Kids, tho nary half so expositionally pompous. My guy hardly says much of anything. And, in this and other regards, was somewhat eclipsed by the Professor. His coat buttons may be considered peyote buttons, if you are of that inclination.

“I dreamed about him last September, for the only time since the possible one back about forty-five ‘yar’ ago. ‘What can it mean…!?!’

There was a fourth page of these begun at the time, of the Professor. But, rotating him was like rotating a board so I lost interest. Most of these characters, reworked to a lesser or greater extent, are slotted to turn up, for old creative times’ sake, in the earlier stories of Weird Dick and the Professor.” –RG (7/9/’09)

~

WHISTLIN’ JOE ON THE NORTH POLE

– (dream 9/15/’08)

“Whistlin’ Joe in winter outfit of wool cloth, with extra lining and so closely fitted where the coat overlaps the pants, hem-to-hem, like a half-ball & cup, that no frozen air can rush in.

“Walking a few feet apart across icy landscape, we arrive at an igloo-style arctic station. But, a sudden vast wind takes him up and rolls him throo the air and almost to the ice again. Taking him toward me, but then past my right shoulder.

“Ask him ‘what does all this mean?’, as is only the second time have dreamed him in decades.

“He says he only s’posed to bring me here. He “bring me” and that’s all he knows…as he blows away into the white-swept distance.

“Inside the (inflatable?) igloo, is mostly bright white or cream colored plastic furnishings, and around to the back an open-walled bath with someone’s waiting tub of bubbles. END.” — RG (July 9th, 2009).

<Unpub’d/’70s

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