Recent News: SPX, Light Grey Art Lab's "Tiny Homes" Exhibition, and Screaming Females

Welcome again devoted macro-blogging readers!

Wanted to quick do a write-up of all the interesting and exciting events that have happened in the recent weeks. I had a fantastic trip traveling to Maryland for SPX and then coming through Minneapolis to wrap up a few loose ends in the cities. Saw so many fantastic friends, made so many memories, and my bag was so full of books I had to take my copy of Bug Boys out to check my bag.

While at SPX I roomed with the delightful Alice Stoehr and Ashley Avard, who are co-hosts on one of my favorite comics podcasts We Should Be Friends. Many episodes of Say Yes to the Dress were watched in our hotel room alongside Carolyn Nowak's husband guy Sean Thompson as he read Pet Semetary (not pictured below). While talking with my father before the trip, he couldn't believe I would be rooming with people that I had never met before, but after a year of talking to them on Twitter it felt like we were already old friends. 

A picture of (L-R) Isabella Rotman, Madeline McGrane, Rosemary Valero-O'Connell, myself, and Leigh Luna AKA your new fave pop group, taken at the lovely SPX Prom photo booth 

A picture of (L-R) Isabella Rotman, Madeline McGrane, Rosemary Valero-O'Connell, myself, and Leigh Luna AKA your new fave pop group, taken at the lovely SPX Prom photo booth 

A definite highlight of my SPX experience was going to SPX Prom sporting a Gina Wynbrandt "Manhunt" shirt, scarfing down fruit from the chocolate fountain and a whiskey sour offered by Wendy Xu. Aatmaja Pandya played the perfect alternative cartoonist DJ set after the crowd was warmed up by Chris Kindred and Tony Breed.

(Thank you Wendy! I think I ran off without properly thanking you because Aatmaja was playing Carly Rae!)

As for favorite purchases at the show, there was far too many for me to even begin to name, but some of my favorites include: 

  • Perfect Hair by Tommi Parrish
  • Bug Boys Volume 1 by Laura Knetzger
  • Hilda and the Stone Forest by Luke Pearson
  • Don't Get Eaten by Anything by Dakota McFadzean
  • Froniter 11 - "BDSM" by Eleanor Davis
  • Frontier 13 - "Fatherson" by Richie Pope 

The SPX leg of my trip ended with a late night adventure to grab Chinese food ordered from a bootleg menu with Ensley, Cathi Chavers, Veronica Agarwal, and Lee Durfy-Lavoie. Krispy Kreme commemorated our achievement in driving 20 minutes to track down this mysterious take-out. Waking up early to boogie to the airport, my dreams were fulfilled by seeing the Washington Monument from the highway in our 4:30 AM taxi cab.

Accompanied by Madeline and Rosemary, I arrived safe and sound in Minneapolis to sell all my loose possessions that had lagged behind. Amazingly I had a chance to see the piece I'd contributed to the Tiny Homes exhibition at the Light Grey Art Lab pictured below. 

"The Wisdom of Hermit Crabs" Illustration © Chase Van Weerdhuizen 2016.

"The Wisdom of Hermit Crabs"

Illustration © Chase Van Weerdhuizen 2016.

Photo credit to Nathan Motzko who was accompanied by Grace Easton to view the gallery. 

Photo credit to Nathan Motzko who was accompanied by Grace Easton to view the gallery. 

By this point in the trip I was exhausted and greasy! Illustrator pal and recent MCAD MFA grad Alex Mitchell gracefully drove me to the airport and I thought I'd finally make it home. 

Surprise! A flash flood shook the Minneapolis-Saint Paul airport, unloading hail that was rattling the windows and shaking the building! After a frustrating evening sleeping on the floor and being rebooked through LAX and Salt Lake, I finally, FINALLY got on my flight home. Below is a picture Ria VW snapped when I almost wept seeing my suitcase sitting at baggage claim, after my long two days of airport purgatory.

My reward on the other end was seeing all my Van Weerdhuizen siblings who'd come down to New Plymouth, Idaho to take part in my niece's 5th birthday. A great time was had by everyone there and as you can see I quickly had washed my Manhunt shirt for the occasion. ;)

Looking into the future or looking to the camera...we obviously couldn't decide.

Looking into the future or looking to the camera...we obviously couldn't decide.

Since then it doesn't feel as if I've gotten off the roller coaster. What was originally posted on Twitter as fan poster is now the OFFICIAL poster for the Screaming Females concert in Boise. Thanks to the Duck Club for reaching out and allowing me to provide an illustration to promote one of my absolute favorite bands.

Screaming-Females.jpg

It seems as if months of my life have all happened in the last two weeks and I'm not even getting off the roaster coaster!

On Thursday, I'll be starting a grand new job at Treasure Valley Community College here in Ontario, Oregon as a Recruiting Coordinator but until that first paycheck comes in I've opened up 10 commission slots (one of which was been filled). 

If you'd like a pen drawing similar to those below, I'm taking $15 commissions of pop culture characters! My Venmo is venmo.com/chasingcomics and I can be paid via Paypal at cvanweerdhuizen (at) gmail (dot) com. 

Thanks once again for reading and will hopefully have even more exciting news in the weeks to come. 

-Chase

MCAD Graduation and Beyond

From L-R: John Wilinski, Cam Saal, Alex Suhktipyaroge, Andrew George, Lizzi Rust, Brando Hughes, Rosemary Valero-O'Connell, and Madeline McGrane. Photo Credit: Robert Wilinski © 2016.

From L-R: John Wilinski, Cam Saal, Alex Suhktipyaroge, Andrew George, Lizzi Rust, Brando Hughes, Rosemary Valero-O'Connell, and Madeline McGrane.

Photo Credit: Robert Wilinski © 2016.

On Saturday I finally graduated from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design with my BFA in Comic Art. My time at MCAD was filled with laughs, self discovery, and countless hours of hard work. Throughout my time there, I drew countless pages of comics, came out of closet, and forged many of my closest friendships. The feeling I walked away with though following the graduation was an incredible pride in my classmates who produced some of the best work to hang on the halls of the school. 

Photo Credit: Chase Van Weerdhuizen © 2016.

Photo Credit: Chase Van Weerdhuizen © 2016.

My own senior project was my biblical graphic novella entitled Babel. It was a deeply personal project for me, encapsulating many of the events that have shaped my life over the last few years. 

Babel Promotional Poster © Chase Van Weerdhuizen 2016. 

Babel Promotional Poster © Chase Van Weerdhuizen 2016. 

In order to celebrate the completion of this work, I did formal reading and presentation of my process at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design on Friday, May 13 at 12 PM. It was a wonderful time and allowed for people to understand what it creatively and physically took to produce the book. 

The first 16 minutes featured a reading of Babel and the remaining time was a presentation about my process on the book. Thankfully it was filmed and is available to view on Youtube. If you haven't yet, you can read the entirety of Babel here on the site or by downloading a PDF of it on Gumroad.

In other news, my comic Ashen was reviewed through Vice's The Creators Project by Giaco Furino back in March. Ashen debuted at the Autoptic Festival in Minneapolis back in August 2015 and seems to have a habit of finding a new audience every few months. The comic tells the story of a woman named Adeline who must journey beyond a grim wall at the edge of her world to try and save her sister a second time. You can read Ashen here on the site, on my Tumblr, through Comixology, or by buying a print copy through my online store

As for what's coming up right away, I'll be be back in Fruitland, Idaho until August working as a summer school tutor! I have been craving fry sauce all year and plan on eating a gallon of it while I'm here. Looking at the collection of notes I’ve scrawled down during its production though out Babel, there are even more exciting works on the horizon from me.