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Message 01.13.11 -What saddle ARE you in, Stewart-san?

Greetings, art-fans! And a Happy New Year to you and yours! It's been an interesting year since my last post. My book Dimensions Behind the Twilight Zone, has stood its ground since being published 3.5 years ago; jumping between #2 - #4 and back again on the Amazon Richter Scale, which is a good thing. There hasn't been a movie made of it yet, which is also good, real good. Apparently, Tom Cruise is defiant to play me, for he keeps leaving angry 40-something-year-old Caucasian-actor no-stretch messages on my machine, but I'm totally against the idea. Well, his messages make me laugh, but the idea of him actually playing me makes me cringe. To quote Doctor Zachary Smith, "Major, you irk me." - God I love that line - No, I want Paul Reuben to play me... but unfortunately he's busy with his own live Pee Wee Herman show. Oh well. WHA?

So, I've taken a break from working on my second book - the title of which I won't mention, because it's such a cool title, and I wouldn't want some other writer to steal even that. The book had been coming along nicely, a preface and 6 chapters fully in the can, and while working on the 7th chapter, I got side-tracked, and set it aside for a bit - if you can call an entire year a bit! I do hope to get back to it soon, but it's not an easy task. The novel is an encompassing idea, way beyond a simple murder mystery or some such rot. So, for an intuitive writer such as myself, I now have to go back and actually let my characters stop talking for a bit so I can look over the full scope of the thing, and figure the full story out.

Meanwhile, I have not been working in illustration these last few years, unfortunately, but eh, whatcha gonna do. Life happens, things happen, and your path changes a bit from where it started. I'm of course ready to illustrate in a heartbeat, or go back into the gaming industry, which I love so. Actually, I have yet to return back to the Bay Area, and it's still difficult thinking about how much I miss Alameda. This past weekend, I had an appointment in Oakland, and afterwards, I drove into Alameda, and checked out my old digs. The building where Microprose once was, before Hasbro Interactive stepped in and eventually managed it into the ground. Interestingly enough, and quite sad, actually, the building is empty and available for lease. But, yeah, I drove there and checked it out, and even looking at the empty building brought back so many good memories, of working there and working with so many fellow artists and other talented people.

Up to speed with the present - one good thing I've been working on is learning Japanese for a trip to Japan this April. My Japanese is coming along fairly well, and I have high hopes for... well, speaking Japanese. I wouldn't mind spending the rest of my life in Japan, that's for sure. Sonoma County has kind of turned me anti redneck-hippy-winer, oh my!... no? REALLY? Really. Well, what do ya want from an urban rocker geek. It's funny, even though most of my blood is Italian, and I look Italian, I FEEL Japanese. Weird. Maybe I was a Samurai in a past life. Or maybe I just watched too many Gojira movies when I was a kid (still do, actually;)

Still playing guitar, even though I hadn't written a song for almost 7 years. Then, one day, out of me came the 6.5 minute prog-like Wake Up and Die - obviously not a feel-good love song... but so few songs are love songs. If it weren't for heartbreak, geez, there wouldn't be much out there, song-wise. Think about it. This last year marked the 30th anniversary of Lennon's death, and still, it's tough to understand that he's been gone all these years. Just think of all the great music he would have done. I'm sure he and the other Beatles would have gone one more go at it... but eh, again, life happens, things happen, and your path changes a bit from where it started.

So, here's to a Happy New Year, to you and yours! And to a new year of good choices!

Always (except for when not :P



Message 12.10.09 - Freelance writing gig for the magazine Fortean Times

Ah hah... just In time for the 50th anniversary of the Twilight Zone (Oct 2, 1959), yours truly was contracted to write a 6-page article for the popular magazine Fortean Times. The article, entitled "Filming the Fifth Dimension," covered the history and making of The Twilight Zone and was published in the December 2009 issue.

Zone on!



Message 01.18.09 - Submitted for your perusal - The BACKSEAT ART YEARS

Greetings, art fans! With this New Year upon us, I figured it was time I made a new page so that I can let visitors know what's been up with yours truly. Truly, that's what I thought. And here is the very first message (whoop dee doo!).

Well, the first thing I can tell you is it's been a very interesting few years living over here in this dead county of Sonoma, since moving from the Bay Area back in 2000. Funny, when people drive to the country, they say 'Ah, God's country.' HA! That's what I say whenever I get a chance to drive back to the Bay Area. Yeah, Sonoma County is pretty, all the pretty vineyards. Ho hum. Eh, unless you work in the wine or real estate industries, once you've seen one vineyard, you've seen them all. Big deal. Besides, as my neighbor Brian pointed out to me a bit ago, "you know, historically, wine is a peasant's drink.' I digress.

This April will mark the ninth year of my having moved over here from Alameda, due to circumstances and the bad decision to do so. What's my advice to fellow artists? Don't move to a county without any art industry, it's a killer. Ok, even though I really don't want to start this thingy off on a negative note, I do feel a need to give you the background of the situation at hand, so you can understand where my art world has been as of late.

During my living here these last nine years, besides having a few art shows in some restaurants, golf-courses, and such, the one strong art gig that I worked on, which took close to seven years, is the published book, Dimensions Behind the Twilight Zone. With that book's publication (April 1, 2007), and a novel that I've been working on, off and on during the last year and a half, I've not really been doing much (if any) illustration or gaming work. It's mostly been just the writing, which I constantly remind myself is simply just another form of art - instead of paint on a canvas, it's words on a page (screen), and flowing sentences in place of colorful brushstrokes. One thing, it's less messier. HA!

I had been doing some contract web design work, for sites like Shadowland Films, and the defunct Skyeboat Games, and then started a bunch of new canvases for my series Fright Gallery, which are in the NEW PAINTINGS IN PROGRESS section, but things have slowed down, painting-wise, in place of the writing projects. And YES, I've missed working in illustration and gaming these last couple of years. But I do have a plan. The plan at hand is to get enough funds to either move back to the Bay Area, or down to Hollywood, or any real metropolitan area where I can get back to working in the industry. I've only been on a hiatus, seriously.

Ah, so now, you must be thinking, 'So, you mean you're not really working as an artist right now? What have you done lately?' Well, it is correct, that I've not really been working as an illustrator or digital artist for about five years, like I had been before. But what does that really mean? I mean, whatever happened to once an artist, always an artist? You mean to tell me that Kirk Douglas is no longer an actor because he might not be working at it right now? Of course he's an actor. Duh. So, I keep telling myself, even though I'm not currently making my living pushing pixels or paint around, I AM WHAT I AM. A dingy? No, silly, an artist.

Ok, so, I got a book published that you can find in any bookstore, and it rocks Hendrix-style. And I'm working on a novel. Sooooo, where exactly is the illustration and gaming world for me right now? Well, it's kind of taken a bit of a part-time backseat to these other things, that's all. It's still there, like riding a bike. I do try and keep up on journal pages, and periodically add them to the Journal Pages section on my art site. But besides those few unfinished paintings and journal pages, and the novel, there's not been much else really happening for me lately, art-wise. But then again, there's the future plan of getting back.

Yes, living here in Sebastopol, or what I refer to as the land of hippies, rednecks and winers, oh my! has been a kind of step backwards, more like sideways, but there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. I just have to get my train back on track. Yeah, once again a couple of carrots were put out in front of me (show me don't tell me), and I've lost a few more friends, being somewhat isolated from them these past few years (cue violins). But eh, whatcha gonna do? Simple - make waffles not war.

Onto the brightness of the future and escaping this boring county - but where to now? Well, like I said, there's a few choices - the Bay Area, Hollywood, heck, even Toronto or Bollywood. Also, since I've been taking Japanese and plan a trip to Japan in April 2011, maybe I'll plan on a one-way ticket at that; maybe do some English-assistant teaching and settle over there. Who knows? One thing for sure about Japan, life would be complete if I could work on a Gojiraa movie at Toho (WOW! What a dream gig that would be), and find a gorgeous Japanese girlfriend who digs rock and roll and old horror flicks! Hey, a man can dream can't he?

Anyways, I'm going to end this silly post now. I just wanted those who are still interested in what's been going on with the old Stewmeister General, to know that, even though I may appear as an invisible man to some, I am a tangible being and completely ready to illustrate and digitize your minds with my 3D and texture abilities!

One talented artist ready for hire, here... in the Twilight Zone.