Friday, January 30, 2009

The old man and the sea

I never actually read the Hemingway book but for some reason I just wanted to write "The Old Man and The Sea. This is also inspired by Mike Maxwell, he did some skulls with beards years ago that I always loved. Also inspired by Barry McGee and Mike Giant.
Mike Maxwell Deck

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

British Knights

Today's illustration with a little water color.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

China #2

I wanted to post this long ago. I was cleaning out my computer and came accross these photos of my second trip to China this past October. I have to admit it was much more pleasant in comparison to the first time because I was prepared for the cultural differences but.. it's still hard.
They give a whole new meaning to "mini-van".
This is one of our factories running production. It's pretty insane how archaic their system is yet they produce a pretty high quality product virtually by hand.
Embroidery factory.
With a garden in the back. I wish my office had a garden.
What is that garbage? Ah, just burn it!
So were were sitting in this office waiting for a sample. It smelled pretty heavily of burning rubber and there was some smoke in the distance, probably just burning trash again but who knows. At any rate it was a glum scene but there was this big billboard that stuck out like a sore thumb, a beautiful sunset with text on it. I asked the manager what the billboard said. He said it was something motivational. I asked a few of my colleagues around the office and got everything from "let go, and science will take you" to "Walk on the outside"? I don't know? I'll update with a translation, but if it is something motivational, I just found it to be odd. But then not, who ever lives here needs all the motivation they can get.
UPDATE: "Emancipate the mind, entrepreneurial innovation, scientific development, always be forefront"

This is an advertisement for some kind of circus show. I like the music

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Ride Day 3&4

The next day we got up and headed out of Santa Cruz. Went up Empire Grade that eventually catches hwy 9 before getting onto skyline or hwy 35. We passed right through Big Basin Redwoods State Park that was just jaw dropping. I'm kicking myself for not stopping to take more pictures. The minute we rode into those trees I slowed down, I started breathing deep. There is just something about being next to a living thing that's been around for over 2000 years. This picture does not capture it but it's the only one I have from the park.

The rolling hills were equally as breath taking.
We met up with Jacob's friend Ben on his Ducati Hypermotard, always fun to add to the party.
We were all enamored with this decaying big rig for some reason.

This photo really sums it up for me. Great day, lots of amazing turns, amazing country, sunset, it does not get much better.

On Monday Jacob and I woke up early and followed Hwy 1 down through Big Sur. Again, words can't really describe this beauty and magnitude.
After a latte and some really expensive scones we parted ways, and I continued on down the coast. There is a streatch of road just south of Big Sur that is just phenomenal. Probably some of the best turns i did all weekend. The hours rolled on and once again the road wore me down. By the time I got to San Luis Obispo I was pretty "bonked" ( see definition from previous post). The stretch of the 101 south of Ventura is just horrible. I was bouncing down the road getting beat up by the wind and then the traffic came. I was so close I sped and split lanes the entire way home. I honestly didn't think my bike could handle it, but it turns out I don't think I can handle that kind of road time. Total millage: 1336
At least for now...

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Ride Day 1&2

So this past weekend I thought i'd take advantage of the three day weekend and the extremely warm weather we've been having for JANUARY!! and ride to Santa Cruz to meet up with my buddy for some fun adventure riding. I left work at 6pm and was on the road by 7.
349 miles 5 hours 43 minutes.
I thought this pretty much captures the feeling and thoughts around midnight going over the 152 from Los Banos to Gilroy. I had been freezing for quite some time, my ass was beyond sore, and I was starting to halucinate. I called Jacob and it was pretty obvious by my voice that I was "bonked". The term "bonk" for cycling fatigue is presumably derived from the original meaning "to hit", and dates back at least half a century.The condition is also known to long-distance (marathon) runners, who usually refer to it as "hitting the wall". It is also referred to as the "green grass" as pupil dilation causes vivid hues to appear. Uh yea..

Breakfast of champions. (note the sandpaper)

Filling up before heading to the entrance of Yosemite.
Jacob= BMW GS 1150 Me= KTM SMC 690

This is an updated map of the ride to Yosemite and back.
We were able to find some awesome fire roads and finaly get the KTM really down and dirty.

Jacob is getting really good at riding with no hands, taking his camera out of his pocket, and snapping photos. He also records little videos of himself yelling in his helmet, they're pretty rad.
Like this.

Preparing for the run over the 130, the sun was dropping.
Now this is a detailed view of hwy 130 of which we thought was a short cut from Hwy 5 to San Jose. At least it looked like a short cut, what if fails to tell you is that it's over 70 miles of switch backs so tight you are not even out of 1st gear, mind you it's pitch black and again, cold. Oh, and sandy and the road was made of marbles. Seriously.

Once we got to the top we could finally see the light, no joke. The only problem was that the first sign said 30 miles to such and such, thinking maybe we could re-fuel there. Such and such was an intersection, at which there was a sign saying 38 miles to next gas. Once we hit what we thought was that place it said 40 miles to San Jose. Jacob ended up coasting 7 miles in order to preserve fuel and it worked.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Origami Vinyl design

There is a new record shop that my friend Neil is opening in Echo Park, Origami Vinyl. I made this illustration for T-shirts, bags and maybe some posters.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Monarchy got invited to do a fashion show in New York's Bryant Park Feb 14th. The theme is "Smoke and Mirrors" so we are adding a special edition deck of cards to the goody bags. I'm not a card player but these are pretty dope. I mocked up the illustrations off some vintage Waddington playing cards and added my own little flare.