Kids Illustrations, A Comic, and a Book

I still remember the feeling I had when I first watched Rocko's Modern Life. I'd seen plenty of cartoons before this, but this one really had an effect on me. It was simply drawn, had adult humor, and no consistent message. I loved it and still watch it to this day. It's the perfect break away from reality.

Having a three year old, I've been reading so many books to her and found that many of the books that she likes the most, I often do too. For instance, everyone knows the story of the Five Little Monkey's and how they can't seem to nail their evolutionary design to land on their feet, while their single mother is too overwhelmed to discipline them properly, and their negligent family doctor would insist on sending potentially coma riddled children to bed instead of provide real help because he's knee deep in a bottle of 99 bananas (seriously B, that was the worst).

At the end of this book when all of the monkeys are in desperate need of medical attention, the mother shuts the door and is seen jumping on her own bed. I laugh every time I read it because in a simple way it contradicts evolution all while putting the stereotypical primate that supposedly got us to what we are now on the forefront of learning.

Naturally, after reading so many books I wanted to throw my hat in the ring and see if I could create something that'd she want to hear a few times. I did not try to make anything with a grandiose message. I just grabbed pieces from our daily play habits and took it from there. This is where Dink and Rae came from.

We've always been into slugs. Our family hikes pretty often and we always stop to look at the slugs. For a while every morning my daughter would wake up and walk down our hallway and say, "Daddy, you be a slug and I'll be a dog." That's all it took for me to start drawing up an unlikely pair of friends.

I also wanted to start a collection of thoughts taken from everyday life. Enter Randy and Ed, a self absorbed blog of I don't know what and his optimistic turtle friend. As much bad as Randy does Ed still seems to forgive.

After making a series of illustrations, I decided to turn something into a real book. I landed on doing a ode to my daughters hair because it's the thing that she enjoys the least and gets the most compliments about. I took a couple weeks, buckled down and wrote out Oh What Wonderful Hair and illustrated everything. I'm super, super stoked to release this later this month. I've kept all of the drawing and content out of view from my wife and daughter. It's going to be great to see their responses.

BarryJohnsonCo_OhWhatWonderfulHair
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