One of the many positive aspects of doing the Kickstarter for my book has been reconnecting with so many artists that I’ve worked with over the years. Two of these cats are John Bergin and Danny Hellman.
I’ve know John since the zine heyday of the early 1990s. He put out a zine called Brain Dead. I was publishing Going Gaga. The first two fellow zinesters I hooked up with were John and Mark Frauenfelder of bOING bOING. Even the names themselves, Brain Dead, bOING bOING, Gaga, had a sympathetic resonance to me. Mark, John, and I have been connected ever since. John and I have collaborated on a number of projects over the years, including John’s contributions to my Going Gaga and Beyond Cyberpunk! projects. I also wrote the precis to his incredible 1993 graphic novel From Inside and he and I collaborated on 2005’s Traitor General, a soundtrack to a book of the same name by our mutual pal, sci-fi author Dan Abnett. John is a fine and graphic artist, animator, musician, movie-maker, writer, there seems to be little creatively that he can’t do (eg. In 2008, he turned his From Inside graphic novel into a 71 minute animated film, doing most of the work himself). For this Art Reward, John is providing three signed CDs from two music projects he’s done, Trust Obey’s Fear and Bullets (John’s soundtrack to friend and collaborator James O’Barr’s iconic comic book, The Crow, The Crow Remix CD, and Lolo’s Bad Idea (which John co-wrote, produced, and plays on). John did all of the art and design for these three CDs, so they look as good as they sound.
Danny Hellman was my first. The first thing I ever wrote for bOING bOING (issue #7) was called “Babbling Homeless Clowns from Outer Space,” about a bizarre encounter I had with a crazy homeless guy in a filthy clown suit on the New York subway. This piece reappears in Borg Like Me as “Below the Clown.” Danny did an amazing illustration for it in bOING bOING and I’ve been a fan of his work ever since. Danny’s distinct illustrations and comics have been found on the covers and inner pages of such publications as The Village Voice, Guitar World, Time, FHM, and the notorious Screw. And, of course, bOING bOING. Danny has already illustrated one of the previously unpublished pieces that will be in my book, “Building Spaceships Out of Fives and Sixes.” (See the image here.) This was a piece I wrote in 2009 for a bOING bOING project that never happened. I want to pay Danny for this awesome work (and hire a bunch of other crazy-good artists), and I will be able to do so if we reach the art stretch goal. For this reward level, Danny has donated two signed, limited edition screen prints, 11 x 14. They’re called “Cosplay Apocalypse: Fukushima” and “Cemetery Nude.”
This $100 Art Reward Pack (see right column of KS page) includes everything in the $40 reward, plus the three signed John Bergin CDs and one of the Danny Hellman prints. Please send me a note about which print you want. You will also get a copy of my and Mark Frauenfelder’s 20-page Beyond Cyberpunk! mini-comic.