My BFF and personal illustrator, Joie Brown, had a freak, drawing hand incident! Some dumb, drunk chick slammed poor Joie’s fingers in a bathroom door over and over again because the door wouldn’t close. Now her magical fingers are all crushed and torn, but I’m happy to know she will be just fine.
Joie’s drawings and paintings are nothing short of amazing, and the fridge illustrations are definitely not the first pieces she’s done for me. You should go to her website and bask in the whimsical light of her awesomeness. Our friendship began in middle school, but our teamwork shenanigans started back in high school. We were often bored in health class. I would say “Hey, Joie! Draw [insert wild and ridiculous idea here] for me!” She always would, and our creative pairing only grew from there. We’ve done all kinds of creative stuff together, from arts and crafts to cosplay to more serious visual and literary works.
If great minds think alike, well, then Joie and I are freaking geniuses because we practically have the same brain sometimes. Our first ideas/attempts to make a combo meal out of my writing and her art came about last year, when I was whining about my very least favorite task ever in the history of mundane tasks I’ve had to do at any job, timesheets. We kept making nerdy RPG references to our obnoxious office jobs, and we came up with Knights to Five, a comic putting a knight and a mage in an office setting.
Not long after that, Joie was bored at work and decided to do an illustration for one of my fridge poems, the sonnet. While we both worked in offices, she would sketch the drawing, take a pic of it with her phone and text it to me. Joie finally escaped the office apocalypse and fled to grad school (Lucky duckie!), and we’ve done all our work together via text, Facebook and e-mail. Joie has enjoyed using the fridge illustrations to practice techniques in Photoshop. Things progressively got bigger, better and more outlandish (kind of like us), and suddenly, what started as a series of quickly sketched jokes turned into a serious affair. I have two of her pieces (a print of Kicking it Old School and the original of It’s Raining Cheese) hanging in my house.
As the fridge saga continued, we explored other projects, like turning my first book, Bakeneko: Mariko’s Dream, into a graphic novel. This is when we decided to work together on the Mr. Socks series. We make a great pair. We are each other’s biggest fans. We are BFFs on a mission.