• Steve and Melissa Burnett

"No matter where you go, you're there."

Good Monday. I had a good week, with the exception of dribbling myself off the concrete driveway on Saturday. They should make concrete that has a little give in it for us old farts. But no, dam I hit it hard and it hit back. Guess it taught me a lesson, like just move the lawnmower and do not try to step over it. I had the gas can in one hand and I am glad it is plastic, and in the other hand I had the stupid safety spout that goes with it. It is so safe I have never been able to get that dam thing to work. I usually just take it off an use a funnel, but could not find my funnel. So I was thinking I will get my channel locks and tear that stupid safety lock off and just use it as a regular spout. However to get to my tools I have to get past the lawnmower. So I try to step over the lawnmower, which one foot made it but not the other. I land on my side, elbow and hip first, my elbow manages to grind all the way above my head on impact, giving me a nice bloody elbow and a hole in my shirt. When you get my age falling is half the battle, I now have to get up. Nothing reminds more that I am getting old than having to get up off the floor, or in this case the concrete. After flopping around like a fish for a few minutes I did manage to reach a point where I could manage to get my legs under me and stand up. I got lucky, for one the plastic gas can landed right side up with minimal spill and two that I did not break my hip apparently my sliding elbow took most of the impact. As I looked at the bloody hole in my elbow I thought too bad it wasn't one inch higher and it may have grinded out the screw in my elbow from surgery back in 2009. Anyway, for all my fellow old farts remember to put down something soft to land on if your going to fall on concrete.

Now to my cartoons. You will notice that the art is not a cartoon, while it is in my cartoon style in is not a cartoon. I guess the difference is it does not have any narrative and not a specific humor theme, it more just created to be interested to look at. The reason for that is based on a survey I ran last week with my 33 newspapers on my weekly email out. Most of them have been getting 2 new cartoons submitted every week since 2014. My survey was so I could get an idea on how many actually used my cartoons (how many per month), would they be willing to pay $5 per month for my cartoons and which cartoons (theme, or type) do they prefer. I wanted to get some information so I would know if I could justify spending the resources to get a booth at the Texas Press Association Newspaper convention in June. I was hoping to get a booth and try to get more interest in my newspaper cartoons and start charging for my work. It is time my work started bringing in some revenue even it was just to pay for my supplies. I have to admit I was totally shocked to only get a 6% response on my survey. I have given 2 new cartoons a week for 7 years to 33 newspapers and only get a %6 response. At least I now will not be wasting any resources on the newspaper convention, and I will now pursue other avenues for my work. I have some graphic novels and cartoon book ideas I have been wanting to pursue. I do have to admit I am really disappointed in the newspapers. I love and support the small local newspapers and thought I was doing them a service. As weird as it feels, like I have just lost a friend, after all I have cartooned for newspapers since 1994 so we do go back a long way, I have to know that it is for the best. The bottom line is I have always thought of my self as a commercial artist, and if I my work is not generating any revenue then my art is just a hobby. As I get closer to retirement I realize that I will have to have another income. If my art will not do it then I have to practice being a Wally World greeter and while that may be fun for a while it is not something I want to do.

The art is a watercolor on gesso textured particle board. It is one of my cartoon book ideas that I have started and was on hold until I retired so I could devote the time to work on it. I also wanted to do a series for donation to the Cook's Children Hospital in Fort Worth. I have sent them some art samples but cannot get any response from them. I think this would be a great piece to have in the hospital for the patients to look at. I just remember them doing such a great job of saving my oldest sons life when he was 6, that I have always wanted to do something for them and basically my art is all that have to offer. I will continue to develop this series as I mock up some story boards for other submissions to publishers.

Be safe and remember; "No matter where you go, you're there."

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