Had to have high hopes for a living.
Woo boy, there has been a lot going on. And I think we're finally ready. Let's start off with a little honest heart to heart. As much as we love doing this, for the past few years it's been our side gig. With us both working full time jobs there was never really time to do much more then prep for C2e2 and then go back to the grind. Now we're at a point where we have both left that behind in order to better apply our skills to the art world. But, man, this has been a TON of work that I really wasn't prepared for. We still have commissions from LAST years C2e2 that are in process and that just isn't acceptable. The website has been an absolute bear to deal with since neither of us are tech savvy. Our comics are coming along, and we have some other really awesome projects that should be really cool! I guess I just thought all of this would be easier.
So, what have we been doing since the last blog post (oh man, October?) well everything above. I've been trying to get commissions done, we've moved all of the furniture in our house to make it a better work space, the website is ready; I'll call it edition 1.5; and we're elbow deep in the other projects. Again, i thought it would be easier. But, like in every other blog post, there is a lot to be excited about.
So, let's break it down:
Commissions, if you have a commission pending with us, I swear to you you will hear from me next week. I have redone a couple and i think you'll all be really happy with them. We will be getting these done and out the door as quick as possible as we know some of them are Xmas gifts (good for you for planning ahead, sorry we've been so unorganized)
Other projects: Well I don't know if I can talk about them, but they are outside of our regular stuff, and I think that once they are completed they will be AMAZING!
Streaming: we are going to be streaming the art, I tried doing some video game streams, and while we'll probably do some more video games we're going to be focusing more on the art. That's going to mean we'll have the time to talk to the people that watch us, and we'll still be doing work to progress our art. I'm not very good at being personable like Danielle is, but hopefully you all wont mind seeing my mug from time to time.
Comics: We are working on Rocket Mouse and Tails from Out There constantly, and we should have at least one issue from each ready for sale at C2e2.
Finally, the website!
I have spent two months trying to get our webstore up and ready. We've gotten samples of every item of clothing and print qualities and I am proud to say that we are OPEN! We have a selection of tees and hoodies, hats, and prints. The prints come in two qualities with both being ones that we have shown at past conventions. And the clothing is stuff that we wear on a pretty regular basis so we're comfortable with putting it out there as quality product, just know if you buy a shirt or hoodie that it will smell a little vinegary when you open it, I think it's the printing process but it goes away after a while. Check it out on a computer, for some reason the mobile versions will work, they just look wonky. We're trying to figure that out too.
And that's it. We love this, I just wanted to let you all know. For those of you that have stuck with us through radio silence, flighty brains, conventions, and through the years. We can't have done this without you. And we want to be better for you. At the end of the day we love hearing from you, seeing your reactions to the mice we've put out there, and getting to be surrounded by so much good juju.
See you, Space Cowboy...
Some good stuff on the way!
I love Teen Titans Go! I loved the OG version as well but, taking it as something that is completely different from the original, i think it's pretty good. But I digress... (I think I'm using that right, but i could be completely wrong)
There is a lot of exciting stuff coming up, with the business, with personal life, with everything!
For the business, we have upgraded our site and will soon be launching our store! We'll have prints available in two "qualities" the first being inkjet, we sell these at conventions and the quality is solid. The colors tend to lose a little of the subtlety in Danielle's watercolor but on the other hand have a more graphic "Comicy" kind of aesthetic. The second will be the giclée quality. These prints will be a little more, price wise, but the paper is fantastic and the print process means the quality is almost as good as an original. I haven't figured out if we are going to be selling originals online or not, there's a part of me that hates letting them go... but it is a business... I'll figure that out later. We are also going to be launching our t shirts, hoodies, and hats! They'll be available in a couple of styles, and we'll probably do a couple of tees that will only be available for a week or something. The hoodies came out to be a little more then expected but we got a sample and it is one of the softest hoodies I've ever owned, and now my mom owns it. So there's that.
With the website update and shop stuff I've been a little crazy recently. We're also working through commissions and the comic and it's been exciting! I had a lot of trepidation about doing this, with health insurance a necessity for me, but seeing the work in front of us and the fact that it's no longer a daunting task but a glorious opportunity (I sat here for a few minutes trying to come up with a good descriptor, that was the best i had that didn't reuse exciting) I'll be Twitch streaming tomorrow, from 1-5 with some art related stuff. I'm finishing up some inks today so I might do some concept work for Leo or Othello (our comic mice) to hone back in on their feel.
Oh yeah, we're going to see the Blackhawks play the Ducks on Tuesday (next Tuesday) and can't be more stoked, except that Danielle is a Ducks fan... I may get in a fight defending my wife's honor... quack quack quack
See you Space Cowboy...
So I thought I would be getting this done yesterday, but I couldn't figure out how to start a new blog post. Don't worry though, Danielle came home and pointed out the bright blue button that says "New Blog Post"... Thanks Techmology...
Here I am though! So, let's get started. There is a LOT going on. I left my job after almost eleven years, and while it wasn't necessarily by choice, it was definitely time. I have had a couple of lazy days but we have also been preparing for the new job ahead. I guess this is where it all comes to a head. For the past six years we have run Of Mice and Madness as our baby, it's allowed us to meet a ton of amazing people and opened us to things that we weren't aware of or wouldn't have thought of otherwise. But, because of us both having full time gigs, O.M.a.M. was always pushed to the side as far as priority; at least in my boat. Because of this we had been late on commissions and I was terrible at communicating with the people that mattered most. You guys. So what does that mean? Where am I going? Hold your horse, I'm long winded and rambly but I'll get there eventually.
We also started streaming on Twitch which has brought even more amazing people and great friends, but with the wedding and honeymoon, losing Ollie, and my job it all sort of went to a hard stop. We have talked a lot about what we want to do and we're going to be getting back into the game, slowly. One of the things that I think might have happened is that we were too aggressive with our schedule. Yes, eventually we will stream five-six days a week. But starting off like that I feel put a lot more pressure on us. So starting next Wednesday we will be streaming from 1-5! From that point we will be on schedule of Mon-Wed-Fri in that time slot. We will keep with the art centered streaming but also be sprinkling in some video games, cosplay builds, and 3d sculpture. I have also been getting stupid into miniature model building so I have a whole line of that planned too... (I love Battlestar Galactica Vipers, just saying)
We ALSO have a ton of commissions that are at differing stages of completing and those will be taking precedence over everything else right now. If we're working with you on a commission expect to see something coming from me (Drew) in the next week. I plan to have all inks completed asap and am super excited for these as I have had them bouncing around in my head a lot. After Commissions we start the real work. C2E2 is our show, well it feels like our show since we've been there the past six years (seven?) and this year we are going to have comics! Tails From Out There and Rocket Mouse with both have their first issues completed and will have special covers for C2E2! We felt that this was appropriate since we were formed in Artist Alley oh so long ago. We'll also have a bunch of new fan service Mice (I'm really excited for the ODST mouse) and of course more Hockey Mice (HOCKEYS BACK!)
You did it! Here's the end! What does all this mean? Well, it means its time to go all in. We will be devoting 100% of us to this company and these little guys, and to you. No more radio silence, we are going to be talking a lot more, to the point that you might get tired of us. But that's what we'll need to do to make sure we flourish. It's going to be hard, I'm an introvert so talking to people is not my strongest suit, but as always we feel that it will be worth it. The last thing I have to say is this. We need you, your support has helped drive us forward. The words of encouragement have always been what let's us know that this is worth it. So thank you, if you've been around for a while; if you've just found us, thank you. I promise the best is yet to come.
See You Space Cowboy...
Times they are a-changin'
Oh, man... where to start?
These past couple of months have been crazy for us. Early August Drew and I got married. It was an amazing day, and I can't thank the people in our lives enough. So much planning for just one day!!! We took a trip to Toronto for our honeymoon to bask in the joy that the Hockey Hall of Fame brings. We came back, and not 2 days later our cat Oliver (Drew's baby boy) stopped eating. We found out that he had a pretty advanced case of Leukemia. We tried everything we could, but we ultimately had to make the painful decision to let him go. Please check out what Drew wrote on our Instagram. It's really beautiful.
So while we were dealing with cat-son issues at home, things started changing drastically in our lives at work. I'm not going to go into details, because I don't want to accidentally get us in trouble (yeah, it's that bad), but after 10 years, Drew will be leaving his job. It's a blessing in disguise, believe me. And as for me, I started a new part time job. It's a retail gig, which I'm pretty sure I said that I was done with retail at some point, but I know it well, and I think this will be good.
What does that mean for Of Mice and Madness? The best of things, I believe! Drew is going to start streaming on Twitch now too!! I haven't been able to stream lately because I've had a mountain of contracted art work to finish that I can't make public before my employer. That work is almost done, so I will start streaming again soon. We'll have to make a new schedule, but it will be much more extensive. We're also going to start streaming video games as well as live art. It's going to be a lot of fun to do this with him, because I think our banter is awesome. If I had to give us a cheesy 70's duo name, it would be Bonkers and the Straight Man... wait... what?
At any rate, change is in the air. It's terrifying, but I think it is so necessary. We're jumping into it with open minds, open hearts, and a new found excitement. We're sorry for the dead air, but not too sorry, because we were busy morphing. Commissions work will soon resume, and so will the streaming. Please join us on our journey. Much love to all you guys.
Adding a live element!
Hi guys! After a while of updating our technology, and getting things set up, we're finally able to do some live art streaming on Twitch! It's mostly going to be me, but Drew may jump in from time to time. I will shoot out notifications before streaming, and eventually create a schedule, but for now I'm going to be testing out different times of day and seeing what works. Please stop by if you can. www.twitch.tv and search ofmiceandmadness
Hope to see you soon!
Time to get super cereal
Well, I did it... I did the crazy thing of leaving a steady full-time job to pursue a life of art. I have a couple of side art-gigs that I'm working on (more to come about that stuff), and a few of commissions that I'm finishing up, but other than that, the focus is going to be on making Of Mice and Madness a successful art studio. I will now have time for blogging, commissions, website updating, and live streaming (Starting early to mid February). I'm very excited to give our mice the attention we think they deserve, plus much more. The live streaming will eventually a mish-mosh of painting (watercolor, acrylic, ink, etc), leather bracelet making, wood burning, probably building something at some point... you know, whatever my scatterbrain is taking care of for the day... I will post with new details as they develop.
Fun Stuff Found
I was cleaning up my computer the other day and I found some pages that Drew and I did for a High School Project that we agreed to participate in. The students worked in groups and were given a scene from Hamlet to have illustrated by an outside artist. They would come up with the theme, and comic page layout, and we would execute the illustrations. Well, we finished the pages, but never heard back... If nothing else it was a learning experience for us. Figuring out how to interpret somebody else's vision is definitely a skill that requires practice. Anyways, I thought the pages were lost, but turns out they were just hiding really well.
I posted them on the Everything Else! page. Take a look, they're fun!
Drew and I went to breakfast yesterday morning, and stopped by the comic book store on the way home. It was there that I found a $10 pair of Jem and the Holograms, light up Synergy earrings. Yup. No-Brainer. Sold. I asked Drew, "What do you think my alter ego would be like?" And with perfect timing he replies, "I don't know... quiet?" :P
Lots of progress on the Star Wars guys. Finn is almost done, Poe is close, and Ben is 1/2 way. But I'm going to post a progress shot of the Thor that's in the works on the WIP page after I'm done writing this. We've had enough requests for Thor at the convention that we thought it was about time to finally make a print. I'll report back soon! -Danielle
Hello again! So we got accepted into C2E2's Artist Alley again this year. *Insert happy dance here*
Drew and I have been really busy getting our new logo done, getting new mice made, and getting the comic book finished before the convention... Lots of work! But the logo is done, and we got our banner yesterday, so we just have to keep chipping along.
We have a new Star Wars series in the works. Rey is done and posted, but I'm currently painting in Finn, Poe, and Kylo Ren. I'm not posting them on the WIP page, though, because I want them to be a surprise. I'll keep you updated!
We'll be at booth V15. Please stop by! :)
More on the "do not" side...
So... I'm just coming to terms with the fact that I'm just AWFUL at keeping up with this thing (blogging). I'm just going to vow to "do better" from now on, which won't take much. :)
Unfortunately Drew had to go under the knife again. No, he didn't get Hasslehoff inspired plastic surgery. That's next Christmas. No, his appendix decided to explode a couple of weeks ago. But, never fear, he is up and about and back to work. RETAIL WAITS FOR NO MAN! Plus Drew is a trooper.
So we're chipping away at some commissions, and got some sent off to their new homes. The ones that were shipped off are now on the Mice! page. There are also a couple that have been shipped off that we can't post yet because they're Christmas presents.
Drew has been working on a new mouse character that I'll let him reveal when he's ready. As for me, in between painting the meeces, I'm working on my color skills with painting nature. Not only is it helping to train my eyes, but I'm hoping to eventually be so familiar with flower/plant anatomy that I start making up my own flowers. We'll see what happens!
D & D
We are the creators of Mice and Madness. Here you will get all of our information as far as what's going on, and even some sneak peaks at in-process work!