(f)Art Party!

I’ve Seen The Future And It Will Be

Robert, and his lovely partner Sabrina, threw an Art Party last night. Which basically consists of a bunch of nerds sitting in a circle, drawing, and not talking to each other. This is how we socialize. Yes, we’re that cool.


Lighting, mother fucker.

During the Art Party, Robert and I worked on Action Hospital pages. To say that we’re gentlemen travelers of the illustrated page might be appropriate.





There are many ways to make comics. Sometimes you just have to make them in a large group of people who are also making comics.



I’m not exactly sure what I’m miming in the photo above but I think it’s proper inking posture. Or it could be  that I’m about to show Robert how gravity works.




The pages are progressing at a steady pace. Robert’s really getting into a groove. Look at that Sibling enjoying her bowl of dirt. How awesome is that? The dude is really starting to kick into high gear.




Towards the end of the night our host Sabrina served us veggie and fruit smoothies. To say that making comics, drinking smoothies and then making some more comics is anything less than a perfect saturday night would be an egregious lie.





Also: can we just digress into douche bag Bro-town for a minute? Look at Sarah. How did I pull that shit? hubba hubba, man. I’ll take two with a side of hells yes. Thank you very much.


There’s really no reference in this post’s title. It’s just funny to put an F before Art it makes FART. No points.


Until Next Time,

Dave Baker

Hollywood, Ca 2013

An Icon of Symmetry

And A Merry Comicsmass To All

Well, we’re rolling along. We’re now two pages deep into Action Hospital. It’s extremely uplifting to see the response from people. I can’t thank everyone who has been reading enough. It’s so gratifying to hear all your kind words. I suppose I should say ‘read’ all your kind words because most of my interactions about the book have been digital. Which is appropriate due to the fact that it’s a web/digital/future comic, right?

I’m so pleased with the response that we’ve got so far and I hope that it will only grow over time.


Robert’s Creature From The Black Lagoon says ‘Thanks everybody!’

Thanks again to my partners in crime Robert Negrete and Henry Barajas. They’re both super studs who are really studly. Also: they’re studs.


I’ll Tap My Man-Thing To Exhaust Your Four Drop Mr Fantastic 

The VS System is hands down the greatest CCG (collectable card game) ever created. You can suck my fat web slinger, Magic: The Gathering. VS’s rules provided the most complex tableau of mechanics, the widest variety of customization, and the best gamer experience I’ve ever encountered.


The game was put out by Upper Deck in 2004. It focused on Marvel and DC intellectual property based decks that the consumer could customize to reflect their personal aesthetic. Ultimately, the game became too complex and lost it’s casual fan base players, choosing instead to court a more hardcore market. This decision, coupled with Upper Deck’s poor managerial skills and a failure to continue running a pro circuit, eventually resulted in the game’s demise.

Since it’s death in 2009, Vs has survived thanks to a fervent fan base of internet fans and a select few store who still run hobby leagues.

Some people drink to relax, some people go out dancing, and some just sit at home an stare at a television set. I played VS. It was my weekly reprieve from the hardships of a monotonous routine. It stimulated me intellectually and allowed me to detox from the troubles of the week. VS helped me through some intricately difficult times.

Ever since the game died in 2009, I have missed it dearly. I have constantly craved the stimulation and mental challenges that it provided. I miss the game on a daily basis. It allowed me to interact with people and express myself and my interests in a completely safe way. The language of the game is highly customizable. Most players utilize overtly intricate in-game mechanics to reflect their personalities. I miss this release, terribly.

Yesterday, I received an email from someone that I had talked to maybe twice, inviting me to a VS tournament. A VS TOURNAMENT. This is akin to someone that you knew when you were 9 calling you up and saying, ‘Hey! Remember me? There’s gonna be a pogs tournament on Saturday. You interested?’ Of course I’m interested! Count me in. I’m there. With bells on and a Spider-man Legends Stall deck. Let’s do this, Spider-Friends. Let’s do this.


The Sudden Realization ( That Doesn’t Pertain To Mortality)

Chvrches has been playing in the background of my existence for a good four months. They’ve been a ubiquitous background noise. Mostly due to the fact that my best friend Kevin has had them on a constant loop. They airy female vocals coupled with the exceptionally dark lyrics and the upbeat synth-pop makes for an interesting cocktail. I’m not sure why it took me nearly four months to embrace the scottish trio’s music but I’ve now fallen head over heels for it.

I’ve been writing a web campaign for a company in New York this week and listening the Chvrches on repeat.


Until next time,

Dave Baker

Hollywood, Ca 2013

Arizona: The Land Of Meth Heads and Unopened Star Trek Toys

Mouths Within Mouths

I’m currently in Arizona. Not by choice, mind you. I’m here out of familial obligation. The simultaneous happenings of my sister’s birthday and my partner’s mother’s birthday was enough to lure us back into the rattlesnake infested, drug addled wasteland that is Tucson.

Arizona, where I was born and raised, is not my favorite place. Partially due to the massive amount of time I’ve spent here, and partially due to the unsavory individuals I’ve encountered within the boarders of the Union’s Most Bigoted state.

There are two things that constantly shock me about Arizona. 1) People here don’t change. Every time I return to this state I inevitably encounter people I know and they’re always doing the same thing. They’re always working some dead end job. It’s like the entire state has convinced itself that it needs to be doing whatever it is that they’re doing. Even if what they’re doing is working at a gas station. 2) There are Star Trek figures at every store in Tucson. Not the cool Art Asylum ones either. The crappy big-headed Playmates ones. They’re everywhere. I don’t know if a batch of collectors died and their relatives have been dumping their TNG and DS9 toys and local used book stores or if people are finally getting older and realizing that these toys aren’t “going to put their kids through college”.

Arizona’s a weird place. It’s flat, dry, and, obviously, fucking hot. There’s nothing to do here. The positive side of the fact that life here is so uneventful is that it necessitates self reflection. The topography of the social terrain requires the inhabitant to administer self-diagnostics. When you’re born and raised in Arizona, you’re forced to evaluate yourself and what you want out of your existence because there’s literally nothing else to do.

Due to the harsh social terrain of Arizona, individuals who spend any significant amount of time here develop social adaptations. They become predators. They grow psychic barbs and talons. People who live and survive in the desert do so because they’re conditioned for it. They’re psychic vultures.

The desert is an inhospitable place to attempt to subsist. Everything is constantly attempting to kill you. Literally and metaphorically.

All that being said, this trip has been really nice. Ever since cutting a few people out of my social circle my level of happiness has skyrocketed.

Honesty is key. Vulnerability is a commodity. It’s these exchanges of dark secrets that cements a friendship. I’ve developed deep rooted connections with people in this place. There’s something about existing in a pack of wolves that helps you to appreciate the other sheep, if that makes any sense.

Tucson, and Arizona in general, is a mixed bag of awful and joy. Obviously, my family lives here. Some of my closest friends have chosen to remain here. However, the overwhelming stillness of life here is debilitating. Possibly, it’s my inability to let go of the traumas that I’ve endured while living here, but sadness echoes in the place. In Los Angeles, life is full and vibrant. It’s almost overloaded with color. I have an amazing partner who I go on swashbuckling adventures with. I have friends and adopted family who are intelligent and creative. In Tucson everything is brown, slow, and slightly decayed.

Arizona feels like another lifetime. It feels like when I moved away from this place I died and was reborn. And every time I come back here I’m forced to confront the ghost of who I was.

The first question I get asked at parties and social functions in Hollywood is inevitably “where are you from?” because no one in L.A. is actually from there. I’m always forced to spit out ‘Arizona’. It never feels right. I don’t consider this place my home. I don’t consider myself from here. It’s the place I was born and then left.


Dave Baker

Tucson, Az 2013

Action Hospital Is Go!


Well, we’re off and running. Action Hospital is moving forward.

Our first page went live today and the response has been wonderful. We’re all super thankful that everyone has responded the way that they have. It’s been really nice seeing people coming together in order to help us promote our work.

If you like what you’re seeing here in the Action Hospital you should check out the websites of the people who make it. Action Hospital #1 has been put together by myself, Robert Negrete and Henry Barajas.

Henry has is a marvelous writer in his own right. His work can be seen in the amazingly funny comic Captain Unicorn . Henry is also a writer for the Tucson Weekly and a standup comedian of some note. All that and Henry can find the time to letter our little book. Impressive, right? He’s a beast. The dude must sleep even less than I do.

Robert is a wicked talented illustrator. His pages look like posters. His talents cannot be exaggerated. You can see more of his work at RobertNegrete.Com Robert is a knockout illustrator and I’m a lucky dude to be working with them.

I’m very thankful to be working with these two gentlemen. I’m also very thankful for the outpouring love and encouragement towards us. We’ll try and not disappoint you guys.




I love Billy Zane. More than is probably healthy. While I was drawing Awesomenaut, a book about a time traveling super spy I drew a few years back, I watched The Phantom on a loop. I’m not exaggerating. Literally on a loop. I don’t even know how many times I’ve seen the film.

The Phantom, the character, holds a special place in my heart. To me, he represents raw potential. Infinite possibilities. Untold stories. The Phantom AKA Kit Walker  is the 22nd inheritor of the mantle of the Phantom. He’s a crime fighter who inherited the lifestyle. He’s trapped in the family business. He believes in what he’s doing but he still is in the family business. I see him as a second generation plumber. People need plumbers but nobody really wants to be a plumber.

The Phantom is a symbol. Since all of the Phantoms have been men there’s an urban legend that he’s a ghost or that he’s immortal. There’s a mystical narrative that surrounds The Phantom that would be so constricting as a persons. You’d never be able to put your personal stamp on anything you did. You’d always be defined by your forefathers actions. You’d be perpetually entombed in the personal legend of your family tree. That’s such a great concept for a character and such a tragic coffin of a life.

I’m not going to lie, I’ve read a lot of Phantom comics and I’ve never really read one that I loved. I guess it has to do with the character’s long history. There have been a lot of writers who have tackled him and most of them just place emphasis on the fighting and the heroing. His popularity has wained over the past fifty years so I would assume that that, coupled with the fact that the main demographic of Phantom readers is people in their 80’s, has contributed to his stories being limited to the action adventure genre. I’d love to see some Phantom comics that are about Kit Walker as a person. I mean, sure I like punching and spandex as much as the next guy, but I would love to see a bit more complexity in the Phantom stories that I read.

Also: the Dynamite reboot of the Phantom was not for me. Sorry, Alex Ross. Didn’t do it for me.

I bring the Phantom up because that’s the headspace that I’m in currently. I’m really amped to be writing and co-drawing this comic. I have a lot of things to say through these characters and I want to maximize the potential of the stories on every page. That’s one of the reasons why our issues are going to be so small. We’re doing hyper compressed, extremely stylized narrative-explosions.

The Phantom, the ghost who walks, is the spirit animal of this book.


Until Next Time,

Dave Baker

Tucson, Az 2013

My God! He’s Done It!

Don’t Shit Yourself In The Spotlight 

When you’re making comics with someone, or pairing up with anyone to do anything creative, it’s immediately apparent who is serious and who isn’t. Sometimes it can feel like you’re in an old-time jailbreak movie, and when the spotlight is trained on you by the potbellied tower guard, your first impulse it to shit your pants. It’s important that you find people to work with who have than impulse but then start sprinting for the wall.

You need to be a team. Two matching black and white be-jumpsuited creators desperately struggling against the confines of life and the realities of the comic book industry.

The key to creating interesting work is finding someone who is actually interested in creating something. That seems like a pretty self evident statement. But you’d be surprised how many people are ‘trying’ to do something without ever really trying. They just have the identity of struggling against something. And when those ideological barriers are torn down? They go crazy.

That’s why it’s important to find people who want to make cool things, not be seen making cool things. There’s a massive difference.


Robert Negrete is one of those people. He’s dtf. He’s down to fly. He’s got the skills, his bags are packed and he’s ready to rock and roll.


He’s been doing some really interesting things on both his tumblr and deviantart pages. The work that he’s  creating has been marvelous as of late. I may be a little biased due to my close personal relationship and the fact that I’ve been writing the stuff that he’s been drawing lately, but whatever. That’s irrelevant. Just look at his awesome drawings, man.



Look how awesome that little plant monster is! How dope is that? All I had to do was say, “Robert, draw a plant monster eating a bowl of cereal and he draws the best super intelligent plant moster ever. This is why comics rocks. Super intelligent plant people.

Be sure to check out his website too. He’s got some really nice pieces on there.


The Micron Is Mightier Than The Sword

I’m starting to ink my Action Hospital pages. I should have something cool to show you soon.


The title for this post comes from Doc Frankenstein #1. 5 points if you somehow guessed that.


Until Next Time,

Dave Baker

Hollywood, California 2013

Yes…But Take Warning



Live Long and Party

creating is a very lonely thing. You spend all your time sitting in a room ‘working’. Sure, some people listen to podcasts or music but it’s an undeniably solitary life. I’m not complaining, mind you. I love not having to go into an office. I love being able to push my schedule around as I please. However, there are times when even I, the most hobbity of hermits, want to interact with people.

In Trek terms, ‘away missions’ are required from time to time. They help maintain my sanity, which is constantly on the verge of snapping.

Night before last I, and my small cadre of nerds, ventured down onto Hollywood Blvd. To say that it’s a hive of scum and villainy wouldn’t be incorrect. The place is bonkers. Twenty-four-seven. Part of me loves it and part of me hates it. I love the fact that a few blocks from my house there’s a massive orgy of excess and drunken indulgence. I also can’t help but be disgusted by the artifice of it all. On Hollywood Blvd there’s nothing honest. There’s nothing real. It’s like Vegas. It’s all genetically engineered to be consumed by individuals who have no cultural awareness. Hollywood Blvd is the porn version of life in California. Everything is heightened, all the vulnerabilities are shoved under a rug, and there’s a shit ton of noise.  There’s a large facet of my person that devours this presentation of life here. I love the fact that people come here to escape from their everyday lives. Even individuals who still live in Los Angeles attend parties and go to clubs on Hollywood Blvd because a small part of themselves buys into what the club owners and party throwers are selling.


And then there’s shit like this. A fucking dude in a Mario suit. Why? Because it’s friday night and why not. It’s like comic con, but with more crappy hip-hop. And almost every night.


The sheer volume of ‘holyfuckwedon’thavetoworktomorrowlet’sgetfuckedup’ is astonishing. People really hate their jobs, their partners, their (insert aspect of their life here) and they are constantly attempting to escape it. Every time I’m in a situation where I witness this It gives me an immense amount of perspective. Oh course there are elements of my life I’m not happy with. Everyone has something. But it’s the fact that people need these venues to escape from themselves for two or three hours that I find endlessly fascinating. I find the whole cycle really beautiful and really sad simultaneously.



The Curse of the Carpal Tunnel Creatures From Beyond The Grave

And now on to the the things you care about. COMICS. Or rather the drawing of the comics and such. Or maybe you don’t care about comics. I don’t know.

I’m almost done penciling Action Hospital #3. I’ve got about two more pages left to lay the graphite down on and the WE MOVE TO THE INKS!


Working on the art side of comics again is interesting. It’s been a while since I’ve actually put any serious effort into drawing. I’ve been concentrating on writing for so long. I’m really enjoying drawing again. I forgot how rewording it is to see a blank page birthed into something so much more.


One of the challenges about writing/drawing is being able to keep one hat on for an extended period of time. Whenever I start drawing I instantly start thinking of ideas for the next script and vis versa. I suppose that’s a good problem to have.


Drawing drawing and them more drawing, man. That’s really all their is to say, at this point. I’m just really deep into the production of this thing. I’m going to be overjoyed when it’s finished.


Form Of A Bucket of Awesome Comics!

Last night I got together with Robert Negrete, my creative partner in crime on Action Hospital.


Robert has finished all the layouts for Action Hospital 2 is just starting on the pages. Even his thumbnails are fucking dope. Look at this:



Great, right? Yeah, great. Robert is ten times the illustrator that I am. Here’s hoping I can finagle him into doing Action Hospital for a little while.



Bonus Chun Li?

I mean, look at these sketchbook pages, man! Look at his control of from and his line weights. It’s super duper good. photo-2

So, since I’m nearing the end of Action Hospital #3 Robert and I have some super cool things planned. We’re going to be both drawing on the pages. As such, here’s a sneak peak:





Team up drawing, yo!


So, there you have it. Drawings, comics, me in a Science Officer’s shirt out in public, and Robert Negrete owning me at the drawing game.


Special Announcement: We’re shooting to launch the Action Hospital page #1 this Wednesday. See you then!


The title for this post comes from Detective Comics #300. Five Points?


Until Next Time,

Dave Baker

Hollywood, Ca 2013