We've lost another one. I came home from an extended weekend away, to hear of the passing of Steely Dan guitarist Walter Becker. To be honest, I was never the biggest of Steely Dan fans, I enjoyed their music when I heard it. As a serious fan of music, I made sure I had at least one of their greatest hits collections in my music library and that was good enough for me.
That said, I was saddened to hear of his passing. He was one of rock and roll's guitarists with a signature sound. When you hear a Steely Dan song on the radio, you don't mistake it for another band's song, and a lot of that is because of the craftsmanship of Walter Becker. He brought a jazz influenced touch to the band's songs. While Becker won't be mistaken for Wes Montgomery, Pat Metheny or George Benson, he gave Steely Dan a distinctive enough sound at their peak and record buyers took notice.
So as the Labor Day 2017 weekend becomes history, and we rapidly march into Autumn, it seems only fitting to end a "tribute" to Walter Becker with lyrics from one of his bands many radio classics... "...Your everlasting summer, You can see it fading fast. So you grab a piece of something that you think is gonna last..." Rest in peace Walter Becker.
The Martytoon Newsletter
The Thoughts, Designs & Process of Marty Qatani aka MartyToons.
Hi and welcome to the first blog post / newsletter of the all new revamped MartyToons website. Where to start ? I suppose a quick intro is in order for those of you who may be unfamiliar with me and what I do. I'm a cartoonist / character designer/ humorous illustrator. That sounds like a lengthy title, but none of those by themselves seems appropriate enough by themselves to describe what I do.
If I call myself a cartoonist, people tend to think I create a comic strip.... not true. If I call myself just a character designer, it seems a little limiting to me. I like to think I do a little bit more... make people think... wake people up, help someone remember a happy thought.... maybe even put a smile on people's faces.... hopefully. Calling myself just a humorous illustrator, just doesn't seem to have any "punch", "pizzazz", "sparkle"... you get the picture. I do like the sound of "Creator of Visual Enhancements for Artistically Challenged and Cartooning Impaired." It has a pretty cool ring to me, but it's a little hard to fit on a business card and still look cool.
What can you expect here ? How's a little doodle sound ? A little peek into what goes on in my working process and maybe even in my thought process ? That's my plan... I hope you enjoy. So let me dig into my archive, maybe shed a little light on happened and then invite you to comment. Sounds good ? Good... then lets get to it.
This is an early sketch of one of my favorite designs I'm working on. It's inspired by one of my favorite music artists, Cat Stevens, who know goes by the name of Yusuf Islam https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cat_Stevens . Check him out if you get the chance and are a fan of 70's "Soft" Rock, and especially if you're a fan of songs about being positive, hopefullness, and becoming a little wiser.
Music is playing more and more a part in my designs. I love many styles of music and I always have it playing in my studio while I'm creating. Alot of times I let the music direct what I'm going to sketch when I intentionally sit down to sketch, sometimes I'm not planning on sketching at all, but I hear a song and an image will just pop into my head, and I have to get it down on paper. I believe that's what happened here, but to be honest, I came up with this sketch several years ago, and I can't remember the exact circumstances that gave birth to this.
So there you have it. I hope you enjoy it. Got any questions ? Feel free to comment below.