April 24, 2006


So, as you can see, I made a book. It was very fun to do, and I'll get into the process later perhaps, but for now I think it's good if I just start showing images. Above, my cover, introduction, and text. Below, a rougher version of the story and the text so you can read it.

The binding of the book was delightfully done by DonTaylor, and my printing by Pikto. All artwork above was drawn and coloured in Photoshop, except for the kids who I borrowed from a Ding Dong School kidsbook. I would've liked to have made my own endpapers, but I ran out of time! Next time I guess.

The story was written to reflect the sensibilities of Toot Whistle Plunk & Boom, Gerald Mc Boing Boing, Dr. Seuss stuff and the like. There's a real ease and lightness to the stuff when it's done well, and I really wanted that in my text. I had to go to some lengths to match the music, which really fenced me in, but it worked out alright in the end. I hope I got close...

There were a couple of ways to take the OMB idea. The PIXAR short (although I haven't seen all of it) seems to play with the idea of the mechanics of a OMB, something which I had hoped to do too, but in the end limited. Instead, I latched onto the idea of a OMB in the real world--a fellow out of place in almost any time or place; the One Man Band as estranged artist, trying to find his place.

this is the story of musical mike
who wiggled and giggled a lot as a tyke
when one afternoon while out riding his bike
he happened to happen on something he liked

heya mike - now that's alright
honk! honk!

with this inspiration he clamoured away
and soon it became what you'd hear day-to-day
the neighborhood kids would all dance in array
whenever young mikey was let out to play

they'd hoot and they'd holler
they'd swing and sashay
they'd jingle and jangle
they would hip and hooray!

and nobody cared they got carried away
and that's the way mike got accustomed to play

but not everyone liked his music...

when mikey was older he went off to class
where he kept in his margins and struggled to pass
but schools weren't places for woodwinds and brass
and teachers all found his shenanigans crass

but mikey continued with what he would tend
though no one with ears ever bent them to lend
and though he quite often felt missing his friends
he knew on his dixieland he could depend

so mikey decided he would skip outta town
where his musical talents could find some renown
he packed up some things
(some percussion and strings)
and set off to see what the city might bring

it wasn't too long 'til he found some employment
though not of the sorts that inspired enjoyment
and sooner or later there would be some annoyment
which'd always result in his speedy deployment

things were looking pretty hopeless...
until one day...

well, go ahead - PLAY!

and he did!

he played and he played and he played and he played,
and the next thing he knew, they had formed a parade!

there's people who'd say
that it's foolish to play
more than one music maker in tandem

though your head's double sided
your attention divided
can only make melodies random

or you may've heard it said
that while patting your head
how impossible's rubbing your tummy?

more correctly without
staying purely devout
you'll end up unabashedly bumbly

yet tellers have told
of a fella so bold
he can keep 14 instruments goin'

but what can i say
to describe how he plays
when it's probably better to show 'im?

so if ever you're wondering if whether you can,
all that needs recallin' is the one man band!


  1. hey there.. love ur blog.. i too am interested in animation.. I wud like to know wad courses u have done to reach this far..
    gr8 work and all the very best!!

  2. hey nick...glad you finally found time to post your book...as i've said before ...it's amazing, awesome, inspiring even...now onward and upward to greater heights for you..!!

  3. Looks amazing . Even though I've seen it numerous times, it never fails to delight and inspire.
    You're the king man.

  4. Inspiration all bond up. Wonderful.

  5. thanks fellas!
    hopefully it only gets better from here...

  6. Sorry, that should have been 'bound' up.