PANTOMERICA

Seeking Color In The US

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Unlazy Savannah

Maggie Owens1 Comment

Name: Savannah

Hometown: Tampa, Florida

Profession: Artist.  Savannah focuses on furry art, and admits that this can be controversial in the world of comics.  "There's a real tribal mentality in comics and anime.  Even within the furry community, there are divisions everywhere.  A big one is between those who do sex drawings and those who don't."  

Savannah says that, because these kinds of divisions and controversies, she kept her drawings a secret for a long time.  She doesn't do sexual drawings, but was worried her friends in the wider anime community would think she did if they knew she was involved in the furry community.

Savannah says that she has just always been interested in drawing animals, and just really connects to the style of art (Disney has been a big influence for her).  

She doesn't let the judgement affect her anymore, and has widely attended both anime and furry conventions to sell her art.  

How did you get interested in drawing?:  "My parents got me into art.  My mom used to draw me paper dolls.  My dad is an engineer and taught me to draw."

What influences your style?:  "I'm bi so I like both male and female forms.  You draw more of what you like, so I guess I like the female form more."

What's your favorite color?:  Yellow.  She likes yellow because of its vibrant, and reminds her of her hometown of Tampa.  Also, her room was painted yellow by her mother.  

On the role color plays in her art:  "I like to express a feeling through colors.  Some colors are cool, some are dreamy, some are warm and vibrant.  I think of colors in tones and feelings."   

On her experience in the anime/furry community:  Savannah has been featured as a panelist in a discussion about Hispanic women in comics.  "It can be kind of a boys club," she says of the comic art community.  "But in furry art it seems like there has always been women.  It's really even, which is cool to see in a typically male dominated art culture."  

On Hispanics in the furry community:  Savannah says she has been excited to see a growing hispanic presence at the many conventions she attends.  She explains that the furry community really supports being proud of who you are and your interests.  "I'm glad there are more hispanics showing up and being proud."  She specifically noted that there is no one hispanic look.  "Hispanics can be anything so theres probably many here you you don't know."  

Check out Savannah's art at www.unlazy.com 

Panda Fuzz Panda-Chan

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Name: Amanda

Anthrocon Alias: Panda Chon

Hometown: Pittsburgh 

What colors remind you of your hometown: Black and Gold, baby. COME ON STEELERS! Come on Roethlisberger, take it home for us this season!*

*we had to wikipedia every sports reference you seen in this interview

Favorite color: Anything pastel, but mint green is her favorite

Profession: Artist, jewelry and clothing maker.  Her art is an explosion of pastels. 

Panda Chon says that she gets a lot of the inspiration for her art from going to so many conventions.  She is a proud member of the furry community and is excited to have AnthroCon in her hometown. 

She is also inspired by anime and retro gaming (she still plays Ages Genesis).  

(pic of her with dog hand puppet)

Her dog Nico loves conventions too. 

Seen and Heard At AnthroCon Day 2

Color 58, Color 37, Color 36, Color 31, Color 3, Color 54Maggie Owens1 Comment

After our first day at AnthroCon, driving back to our motel on the outskirts of Pittsburgh, we stopped off at a Dunkin Donuts to each try our 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Cronuts ever.  

We decided to take a real hard look at ourselves in that Dunkin’ parking lot.  It was dark.  We were tired and confused.  There was a family size box of donuts between us, empty.  It was then that we really accepted our fate as Josie Grossies.  

This realization was liberating.  There is a freedom that comes with accepting that you are the biggest loser at a Pittsburgh furry convention.  But, hey, we knew that on Anthrocon day 2, we would walk into the festivities, dorks that we are, and learn as much as possible about the craziness all around us.  Theres nothing more loser-y than learning new things!  (Maybe besides binge-eating Cronuts in the dark).

"Welcome back to AnthroCon day 2, I've been waiting here since last night. I never left. I haven't slept.  I'm so excited."  

"Welcome back to AnthroCon day 2, I've been waiting here since last night. I never left. I haven't slept.  I'm so excited."  

Lesson 1: What is a "Yiff"?

A lot of people assume that every Furry does sex stuff in his or her furry outfit.  This, however, is not true.  We learned that a majority of Furries enjoy dress up platonic fun.  "Yiff" is a special term designated to those who bring it into the bedroom (that's where they do the sex).  

This is a man singing karaoke while wearing dog ears and a shirt that proudly reads "Yiffsburgh".  For the record, he is singing Four Non Blondes' "What's Up".  

This is a man singing karaoke while wearing dog ears and a shirt that proudly reads "Yiffsburgh".  For the record, he is singing Four Non Blondes' "What's Up".  

Lesson 2: It's not just about Furries.  

If you think Furrydom is all about cute cuddly animals then you're wrong.  Dead wrong.  Road kill wrong.  It's time for you to meet the Scalies.  Instead of dressing up like animals that are furry, they dress up like amphibians and reptiles that are scaly.  Do you see what a huge mistake you made?? Do you feel like an idiot?  Calm down. there's so much more to learn.  

Q. Is this a Scalie?  

A. No, this is a Furry.  Are you an idiot? 

Q. Is this a Scalie? 

A: Yes, this is an excellent example of a Scalie.

Lesson 3: You're Gonna Need A Tag. 

Everyone at Anthrocon has at least one these hand drawn tags dangling around.  They represent your personal characters.  Often times Furries get their talented friends to drawn tags for them.  We could have had some tags for AnthroCon if we had any friends or talent or friends with talent (JK LOVE YOU KEEP READING OUR BLOG).  

Amelia here had some of the coolest tags we saw. She was dressed up for the day in a Cosplay for her fan character "Flufferpuff."  Her favorite color is teal. 

 

Lesson 4: "You can't always match the pony to the Brony"*

It can be hard to pick just one.  

*Overheard at the "My Little Pony: Frienship is Magic" meet up

 

Lesson 5: Something about Wyrms

These are Wyrms.  What are Wyrms?  I have no fucking clue.  I failed Wyrms class. 

We met a group of teenage girls that were huddled around a group of the most colorful little fuzzy things we’d ever seen.  We thought to ourselves, “hey, we are definitely in the same age range as these girls, and we have a blog about color.  It looks like we’ve found our AnthroCon niche after all.”   But it was so much deeper than color, guys. 

The girls really tried to invite us into their world.  They were so gracious.  The spent far too much of their time trying to explain to us what the fuck a wyrm is.  We still only know that they are fuzzy and colorful and not worms.  

Don't hang out with the burnouts under the table.  That's how you get an F in wyrms class. 

Don't hang out with the burnouts under the table.  That's how you get an F in wyrms class. 

In Conclusion...

Be cool. Stay in school.

Seen And Heard At AnthroCon Day 1

Color 13, Color 19, Color 21, Color 35, Color 37, Color 39Maggie OwensComment

I’d like to say we just happened to stumble on the world’s largest furry convention but no. This is one of the few things (the only thing maybe?) we planned far, far in advance. In fact, when Maggie got the dates wrong, we ended up having to backtrack 590 miles east from Salem, MA to Pittsburgh, PA just to make it on time. Needless to say that our scenic drive through the Poconos was tense and passive-aggressively silent.

From what we thought we knew about furries and what we thought we knew about conventions, we were expecting AnthroCon to be a slutty, debacherous mess. Essentially, we thought it would be a college party bender (there’s an animal house joke here we’re too lazy to make).

To our surprise, AnthroCon was not really about clumsy pick-up lines and full-costume walks of shame the next morning. It wasn't college. Rather, it was a constant ebb and flow of people being cliquey and people being inclusive.  Yep, it was high school.

And if AnthroCon was high school, then we were Drew Barrymore in Never Been Kissed — we were the too old, too uncool-for-school posers flying under the radar to see just what it was like. And here's what we found:

1. There's A Lot Of Love

2. And There's A Lot Of Exclusion

Look at this Arctic creature gazing on to a group that he wishes he could be a part of.  So tragic, so high school.

Or maybe he's just watching the Pittsburgh Panthers game going on in the far distance?

PS: it is so weird knowing that a Panthers game is going on while you're in a convention center with way, way more panthers. 

3. But, Hey, Man, Let Your Freak Flag Fly

donut.jpg

AnthroCon is definitely a time to express yourself. Are you a dog wearing a Pikachu backpack? Or are you more of a tiger wearing an over-sized donut? 

We were all about expressing ourselves in high school but we had a uniform with a fairly strict dress code and inflatable pastries were definitely not within jurisdiction. Such a shame, too, because that's definitely a look we would've rocked.

4. Wait... Are You Guys Gossiping About Me?

Seriously, what are you guys talking about? Is it me? This is all getting a little too high school. Like, come on, guys. Let's act our age (though I'm pretty sure I'm Josie Grosie and I'm 16 years older than you). 

... But I can't really tell how old you are cuz you're wearing fucking furry masks over your face. That could be John C. Reilly under that costume*.

*PLEASE GOD LET IT BE JOHN C. REILLY UNDER THAT COSTUME.

6. In AnthroCon, Like In High School, Fashion Is Key

Look at the style on this guy! You don't get more chic than a vest on a fox. I kind of know what I'm talking about. I was the first girl in my class to wear Uggs. 

6. But, Of Course, There's Gonna Be Some Fashion Faux Paws

Hey Ms. (Mr.?) Thing, I know this is a color blog but wow. If it's yellow, let it mellow. If it's orange on yellow on yellow, let it mellow in your closet forever, am I right??? 

Don't worry. Everyone has those fashion mistakes they look back on with shame. I kind of know what I'm talking about. I was the last girl in my class to stop wearing Uggs. 

Also, I actually really like this outfit. I'm just projecting because of the whole Uggs thing.

7. Some Girls Just Get All The Attention

"What I found? Those girls are still there. The ones that, even as you grow up, will still be the most beautiful girls that you've ever seen close up."

-Josie "Grosie" Geller, “Never Been Kissed”

8. The Hotties With The Bodies Were All There

Isn't it hilarious that we thought the boys we knew in high school had "hot bodies?" MAJOR LOL there. They were squirmy JV-basketball one-time-not-virgins and we were talking about them like they were Gerard Butler. 

Anyway, look how sexy this ram with a six-pack is! What's your sign? Aries? Me too. Does that mean I can touch your biceps? Is it weird that I'm sexualizing a ram? Probably not because that's an actual fucking human, right? 

Also, do you think it's a coincidence that the team mascot in Never Been Kissed was the ram and this guy is dressed as one? Yes. It's 100% a stupid fucking coincidence, Maggie. Let it go. 

9. And Some Boys Are Always Gonna Be Bad To The Core

If angstily smoking while looking at pristine bridges doesn't remind you of high school, you were not an SF kid. Or you had the wherewithal to consider lung cancer (sorry to hear you were a big fat dweeb!).

Also, do you guys remember smoking Cloves? All of my older cousins tried to convince me to stop smoking them because "Cloves are disgusting" and I just remember thinking "sorry you guys aren't as complex as I am but I am going to be smoking these cinnamon sticks forever."

And look at me now — complex as ever at a Furry Convention! SUCK IT COUSINS.

10. No, seriously, you guys. This shit is so high school!

... right down to the straight jacket, you know? Remember how crazy that was?

Wait — did I say straight jacket? I meant halter tops. Remember how crazy halter tops were? Straight jackets are for crazy people and I was only crazy about halter tops back then lol #boys #NormalGirl #NormalGirlAtAFurryConvention

lol can't wait to spread the rumor to those bitches from picture #4 that Ceil wore a straight jacket in high school...

11. In The End, It's All About Friendship :)

Yep, this is an actual photo of Ceil and Maggie. Friendship still strong after 12 years. 

 

So, as an ending to this article, and, perhaps a beginning to a new chapter in my life, I, Josie Geller, will be at the state championship baseball game, where my friends, the Southglen Rams (with six packs!) are playing for the title. I will stand on the pitcher's mound for the five minutes prior to the first pitch. If this man accept my apology, I ask him to come kiss me, in front of everyone, for my first real kiss.

...Shit, that's Never Been Kissed again. Whatever, keep posted to see what else we learned, saw and heard at Anthrocon (and to see if Michael Vartan ever showed up to make out with us!)*

*Spoiler alert: he didn't.

Best quote heard that day:

"Do you kiss your mother with that beak?!"

 

Sculpture Artist Wayne Porter

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Name: Wayne Porter

Profession: Artist.  Wayne is a self-taught sculpture artist who works with mostly recycled materials.  He makes both small-scale and large-scale sculptures, some getting up to 60 feet tall.  

Hometown: Montrose, South Dakota

About His Studio: Wayne’s property in rural South Dakota is now a much visited sculpture park featuring all of his work. Pieces of his that range from a giant, red dragon to a demonic Jack-In-The-Box clown tower over highway 14.

It’s clear Wayne loves living in South Dakota. He was as enthusiastic and excited to show off some of the flora that grew on his property (like bluegrass and sage) as he was showing us a, say, 8 foot statue of a frog dissection. In fact, he gets some complaints from his neighbors about how he doesn’t cut the grass. “Really weird,” he explained. “I love the grass.”

Wayne also lives with his albino dog, Bambino.  

How did you get started with sculpture?:  “I grew up in a blacksmith shop,” he explains.  Wayne’s dad was a blacksmith in St. Lawrence, South Dakota.  His first experiment with sculpture design was a small bull, which he still has on the desk in his shop. It’s funny to think years later, he’d own his own studio / property with a 60 foot bull’s head he crafted himself. 

IMG_3206.jpg

What is your process?:  Despite the fact that Wayne’s sculptures are often life size or larger, he works with no preconceived plans.  He says that he pretty much just flies by the seat of his pants.  “I can’t draw them first ‘cause I can’t draw.  Can’t even write the idea down ‘cause I can’t read my own handwriting. I just have to go for it.”  

On the topic of inspiration, Wayne added “It comes to me at two in the morning and I just let it talk.” This wouldn’t be the last time Wayne anthropomorphized his art by a long shot. Frankly, if you were creating gargantuan figures of flies and goldfish toting umbrellas, you probably would too. 

Porter says cartoons are a big inspiration for his art. 

Porter says cartoons are a big inspiration for his art. 

What kind of materials do you use?: Wayne uses everything he can find, including but not limited to old refrigerator parts, cement mixers, soft water tanks, diesel tanks, car rims, and old station wagon parts.  

Porter says he doesn't understand why people constantly compare his work to that of Tim Burton's or say it is macabre. He just doesn't find what he does all that creepy. 

Porter says he doesn't understand why people constantly compare his work to that of Tim Burton's or say it is macabre. He just doesn't find what he does all that creepy. 

“When I was younger I used a lot more recycled materials ‘cause I was working faster.  I would take anything I could find and just start making something with it.”  In recent years, Wayne has has taken a slower approach.  He spent three years working on the bull's head alone. 

Favorite Color:  Red.  “i don’t know anything about color or art,” he insists.  “But like anyone, if I like it I like it.  I’ll completely change the colors on a sculpture if I decide I don’t like it.”  Red shows up a lot in Wayne’s process. “Rust is the disease of iron,” he says. And if he likes it, he likes it. 

What colors remind you of Montrose?:  He says that the spectrum of natural colors in the area has changed a lot since he settled on his property 15 years ago.  “It’’s hard to find colors here now.  The county is disappearing.  It used to be 1000 people, now theres 3,900.” 

"Steinbeck said 'you'd be proud of anything if it's all you have," Wayne told us. 

"Steinbeck said 'you'd be proud of anything if it's all you have," Wayne told us. 

Animal Stuffin', Good Lovin' Joe

Maggie Owens1 Comment

Disclaimer:  

We were leaving Yellowstone when we drove through the town of Dubois, Wyoming.  We saw a roadside sign for a taxidermy shop.

What we thought would be a gruesome adventure into Wyoming mountain life turned out to be quite the opposite.  Instead of finding gross shit we found Joe.  Joe is hot.  And actually there was a lot of gross shit but joe was really hot so we kind of didn’t notice.  Maybe he was skinning a mountain goat before our eyes.  We didn’t really know what was going on.

Tessa was so smitten by him that she forgot that she hates guns.  In fact, she thinks their perfect for each other and they’d be able to, in her words, “work it out as opposites.”

While he rifled through the pages of his taxidermy catalog, showing us false deer and moose eyes he would order and later shove into the skull of so    me dead animal, our eyes were fixed on his. In fact, our eyes probably looked as googly as the fakes ones in the catalog did. 

Each of us stood in his sexy little murder den fantasizing about him being her boyfriend. Like, maybe he’d send me flowers or win me a big stuffed bear at a carnival. Except, I guess, in his fantasy, it would be a bear that he shot, dragged back to his workshop, skinned and stuffed himself. Swoon!

Long story short, our pictures of him are blurry. A girl can’t be expected to focus her lens or her mind with such a foxy fox-murderer around? Did we just take women back 50 years? Somebody shoot me. Joe? 

Name: Joe

Hometown: Dubois, Wy

Profession: Taxidermist.  Being an avid hunter, Joe originally got into taxidermy because he couldn’t afford a taxidermist.  He started as an amateur and then began going to taxidermy shows around the area.  After a series of white ribbon awards he decided he needed to improve.  Joe is now the owner of Windy Mountain Taxidermy in Dubois, and his shop is filled with expertly stuffed animals.  

What’s the craziest thing you’ve stuffed?: “I’ve done a monkey for a zoo.”  Joe has also stuffed pythons for zoos.  

Craziest thing in the shop:  Buffalo penis that he turned into a walking cane.  Probably not the biggest in the room, am I right, Joe?

Fave Color: Green, like a plant green.  The kind of green you hide in when you see a bear.  (Joe has, in fact, faced a bear.  Joe is incredibly nonchalant about this fact).  

Name of your hunting dog: La Dee Da(😍😍🔫🐕🔫😍😍). Must Love Dogs? Check! Must Kill Elk? Check! 

Bison Ranch Dan

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Name: Dan Thiel

Hometown: Cheyenne, Wyoming

Profession: Owner and Operator of Terry Bison Ranch

Mission: “We try to give people a little flavor of the whole west.”   Dan stresses wholesome family fun and entertainment.  He and his family, who all work together at the ranch, have set up a train tour, horseback riding excursions, and ATV’s all as different ways to get people excited about exploring what the West has to offer.  

About the Bison: There are 2500 bison at the ranch, roaming across 27.500 acres.  Dan loves getting to take people out to get up close and personal with the animal that played such an important role in the history of the region.  

What colors remind you of Wyoming: “Really you have your two colors.  Summer green and winter dormant brown.”  Dan is originally from North Dakota, and says that when he same out to Wyoming at 15, he noticed how green everything was.  “Every state has its magical parts,” he says.  “We like to think we’re a part of the magic here in Wyoming.”  

Favorite color: Red, particularly the color of his red pickup truck.  Dan’s father was in construction.  He built big steel electric lines that were used for the Hoover Dam.  The company color was red.  “All the trucks were red.  Uniformity was important for the corporate theme.”  Today at Terry Bison Ranch all the machinery is painted Red, White, and Blue.