We Have Some Nice Friends

Team Cul de Sac, the Parkinson’s research fundraising project started by the indefatigable Chris Sparks, has received some inspired contributions by artists and cartoonists. The recent donation pictured above is particularly eye-catching. It comes from Mr. Bill Watterson, who’s got a dab hand with a paintbrush and whose beloved Calvin & Hobbes stands as the platonic ideal of the comic strip, or as close to as such a thing is possible. I once saw a comment on a comics thread from someone saying that he’d dreamed about hiking in the Cascades and coming across a church newsletter stuck in some bushes that featured new Calvin & Hobbes strips that were being published nowhere else. That strikes me as eerie and charming and a good measure of the depth to which C&H has permeated the popular imagination.
So I was floored when I got a call yesterday from Chris saying that Caty Neis, who’s shepherding the Team book project at Andrews & McMeel, had gotten a painting from Bill. An oil painting of Petey Otterloop of all people. After studying it pretty closely for the last consecutive 12 hours or so I can say that he’s done Petey as much justice as possible. Adding another dimension to a 2D character is a tricky business and Petey’s awkward enough in dealing with the two he’s normally confined to.
Thanks to Bill from the bottom of my heart. And thanks also to Alex, Jim, Jerry, Bill L, Crow, Stephan, Steve, Ron, Matt, Canaan, Jim D, Shannon, Pab, Matt, Mo, Mark, Lynn, Peter, David and everybody else who’s contributing. I appreciate it more than I can say.

(Reposted from my blog).