So two of these unterwegs are from other months, drawings that started as quick sketches and were left unfinished. Often I’ll have a sketchbook that has some orphans in it, left behind when I ran out of empty pages.
This month I’m gathering up the orphans and finishing them!
Actually, pretty much every sketchbook has a sketch or two I forgot about or didn’t finish because I ran out of marker, lost my pastel, or needed some reference for a bicycle.
I might need to check the layout of the car, see where the doors or handrails are. Orphans are generally dated the day I finish and sign them, which is why the woman with the tree in summer clothes is dated February 18.
The drawers, drawn! AKA, women cartoonists unite and rule!
Last weekend my friends were performing in my neighborhood, just a couple blocks from my home. At a cool place I didn’t know about, an art gallery/music venue called Art Stalker!
We don’t get much punk rock here in the Far West, ya know, so it was a big deal!
It was my first chance to catch an official gig of Baron Anastis and the Erinyes. Friend and muse Rah Hell is the drummer, veteran Berlin rocker Joe Sparkle is on guitar and Baron Anastis, punk titan of West Berlin, is the frontman and songwriter.
(You can see my drawings from when I went to a rehearsal at their Sekrit Mystery Rehearsal Space here. )
To my delight, I also got to IRL meet Rah’s bestie, Switzerland-based American cartoonist Kristen Haas Curtis. Kristen is known as Miz K in the independent comics world, and she is a marvelous talent. I had been enjoying her warm and deft diary comics for a while, and was intrigued to see her at work in the wild.
Miz K and I settled down together to share a drawing table – she was doing Hourly Comics Day, which I didn’t even know was a thing!
It turns out it is, and damn, no way would I be able to do that. Would you look at this??
It was so nice to have a drawing buddy at a gig and the show was great. They played some of their terrific glampunk originals and some covers including a deliciously corroded cover of “Pure Morning” and a rollicking “Commando”. Everyone had a good time!
Afterwards we took a taxi since Rah and Miz K were transporting drums, and they dropped me off at my door like a fancy person. And then I read Kristen’s lovely comic done in collab with her daughter Bee, Princess Wolf and her Life of Darkness, which is really wonderful and if you have kids or like comics, check it out right here, I HIGHLY recommend it!
Thanks a million, million to my beloved Patrons on Patreon, who make it possible for me to show up and document events like this!
I was super excited for this session of Dr. Sketchy’s Berlin!
There’s nothing I love like too much, and Broken Baroque is such a gorgeous theme. As always, LalaVox and Le Pustra did it up right. Above is the marvelous Viva Lamore as Mistress Overdone. She looked both beautiful and deliciously wicked! She is such an amazing performer, and her gestures are incredibly expressive. I brought my new pastels and drew with them!
I always try and draw hostess LalaVox, as she brings her A game to her look every time. Like this ship-in-head!
Isn’t the sacque-back gown a perfect style for her?
I had been wanting to draw Evilyn Frantic for a long time, since I saw her in the street last year, introduced myself and told her I wanted to draw her picture.
This one-minute sketch was my first chance, more to follow as I clean up and finish up the pastel mess I made!
Also bonus: here is a drawing of Viva Lamore jumping out of a Campbell’s soup can, from the Sunday Slips New Year’s Extravaganza! She is wearing a hand print bra and panty set from the Bettie Page line by Playful Promises, the queer, trans, gender-fluid-, sex-worker-, body positivity- and diversity-embracing lingerie company. They’re donating a percentage of sales to fight ovarian cancer til Feb. 15th. They don’t sponsor me, they’re just great!
Thanks so very much to my Patrons on Patreon whose financial support makes it possible for me to go to events like this. You are the best.
The Dr. Sketchy’s Berlin Instagram!
These two just slayed me. What you can’t see is that her amazing vintage 80s coat was a rich deep marigold yellow and her chunky knit scarf was a darker mustard. She was coolly wearing the hell out of her whole look.
People often look so displeased when they are looking at their phones. Since I don’t have a phone, I’m free to look around and observe this!
The older guy was playing and they just started dancing together. This isn’t the prettiest drawing, it’s kinda clunky, but I found it half-finished in a sketchbook this weekend and decided to finish it cause I like the women in the background.
And I really like the fact that I drew a guy doing an actual double take!
I also found this drawing made very quickly from the upper deck of the M29 bus and finished it roughly.
It’s a good example of how elements can be added to a documentary drawing responsibly. You couldn’t see the typical European notice column with its posters in the same shot as the guy, but it wasn’t far away, and adding it helps to sell the setting of the sketch really quickly.
You can see previous unterwegs here:
This woman was singing Tracy Chapman’s “Give me one reason” on a cold night, pretty late. Her voice rose up in the station, and she laughed as she got a little feedback howl.
These two guys, one Russian and one British, were speaking English and having the loudest, most public discussion about buying drugs I’ve ever heard.
Brit: “Her message – ‘love gettin fucked with you'”
Russian: “And yours?”
Brit: “Gonna go get weed.”
Russian: “Aw that’s the sweetest thing to text to a girl!”
They had a long discussion where the Brit explained she had offered to get the weed, but he said he’d do it his own self, because “Gotta show I’m a provider”, which the Russian guy followed with this whole story of how when they had kids, there would be a little miniature boy who felt the same need to take care of supply maintenance, and then they rambled into how to split two bags for €15 three ways, which is not a math problem they were really up for. To be honest, I don’t know that they needed much more weed.
The German girl with the skateboard was laughing at them.
She replied, “Actually, Miguel -” and she enumerated some recent times when he’d gotten to do exactly what he wanted.
She said it in a very chill way, like she was just explaining something reasonable to a reasonable person.
And he kinda huffed, like, “Fair enough”, and settled back against her legs.
The little girl next to him was blown away by it. As her mom was herding her off the train, she was staring at me and I flipped my sketchbook around and showed her the drawing, and then she was even more astonished!
You can see previous unterwegs here:
We had a great New Yorker talk, ranging from the things lost from the East Village to how it impacts your life to be a collector and archivist of your community’s history.
Folks from this particular community have a hollow leg for Club Mate.
I asked if they wanted one and Emmanuel said, “Well we just had one – sure, why not!”.
Good thing we keep a case on the balcony around CCC season, also known as the Hacker High Holidays in our house!
We went to the Sunday Slips Extravaganza at Lagari for New Year’s.
This year though, lots of our friends were performing/going to Lagari so we got on the M29 bus and went to Neukölln.
It was so wonderful to ride on the upper deck of my beloved M29 along the river of stars that is the Ku’Damm at New Years.
I felt ridiculously, absurdly fortunate to be riding the bus to friends with my husband in a city that was not just safe, but sparkling.
Well, exploding, really, but I like the noise and fireworks of Silvester! We arrived at Lagari around ten, just as the open mic session was ending.
The host of the event, Liliana Velásquez, is someone I drew previously at Folsom Europe. You can see her dancing with friends in the top drawing. As well as hosting the Sunday Slips, the weekly clubhouse of Freudian Slip Club, she is part of the Fetish Comedy group.
Her partner Wynton Kelly Stevenson is an amazing one-man band.
We were blown away by his sounds, created with harmonica, beatbox and Loopstation. And his sound is super danceable. Hubbin got up and danced a bit along with the folks of all ages who enjoy the chill Lagari scene!
…the rocked to fuck show by Alfred Ladylike and Rah Hell of Donut Heart!
They were joined at the end by Liliana, who just learned to play the bass!
At one point Rah had to stand up and drum because her drum was trying to escape the pounding she was giving it. Wynton had to lie on it to hold it in place. Berlin is punk as fuck.
Berlin art and music fam, we love you!
Here is Miss Natasha Enquist resting peacefully in the cozy corner at Ludwig.
This was the last pose of our Women’s Art Lounge, and we all loved it so much we asked her to hold it for an extra twenty minutes. You can see three other woman artists interpreting it in the first post about the Art Lounge.
And for good measure, here are two more elf drawings.
I wish all of you reading this the happiest holidays, at this beautiful inward-looking time, the turning of the year.
My husband works for a wonderful company.
And every year the company throws a really terrific holiday party. (They throw parties all year, actually, but the December one is the fanciest!).
The venue is always super cool, the food is always FANTASTIC, the music and entertainment is great.
This year’s party was at TangoLoft Berlin, which is soooooo beautiful! They had some of their tango dancers do a demonstration for us, above – I hadn’t drawn the tango in over a decade, and I had to hustle to get it going! Did you know the tango is hugely popular in Berlin?
The theme was 1920s so lots of the guys wore suspenders and bowties, which is a great look!
I actually cried with happiness while I was drawing at one point during this party, because I am so incredibly grateful that my hard-working guy works for good people after all the evil startup asshats he worked for in the Bay.*
We had a delightful time, as always, and I drew Steven twice because he’s so handsome. My husband danced quite a bit, on his new cyborg body part, and it was just beautiful to see.
The Tango Loft folks were super kind and the food, which was 90% vegan, came out of the small kitchen in smooth waves of scrumptiousness. We had roast goose, and it was SO good!
There was a smoking lounge, which I visited several times to enjoy the pleasure of vicarious smoking. The cigarette holder seen here was antique, a telescoping brass thing of great elegance.
Check out the fabulous Dancing Dev Team!
This was after the big “Despacito” sing-along. I was not familiar with Despacito, but apparently it was THE hit of the summer! There was also dancing to The Spice Girls song that has that line about family, idk? I kinda missed the whole Spice Girls thing. Anyway, we had a fabulous time.
*Here is a story I will not stop telling until work/life balance changes in the US. In 2012 my hub and I had gone to the East Coast for Christmas to visit our families. We were at his parents’ house on Christmas Eve when his boss at the tech startup called him to ask him a question about the server. And hung up without saying “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays”. Jesus forgive me, I hated that fucking guy so much, and I hated that my man had to work for him and be exploited by him so we could have health insurance. Pretty much every conversation my hub and I have about his work here ends with, “We’re in Germany, thank God.”