Ultraist Studios Blog Journal thoughts, musings and other rambling…

October 29, 2010

Influence Map

Filed under: Inspiration,Thoughts — M Kitchen @ 10:20 am

Mike Kitchen's Influence Map

Here’s my list, starting from the top left.

  1. Dave Sim – Cerebus. My biggest influence.  Obviously.  When I first read Cerebus 166 back in January of 1993 I realized that this was how a black and white independent comic should be made.  I admired that it was creator owned, and self-published and didn’t pull any punches.  I liked that there was an editorial page, a letters column and extra stuff in the back.  And I was amazed at the results of cross-overs that happened with other artists who owned their creations (such as this one with Sergio Aragonés – Groo)
  2. The Empire Strikes Back. Star Wars was a huge influence.  But Empire Strikes Back trumped it.  I think it was the AT-AT Walker sequence on Hoth that made me decide to do effects animation.  Pretty cool that I had a chance to work for the man who animated them when I was at Tippett Studio working on Hellboy.
  3. Chuck Jones – Looney Tunes. These cartoons are most likely the reason why I’m still drawing cartoony characters in the comics I make today.  Probably explains the violence as well.  This is harebrained comedy at it’s finest.
  4. Conspiracy Theories. It was Jello Biafra that first opened the door to this stuff, and it’s been down the rabbit hole ever since.  These are my favorite stories.
  5. Silver Age comic books. It was a box of silver age comics that got me hooked on the standard comic book format.  Batman 244  by Neal Adams was my favorite of the bunch.
  6. Katsuhiro Otomo – Akira. I had already decided to become an animator when I watched the animated Akira movie.  But it changed the way I looked at animation.  From there I read the manga series, and it changed the way I looked at comics.
  7. Steve Ditko – Spider-Man. Everything I liked about comics in the 1980’s was a result of what Steve Ditko did in the 1960’s.
  8. Bill Watterson – Calvin & Hobbes. It was newspaper comic strips that got me reading comics, but it was Calvin & Hobbes that made me see their true potential.  I always dreamed that Bill Watterson would do more full comic book format stories, like the painted ones he did in The Lazy Sunday Book…
  9. Who Framed Roger Rabbit. This was the movie that made me get into animation.  It also has a lot of the same ambience that I try to create in my comics.
  10. Blade Runner. Cyberpunk done right.
  11. Transformers. Seriously, how could you grow up in the 80’s and not be influenced by giant transforming robots.

What are the things that influence you?
Go grab the template from fox-orian at deviantart.com and fill one out yourself.
Be sure to share a link in the comments if you do.

October 25, 2010


Filed under: Mantra — M Kitchen @ 8:52 am

Mark Millar quote:

“It can be soul-destroying writing stuff and not getting paid. That’s how I started. But necessity is a great thing. It forces you to be commercial. I think there’s a kind of literary Darwinism in evidence in all forms of media; it’s very much a case of the survival of the fittest. I hear people complaining about the system, but you have to totally embrace the system if you’re going to survive as a creative person; you have to love the idea of what you’re doing. If you stop loving it for a minute, it’s over.” *

This mantra goes well with this one and this one.

October 16, 2010


Filed under: Mantra — M Kitchen @ 1:54 pm

J. Michael Straczynski quote:

“It’s never too late to become what you were supposed to be in the first place.” *

September 10, 2010


Filed under: Mantra — M Kitchen @ 9:16 am

Mark Twain quote:

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” *


Filed under: Mantra — M Kitchen @ 8:49 am

Seth Godin quote:

“The interesting question is: what about the world as it is would have to change for your idea to be important?

In the case of Readers Digest, the key thing that changed was the makeup of who was reading magazines. Most of the people (and it was a lot of people) who subscribed to the Digest didn’t read other magazines. And so comparing to other magazines made no sense, except to say, “this is so different from other magazines, the only way you’re going to succeed is by selling it to millions of people who don’t read those magazines.” And Starbucks had no chance if they were going to focus on the sort of person who bought coffee at Dunkin Donuts or a diner, and the iPad couldn’t possibly succeed if people were content to use computers the way they were already using them.

Keep that in mind the next time a gatekeeper or successful tastemaker explains why you’re going to fail.” *

July 19, 2010


Filed under: Mantra — M Kitchen @ 9:06 am

Seth Godin quote:

Self marketing might be the most important kind

What story do you tell yourself about yourself?

I know that marketers tell stories. We tell them to clients, prospects, bosses, suppliers, partners and voters. If the stories resonate and spread and seduce, then we succeed.

But what about the story you tell yourself?

Do you have an elevator pitch that reminds you that you’re a struggling fraud, certain to be caught and destined to fail? Are you marketing a perspective and an attitude of generosity? When you talk to yourself, what do you say? Is anyone listening?

You’ve learned through experience that frequency works. That minds can be changed. That powerful stories have impact.

I guess, then, the challenge is to use those very same tools on yourself.” *

June 28, 2010


Filed under: Mantra — M Kitchen @ 10:42 am

Oscar Wilde quote:

“If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they’ll kill you.” *

June 23, 2010


Filed under: Mantra — M Kitchen @ 12:26 pm

Hugh MacLeod quote:

“The sovereignty you have over your work will inspire far more people than the actual content ever will. How your own sovereignty inspires other people to find their own sovereignty, their own sense of freedom and possibility, will give the work far more power than the work’s objective merits ever will.” *

June 5, 2010


Filed under: Mantra — M Kitchen @ 6:55 pm

Seth Godin quote:

“There’s not a lot to say about the Cul-de-Sac except to realize that it exists and to embrace the fact that when you find one, you need to get off it, fast. That’s because a dead end is keeping you from doing something else. The opportunity cost of investing your life in something that’s not going to get better is just too high.” *

May 28, 2010


Filed under: Mantra — M Kitchen @ 8:39 am

Dave Sim quote:

“Drawing comics is the Great White Shark of devouring time.” *

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