Saturday, February 27, 2010

Doodle Penance: "detached mustache"

This week's "Doodle Penance" comes from some anonymous web-creeper who came by the site looking for "detached mustache," just as the title above implies.

Mike finished his doodle before I got mine done, so I'll let him explain his results:

In a way, this doodle would serve just as well as my inaugural contribution to WHWBR?, since it is based on images from one of the few comics I've had any time for lately. In my typical fashion for reading webcomics, though, I tend to forget to read this one for weeks on end, then binge on a couple of months' worth of archived strips. So far I'm up to January 2005, which means I am well acquainted by now with the usually mustachioed figures of Nice Pete and Lyle from the famous Achewood:

It should be clear from the typography (as it were) how my thought process worked on this one. Surprisingly, the Achewood-specific element came really late in the day: I had notions of just drawing guys screaming in agony as mustaches were torn from their faces, thereby conveying the sense of an "ache"; but this version seems less horrendous, as if the 'staches really did just detach, slipping down from 'neath the noses of Nice Pete and Lyle, and thereby, Samson-like, depriving two of the hardest characters in Achewood with the main source of their strength and danger. At least, they don't look so tough to me now that they are clean-shaven.

So that's Mike for this week. And, perhaps predictably, my own analysis of the search term proceeded along a similar path. Noticing, as Mike did, that both words contained the same string of letters, in the spirit of Lewis Carroll's "Mischmasch" word game, I started searching for the other magpies that contained T-A-C-H-E.

I hadn't known that tache itself, in English, means a buckle or a clasp; nor had I known that in French tache means a blot or a stain. Equipped with those obscurities and one cheat I allowed myself to invent, I cooked up this story in seven silent panels:

It was nice to draw an actual comic for a change. Not that I had time to do it, really. But sometimes you have to make time for fine art.

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