I make no secret of the fact that my storytelling is inspired by the movies. Where other performers talk about how they grew up in houses filled with musicians or yarnspinners, I grew up at the foot of a black and white TV with a bad vertical hold that brought me all the UHF goodness of the Monster Movies of the 30s and 40s. Plus, there was the Spring Valley Cinema, home of the fifty-cent double feature and all the great low-budget movies of the seventies and eighties.
Recently I read the Fool of the World and the Flying Ship in Andrew Lang's Yellow Fairy book. I decided I wanted to tell the story, but it needed to be punch up a bit. I remembered my eighties movies and that the opening story in Terry Gilliam's Adventure of Baron Munchausen was not actually a Munchausen story, but was indeed the Fool of the World.
Then it hit me - I looked back a few years in my idea book - there was a note from January 2009 entitled: Indana Munchausen. The idea was to tell first-person adventure stories that are a mix of Indiana Jones and Baron Munchausen.
I started toying around with the idea again in the vein of the Fool of the World instead of Indiana Jones. I like flying ships, and they look good on advertising. So I dug into my vast collection of Ed Emberley books.
I grew up drawing from Ed Emberley books. I was never patient enough to develop my drawing skills, but I can follow directions, so Ed Emberley gives me all I need.
There it was, in the Big Purple Drawing Book, the most difficult Ed Emberly drawing ever, the Sea Hawk. I had never drawn the Sea Hawk, it took me three attempts in pencil before I could get it to fit on a single page. And then, when I finished, to make it into a flying ship I still had to attach two more sheets of paper, and then I had to scan it in three passes.
But now that it's complete it's a beauty to behold and will become the centerpiece image for my summer program: Les Voyages Fantastique, classic adventures told in the Munchausen style.