Blinking and Missing the Moment : Brian Kesinger

The world is a giant, strange place full of good, bad, and everything in between. Most importantly, and often the source of many of those emotions, are people. There are billions of us on this planet and we are all making our own way through our versions of what our lives should be. My point is that there is no way to know of everyone out there, but sometimes you learn of someone – their talent, their gift, their personality, quite randomly or by accident even – and you discover something amazing. This happened to me when I hit a Bored Panda link on Facebook by accident. Until last week I had no clue who Brian Kesinger was. According to his Instagram page  he is a “story artist at Walt Disney animations studios and an Artist for Marvel Comics”. He is also a big Calvin and Hobbes fan, and evidently, Star Wars too. He has mashed up a whole bunch of joy between two of my favorite worlds

Calvin and Hobbes has always been one of my favorite things. I have the entire anthology and now my 12 year old child is reading them and really enjoying them (which makes me very, very happy!). I linked a comic here once back when the economy was crashing. I want to use them on my new, still boringly white goalie helmet (if I can find the artist to do it!). I even have a tattoo of Hobbes, leaping across my body that I got when I was 15. To better give you insight into how much of a rebel I was/am, even when I was 15 and getting a tattoo done against my parents wishes in the basement of a suspect, older high school student I had the foresight to put it somewhere where I could choose who would and wouldn’t see it. There would be no mistaking a tattoo-viewing without my absolute permission.

Mr. Kesinger has brilliantly merged the two. Any fan of Calvin and Hobbes, or Bill Watterson’s art style (the creator of Calvin and Hobbes!) and more importantly the style and attitude of the former syndicated strips will instantly recognize – and fall in love – with the mashup. He has hit many nails on many heads.

I just can’t get enough. If you look through his Instagram page you will find all sorts of awesome pieces from other genres and popular movies as well – but because I have had a Calvin and Hobbes drought AND the upcoming The Last Jedi movie launch I am only focusing on these ones. If you dig deep enough you find The Little Mermaid, Dr. Who, Big Hero Six, Guardians of the Galaxy, and much more. Heck, even Garfield!

Mr. Kesinger is not selling a book of them (unfortunately) and rightly respects that his works are fan fiction and that he could not sell without prior written permission from Mr. Watterson. Still, I’d pay to buy a book and not so secretly hope that there is some way, shape or form that proceeds from such a sale could go to a needy beneficiary of some sort. Of course maybe I am the only willing buyer but these mashups really pull all the right levers for me.

I’ll link a few more but just a happy way for Calvin and Hobbes, and Star Wars fans, to start their Monday. I’d encourage any fan to stop by his social media and give lots of likes, and loves =)

Thank you, Brian. For sharing your talent and passion.


2 comments / Add your comment below

  1. Hmm. I dunno. He may not be puttinng them in a book but he’s auctioning the originals and indeed producing them on commission, isn’t he? The quality is fantastic but given Bill Watterson’s extremely hard line on endorsing any form of commercialiazition of the Calvin and Hobbes I.P. (to the point that he won’t do any more strips, ever, because of the commercial demands of publishers), these seem to be going through a grey area and right out the far side.

    I wouldn’t be comfortable buying one (not that I could afford those prices). I feel somewhat uncomfortable even looking at them.

    1. Funny enough I didn’t even notice that. The Bored Panda link just showed the pictures, no link to the Instagram page itself (and definitely not the comments) and my first visit to his Instagram page his comments were this on his latest work:

      “briankesinger: Welcome to all the new followers here! FYI out of respect for Mr. Watterson’s work I do not sell prints , books or T-shirt’s of these mashups. They are just a fun way to show my love of two of my favorite things. That said I occasionally sell originals, but the main goal is to brighten your feed with a bit of artistic nostalgia and humor! Thanks”

      I linked all of those pictures without reading the costs or commissions. So yeah, I get where you are coming from now that I have read into a bit more of the money made. It’s tough – he does do wonderful work but as you said, on their own without the C&H connection they probably don’t sell as well.

      Bah. So much for a happy Monday! Now I am conflicted.

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