FREE Caricature Contest

Every week VoogDesigns creates a heart-warming comic strip for our wonderful client Bruce Sallan titled, Because I Said So. Bruce is an author, motivational speaker, radio show host and his most important role, "Dad".
Visit www.BruceSallan.com to view this Comic Strip
Last week Bruce announced on his Radio Show show a "Secret Word", which is the key to entering to win a FREE Color Caricature by VoogDesigns. 
Discover the "Secret Word" and Enter the Contest HERE!
On January 26th from 11:00am-12:00pm PST, VoogDesigns will be a featured guest on his radio program to discuss the comic strip and the contestTUNE IN to am1290



4 years. They say if it's worth having, then it's worth waiting for. On August 27, 2007 I read this article in our local paper about a very special museum located in Santa Rosa, CA that I immediately decided would be a fun place to take my then 6-year old daughter. I anticipated visiting the Charles Schulz Museum every weekend since Santa Rosa Valley is only 10 miles from my home.

After searching the Internet and mapping out directions, I was suddenly deflated. The Santa Rosa they mentioned in the article was 430 miles away! And a 7-hour drive to get there was going to need a little more planning than a quick weekend jaunt in the car.

Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans. 

Fast forward to December 29, 2011. After four years of waiting, my Christmas present was not a new iPhone, but what would prove to be very special "Cartoons" Trip with my 10-year old daughter.

The museum opened at 11:00am and it was a 7-hour drive, so that meant we needed to leave at 3:00am in the morning! Sure I could have chosen to leave a day earlier, or travel by plane, but drawing from my childhood memories, road trips are something special. They provide ample quiet time to ponder life and detox from the stresses of the daily grind. It's also a great bonding opportunity with my little traveler!

So with a full tank of gas, a surplus of coffee, and a quick donut shop stop, we were off. Shouldering the responsibility of getting us to our destination safely, I repetitiously sipped coffee as I listened to motivational CDs, while my daughter rested soundly in the back of our car. Our first stop came shortly before 7:00am in King City to refuel the car and our stomachs. C'mon, you can't have a road trip with out a #2 Breakfast Meal!

We spent the remaining trip in the car listening to audio books of Geronimo Stilton and The Spiderwick Chronicles to help pass the time. At 11:00am we finally entered Santa Rosa to check into our hotel and freshen up before travelling the remaining 2 miles to our destination- The Charles M. Schultz Museum!

Because of the theater schedule, our first stop was watching a short documentary on Charles Schulz titled, A Boy Named Charlie Brown. This set the tone for what would be an enlightening and inspiring trip through the museum. My daughter was entertained by the history of all the classic Peanuts comic strips on display throughout the gallery. She also posed with numerous Peanuts gang statues and participated in drawing some of the characters herself in the Education Room.

One highlight for me was visiting Schulz' Drawing Studio. It was motivating to see where all the magic happened as this room showcased his vast collection of books, materials and memorabilia. At the museum we also met some friends that live in the area to play some miniature golf and catch up over dinner.

Part of our trip was to visit Snoopy's Home Ice located next to the museum. Because open ice was sold out earlier, we had to come back at 7:30pm. In anticipation we watched the Peanuts-decorated Zamboni renew the ice before we made our way onto the rink. What a magical 2-hours that was as me and my daughter held hands skating around the colorfully lit ice decorated with Christmas lights.

The next morning we stopped at The Historic Railroad Square District to take a few more pictures with a bronze Charlie Brown and Snoopy statue before visiting San Francisco on the way home. In San Francisco we planned to take pictures at the Golden Gate Bridge, have lunch at Fisherman's Wharf, ride a Trolley Car, and visit the Cartoon Art Museum. It was a this point where I was rethinking the purchase of that new iPhone because with out a GPS in the car, getting around San Francisco delayed our first stop by over an hour. But the delay was worth it because our first and only stop was in the presidio at The Walt Disney Family Museum.

My daughter was fully entertained by all the colorful and interactive displays that chronologically toured us through Walt Disney's historic life journey. But with another 7-hour ride ahead of us,  it was time to return home. Low on fuel and energy, we made a perfectly timed pit stop in Sunnyvale at PF Changs China Bistro to enjoy our last meal of this special trip together. My daughter then slept the rest of the ride home while I enjoyed the quiet reflection on what I hope will be a trip she will always remember.


Creating a Comic Strip

Deadlines. It's part of the business. Every week I have the pleasure of receiving ideas e-mailed to me from my clients to create the comic strips that I illustrate for them. And it is my challenge to provide the layout to them on how I "see" their idea illustrated in a comic strip. My approach is rather systematic, so I thought I would share my process with you.

I know many artists that choose to draw out what are called "thumbnail sketches" of their ideas to get a feel of how it will look on paper. Time permitting, I will use this approach as well, but more often I will find a quiet place, close my eyes, and let my mind wander. I picture in my mind how I would like the comic strip to flow, and visualize different perspectives and viewpoints to determine which images will illustrate the story best. 

Here is that process for a recent comic strip I completed for our church bulletin. Enjoy!



New Life

Animation. When most people see or hear this word, they of course associate it with cartoons. But animation is also defined as:
1. The act, process, or result of imparting life, interest, spirit, or activity.
2. The quality or condition of being alive, active, spirited, or vigorous.

New Years Day is the beginning of a new calendar year and symbolizes a fresh start and the promise of a new life. Like many, I get re-energized at the thought of the tremendous possibilities awaiting my pursuit over the next 366 days... just seeing if you are paying attention. (It's a Leap Year!)

The Bible says in John 10:10
"I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."

Enjoy this latest Character Matters comic strip below, and let us approach 2012 with animation! To wake up with an "Attitude of Gratitude" being thankful for the new day and the potential we've been given to make the most of our time to live life to the full.