sketch diary, Sun. 12/17

December 17th, 2006 | Uncategorized

beaverdam closeup

Damn beavers.sketch diary 12/17/06

27 Responses to “sketch diary, Sun. 12/17”

  1. Ellen O. says:

    Inspiration is slippery, but I think this sketch is a Zen koan.

  2. St. Louis Elizabeth says:

    Love it! Very smart and funny. Exactly what I’ve come to expect from you.

  3. yelena says:

    You are *so* cute!

  4. tallie says:

    the silhouettes are so cool!

  5. Josiah says:

    I love the hats.

  6. Ken says:

    I love these!

  7. sjusju says:

    the best bit is, you didn’t ruin it at all! and inspiration is at its best when it is slippery. beautiful. I really like the rougher handwriting.

    thank you!!

  8. Deb says:

    I love the ‘raw’ sort of feel of this. It’s another very cool look into your life Alison…………..very nice.

  9. Rora says:

    I remember sitting in the bathroom as a very young child (a plac of stillness where I could think) “writing” in my head what I was thinking and doing and then knowing I needed to mention that I was thinking it and that I was thinking needing to mention that I was thinking etc. And sometimes I would sort of get trapped in the cycle, like that aweful song that goes around and around or like a night when you can’t think and your thoughts go in circles, thinking “she thought, she thought, she thought….” and not being able to get out of having to note down every one. I didn’t quite realize yet that you don’t have to put *everything* in to tell the truth, or if I did, I knew that thinking like that was part of the essentials of the istuation I was narating and completely necessary for plot development. I was that sort of child.

  10. crazycrone says:

    I love all sketch diaries, and these are just wonderful. I’m enjoying them so much.
    Yes, the hats are brilliant.

  11. mabel says:


    In the run up to Christmas, as I am slowly coming apart at the seems and I feel like the only thing that is keeping me sane is force of habit, your sketch diaries have provided a tonic no brewery could ever bottle up and sell.

    You’re a good woman.

  12. aimes says:

    Nice insight, Ellen O. 😀

    Abosolutely zen koan.

    Alison ruins and completes — at once.

    Sketch diary yet cartoon strip. Takes a break yet works.

    She is on to something here, while she’s not.

  13. Elaine says:

    He-he..Am I the only one here to read into the title too far, before getting to the strip?.. Not to say I dont love the cartoon:)

    (Dont forget Alison you are allowed to take a break at Christmas!!)

  14. LEM says:

    Sketch diaries are fab! Especially like that they prove you have a life.

  15. Virginia Burton says:

    I feel really, really stupid, but we’re all friends, right?

    I don’t get the cartoon. Has the dam been destroyed and all that’s left is one felled tree? I don’t see any signs of destruction, other than the tree. And it clearly was cut down by beavers.

    Please explain. It’s driving me crazy to think everyone gets the joke but me.

  16. Danyell says:

    Maybe the trick is not to talk to about it. If it’s entirely unconscious, you can go on auto-pilot. Like…brushing your teeth. You don’t talk to anyone about brushing your teeth (mostly because everyone does it and it’s not interesting, but anyway) and it’s impossible to get anxious about, since it comes so naturally. If making these sketch comics becomes part of your routine, you won’t be able to over think them.

  17. Danyell says:


    I don’t think the downed tree really has any significance other than making an interesting angle and proving that they did in fact make it to the dam. In fact, nothing actually happens in the comic. In talking about the comic beforehand, Alison has ruined her inspiration to talk about it later in comic form. Thus, the comic is about her ruining the comic.

    Kind of Zen, actually. Ha ha.

    Don’t worry about not getting it. There are quite a few times I haven’t gotten it. Hey, maybe my interpretation is off the mark here too!

  18. mlk says:

    my interpretation:

    the diary entry illustrates the dynamic of inspiration and analysis.

    the third panel shows some sort of inspired moment. the 4th panel illustrates that inspiration, which isn’t what Alison originally had in mind (a whole tree, untouched by human hands or beavers’ teeth) but that nevertheless has its usefulness (beavers can’t build a dam unless they cut down a tree — which kills the tree, but creates something else).

    and the tree represents what Alison and her pal came out to see — the beaver dam.

    intricate, huh? that’s my understanding, not necessarily what Alison had in mind. I, personally, prefer the picture version!

  19. elis says:

    just plain beatuiful. loving it.

  20. Kat says:

    visual representation of the felled idea?
    That’s what I was interpreting….oh, and the bit about arriving at the dam, cuz wasn’t that where they were going?

  21. Em says:

    Hehehe… there’s something very Peanuts/Calvin and Hobbes about this

  22. --MC says:

    My interp. of the cartoon is that the downed tree was so striking that Alison, before she could prevent herself, had already conceptualized her four-panel anecdote BEFORE they had even gotten to the beaver dam.
    It’s what happens when you do diary comics or whatever on a daily basis, you can’t avoid it. I kept a dream journal for six months this summer, and had to stop when every dream was about what I was going to put in the journal the next morning.

  23. Zan says:

    I love the freedom and spontaneity of the pen lines!

  24. Lester says:

    I think the fallen tree mimics her fallen inspiration.

    plus it’s about sex and thinking too much.

  25. Aunt Soozie says:

    Lester…you are too funny…yes, it’s most certainly about sex.

  26. Julie says:


  27. Timoty says:

    cool blog!