Greetings From Toronto!
I've been doing a lot of work on location this year ( I've spent a total of about one month at home in Los Angeles this year ) I spent a little over four months in Wilmington, NC--- storyboarding the biopic "Bolden". Currently, I'm working on a sequel to a big, green, blockbuster superhero movie in beautiful Toronto, Ontario ( Canada! ). I gotta say, I really love this town. There's restaurants and bars on every corner servicing every taste-- upscale or downscale, anytime you want. It's a very international city. You can find food from every corner of the globe here. I also like that it's a "walking town". You can casually stroll down any street and find something interesting. It's like a big U.S. city--only cleaner and safer. As much as it is like the U.S., there's a few subtle differences ( They've got Catsup-Flavored and Roast Chicken-Flavored Lays Potato Chips here! ) TV is similar, but slightly different. They have their own version of the Cartoon Network that carries some local product I've not seen in the US. One show I've noticed is an animated cartoon called "6Teen". Although geared to the teen set, it's intelligently written and beautifully designed. Kind of like "Friends" for the younger crowd, and rendered in in a stylish, geometric style, without outlines. As a major book and DVD hoarder, I've gotta say this town seems to have more video stores and book stores than any city I've ever been in. In the first couple of days I found half a dozen or so good comic shops. A few worth mentioning: THE BEGUILING is a great little store with a nice variety of books. There's a section with a good selection of European comics as well as a nice selection of independent books. And of course theres the mainstream stuff upstairs. There's also THE LABYRINTH nearby. This store just opened recently and it is FANTASTIC. Similar to what you might find at Stuart Ng--there are tons of art books and sketchbooks with an emphasis on animation and manga. Lots of European albums and self-published sketchbooks as well as art books from Asia as well. For those of you into the oldschool stuff, there's DRAGON LADY PAPER NOSTALGIA. At one time, they were Dragonlady Press--putting out great stuff like collections of old Frank Robbin's Johnny Hazard strips and such. The've got lots of old comics and magazines. A great collection of old Saturday Evening Posts and Life Magazines. ( I was finally able to find an old Noel Sickles illustrated article from a 40's era Life Magazine ). And of course there's also SILVER SNAIL COMICS. A bit more mainstream than the others, but has a little bit of everything there.
Every Thursday is PUB NIGHT after work. A group of my co-workers get together at a different Toronto watering hole and consume large quantities of alcohol ( I guess the weekend starts early here! ) Being inspired by THE DRINK AND DRAW SOCIAL CLUB book (http://www.drinkanddraw.com/) I convinced some of my fellow artists to bring in their sketchbooks and add doodling to the mix. I've posted a few of my contributions to that effort here.