Dogpatch Press

Fluff Pieces Every Week Day

Month: January, 2017

Yiffing for dollars: Furry artists among top highest-paid Patreon creators.

by Patch O'Furr

The planet is in trouble and every species has a complaint these days, so let a dog bark about politics.  If I had a crystal ball to see into the coming Trump years, I bet there would be nothing but murk with occasional mushroom clouds.  The power-hungry pumpkinhead will bring isolationism, extreme nativism, and turmoil for international relations.  He gives lip service about bringing back jobs, but with no plan beyond drunkenly slashing and burning everything: Regulations, facts, the social contract. Don’t be surprised if work involving foreign trade vaporizes with no replacement, leaving only burger-flipping and a Limbo game for wages.  (Burgers will be a nice memory while gnawing rats in the rubble.)

But if the Doomsday Clock stays at a minute to midnight, even a stopped clock is right twice a day. Maybe business will have a bounce.  Not in the old economy way before they had robots do the work, but if they aren’t hiring, what’s better than making your own career?

Look at what’s up on the indie level. And this caught my eye: “Can This Startup Reinvent How Doggie Portraits Are Sold?

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Artstuffs, by Melody Wang – book review by Fred Patten.

by Patch O'Furr

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

40593Artstuffs, by Melody Wang
Toronto, Ontario, The artist, November 2016, $20.00 (unpaged [48 pages]).

This is not a book as much as a book-format folio of 48 pages of the artist’s color illustrations, drawings, and sketches, on thick glossy paper. There is no subject. Like most artist’s sketchbooks, this is a hodgepodge of whatever the artist has felt like drawing.

What Melody Wang has felt most like drawing is anthropomorphic animals. There are Constable Nips and Inspector Porkington, of her student film. There are rabbits, pigs, and other animals in late-Victorian dress. Even when she is sketching the plants in a greenhouse, she usually has added an anthropomorphic animal or two. Her birds, “Wingfolk”, are particularly wonderful. A couple, such as the one of a man turning into a mandrill to his young daughter’s delight, cry out for having a story behind them.

Some of these are in black-&-white linework, but most are in full color. There are experiments in pastels and linocuts as well.

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Fred Patten’s new book is a first for fandom: Furry Fandom Conventions, 1989-2015.

by Patch O'Furr

51561577Fred Patten‘s Furry Fandom Conventions, 1989-2015 is out.

Until now, if you looked up “furry” at a mainstream book store, you might find a tiny handful of drawing, costume making or novelty books, but little about the fans themselves. You would have to sift the sands of the internet. This kind of recognition has been a long time coming. (We had TV specials in the early 90’s!)

Fred says:

“This is the first study of furry fandom published by a publisher outside of the furry specialty press itself. It indicates that furry fandom is becoming an accepted subject for academic study. Dr. Kathy Gerbasi of the IARP introduces it (she wanted to write a Furword rather than a Foreword.) I worked on this for more than three years.”

Furry Fandom Conventions, 1989-2015 is from McFarland, a well-known publisher of histories and academic reference books.  It’s $39.95, with 242 pages, illustrated in black-&-white and 8 pages in color, with an index and over 50 illustrations of furry con graphics.  It covers all furry fandom conventions around the world, from the first in January 1989 to the end of 2015.

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Urchin and the Raven War, by M. I. McAllister – book review by Fred Patten.

by Patch O'Furr

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

51Nh4vyr8BL._SY346_Urchin and the Raven War, by M. I. McAllister. (The Mistmantle Chronicles, Book 4.) Illustrated by Omar Rayyan.
NYC, Hyperion Books for Children, October 2008, hardcover $17.99 (284 pages), Kindle $6.99.

Urchin and the Rage Tide, by M. I. McAllister. (The Mistmantle Chronicles, Book 5.) Illustrated by Omar Rayyan.
NYC, Disney • Hyperion Books, July 2010, hardcover $17.99 (268 pages), Kindle $6.99.

This is a guilty review. I reviewed the first three Mistmantle Chronicles for Cubist’s Anthro magazine in 2007 and 2008. Then Anthro ceased publication. An additional complication was that the first three books appeared first as British paperbacks, with the American hardcovers as reprints. When I looked for any subsequent books, I looked on Amazon.uk and didn’t find any. This was because there weren’t any more British editions. Books 4 and 5 were only published in America. So I never reviewed them when they were first published.

Fortunately, they are still available, so I am correcting that error now. The Mistmantle Chronicles are technically children’s books, but they are very similar to Brian Jacques’ Redwall novels, and those are enjoyed by readers of all ages. If you are fond of serious adventures featuring talking animals, don’t miss The Mistmantle Chronicles.

The setting of Urchin of the Riding Stars (January 2005), Urchin and the Heartstone (April 2006), and The Heir of Mistmantle (March 2007) is the isolated island of Mistmantle, hidden by thick sea mists (I was going to say fog, but McAllister makes a distinction between fog and mists). It is a kingdom shared by four British woodland animal species living in harmony: hedgehogs, moles, otters, and squirrels. When the series starts, Mistmantle is ruled by good King Brushen, a hedgehog. But there have been other dynasties in the past, and there is no prejudice against a new king from one of the other species. Whenever a dynasty does not have an heir, the senior captain becomes the next king. The captain (there are traditionally three) is a combination of a royal advisor and leader of the royal guards.

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EZ Cool Down vests are a major business for fandom and beyond – EZ Wolf tells why.

by Pup Matthias

Thanks to Matthias for writing for our mission: to show that furries don’t just dream, they make things with awesome DIY power. EZ Wolf’s shirt says it all. – Patch

Wearing a fursuit is a pain in the tail. I wouldn’t know myself, since I would like to have a roof over my head for the next month. However, ask anyone who has had the joy of bringing their amazing characters to life, and they’ll tell you it’s like wearing your couch. There’s a lot of sweat and heat that goes into bringing the magic to life. But one member of our fandom has gone out of his way to battle this problem, and has developed one of the most successful fandom businesses. I’m talking about the EZ Cool Down vests created by well-known photographer and video maker, EZ Wolf.  Here’s what he told me.

EZCD_logoIntroduced in 2013, the vest has become a standard for many Furries to stay cool under their fursuit.

(EZ Wolf:) “The EZCooldown Performers vest is specially designed for actors, cosplayers, LARPers, fursuiters, and other costume performers.

This cooling vest provides hours of cooling comfort and prevention against heat stress thanks to four special PCM inserts which provide comfortable cooling relief for up to four hours, even during strenuous activities in high-temperature environments.

Each vest has four inserts made of phase change material.

The four inserts contain biological phase change material (PCM), which retains cold.

The PCM inserts can be quickly activated in your refrigerator or freezer or by putting them in ice water, and they can be reused over and over again. Once activated, the PCM maintains its temperature for a long period, providing comfortable cooling relief.

The EZCooldown Performers vest is made out of thin yet durable polyester mesh, which won’t add a thermal insulating layer to your outfit.

The four inside pockets can house four PCM inserts: two on your chest and two on your lower back.

Our vests come in three sizes and can be easily adjusted with the six Velcro straps to fit each individual wearer perfectly.”

Unlike fursuit making, this is a step up from the process of custom handiwork.  EZ Cool Down does not make the vest themselves.

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The Best Furry Videos of 2016! Culturally F’d teams up with Dogpatch Press.

by Arrkay

It’s an honor to welcome guest posting with Culturally F’d, the furry channel most in tune with everything we do here. Thanks Arrkay! – Patch

Hey Fluff Punks, it’s Arrkay here from Culturally F’d. Hope you had a restful holiday! Today we’re going to round up 2016’s best of furry YouTube.

2016 video roundup

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The history of My Little Pony and thoughts about growing up with cartoons.

by Patch O'Furr

Coming soon at Dogpatch Press – a Q&A with the author of Ponyville Confidential: a History of My Little Pony.

Sherilyn Connelly is a journalist local to the Bay Area Furries.  She gives them supportive notice in publications like SF Weekly. Now her first book is coming from McFarland publishing. Ponyville Confidential will dig deep into culture while being a fun read for everypony.  (I’m told there are some parts specifically about furries.) If you like the show and can give support back to Sherilyn, please visit the book’s Facebook page and give a ‘like’ right now!

I have only seen 6 or 7 episodes of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, and they were great.  Even with low experience, it makes me want to share some thoughts before the Q&A.  This is more personal than about the show or the book.

Growing up with cartoons.caamqryusaahzcn

When I talked with Sherilyn, she described a double standard about audience gender. It’s a thesis in the book that when My Little Pony first aired in 1986, it was disrespected as a prime example of crass commercialism. They said it was all about selling toys. By comparison, similar toy-related “boy” shows, like Transformers, got a pass. “Girly” shows had extra stigma.

It gives me curiosity about my own puppyhood in the 1980’s, but parts that were a bit outside of my consciousness.  I didn’t watch My Little Pony, and similar sparkly friendly shows like Rainbow Brite and Strawberry Shortcake. I experienced them being judged as sissy girly stuff, and they would make me do barfing noises. Instead I loved He-Man, G.I. Joe, and most of all the Transformers.

There was another kind of stigma with “boy” shows. Even if “girl” shows could be disrespected as trivial, they could still be considered inherently nice. But my favorites were judged as morally questionable.  Parents were suspicious of indulging a masculine sense of adventure and danger, even with stories about justice.  Action and “violence” would corrupt impressionable minds.  It had to be policed to keep kids pure and innocent.

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Dogs of War book, edited by Fred Patten, is launching at Further Confusion.

by Pup Matthias

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

patten09_smDogs of War, edited by Fred Patten, is launching at Further Confusion 2017 in San Jose, California over the January 12-16 five-day weekend. The book can be pre-ordered from FurPlanet Productions. It will be for sale on the FurPlanet online catalogue afterwards.

Dogs of War is an all-original anthology of 23 short stories and novelettes of anthropomorphic animals (not just dogs) in military scenarios, from battle action to boot camps, on land, at sea, and in space. This is designed to appeal to both s-f & fantasy fans, and fans of military s-f.

From a rabbit army’s training camp, to a human army turned into wolves, praying mantises in spacesuits, rattlesnake troops, prejudice against uplifted rat sailors, multi-tailed fox warrior priestesses, and more; these are stories for your imagination and enjoyment.

Contents:

  • Nosy and Wolf, by Ken McGregor
  • After Their Kind, by Taylor Harbin
  • Succession, by Devin Hallsworth
  • Two If By Sea, by Field T. Mouse
  • The Queens’ Confederate Space Marines, by Elizabeth McCoy
  • The Loving Children, by Bill McCormick
  • Strike, But Hear Me, by Jefferson P. Swycaffer
  • End of Ages, by BanWynn Oakshadow
  • Shells On The Beach, by Tom Mullins
  • Cross of Valor Reception for the Raccoon, Tanner Williams, Declassified Transcript, by John Kulp
  • Last Man Standing, by Frances Pauli
  • Hunter’s Fall, by Angela Oliver
  • Old Regimes, by Gullwolf
  • The Shrine War, by Alan Loewen
  • The Monster in the Mist, by Madison Keller
  • Wolves in Winter, by Searska GrayRaven
  • The Third Variety, by Rob Baird
  • The Best and Worst of Worlds, by Mary E. Lowd
  • Tooth, Claw and Fang, by Stephen Coughlan
  • Sacrifice, by J. N. Wolfe
  • War of Attrition, by Lisa Timpf
  • Fathers to Sons, by MikasiWolf
  • Hoodies and Horses, by Michael D. Winkle

perf5.500x8.500.indd

Price: $19.95. 455 pages. Wraparound cover by Teagan Gavet.  ISBN 978-1-61450-346-0.

Fred Patten

The Furry House – a base for creativity and community.

by Patch O'Furr

Ever been to a furry house

They don’t smell like barns or zoos, with shedding all over the place. But they are full of nerdy games and comics, fursuit parts, and framed animation and fursona commission art on the walls. Sometimes there’s art that might cause awkwardness during a pizza delivery or surprise visit from mom. But it’s not for them. It’s by and for fellow furries when they get together for meets, parties, art jams, and movie screenings as a community.

A furry house is a special place. It’s more immersive than activity by yourself. If you live there, you’ll never get PCD. It’s a dimensional crossroads where the limits of reality dissolve and you can be furry 24/7.

Inside the P.S.

Inside the Prancing Skiltaire.

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Talented furries wanted for ‘Public Access’ show.

by Patch O'Furr

pubaccessFurry friends, I’m honored to share a special invitation to you from media producer Ben McShane. A professional studio is being offered for you to make YOUR video show. (Please be aware this is on site in Burbank, CA.)

When Ben’s call for furry talent came to my inbox, I had to be careful to screen it.  (We know about ‘the media,’ right?) I saw that Ben’s genuinely into cool stuff, has worked on some shows you may know (Battlebots, Shark Tank), and is associated with Nerdist. I’m copying from his resume to show the guy who’s inviting you:

Producer, Project Alpha – Legendary Digital Networks / Nerdist Industries

“Currently I am the producer on a number of shows for Project Alpha, the exclusive, interactive, live-streaming SVOD portal for Legendary Digital Networks. I manage a small budget, oversee staff hires for the shows, and lead creative. Many hats!

Live broadcast and digital content are exciting new frontiers for me as a producer. As a life-long table top gamer and über-geek, coming to work with the Nerdist and Geek & Sundry families has already been one of the most memorable stops of my career. I can’t wait for the shows to launch so I can say more!”

Check Project Alpha and browse the shows to get some idea of what they already have… I sense a great opportunity.

Ben shares details of the project:

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