Way back in October (I think), I entered a contest sponsored by Chuck Jones Galleries. You know, Chuck Jones, the creator of Bugs Bunny and genius behind Looney Tunes cartoons, the animated Grinch special and more.
The idea behind the contest was to “show your memories with your favorite Chuck Jones characters”. Meaning, post a photo and say something about Chuck and your favorite character, whether it be Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, etc. Grand prize was $1,000 cash, $5,000 to spend on Chuck Jones art and a trip to a VIP event at the gallery in San Diego.
Brickfish, the site managing the contest, provided a bunch of stock backgrounds and character art for people to mix and match and make their own creations. I saw this as an opportunity to create something original. Thinking about Looney Tunes takes me back to days of getting up on a Saturday morning and sitting in front of cartoons with a bowl of cereal. At least until the crap cartoons came on around noon, anyway.
I created a scene of me and a long-eared friend sitting in front of the tube, watching “What’s Opera, Doc?” as the sun comes up. I have to say I was pretty proud of it. I’d never drawn Bugs before (that I can remember), even if it was from behind.
I posted the art, along with a blurb about what Chuck’s work has meant to me. To my delight, Craig Kausen (Chuck’s grandson, who also runs the gallery) liked my entry and actually retweeted it several times over the length of the contest. He said I was the only one, as far as he knew, that had created a 100% original piece of artwork.
The contest actually ran quite a long time, so the suspense was a killer. It finally ended in early December, and the judging seemed to drag on equally long. Then on December 18th, I got an email from Brickfish that I’d been selected as Runner Up! Of course, I’d have preferred grand prize, but to be second out of over 1,300 entries is nothing to sneeze at either. I still get $250 cash and $2,500 to spend on artwork. I’m hoping I can get at least one good piece worthy of passing down to my daughter.
Not sure when I’ll actually receive the prize, but I’m thinking of using the money to get an Amazon Kindle. Then again, part of me feels I owe it to Chuck to buy something art-related with it. Still debating.
At any rate, big thanks to the gallery and Craig for the opportunity and for helping keep Chuck’s legacy alive. Hopefully someday I can repay the favor.