This week’s amazing contribution is the work of James Hohenstein, the author and artist of the crime drama Stymie.  Noir-style stories using anthropomorphic characters have been tried in comics and animation before, but rarely with the kind of thorough understanding of actual film noir and its nuances that James brings to his work.  Now, granted, being a huge fan of film noir, I may be biased, but for my money Stymie is one of the most genuinely sophisticated dramas in the world of webcomics at the moment.  He has the ability to zero in on exactly the right mood and moment in his scenework and realize it in detail that seems so effortless while it’s simultaneously so beautifully constructed.  Stymie is a real hidden treasure, and I strongly recommend that you all check it out.

As for me, this week I had a little time off around Independence Day.  Unfortunately for the comic, but fortunately for me, this gave me some time to take care of some rather pressing tasks that I’ve been putting off, and also to find some time to visit friends and family I don’t get to see as often as I’d like.  I also tackled a set of pages that I’ve been really hesitating about – pages that, in point of fact, nobody has ever seen before, except me.  I was of half a mind not to show you the progress this week as a sales gimmick but then I thought what the hell, so you can go ahead and vote to see one of them up now.  The whole spread is going to take another few days I think, but still, it’s fun to know that even what you’ve already read can have some surprises left in it.

I also spent some time going through still more paperwork and associated nonsense for my architectural licensing.  If any of you are in licensed professions, you know just how irritating it is to try to work your way into a cartel that has a huge incentive to keep you out of it and throws up arbitrary barriers to your advancement.  If you aren’t in a licensed profession, and you want to know what this is like, this ought to give you a fairly good idea:

I’ve also been doing some site work to tighten up some loose ends in the code here, and also doing some thinking and planning about what the next step in the 6-Commando project is going to be.  I don’t want to get into this in enormous detail at the moment since I’d rather focus on the work at hand, but I am trying to think of how best to proceed at the end of the summer.  But more on that later.  For now, I’m off to bed, and all that.  Have a good week, folks!