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PYRO-PENGUIN

After a major fight with his brother, Bleu the penguin runs away from the zoo and into an unsuspecting house. He discovers a love for fire after finding a box of matches, causing the rest of the neighborhood to catch on fire. Upon seeing the news, Purple gathers the rest of the penguins to retrieve Bleu, steal an RV, and head out on a road trip along west America for the commotion to die down. Along the way, they get into many fiery shenanigans as the penguins try to get Bleu and Purple to make up before heading back home.

For how silly and off the rails the penguins and their shenanigans are, they were created during a very depressive period of my life. I honestly never thought I would draw them again after the assignment I created them in.

The blue penguin was the very first one to exist. I was taking this Comics Illustration class  after failing most of my winter term freshman year, and Felix suggested I take it so I would have something I would enjoy in my life as I went into therapy at CAPS. We were given prompts and panel guidelines each week to base a comic around, and this assignment was basically a fill in the blank comic using the following guidelines:

 

  • The first panel must have the bird flying in through a window, and the last panel must have the bird fly out a window.

  • Somewhere throughout the comic, a fire must occur. How it occurs is up to you.

  • Use the 12 panel template provided

 

And that was how my little  Pyro-Penguin was born. He never had a proper name, so I just called him Blue, and later Bleu (I know, sO cReAtIvE), after his color, and it eventually became his official name. I really only made him blue because I did not want to paint a normal black and white penguin at the time.

 

Bleu’s comic was not the best since the professor thought the story was a bit nonsensical, which I understand. I am still pretty happy with it though. I really want something funny to look at

I later gave him brothers for an assignment in 3D Core Studio Fall term of my sophomore year. I do not remember the specifics, but the assignment was basically to create a work that we leave out in the open that will interact with the public. Part of that were rainbow penguins. I quickly painted them out of watercolor and laid their cut outs on the railing of the disability ramp next to Gilfillan Auditorium. I laid them out on a Sunday, and I remember seeing them Monday morning undisturbed. I was planning on grabbing them after class, but someone had the AUDACITY to take them. Either that, or the wind took them (but I really doubt the wind took all of them). The same thing happened to the other parts of my projects, and if the person(s) who took my comic and penguins are reading this: I will find you, and I will get them back. I swear on it.

 

Anyways, I remember feeling very hopeless and alone at this point and really wanted to give up on school. I ultimately stayed with it, not because I eventually found some sort of hope, but more so because I was going through the motions mindlessly. I remember making these penguins without much thought or care, and I did not regard them as being worth more than a grade. I was not expecting much of a reaction to my project during critique, but everyone thought they were really cute and were really happy seeing them. I think that was the point I saw them in a new light and when an inkling of a story developed.

After some sketches that are not in this document, a story was developing between Bleu and the purple penguin that I will dub, Purple. Bleu and Purple are brothers that live in the same zoo in Seattle, Washington. Bleu absolutely adores Purple. He will hug him, climb him, and use his head like a little drum. This all bothers Purple, finding Bleu to be an annoyance more than anything. This eventually led to a fight between the two of them, and in reaction, Bleu fled from the zoo into a suburban neighborhood where found his love for fire. After lighting the neighborhood in flames, Bleu’s face is plastered in the news. Talk of it gets to the zookeepers and eventually to Purple, who freaks out, grabs the other penguins, and breaks out of the zoo and hijack a poor lad’s RV in search of the little blue boy.

 

After they found Bleu, they decided that staying in Seattle was no longer viable since Bleu was basically the police's top suspect for arson and the rest were guilty for vehicular theft. In their spiffy new RV, they drive out of state until the situation in Seattle settles down enough for them to safely sneak back into the zoo. Throughout the journey, they go on hot air balloon rides, develop gambling addictions, visit Yellowstone Park, and of course, commit more crime!