When I started setting up a camera on my remodeling jobs with the idea of creating a website that showcased videos of my work, I wondered why more business owners didn’t try to do the same thing. Now that I’ve done it I know why; it is practically a second job! Ha ha. Click here to check out this week’s video, which combines clips from various job sites to create a power packed promo for the Utica Remodeling Company Episodes. Thinkpierce, Something New Every Friday!
Anyone that has rummaged through a few pages of Thinkpierce.com, probably wouldn’t be surprised to learn that drama class was one of my electives as a senior in high school. What might not be expected however was that I hated it. The class focused heavily on Shakespeare type plays and other stereotypical content that anyone would assume to be a part of a drama class. It seemed to be something my peers could get in to, but it just wasn’t for me. When I dropped the class and didn’t return the next quarter something unique happened; for whatever reason, the drama teacher Mrs. Harbolt wanted me to come back to the class when the next semester started. Around that same time I had already started working on a rough draft for a space based story during my homeroom period that featured a character named Captain Robert. I wasn’t really interested in coming back to the class if I had to keep doing the same type of stuff I had done the first quarter, however Mrs. Harbolt’s question put another idea in my head. I asked her if she would let me put on my own play if I enrolled in drama again next semester. I don’t know why, but she said yes and that moment marked the beginning of what would eventually turn in to a play called, “Captain Robert and the Search for Magni-Tron Transmitters.”
Over the remaining weeks I finished writing the script during my homeroom class and once the next semester arrived I was ready to get started. True to her word, Mrs. Harbolt gave me control of the class for a set amount of weeks as well as a small budget to spend on costumes and building the set. I was truly blown away by the opportunity I had been given. I was allotted a specific amount of time to rehearse with the class and after a lot of work on everyone’s part the day finally came to perform the play. We performed it two weekend nights and had a really positive turn out. Many of the audience members who had seen it the first night, came back to see it the second night as well. The zany storyline included anything from an insane choreographed rant about the lunch I brought to a woman swooning lip sync performance of Backstreet Boys’ I Want It That Way. Due to the positive buzz the play had created, the school administration asked us to perform it again the following week to provide entertainment for all of the seniors while the junior class was doing some testing. This brought a lot more exposure to the play that it wouldn’t have gotten otherwise and seemed to once again bring a positive response from the audience.
The experience of getting to create this play ended up being a landmark moment for me creatively. I owe a huge thanks to Mrs. Harbolt as well as my fellow drama class students for allowing me a unique creative opportunity that I’ll never forget. The only regret I have is that I didn’t take better steps at the time to get higher quality video footage of the performance. Although I currently have a lot of creative goals that I have made a priority right now, one day I plan to make a unique movie version of this play. When that day comes, I will probably have such a natural high that people will think I’m insane….er, wait a minute…
While I was in the process of remodeling an owner finance fix up the tenants in the house next door moved out. Weeks later, it had turned in to another rental rehab project by Utica Remodeling Company. Click here to watch the video. Thinkpierce, Something New Every Friday!
“Numlock & Gordon” is the half-finished illustrated story of two characters that I sketched while working a call center job. It began by drawing a character named Gordon in a veterinarian clinic who was becoming obsessed with a rugged door wreath while waiting for his dog – you know, the predictable action-romance “Hollywood blockbuster” storyline that gets recycled and released every year? Yeah, that one. From there a rough plot began in my head adding a sidekick character named “Numlock” (named after the numlock key) and the Numlock and Gordon adventure began.
During that period, I was working as much over overtime as I could at the call center to raise money for The Turtleneck Club, an independent film I shot later that year. Drawing “Numlock and Gordon” in addition to a small army of other oddball characters and drawings was a way for me to pass the time during those long hours. Many of those additional characters and drawings were later used in a book of illustrated stories I wrote called, Zap Nugget.
After raising the money to shoot The Turtleneck Club movie, I had gotten what I wanted out of the call center job and decided to dive back in to remodeling work, which later turned into Utica Remodeling Company. Although I had reached the halfway point of the Numlock and Gordon storyline, I didn’t consider the project to be a main focus at the time and the drawings sat in a folder as I continued to remodel and work on other creative projects. Years later, my interest in the characters picked back up when I was working with colorists to enliven some of my other whacko-spazzed illustrations, which later became Thinkpierce Art. That experience opened my eyes to the possibilities, and I was starting to envision Numlock and Gordon’s spastic tale in the form of a book app.
At that same time I was also in the process of redeveloping another story I had written featuring a character named Jim Jamkins. Working on both stories at the same time allowed me to see a lot of similarities that I felt both Jim Jamkins and the Numlock and Gordon characters shared. Since both storylines had such a similar feel and because I could start to see that I might be spreading myself out too thin by taking on more than I could complete, I came up with the idea of combining them, merging the qualities of Jim Jamkins and Gordon together creating only one lead character. Because I had already done more development with Jim Jamkins, I stuck with that name with the intention that Numlock’s character would be transformed in to a neighbor or friend for Jim later on.
With a new vision in place, I went back to the drawing board and created a redeveloped character sketch of Jim Jamkins. I then began drawing accompanying characters and scenes for the revamped storyline, passing them along for coloring. You can see some of the finished illustrations here. As the redevelopment process tapered off, the original story I had written about Gordon’s obsession with a rugged wreath was turned in to what would become the storyline for the first Jim Jamkins book app.
Looking back, the story of Numlock and Gordon is a perfect example of what can occur during the creative process and ultimately represents one of the development stages of what will eventually become the first Jim Jamkins book app. This process has also shed a light in helping me understand why some movies or stories can take “years” to make, ha ha.
Birthed from a lineage of homemade style booklets, Jonathan Pierce’s whacko-happy book, Zap Nugget offers the literary equivalent of a spit wad against a crusty notebook paper backdrop. Starting with page one, Zap Nugget readers are immediately dumped into an inkhorn of insanity as they explore a hodgepodge of zany illustrated stories and oddball comics. Casting a wide net, the mini stories in Zap Nugget bust open the doors on a variety of topics like, doctoral robes, going in to the scab selling business, creating a month long lesson plan to learn about frogs, identifying the problem with nomads and much more. Offering 30 pages of total bliss, Zap Nugget has the power to offer something exciting to everybody and nobody all at the same time. So for those who want to live vicariously through characters like “Barg” who encounters the unpleasant of experience of getting his toenail ripped off in a motorcycle gear-shift gone wrong, strap in for a good read that is guaranteed to leave your hair greased and your lips so dry that they’re cracked and crusted. Click here to order your copy today! ibook version coming in 2014.
Check out this week’s video trailer, which promotes a fictitious movie about a rugged special ops military legend named Drill Sarge Dan. Thinkpierce, Something New Every Friday!
One day I found myself considering the purchase of a run down property as I toured it with the owner. It was a total wreck with an interior that felt more like a neglected barn than a residential dwelling. After viewing the various animal cages and piles of junk that were emitting an incredible odor through the entire house, I looked at him and said, “I’ll take it.” Click here to watch the transformation now. Thinkpierce, Something New Every Friday!
If I could sum up my “growing up” years in one word it would probably be; Music. Here’s a video of a drum jam that features various pictures taken over the years. Thinkpierce, Something New Every Friday!
Every once and a while a really unique job comes along out of left field. That was the case when I received a phone call to install some slate tile showers in a private lodge outside of town. Click here to watch the video now. Thinkpierce, Something New Every Friday!
Shortly after graduating high school I started writing a book about an oddball character that lived in a school bus titled, “Jim Jamkins: The Fringe Benefits of Converting a School Bus into a Home.” The comical story allowed readers to see life through Jim’s eyes as he used unlikely logic to handle the different experiences that were presented to him throughout each chapter. I went on to self-publish the book as a paperback in 2005, making it available for sale online.
Years later, I began exploring the idea of working on another story I had developed that featured a set of equally oddball characters named Numlock and Gordon. To make a long story short, that experience opened my eyes to the idea of redeveloping “Jim Jamkins” into a book app. Among other changes, the revamped story of Jim Jamkins would also include a new character design, (which had previously simply been a likeness of me, ha ha). With the Jim Jamkins story taking on a new identity, I decided to pull the original paperback to prevent any possible confusion once the new book app version was released.
Unlike the original paperback book, the new Jim Jamkins story will feature illustrations of each scene. I’ve already been able to illustrate some of the characters and scenes of the new story, which were then passed along for coloring. Shuffled in with a variety of other projects I’m currently working on, the Jim Jamkins book app is still a ways away from being finished – but when it finally is, it will probably be among the most personally rewarding projects to see completed. Thinkpierce, Something New Every Friday!