Conroy and Rosco (2002)

As a lad, I played outside a lot. A typical weekend afternoon adventure consisted of riding my mountain bike down the dirt country roads. Living around corn fields may not sound like a blast, but I always tried to make a game out of what I had. I believe that’s when the inspiration hit me.
I noticed a scarecrow, in the guardian of the field. I also noticed a crow, standing there at the scarecrow’s feet, eating a fallen ear of corn, somehow immune to the scarecrow’s power of fright. It made me laugh. This must have been the bravest crow I had ever seen. Other crows were in the safety of the high powerlines, looking down at this crow as if he was on a suicide mission. The whole situation was quite funny in my eyes as well as ironic. I knew at some point I would have to draw a cartoon series that was, in fact, a true story.
I had always enjoyed watching Looney Tunes as a kid, and still do today. It was great comedic writing, comedic timing, colorful stories, and above all, memorable characters that made the experience of watching them all worth while. In a way, Conroy and Rosco is my strict dedication and homage to the great era in motion picture entertainment.
In the eyes of some art experts, the animation and cartoon field is very remedial. By today’s standards, a doodle of a character experiencing weird, uncommon situations (Spongebob, Chowder, Misadventures of Flapjack) or mature, low brow spoofs (Simpsons, Family Guy, South Park) can pass as entertainment. This cartoon is for those who will enjoy a good laugh through classic physical slap stick comedy, not for those who theorize the intentions of the tortured artist.
The art of the anvil, TNT, laws of physics, inter dimensional black novelty holes, and shot guns that only leave one’s face stained with gun powder are not dead in this cartoon series!

The Smuggle Shuttle

Yes, even Zerik and Spitzer have their own way to get around. Unlike the Space Zoo Safari Shuttle, the Smuggle Shuttle is bent more for the aggressive poaching crowd. This ship is equipped with weapons like tranquilizers, nets, pincers, and ample trunk space for cages.

The Safari Shuttle

The source of transportation while on the field. This unique ship has more mechanical capabilities to aid Space Zoo wranglers (like Xax and Iggy) while on a mission. Gadgets like radar detectors, grappling hooks, and other animal friendly tools ensure safe captures. For the fastest of creatures, I figured the Safari Shuttle has a homing gadget that is able to lock on to the object and tail behind it. The wranglers however have to man the freeze or anti grav guns to stop the animal. Other ways are to simply drive beside the animal and lasso it from the ship.

Xax and Iggy in Uniform

Here’s Xax and Iggy in their zookeeper/safari uniforms. I wanted to show that they really aren’t that advanced in the field of animal care, in fact they have about the same tools we do on Earth.
Xax holds a basic butterfly net and Iggy holds a standard radar detector in order to track said alien species.

Spitzer Sputnic

Zerik’s loyal lackey. Spitzer is a hired and skilled hitman and fighter that does most to Zerik’s dirty work, whether it’s spying or exterminating their enemies. He rarely thinks for himself and follows
his foul direct orders.
Spitzer was fun to come up with as well. I really like drawing stout, buff henchmen, and I made sure that Spitzer lived up to the expectation.
Naming the characters in Space Zoo is one of the more challenging parts, but its still a blast. Spitzer Sputnik is named after the astonomer Lyman Spitzer and the Russian satellite, Sputnik. When I came up with that combo, I imagined Spitzer having a Russian accent.


Zerik Sungrazer

Zerik is a fiendish, greedy bounty hunter and poacher. He’s selfish, bossy, and most of all down right mean. He loves making his dishonest money though poaching, theft and gambling. He’ll do whatever it takes to come out financially successful.
Coming up with a formidable foe is a lot of fun for me. I wanted Zerik to be up there in the ranks of the really well thought out Disney villains: Competent, threatening, but still a character you love to hate.
Finding his last name was fun to figure out. I wanted a name that sounded edgy, so I did some research to find out what kind of stuff in space that sounded dangerous, and thus I found “Sungrazer”. Sungrazers are types of comets that pass extremely close to the Sun.
And that children, is your fun fact for the day!

Igmar Io

Igmar is the tech-savy, sarcastic, smart alac sidekick. He’s very materialistic about all of his electronic toys and gadgets. Where Xax is more of an outdoor guy, Iggy is more comfortable in his media center or tech lab. It’s hard for Iggy to stay positive when he’s in the harsh elements of the great outdoors.
Iggy was fun to design. He went through a lot of changes over the first days of creation. (will post those sketches in the future)
I followed suit when creating Xax a sidekick. The first thing that came into my mind was someone who was shorter with a little more of a flawed personality.
Iggy’s last name is Io. For you non-space aficionados out there, Io is one of Jupiter’s many moons.

Xax Starclipper

Xax Starclipper is the brave, charming, adventure seeking straight-man who is one of those lucky folks who loves his job. He’s very professional and resourceful when he’s on safari missions and always keeps a level head when in trouble. He’s not too educated when it comes to using his partner’s high tech “doohickeys”. He’d rather rely on his own practical skills.
I wanted kind of a catchy name like Luke Skywalker for my main character for Space Zoo. I figured Starclipper was kind of a fun last name that a hip alien would have. As all main characters go, I designed him to be pretty much mainstream. Fit, athletic, normal wardrobe, and a color scheme that reminds you of America.

Space Zoo (2005)

This is Space Zoo. It’s a series I came up with back in 2005.
Basically, it’s a story I worked out involving two Alien Zookeepers (the good-guys) who cross paths with a clan Alien Poachers (the bad-guys).
The taller alien is named Xax, who plays the role as my brave, level headed hero. Igmar or “Iggy”, is Xax’s sarcastic, geeky sidekick. I will share more info about them later as the Blog expands. Stay toon’d!