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This Has Been a PSA

Hey! This blog doesn’t formally update anymore. For three years it was an art blog belonging to Tessa Tallagnon. It is still technically all of those things. The internet is forever, kids. She was in a two year visual arts tech program, and intended to become an animator. The artist loved art, and also you, but stuff happened. For a while I could only attribute my sudden disinterest in art to a permanent effect of temporary unhappiness, but the more immersed I become in my new area of study (screenwriting for television), the more I see that I was never the right way about art to do it professionally. Believe me that I’m somewhere better now. But that doesn’t invalidate the time we had together. That would be as stupid as dismissing any other relationship just because it was over.

I can’t give you a timeframe for seeing my work in this new medium, if you’d like to keep up, but I can tell you that I have literally hundreds of pages of writing already. When there’s something to see, it’ll be here. In the meantime, feel free to hang out. I loved this place too.


Anniversary Redux

Hey! It’s been two years! How ’bout that?

I don’t know, I get emotional about Radio Trees to close friends, like, once a week, but maybe it’s actually not old yet for other folks. Right? (Just let me have this.)

Radio Trees means a ton to me. I’ve become a much better artist because of it, it and art in general have given my life more meaning. And George & Co! Seriously, all of this has made my life so much better. Things could have gone a lot differently without art. You know I once wanted to be an engineer? Somebody told me I should. I notice I did a lot of things because somebody told me I should before Radio Trees. Including starting Radio Trees.

Anyway, the last two years have been lovely. I remember last year there was a toast to the hope that these are humble beginnings. Already in the past year I feel as if that’s proven true, even though things have been hard. I’m a better artist, I’ve started work on the cartoon (although it may be a long time before we get to see it), and I’m a tad more successful. I hope things keep going this way. Because this is still certainly the beginning. We’re still only in the beginnings of things. And I hope, still, that these are humble beginnings. I want it to be like Community: begins as a cute sitcom and transforms into an absurd, demented epic that incorporates air conditioner repair messiahs and corrupt community college dictatorships and alternate timelines. This paragraph didn’t quite go the way I planned.

The point is that I love art and I love you all.

Galaxy No. 1

Galaxy cropped

Happy Sunday. Galaxies are pretty things.

I should explain myself. I haven’t posted anything here in over a month, and even before that, updates were spotty for a few more. Things weren’t so good for a while, and I became afraid of drawing, and of creating in general. I don’t really have much more of an excuse than that, my fears bred an allergy to graphite. You should know it’s been miserable without you, though. Losing my motivation was more terrifying than anything else.

So now things are getting better, and here’s the plan: if you’ll look to your right, you’ll be able to find the tally of pieces of art on this blog. I’d like that number to be 104 by September 11th of this year. That is, I want the average to be one for every week by the second anniversary.

The cartoon’s going through some major revisions, I really want it to be something fun to write and watch and of which I can be proud. Therefore, for right now, the release date of the first episode is the same as Duke Nukem Forever’s once was: “when it’s done.” Feel free to give advice if, by some chance, you have opinions, I am generally of the perspective of that the rest of the internet is collectively smarter than me, and I know some of my friends are.


“No no no, it has to be a massive crowd scene with everyone you’ve ever drawn, and the apatosaurus floating in the background, the owl slug wrapped around a lampost, and Jillysauce, you need Jillysauce–”

“Yeah I can’t really do any of that.”

That’s right, it’s been one year.

It really shows how little I expected to come of this that I started Radio Trees on 9/11. Bit awkward, isn’t it? (My condolences to those who died on 9/11 and their families.)

It’s also just after the weekend on which I had my biggest exhibit yet. Probably the first one you could actually call an exhibit at all. So.


Well. I just really don’t know what to say. I’ve been trying to come up with something meaningful for this post, but I got nothing.

This weekend, while I was watching over my exhibit at Art Hop, some friends came by to visit me, and we raised a toast (a crushed, mostly empty water bottle one of them was holding) to the hope that one day, these will be humble beginnings. That’s really it, I guess. I hope they are. And I wouldn’t have a year ago. Art just didn’t matter nearly as much to me back then, I didn’t have enough faith in myself to let it.

So that’s pretty good.

Thank you to everyone who’s stuck around. I know I’m nowhere yet, but just you wait.

Esther and the Doctor and Time (Being Painfully Un-Timey-Whimey)

I had a conversation with my friend, Willa, in a parking lot in January, where we were talking about Esther Earl and Doctor Who, and I realized Esther never saw the Eleventh Doctor. It stopped conversation for a minute. Esther Earl was a girl who became somewhat famous within one of the little corners of the internet she favored, the Vlogbrothers fandom, and she was also a fan of Doctor Who. She died two years ago today at the age of 16. My observation did not, in fact, turn out to be verifiably true, Esther died, as I said, in late August of 2010 and the Eleventh Doctor’s first season aired in April of the same year, so if she was much of a fan (and she was) we can assume she did, in fact, watch some of Matt Smith’s work before she died.

But it isn’t really whether Esther got to see the Eleventh Doctor that’s the point. It’s the way the dead get left behind. Maybe I’m being a bit obvious here –it’s possible I’m emotionally stunted and just now dealing with the finality of death or something Freudian like that– but the dead kind of stop riding the ride once they die. Esther doesn’t know about The Fault in Our Stars, for instance, a book she unintentionally helped to shape and which I think she would have loved. Any person who died in 2010 never learned about a thousand little and big things, and they’re never going to, and that rather undeniably separates us from them. Life, to use a cliche in a dramatic new light the way people do in the movies, goes on.

Esther stopped living back in 2010. My great grandmother stopped living in 2004. Billions of people have stopped living, many of them people we know, and they’re never going to learn anything ever again.

When you die, you stop taking in information. And that is what terrifies me most.

I’m sorry to talk for so long. I kind of wanted to give you something today. Like a renewed fear of oblivion. That’s an acceptable gift, isn’t it? Anyway, I’m pretty happy with how this one came out. I like being able to use the sketch for the final lines, it’s a time-saver, and the effect is great. Hopefully I’ll do some more work like this. It’s a little shoddy structurally, though. I’m having some sort of artist’s block, and I sincerely feel like I’ve forgotten how to draw. (Willa, I don’t know what happened to your …everything and I’m sorry.)

Oh, also, super high quality new scanner what whaaat. (Never doing that again.) Seriously, my mouth waters every time I look at this drawing. It’s so good that, dare I say it:

Full view for high quality version.

This is the first time I’ve felt that that was warranted.

Owl-Slug v2

Bri is not exactly fond of the whole apocalypse thing. She’s not fond of being hungry all the time, she’s not fond of any protection she ever had being stripped away while the dangers lose their manners, she’s not fond of sleeping on park benches. She’s not fond of the crazy people who used to scream about the end of days not seeming so crazy anymore, of everyone else in the world seeming more so. She’s not fond of not having seen her apartment in about six months, of knowing it’s probably torn apart, maybe even fallen over. She’d be a little bit fond of not paying for stuff if there was any stuff left not to pay for. She’s really not fond of fighting something or someone for everything. She can feel the gash on her hip from that runin with a bearfish yesterday when she was down by the river, but if she turns over, it’ll just hurt more. She’s a little bit proud she’s hardly even afraid of bearfish anymore, but she’s still definitely not fond of them existing, or any of the weird crap rising out of the sewage these days. Did these horrifying hybrids always exist, just out of the public eye, or are they new? Nobody recycles anymore, that’s for sure.

And just as she’s finally drifting off to sleep, a giant, animalistic shriek all too close shocks her awake with the sort of petrifying panic she’s come to associate with waking up.

A gigantic owl with a …slug’s? lower half. (Why are the mutants always so big? How is the streetlamp even holding its weight?) It doesn’t seem to care that she’s there and, god, she isn’t even scared, either. Just annoyed.

Yeah. The apocalypse thing is getting old.

Hoh god this is late. Sorry about that. But it’s finally happened: a colored version of the owl-slug that I actually like. It occurs to me that I finished the original drawing around this time last year. I’d spent weeks working on it, drawing rows and rows of what turned out to be biologically inaccurate feathers, doing the pattern on the right wing, repositioning the head, working out the kinks in the flow of the feathers around the eyes. I even put three little stripes (not included in the colored version because it would have given me carpel tunnel) on every single feather. It was that wonderful sort of drawing that never goes wrong and never feels rushed, I just worked on little bits of it when I could, and eventually it was finished. I remember that for days after I finally decided it was done, I carried it around in my backpack (as I did all my drawings, to be fair) and pulled it out to show anyone who would look. Oh, those days before I discovered the internet.

I really didn’t mean for this to get so sunlighty, but, god, I just love sunlight so much. Also, when I first drew it, I wanted it to be a three panel comic (one for Bri sleeping on the bench while the owl-slug lands silently on the streetlamp, one for the wakeup call, and one for her realizing it’s just another gigantic, indifferent mutant and calming down) but by the time I finished this, I realized there was no way I could draw the owl-slug again on that scale.


I hit a thousand views just now! Best birthday present ever. 1000 views from (at least) 21 countries in 7 months. Thanks, guys, for all your support.

Okay, Is This A Blog, Or Is It A BLOG?

Right. So.

I have this blog.

I don’t know if you’ve heard of it.

It’s called Radio Trees.


So I have this blog, Radio Trees, where my art goes. I mean, if you look through the thing, it’s all art, all the time. (Also t-shirts. I’m greedy.) I’ve been really good about not posting anything unless a lot of drawing-time has gone into it.

And I hate doing so.

Radio Trees has given me this extra awareness of the internet and an insane urge to share things with it. Whenever I think something really funny, my first impulse is to draw it and put it on Radio Trees. Basically draw what would be a vlog.

Now, in terms of efficiency, that is a terrible idea. I just want to be able to put it on Radio Trees. So the question is: should I? The way I see it, Radio Trees can only be one of two things: professional or entertainment. It can be about my art or me as an entertainer and therefore my art. Obviously, I want to go with the option that gives me more freedom, but what I need is what will sell better.

I can’t, for the life of me, figure out which that is, so I’m gonna go for the “writing sometimes” thing, and if I start to not like it, I’ll erase all evidence that it ever happened. Radio Trees is not my only chance at the career I want, and it’s not even quite relevant to it. I want to be an animator. Have you seen anything on here move?

TL,DR: I think I just decided to be an actual blogger in addition to an artist with a blog.

Disproportionate Redhead Who I Don’t Quite Like (She’s Shady)

Traditional media! We don’t see that every day around here!

I really don’t know a thing about this girl, which is probably why she just doesn’t sit right with me. Also because I did that thing where her body gets progressively smaller going down, like a human log scale, except not like that at all. Usually, I’ve got some idea of the life stories of the people in any drawing of mine, and the context of the drawing, and things like that. Spewing unnecessary detail is kind of a skill of mine. (Once, I even thought up the economy of a hypothetical country that was part of a simile in a draft of a letter.) But this girl… nothing. No idea. Sorry. She kind of reminds me of Marie, the blue-haired Kanker sister from Ed, Edd n Eddy, but that’s all I got.

Anyway, I was inspired by this. Which, I guess, is why she’s a redhead? The girl above you was originally in pastel, but the artist in that video, I think, was using a different sort of pastels than me, and it backfired pretty quickly.

So, yeah. Disproportionate redhead in colored pencil who I don’t quite like.


This is Dawn. I made her out of math. (No, seriously. I started with a 3 5/8 inch diameter circle, used 75º angles from each of the perpendicular diameters for the forehead, put the start of the jaw two thirds back on the circle at a 130º angle, which then shifts up by 10º at the halfway point, then a third of the remaining length to the end of the jaw, etc. Yeah. She’s made of math.)

Coming soon (hopefully) is her friend, Emilie. I know all I do lately is draw pretty girls, I’m sorry. I’ll come up with a whimsical hybrid for you eventually. You can’t rush these things.

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