I recently interviewed Adam Koford the contributing mastermind behind the Zazzle gallery ApeLad. He first caught our attention with his hilarious LOL Cats comic strips, but as if that wasn’t enough, we soon discovered that he was also into drawing cool ape illustrations and even cooler hobos drawings! I love apes and being that I live in San Francisco, I’ve gotten used to hobos. So I guess what I am trying to say is, this guy rocks in my book!
With out further adieu,
I HAS AN INTERVIEW FOR U!
Zazzle: Tell us a little about yourself and where you are from.
I’m a cartoonist and a bit of a nomad. I grew up in Southern California, but I’ve also lived in Missouri and Utah. Now I live in Central Florida, not too far from a railyard.
Z: How’s the weather in Hobotopia today?
A bit stogie.
Z: Speaking of Hobotopia, LOL Cats Rock! What’s the full story behind the history of LOL Cats?
The Original Laugh-Out-Loud Cats were created in the early 20th Century by my great-grandfather, Aloysius Koford, who was also a cartoonist. Due to pressures from a competing syndicate and a certain newspaper magnate, the strip was very short-lived and he subsequently gave up cartooning for a life of adventure on the high seas. As the only remaining cartoonist heir to his estate, I’m authorized to continue drawing the strip and sell them to the unsuspecting public. I would encourage everyone to take my word for all of this; history has it’s dark corners that not even google can enlighten.
Z: I also noticed you have a huge collection of ‘Hobo art’ that you have drawn. Where do you get your inspiration from? Were you homeless once?
The hoboes I’ve drawn are from the book entitled the Areas of My Expertise, by John Hodgman. In addition to 700 hobo names, Mr. Hodgman has recounted the history and mysterious demise of the hobo movement in the United States. The visual inspiration for my depictions of his names came from far-flung sources: Charles Schulz, Jim Flora, and many others. There’s even a segment of a Rembrandt etching in one of them, though I’ll never tell which. I have never been homeless, though as an boy scout I slept on the ground in the wilderness on several occasions.
Z: What about the huge collection of ape drawings as well as a huge freelance portfolio. Doesn’t being this busy make you go bananas? That’s right… I said it…
I love drawing and creating, so I don’t ever mind being busy. It certainly beats my old job at an HMO. That’s some serious bananas.
Z: Who are some of your favorite cartoonists?
The list is very long, but the top five are probably Charles Schulz, Walt Kelly, George Herriman, Ralph Barton, and Bernard Kliban. This week, anyway.
Z: Who are some of your favorite Zazzle contributors?
A couple of my fellow hobo artists have some really nice designs available, including Len Peralta (jawboneradio) and Ben Rollman (xadrian). Eric Verspoor (dutchb0y) has a couple of cool hobo and zombie shirts too.
Z: What was your favorite toy when you were a child?
I had a lot of Star Wars action figures, which my kids still play with today. My very favorite, though, was a black Spider-Man toy, which my kids can’t touch.
Z: Tell me a little bit about your workspace, do you have a studio set up? Are there are ton of cats running around? Maybe a monkey?
My workspace is animal free, but I am surrounded by books by and about artists & cartoonists. I also have a spiffy thrift store painting of a schooner, which I’ve modified with a pirate flag and some tentacles.
Z: Did you wait in line to buy an iPhone?
I’m a bit of a late adopter, so no. I’ll wait till it comes in different colors.
Z: Are you a PC or Mac person?
Both, though I’ve preferred a Mac ever since my days playing Choplifter on the Apple II.
Z: Describe a typical day for you.
Working from home with a family, there’s no real “typical” day for me. Usually it’s a mix of drawing (both on freelance assignments and monkeys or cats), blogs and blogging, scheming, and maybe some laundry. There’s always laundry.
Z: To you, what is more funny, Ikea’s Swedish meatballs or Canadian bacon on a Hawaiian Pizza?
I’ll go with the pizza, though I’d like to read the assembly instructions for those meatballs.
Z: Have you ever freight-hopped?
I haven’t, but my grandfather (not my great-grandfather Aloysius) really was a bit of a hobo for a while. He hopped the rails in 1933 to attend the Century of Progress in Chicago, and basically lived off the kindness of strangers for a summer. That is, if my mother is to be believed.
Z: You have this cool ‘Watch Me Draw’ thing where a customer can watch you draw something they ordered, what’s this coolness all about?
Part of it was for my own enjoyment, it’s sort of like an out of body experience to watch myself draw. I’ve picked up on a couple things I didn’t realize I did, technique-wise. That probably sounds weird, but I like to watch people draw, myself included. It seems other people enjoy watching too.
Z: Thanks again for the interview, did you have any final thoughts?
Only this: I can’t think of anything pithy at the moment. Thank you!
Well thats all for now folks, but if you want to know more about Adam and his crazy cool stuff, check out the links below!