Pocket Guides

A Pocket Guide to the Pocket Guide to Series (2013)

Pocketguides3It’s fitting Kevin Huizenga loses it in his pocket guide, The Pocket Guide to Series. Not loses it in a bad way, but loses any pretense he isn’t just having a laugh with the form. The skill and talent comes from how well the laugh goes.

Series is ostensibly a guide to all Huizenga’s pocket guides–the last page, with ordering info, reveals all of the guides mentioned in the guide are out of stock, except the two actual other guides, which he doesn’t mention. This “index” is a cross between meta text about the reader reading and something like Borges’s potential literature. Maybe eighty-twenty, since Huizenga could never turn any of the indexed guides into actual guides; the point is their description here.

It’s a really breezy read; Huizenga had me grinning by the first actual page.

One reads it, smiles, laughs and marvels at Huizenga’s artistic processes.

CREDITS

Writer, artist, colorist and letterer, Kevin Huizenga; publisher, USS Catastrophe.

A Pocket Guide to Pleasure (2013)

Pocketguides3By the third page of A Pocket Guide to Pleasure, it becomes clear Kevin Huizenga is having fun. He’s not messing around and not doing work, but he’s having fun. The guide doesn’t really include any tips on what kind of form and content give pleasure, except this guide does give pleasure so maybe one should emulate it.

But mostly what Huizenga does is constantly amuse the reader. He turns the form–a 2 x 3 or so ink jet printed mini book–into a kind of performance piece. He’s performing for the reader with the work, which isn’t the same thing as telling a good story. Pleasure is a written, illustrated, designed monologue.

Huizenga frequently tells the reader to keep the guide in his or her pocket for a constant return to pleasure. It’s a funny little thing, with rather deep implications.

Very glad it’s paper, not an app.

CREDITS

Writer, artist, colorist and letterer, Kevin Huizenga; publisher, USS Catastrophe.

A Pocket Guide to Objects (2013)

Skitched 20130630 203648What’s A Pocket Guide to Objects about? Guess what, not objects. Not really. Sort of. Maybe.

The pamphlet or comic or book is itself an object, which Kevin Huizenga wrote while listening to Beethoven. A lot of the concepts he actually does discuss–I thought when he said “objects” he meant something simple like how to organize one’s mix tapes from the late nineties–regarding form and content tie into his experience listening to the music. So it’s a narrative. It’s non-fiction, first person narrative about his thoughts about making comic books (without saying comic books) while listening to Beethoven.

According to the back of the guide, Huizenga made this book on his inkjet printer. It runs approximately sixteen pages; I’m probably counting the covers. On the front cover Huizenga writes, “Keep it for Future Reference.” Definitely.

His ideas perplex and engage, but his execution of his thoughts inspirits.

CREDITS

Writer, artist, colorist and letterer, Kevin Huizenga; publisher, USS Catastrophe.

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