2015 was a big year for MazeToons as I made the leap to newspaper syndication thanks to Creators Syndicate! I drew more mazes in 2015 than I had in all other years combined. When you do that much drawing you keep getting better and I look forward to 2016. I have already drawn the first four months worth of Sundays and dailies for newspapers in 2016. If your newspaper doesn’t carry MazeToons, drop them a line.
So here is my list of favorite mazes (by me) for 2015!
10. Charlie the Tuna Maze!
StarKist is without a doubt my favorite client to work with. I have become their historian of sorts for Charlie and I’ve grown pretty fond of the iconic tuna. A large mural sized maze hangs in StarKist corporate headquarters but this was one I did just for fun!
9. Aviation, MazeToons Sunday
This Sunday feature was created for aviation month. It was the first time I themed a maze to a national celebration month.
8. Lighthouse, MazeToons Daily
It is very tough to design a maze for my dailies. It’s a small amount of space to make a maze that is both challenging and illustrated well. This maze is surprisingly difficult and one of the few that focus on a landscape instead of a central cartoon figure.
7. My Little Pony Discord Maze
This one was done just for fun! I purchased some blank covers to sell at comic cons and events, but this one I saved for my daughter. She loves MLP but my favorite character is Discord. So I jokingly call it the Discord Show. Go watch an episode with that character right now and you will see why I love Discord! He is basically Q from Star Trek the Next Generation. Both are voiced by the brilliant John De Lancie.
6. Halloween Maze
Halloween is my favorite holiday so naturally this had to make my list! I had done one in 2014 but this one was far better executed and colored.
5. Cats in Boxes, Mazetoons Sunday
We just got a cat in our family last year, his name is Mittens. I promised my son I would do a few cat mazes every year. This was the first one. Unfortunately I couldn’t include Mittens! He is a black cat which doesn’t work so well for mazes. Maybe next time.
4. Mad Hatter’s Tea Party, MazeToons Sunday
I am an Alice enthusiast as you can tell from my multiple Alice themed mazes. This maze was created to mark the 150th anniversary of the publishing of Alice in Wonderland.
3. Popeye Cover
I have to thank Craig Yoe of Yoe Books for this opportunity. I’ve always wanted to draw a cover to a comic book, but my style never quite fit. Being able to create a MazeToons of the legendary Popeye was a great honor. I also got to work in my favorite character, Eugene the Jeep!
2. Peanuts Maze
Like many cartoonists, Peanuts is my inspiration. Even though I didn’t go on to create a comic strip Schulz’s work is close to my heart. I have the great and distinct honor of being the visiting resident cartoonist of the Charles M. Schulz Museum since it’s opening. I return every single year to perform and lead workshops. This maze was created as a gift to the museum and to my friend Jean Schulz.
There is a quote that’s been attributed to lots of different people. This is probably unfair because every artist will tell you they like their most recent work most. This was created for a gallery show at Most Wanted Fine Art in Pittsburgh. But I used it as my Christmas greeting to fans, friends and family. It gets my number one spot because it is the culmination of a year of practice where my mazes moved away from random insertion of objects into more figurative illustrative pieces. I still enjoy random mazes but this one of Santa shows how far I have come in one year. I look forward to another year of getting better at what I do.