A Maze a Month, 12 of my favorite dailies of 2017.

With over 300 mazes a year to chose from it can be tough to pick favorites. After pouring through all my daily mazes (and a few groans of frustration at earlier work) I was able to pick a favorite daily maze from each month from January to December. Scroll through the images to see why I picked each one.

January: Bull Dog. I really like the drawing of the fancy british bull dog having his tea.

February: Chicken soup hot tub. Chickens are a common theme and one of my favorite things to draw. Maybe I like this one because he is making the best of a bad situation. My sister and her husband had also gotten a hot tub that month, so that was the inspiration.

March: Mister Rogers. He is one of my personal heroes and this maze celebrated his birthday. I met him several times and it’s a fun story I’ll share with you sometime.

April: Penguins on bicycles. I love penguins, I hate bicycles. Well, I hate drawing them. I don’t really mind bikes otherwise. Although I wrote a notorious tongue in cheek, op-ed once against a new bike lane in Pittsburgh. I still get threats for writing it! I love this maze because I actually did okay drawing a bicycle.

May: Tweet tweet. Brightly colored and simple drawings, but I find it charming for some reason.

June: Paul McCartney/Sgt. Pepper. The maze celebrates the 50th anniversary of the release of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. It’s one of my favorite albums.  I was happy with the caricature in the maze and the color choices and style.

July: Hog on a Hog. When I was a kid my little brother didn’t quite get the concept of how jokes worked and had come up with the classic: “What do you call a pig on a pig?… A hog on a hog!” It became a running gag whenever one of us would say something silly. Little did we know that his joke was actually a unwitting take on Harley culture.

August: Rocket. This one started out as an abstract maze. I try and do no more than one of those a week at most. I realized half way through the maze I had already done an abstract one and so I added the rocket to create a figure in the maze. I like the depth and perspective on this maze. I don’t like things to be symetrical as it makes mazes to easy. I also like the perspective to throw you off a little.

September: Kid in the kitchen. This was for “Kids in the Kitchen Day” and the kid in the maze is my son Wiley. He is fond of making up wild concoctions in the kitchen so it seemed appropriate.Though simple in style, it’s a pretty good likeness too!

October: Deviled Egg Day. My mazes aren’t traditional comics or cartoons so it’s not often I get to work in a gag. I love bad puns so “deviled egg day” allowed me this opportunity.

November: Issac the bartender. This one was created for “Bartender Day.” I tried to think of the most famous bartender and immediately thought of Issac from The Love Boat. I’m not very good at caricature, but I was happy at how well this likeness turned out!

December: Ninja Maze.  To end out my selections of the year I picked my only collaboration to date. It is for “Ninja Day” so I knew what I was going to draw, but then I remembered my daughter Lida had created a character she called the “Crappy Ninja” so I asked if she would draw her character for the maze. She drew it and then I made a few adjustments and created the maze around it. It turned out very cute and she even signed it. I am sure this is the first of what will be many collaborative efforts!

Thanks and have an A-Maze-Ing New Year!

Joe

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