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Good Robots, Bad Robots, and Heads for Hats

October 15, 2012

I do a bit of drawing.  I’ve never taken any art classes or anything, but I’ve doodled and drawn for about as long as I can remember.  I know I’ve cranked out some 5 minute masterpieces on Microsoft Paint for this blog in the past, but that’s not what I’m talking about.  I’m talking about taking pencil to paper and scratching out something cool.  Mostly, I draw robots.

Yes, I’m a grown ass adult man, why do you ask?  Oh, I see, you think drawing robots is for kids.  Well it’s not, and now don’t you feel silly and uninformed for thinking that in the first place?  But, you can’t just draw a bunch of boxes with a face and call it a robot.  That’s bullshit.  No, there are RULES to the drawing of robots.

1) You must decide if you’re drawing a GOOD robot, or a BAD robot first.  They will influence the design

2) Bad robots have mouths, good robots don’t.  I didn’t make up these rules, it’s just how it is.  Here, let’s look at the history of pop culture robots and I’ll show you…

Wall-e… a nicer robot you’ve never met… no mouth

Johnny 5.. is ALIVE! And has no mouth… just a series of lights slightly below the eyes.

R2D2 – actively fought on the side of good, with no mouth.

C-3PO … maybe not evil. But a whiny bitch made by Darth Vader as a kid. Yeah. He has a mouth.

Maria from Metropolis… evil as fuck… has a mouth.

The T-2000… mouth full of metal teeth. Evil.

2b) Obviously there are exceptions to rule 2 – the Iron Giant has a mouth and Daleks don’t, and I myself have broken the rules here once or twice, but for the most part once you put a mouth on a robot it starts to gain some creepiness.

3) Steampunk is preferable to digital age.  If you can show internal clockwork and hydraulic plumbing, it looks WAY cooler than digital readouts and wiring.

3b) Again, there are exceptions.  It depends on the robot.  But wouldn’t C-3PO have been badass with a series of spinning gears and belching steam?  Just sayin’.

4) Good robots should always have a heart.  This one doesn’t come from pop culture, but from my stepson who is also a fan of drawing (and, more often, sculpting) robots.  The idea here is that every good robot is always looking for love, looking to become more human.  So, give them a heart (usually a heart-shaped series of gauges or readouts on their chest… or a pair of gears exposed above a triangular shape… something to literally put a heart on the robot’s chest).

There.  Now that you have all the rules to drawing robots, you should go out and draw some.  The nice thing about robots is that there is no wrong way to draw them.  It can be an abstract series of squared off body parts, or incredibly detailed.  For some of them, it’s all about the detail you put into their expression, making them seem more human.  For some, it’s about the mechanics of their construction.  Whatever you do, though, ask yourself first: is this a good robot, or a bad robot?

Here’s one I’m currently working on. I feel more comfortable putting something on here that isn’t actually complete because I can deflect any criticism with “oh, well, it isn’t done yet.”  I’m weird and lack confidence like that.  Don’t judge me.  Anyway, here’s the current robot (yes, he’s evil):

Incomplete Robot … pencil on leftover envelope. Cause I’m not classy enough for “oil on canvas”

I Want to Wear Your Head for a Hat

This actually brings me to the whole point of this blog.  I’ve found bloggers to be a fairly artistic bunch of people.  I’ve seen paintings, drawings, sculptures, cool crafts, intricately decorated foods, and amazing photographs all done by bloggers.  I feel like we’re kind of a unique group of individuals.  We populate the internet because we don’t know how else to spew our creative flow into the world.

So, when I received the I Want to Wear Your Head for a Hat award, I was immediately struck by how amazing the drawing was.  Here’s the award, and click to see it full sized:

This award was given to me by Valerie over at last Thursday, and before that on the previous Sunday by Banana Stickers over at Cerebral Milkshake.  I could NOT have been happier.  But, then I got to really wondering where this thing came from, because the drawing is so cool.  So Valerie said that she had been given this award by Misty over at Misty’s Laws.  After reading through MONTHS and MONTHS of Misty’s blogs, I found where she had been given the award, and she said that the award had been created by Leauxra at Does This Make My Blog Look Fat? (awesome blog title, by the way).  So I fired off a quick email:

My blog was just given this award, and I wanted to not only credit the person who passed it along to me but, since the artwork was so amazing, I really thought the original artist should be credited as well.  But, nobody seems to have credited it to anyone… until I traced it back to Misty’s Laws who said the award was created by you.
I LOVE this award!  It’s the coolest thing I have ever been given, and really want to link back to the artist, if 1) you are in fact the artist and 2) you want my stupid little blog ( to link back to yours.  Anyway, if it was yours, I’m officially hooked and will follow you forever (not in a creepy stalker way… you keep closing your curtains and ruining my view… just kidding, because if I could see you from the middle of nowhere Arizona that would take some Hubble telescope-like optics… this parenthetical aside has gone horribly wrong… I just meant in a regular “follow” button clicking way… ignore all that other stuff).
Sorry for this horrible email,
Todd [last name redacted] (a.k.a. The CrakGenius)
Then, today, I got this reply:
Hi Todd,
I am in-deedy the person who created this PRESTIGIOUS award.  I set it free on the interwebs, but I lost track of it somewhere.  I am glad to see it is still making people happy.
My original post about it is here:
With the suggested “rules”.I am so glad you like it!  And I would love a link back!XOXOLeauxraP.S. Off to check out your blog now.  🙂

So, there you have it.  I found the originator of the award, and get to link to her blog, which makes me totally feel a little like Columbo.  So, here are the “rules” of this blog award:
  1. Link back to the person who tagged you.  Say what you will.  It doesn’t have to be nice.  Just know that I will find you.
  2. Run like hell and hope that that crazy bitch who is following you doesn’t saute your tongue in a butter and garlic sauce.Wait wait.  That isn’t right.  That should read, “that crazy bitch that ‘joined’ you in Google Friend Connect.”Or circled you… or whatever the hell these crazy kids do these days.Aw, fuck it.


  3. Nominate some OTHER bloggers and ensure that they will never sleep again.
  4. I’m adding this one… if you feature an image of this award on your blog, feel free to link that sucker back to Leauxra’s blog.  (rule #4 totally added without the permission of Leauxra and may be ignored at any time by anyone since it wasn’t one of the original rules… but I think she deserves it because pointillism is HARD, yo!)

I love that this doesn’t require a specific number of blogs to give the award to, so I can really concentrate on guys I know will actually APPRECIATE getting this thing.  So, by the numbers, here we go:

1) I’ve already done that (see above, or just look to the right under “Badass Blogs” and click where it says ‘Cerebral Milkshake’ and ‘Valerie Nunez and the Flying Platypi’)… or just click here and here. Whatevah man!

2) Okay… here I goOOooooOoooOooooOOOooo  … wheeeeeeeeeeeee…. aaand I’m back.  All that running made me thirsty, hang on a sec.  *gulp* *gulp* *gulp* … okay all better.

3) Here’s the nitty gritty, the bloggers I’m nominating.  I wanted to carefully select just a couple of blogs this time… people who would really DIG this award and wear it proudly as a skeletal antlered four legged demon beast would wear a head for a hat (metaphorically speaking).  I also wanted to make sure the winners had not, to my knowledge, already gotten one of these.  So, the winners are:

Cannibalistic Nerd – I think this crazy ass award goes well with her crazy ass blog.  Superfriends, the Walking Dead, and all things nerdish are all fair game on her blog.  Enjoy your new demonic prize, Carrie.

My Life As Lucille – Her love of the macabre made me think, “she’d totally enjoy an award featuring a skeletal antlered demon.”  So, there you go. Treasure it always.

That’s all.  I’m only giving two of these away.  That way, it feels more like an award and less like a pyramid scheme.  I truly have enjoyed getting, and giving, this thing.  And to my two recipients, you were both chosen because I think you’ll feel the same.


From → Blogs

  1. Ok, I’m a huge dork, but this post made me nostalgic for Syberia, an adventure game series (does anyone else remember when games had stories?) Oscar, the robot character, had a mouth and was not evil though.
    Short Circuit references are always a plus in my book 🙂

    • I must have missed that series. Too bad, because I loves me some adventure games!

      Also, hell YEAH Short Circuit!

  2. How do you feel about cyborgs, like Data from Star Trek: TNG, or the character in A.I.? Or does the robot just lose robot-appeal once it approaches human appearance?

    Also, congrats on the award! That picture is awesome but slightly unnerving. Because I obviously only enjoy normal artwork.

    • Hmmm… Data was always one of my ST:TNG faves. It’s a fine line, though. The robots with really human expressions like in irobot freak my freak.

      And, yeah, you’re the ONE art critic who should totally understand the appeal of this award 😉

  3. Nice Pointillism!

  4. I am so proud of my little award… I set him free on the internet, and he went so far… He brings joy wherever he goes! And fear. He brings joy and fear… they’re kind of the same thing, right?

    • You should be proud! I know I’ll wear that badge with honor, right on the “sleeve” of my blog!

  5. Thank you for this fabulous award. I’ll send my head to you in the mail within 2 weeks.

  6. OMFG! I love to say that! THIS IS THE COOLEST AWARD EVER! Is there a way to top ALL CAPS? Idk. I am totally passing this on and it is a TRUE, TRUE honor to have it bestowed upon us/me. I mean, we both know who does the posting, right? LOVE! xoxoxo

  7. YAY!!! Congrats! You totally deserve it. Because I really do want to wear your head as a hat. But in a total non-creepy way. Like… I would wear it out to dinner with my fancy pants. CLASSY!!



  8. mylifeaslucille permalink

    I am STILL. SO. PROUD. xoxoxo

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  1. Ahhh… My Dearest! « CrakGenius

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