Myspace Brian Repents

November 20, 2016
 Hello again Normal Bob Smith,

I just wanted to send you a quick thank you. I happened to be one of the many many people who sent you "hate" mail 10+ years ago. 
I was 16 sending you myspace messages about how real God is and how wrong you are. I randomly thought about the time I sent you those messages and googled my way to find and read them and of course they're more ridiculous than I remembered.

Myspace Brian 16I came to terms with being an atheist about 6 years ago now and I honestly think messaging you 10+ years ago was a beginning to my questioning. You ended the last message with 
 "I'm glad you're at least thinking about all this stuff. That's what got me started questioning, and eventually led me to what I believe today" and it's crazy how right you were.

Anyway, reading back at those messages, you could have easily shrugged those messages off and replied back "hail satan. see you in hell kid.", which may have been funny. I think what really struck me back then was how calm, collect, and informed you responded and I wasn't expecting your messages to actually make me think. So yeah, I'm 25 now and becoming atheist years ago was one of the best things that ever happened to me, so thanks for responding to a 16 and making him think. 

Take Care,
 Brian

 

Well that's pretty amazing.

Now if I'm correct I never got a responce from you after that final long letter I sent. I'm curious what sort of reaction you had to that letter about Koko the talking gorilla and me taking back evolution to single celled parents and their babies. Or did 16 year old Brian see the length of it and just skip it?

I'm also curious, can you put your finger on what finally changed your mind and swayed you to atheism.

I'd love to see a picture of you now if you don't mind. I plan to post this on my site if you don't mind.
 Thank you!
Normal Bob

 

Myspace Brian 26It's hard to remember exactly 10 years back but I know I read the last message and took it serious. I just don't think I was ready to start seriously questioning everything I ever believed yet. I think when I was 16, it didn't even come across my mind that I could be wrong and it's easy to pass off every scientific explanation as "God is so powerful that we just can't comprehend how he's working". What led me to come to terms with atheism wasn't so much an overnight decision but just 4+ years of doubts and questioning along with simply getting older.

I grew up in a small conservative town where every kid was involved in a church and as I left and got involved in different communities, my mind just opened up to other points of view. There is one odd moment though that I give some credit to which seems pretty random now. I came across this image of an uncontacted south american tribe aiming a bow and arrow at a plane flying overhead.
South African tribe aiming arrows at plane
Something about this image and story really hit me with the amount of diverse people that are currently living and have lived on earth. If even today there are tribes aiming arrows at a plane, showing how out of touch they are with the modern world, how can I assume that the God I believe in is the only answer. The world is so much bigger than each of us individually and to think that every single member of every non-christian tribe since the beginning of time is in hell for not knowing about the Christian God, couldn't be more ignorant. 

Even though there are now countless reasons I don't believe in a God, I do think that realization was one of my turning points. 

I was watching "Sex, Death and the Meaning of Life" by Richard Dawkins yesterday and when he started reading his hate mail, that's what reminded me of my 'burn in hell, normal bob!!' messages. Whoops.

Brian

Now I’m not one to brag, but after going back through Brian’s and my 2006 conversation I’m impressed with my responses. I didn’t remember it being this good!

Also, here’s that Richard Dawkins video he mentioned.

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HELP WANTED

Floppie the Clown dressup
Floppie the Clown dressup

When I first moved to NYC I supported myself primarily designing custom dressup games for the web. There was no Jesus Dressup magnet income yet (I couldn’t find anyone to produce them for a couple years after I arrived). But the online version of it was very, VERY popular. I mean hell, it was in the top two results for the word “jesus” for a decade. That was enough to wrangle in similar jobs from a wide variety of clients.

My dressup games have been birthday presents for husbands wives, promotal devices for marketers, lawyers, burlesque dancers & other adult services needing erotic dressups. I was even hired to do a dressup game for a couple of Australian escorts looking to boost their business!

 Escort Dolls dressup
Escort Dolls dressup

These types were always favorites of mine. They requested I make them have a growl face when the client touches parts that’re off-limits, and wink to show where to go. I always gave discounts and extra attention to these, and I’m happy to say they were a substantial portion of this business, but my clients spanned the gamut – lawyers & librarians to bohemians & bodybuilders. I was also fine with doing kid-friendly dressups as well. Heavy.com had me making a monthly celebrity dressup which was a nice consistent check for a while. I even did one for Blue Man Group.

 Whippedcream Bikini dressup
Whippedcream Bikini dressup

It was a wonderful, dependable income for a budding freelancer such as myself.  I’d found a niche. In fact, for a time it seemed I’d cornered the market on custom dressup games production for the web. Ahhh, those were the days.

I do not write code. I draw and design to no end, but when it comes to programming I am inept. I can’t make my brain do it to any great extent, and that’s turned out to be one of my biggest business handicaps. Luckily there was Dreamweaver at the time to do all that work for me. It was the perfect tool for building quality, movable layer dress up games that’d work on almost all computers, browsers and the like.

Then came smartphones, tablets, apps, updated browsers, and a whole new more complicated web. And Dreamweaver did not try to keep up with the movable layers technology. For a while I could keep up with Dreamweaver’s lag. I hired programmers to give me fix files to implement after a page is designed & I made a HELP! page too, but Google Chrome seemed to almost plot against any future for movable layers.

the many outfits of @babyballs 🎨 by @normalbobsmith

A video posted by VICELAND (@viceland) on


I was just recently reminded of all this working on a magnetic dressup Thomas Morton game for the Viceland show BALLS DEEP. Designing and producing beautiful dress up games is something I love to do. I used to do one after another for myself, with no intentions of anything more than fun for me, i.e. (Yolandi, Unholy Army, Mr. X & Revenge).

 Mr. X Hangman dressup
Mr. X Hangman dressup

What makes this all even more frustrating is I know it’s possible to make workable dressup games for today’s web. Universal, smooth moving layers on any browser, and any device, is a reality. I’ve found working, detailed instructions & examples that simply need to be programmed in by someone way, way smarter than me. And I have dressup jobs ready to be made if I could just figure this out.

Toothy McFadden dressup
Toothy McFadden dressup
For the last 10 years or so I have had a hell of a time finding any such programmer, and I do not completely understand why. I know it’s not immensely complicated. The last time this was done for me it was by a kid just out of high school (java file & php fix as html file). I am willing to pay. And I’ve got all the information it takes to make it happen. This page shows it being done properly. I just need someone to program the fix. Something that’ll make it possible for me to design it in Dreamweaver and then implement a fix. I would love to be able to promote my services again as a professional dress up game maker for magnets AND online usage!

If you think you have these skills to make this possible for me again, please contact me. I would love to start regularly making these again.

Whigger Dressup
Whigger Dressup

For a pretty thorough list of dressup games I’ve made you can visit my portfolio here. For the record, Safari is the browser to use if you want any of these to work properly.

The Jesus Dressapp

UPDATE: Sept 25, 2016 – The Jesus Dressapp has been deleted from Google play, but is available, uncensored here at Evil Apps.

Jesus Dressup crownhanger logoIt’s here at last! The Jesus Dressapp for Android. But not without it’s share of drama… Already!
This is actually the 2nd version of this particular design posted within the last 48 hours. The first one removed for being too sexy explicit with the BDSM clothes. Those have now been removed. (btw, if you downloaded that first version you can still download the new one without disrupting the one you have. You’ll just have 2 versions on your phone.)

Jesus Dressup App for Droid samples
Jesus Dressup App for Droid samples

Anyone who’s followed the Jesus Dressup app story for the last 6+ years has witnessed the constant struggle to get it & keep it available to the public. And there’s a story to go with each desperate attempt made.

Jesus Dressapp Attempt #1

Apple FAIL image

The first big attempt was in 2010. A fan of the site from Scotland came to visit at Union Square. He offered to make the app for iPhone. He’d mentioned it when we met, hung out a few days without talking much more about it. Then I happened to be walking by him on Astor Place the day he was flying back home and he shouted from the distance, “Do you still want me to make that iPhone app for you?”

“Sure! Go for it! Just put a link to the fridge magnets on it and it’ll be worth it to me!” I shouted back.

Knowing it was a lot of work to make, in haste I said, “If you can put a link to my store on it it’s yours to do whatever you want with!” Or something of that nature.

Many months passed and I had already forgotten about it. Then low and behold he messages telling me it’s done and ready to go. I was impressed.

The next step was getting it approved by Apple itself, which much to my surprise they did! We were both visibly shocked and excited.  Unfortunately, the other thing I was quick to find out was he’d made the Apple account entirely under his name, and all purchases of the app were going to him. I’d been shut out of it completely. And there wasn’t even a link on it to promote the magnets I sell.

I called him and explained how this wasn’t an acceptable setup. He immediately got defensive, saying “You said I could have it if I made it!”
After several more minutes of angry words I told him if he doesn’t change the situation fast I would contact Apple and tell them he’d stolen my product and have them take it down. He yelled back at me “Fine! I’m taking it down myself!” And hung up on me. It was removed seconds later.
Then this guy from Krapps emailed me wanting the full story…

Jesus Dressapp removed banner

Jesus Dressapp Attempt #2

Attempt #2 happened about a year later (2011). Inspired by the acceptance by Apple from the previous attempt I started asking around for possible programmers. Having an iPhone App appeared to be a venture that could be quite lucrative. This time I’d pay someone to make it again, and I could have full control, beginning to end.

Union Skaters w/jesus dressup flyer
David, Shiva, Greg & Tom burning a hole through Jesus Dressup flyer

A friend of mine from Union Square, one of the skateboard kids I’d known since he was 15, was now going to school for programming. He was happy to figure out how to make an iPhone app while getting paid. It took the better part of winter 2010/11 and a lot of headaches, but after several months we had our iPhone App ready to go. We submitted it to Apple, and about a week later they rejected it. I tried to appeal the rejection but they didn’t care. I belly ached to them how they approved it a year earlier when it wasn’t me who submitted it, but they stood firm. “Too controversial.”
It was spirit-breaking.

In an amusing side note, below is the image they sent us with the rejection letter. And yes, someone on their end had to dress him up like that before concluding it was too offensive for Apple.

March 14, 2011 image included in denial email after contending the Apple app rejection.
March 14, 2011 image included in denial email after contending the Apple app rejection.

Anyhow, this particular rejection really took the wind out of my sails for a Jesus Dressup app any time in the near future. Having it approved for the guy who stole it, and rejected after putting so much time and money into it was the deathblow. Tom and I parted ways, and I didn’t feel like getting into app making ever again.

Jesus Dressapp Attempt #3

Then in 2013 I was contacted by a Facebook friend who said he wanted to make the Jesus Dressup app for Android. Let me say that he was making a very generous offer of doing it for no charge for the experience, and credit on the app itself. I warned him of the troubles in the past, the difficulty & time involved in making it, and the very real fact that it’s probably not worth it financially for either party involved. Still, he offered to do it while in school, for no pay.

A year later the progress had been minimal and I realized again, it was way too big a job to be worth doing at all. I seriously don’t know how making these free apps is worth it for anyone.

Jesus Dressapp Attempt #4

Finally earlier this year, around March, I was contacted by another Jesus Dressup fan, Mirko Bonasorta from Italy, offering to make the app for Droid as long as he could get named credit. I did the usual “It’s a bigger job than you think, and afterwards it’ll be rejected for being offensive” speech. But as long as his name could be credited for making it he was willing to give it a shot, no charge. He sent me video of how it’d play, and several months later it was done. That was last week.

Less than 24 hours later it was deleted from Google Play for being too sexually explicit. So we removed the BDSM option, and just in case we also removed the Nazi stuff from the Final Justice version, and now it’s back up. And that is where we stand.

Playthrough of the 2016 Jesus Dressapp for Android

It has almost every version of Jesus Dressup I’ve ever made included, it’s FREE, and it even has a link to my fridge magnets in it!
I have an iPhone so I haven’t played it yet, but after watching the play-through (above) I really wish I had a Droid instead. And the reviews it’s getting are astounding!

Jesus Dressapp Batman screenshot

“Even more fun in app form!”

“I have the magnet set, but now it’s on my PHONE! No more carrying my refrigerator around wherever I go”

“Hilarious”

Even more fun on app form. I love the magnets so the app is even better! I love the villains option, it’s my favorite! Easy to use and fun.”

“Instant classic. Brilliant”

So race to Play Google, download it before it’s deleted again, pass the link onto friends and write a nice review before I’m writing about the Jesus Dressapp 5th Attempt!
Just click on the link below. And if that one’s been deleted you can always get the completely uncensored one here at Evil Apps.

Jesus Dressapp for Droid on Google Play

Funhouse Exit Girls

Funhouse Exit Girl AnnieI understand how from the outside it looks like I’ve been slacking off. There’s been no new videos on my channel, blog posts have been minimal, and I haven’t even been showing off a lot of new art. I have however been creating new art. For clients. I’ve been staying busy enough with freelance jobs that I can remove everything else from the “You’re not being productive enough” part of my brain which haunts me whenever I try to relax.

Recently I was asked to do a series of girls getting their skirts blown up. The client who contacted me about this told me about how back in the day at the carnival, just outside of the funhouse exit, there was a grate on the floor that would shoot up air to blow the skirts of the ladies. And it was outside this exit men would gather to bare witness. What he was asking for were a series of three drawings to commemorate this memory from his youth. These always turn out to be my most favorite jobs to dive into.

Funhouse Exit Girl Traci sketch
Funhouse Exit Girl Traci sketch

I have a folder I keep off to the side filled with people and things I hope to use for a drawing in some way or another. A majority of the images are of girls and other people I find beautiful or interesting. And several of these were referenced for this particular project, including Betty Page, Traci Lords from Crybaby, and Playboy’s Annie Fanny, which is probably the easiest to spot in these. And I knew they’d each make adorable Petty Girl style pieces.

I always begin with a sketch. And in this case I sketched all three ladies before bringing them to Illustrator for digitization. Then I trace the sketches in black and white. After the basics are complete I bring them onto the same page to unify them. Make sure they’re similar enough to be a set, but different enough to compliment each other. And then I start the search for a color scheme. In this case a Red, White & Blue theme worked perfectly for redhead, blond & black hair.

Funhouse Exit Girls in black & white
Funhouse Exit Girls in black & white

At each step along the way I make sure the client is happy with the way things are going, and I always leave room for revisions, tweaks and even a complete redraw at times. Then the final step in these was to make that funhouse exit background that would bring them all together.

I’m telling all of you this for two reasons. One is because I’m really proud of how these turned out and wanted to show them off. And the other, I love being hired for jobs like this, and for anyone who does hire me, this is how a job gets done.

Artist, Atheist, Anthropologist