Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Arctic Shark and Quilt

"The arctic shark is living free in the coldest part of the Eastern Sea."
           ~ Lyric from the song, "Arctic Shark" by the band, Quilt

I discovered the band, Quilt, at Their featured song, "Arctic Shark", is a fantastic, trippy little tune that reminded me of my own dazed and confused Greenland (Arctic) shark character, who was part of my, "Arctic Circle" comic strip.

Back in the late 1990's and early 2000's I was obsessed by all things arctic as I worked on my comic strip submissions.  An issue of National Geographic featured the Greenland shark on the cover.  It grows up to 16 feet long (or longer!), is slow moving and nearly blind due to a parasite that lives on its eyes.  Maybe it makes up for blindness by having very large nostrils. It's meat is poisonous if not prepared properly and will cause drunken behavior in dogs if they eat it raw.  Because of it's slow speed it is believed to be primarily a scavenger, but when a diver presented it with some food it sucked it in like a vacuum!

When I started sketching its fuzzy eyes and huge nostrils he just looked stoned!  I immediately associated him with famous movie stoners like Spicoli, from "Fast Times at Ridgemount High", Bill and Ted from their Excellent Adventure and The Dude, from "The Big Lebowski".  Instead of using  lightening speed and ferocity to hunt, which is typically associated with sharks, he would use the stoner-surfer logic to convince his prey to willingly be eaten.  "Dude it's all part of big cosmic circle of life!  It's your karma!" - that type of thing.

Like many of my characters I could never come up with a good name for him.  How about Bogart?

Oh, and go listen to Quilt!

For more facts and pictures of this unusual creature check out GEERG.  Great name!

 Can you spot him in this one?

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