We’d like to introduce you to Steve.
Steve is a raccoon.
He is gracing the cover of our Winter 2017 school catalog, which many of you will soon find in your mailbox.
You’ll also see Steve in upcoming online and print advertisements.
Steve is the creation of Mr. Hooper.
Who is Mr. Hooper?
We’ll let this bio from his web page tell the story: Mr. Hooper grew up in Nashville in the ‘70s and ‘80s as a typical middle-class kid who watched way too much TV. His first artistic endeavors were drawing on the walls of his closet with a purple crayon, copying characters from the funny pages and rendering all four members of Kiss. Connecting with an R. Crumb comic book in high school had a huge impact on Mr. Hooper and inspired him to become a cartoonist. He spent his twenties creating comics and trying to get them published (with little success).
After college, a myriad of low paying, dead-end jobs, and limited prospects in the cartooning business, he picked up a paint brush and began to paint in 1998. His paintings are an extension of what he was doing as a cartoonist, without the linear narratives of comic strips. Through self-training and trial and error, his paintings have evolved into distinctive artwork.
More work can be seen at mrhooperart.com.
Why Mr. Hooper?
For years while he was doing comix and graffiti, Tim Hooper had several pseudonyms. He never intended to be a painter who operated under a pseudonym, but he had a teacher in college who addressed everyone by their last name. The parallel between him being Mr. Hooper and the character on Sesame Street (also named Mr. Hooper) was irresistible to his classmates. The nickname stuck with him and he began to sign prints, and eventually paintings, with Mr. Hooper.