Most of you do your holiday shopping at the mega-mall, blackening each other’s eyes as you battle for incredible markdowns on crap that you won’t like six weeks after you’ve gotten it home. We accept you as our brothers and sisters still. But for the rest, those who want to do better, may we suggest to you that the humans who make the pictures and words that are the meat and blood of Lucky Peach are, in fact, the very best humans? Not only that, they are exceptional humans who participate in the circus of capitalism by selling things they have made for you to cherish, enjoy, and give as gifts. Herewith, then, is a list of some but not all of the sorts of things they make, and that you can have and give or just pine for. (Free bonus tip: follow all these people on the Instagrams and what-have-you networks, and your phone will delight with their good works at all hours of the day!)
Raymond Biesinger’s illustrations are editorially astute—his art always adds to a story. Now you it can add something to your home! His range is broad, but we’ll note there’s some food-related stuff on his site, including a super cool lobster, a butcher shop meat-cut chart, and a rendering of Jacques Le Magnen’s 1956 discovery of the “smorgasbord effect,” featuring a rat stuffed full of delicious food things, originally featured in our holiday issue.
Kelsey Dake is a desert-dwelling picture-drawer who we always feel lucky to work with. She’s got prints for sale, of which we own a few, but this year she’s also making custom, hand-drawn monograms—and both are available on her Etsy page. For the many teeny infants in your life, get these T-shirts that Cotton Bureau recently re-released, featuring Kelsey’s illustration. Kelsey also illustrated the cover of Alida Nugent’s book of essays, You Don’t Have to Like Me: Essays on Growing Up, Speaking Out, and Finding Feminism, which you can give to your grandmother to spark some lively conversation!
Columnist Lisa Hanawalt is the cat’s meow and the cat’s pajamas. You should read all her stuff here and elsewhere and then tune into BoJack Horseman on Netflix, since she draws the characters for it. When you finally reengage with society, check out her website for prints or original artwork, and the chance to buy a bomber jacket with art all over it. We consider her first book required reading, and can’t wait for her food-themed follow-up, Hot Dog Taste Test, which comes out in the summer.
Tim Lahan has a selection of books, bookmarks, prints, and bumper stickers available on his website. His most recent thing is Anywhere, a limited-edition zine put out by the risograph savants at Tan & Loose Press. Look for Tim’s illustrations to dominate next spring’s sausage compendium “The Wurst of Lucky Peach” the way Hakeem Olajuwon dominated the NBA in ’94.
Tim Lane has a graphic novel out called The Lonesome Go. It explores the concept of wandering, mixing dream and reality, myth and fantasy. You can read some excellent reviews here and here. You might recognize the image on its cover from Lucky Peach #4!
Grace Lee, who painted all the Atlas entries in the Breakfast issue, is one of the creators of Amazing Babes, a picture book featuring inspiring women of all ages and from all over the world. You can buy it here.
You can purchase Sab Meynert’s very cool debut comic Breaking is Opening here.
To combat the ephemerality of flapjacks, Travis Millard has petrified his pancakes, put them on a plate, and covered them in resin rather than syrup, making them conveniently wall-hangable. There are pancake elves, pancake boobs, pancake feet—all equipped to survive nuclear war and serve as relics of our time. Get there here, along with other cool stuff, like an illustrated zine of stories his mom wrote when she was eight.
Melody Newcomb is partnering up with Argent NYC to create T-shirts, tote bags, and patches with a tattoo-inspired feel for the impossibly cool among your relatives—or those who prefer to discard their tattoos in the laundry bin at the end of the day. If grandma doesn’t dig on tattoos, she might prefer these beautiful gold leaf cards. Melody also makes posters featuring important literary feminists.
Jason Polan’s Every Person in New York, a big-hearted and humanistic picture of the city, makes a great gift for anyone who has ever lived in or visited (or wanted to live in or visit) New York. (Editor Peter Meehan gushed about it once.) And for those who want Jason’s art at all times, there’s his line of espadrilles with Soludos.
Everything Tamara Shopsin makes is cool. (For example: She designed her dad’s amazing cookbook and Brooks Headley’s amazing cookbook, which is two more amazing cookbooks than most people have ever designed.) This year you could get a subscription to The Thing Quarterly, which is like a magazine, but made of tangible objects. The most recent issue features a thousand ceramic lottery balls, one of which contains a genuine diamond. She also made a children’s book called What Is This?, which is small and cute and designed for tiny hands. It teaches children about abstraction, featuring simple line drawings and no words. Her photo book, This Equals That, is great for both children and adults. She also designed a five-year diary, and wrote a memoir called Mumbai New York Scranton.
The latest edition of Frontier, the award-winning quarterly art and comics monograph, features the work of Rebecca Tobin. Rebecca tells us there are a lot of “gratuitous dough and spaghetti paintings,” making it perfect for a Lucky Peach audience of alimentary enthusiasts. The central character is a “doughy golem” and the comic tackles the tricky subjects of Euro pop and hubris. (Remember when she drew ramen people in love for this here site?)
We love the many prints and original paintings that Rachel Levit has available. When purchased together, they depict a typical day for us, punching guys and staring into the freezer contemplating ice cream. Get them here.
Jennifer Billock has written a two-part history of the food of the American Civil War for all the food-history nerds in your life. One book covers the North, the other the South. Get them here and here.
Michael DeForge (okay, he’s an artist first and foremost, but his words are really good) has a great compilation of short stories, mini comics, and zines out. Get Dressing, published by Koyama Press, here.
Adam Leith Gollner’s The Fruit Hunters has been out for a while, but you should still get it. If you speak Chinese, or you’d just like an extra challenge to go along with your holiday cheer, you can purchase the forthcoming Chinese edition.
We’ve already suggested that you read Eli Horowitz’s The Pickle Index—we even excerpted it in our Fantasy issue. Seriously, get it. If you’ve already done as you were told, you made the nice list.
Huan Hsu’s The Porcelain Thief was published earlier this year. It is part memoir, part travel book, and also sort of a historical story, involving a journey through China and Taiwan to retrace ancestral steps.
Genevieve Ko helped write Hey There, Dumpling! with Kenny Lao. Contained within its pages are over a hundred recipes for dumplings, including pork, Napa cabbage, Szechuan chicken, and more. As a special bonus feature, the book teaches you to make things that are not dumplings, like noodles and salads and soups!
Drew Lazor helped chefs Jeremy and Jessica Nolen (of Brauhaus Schmitz in Philadelphia) write New German Cooking. This is a newer, lighter take on German food, so you can maybe avoid having a bowl full of jelly.
Alexander Lobrano’s Hungry for France and Hungry for Paris are excellent travel companions and culinary tours. If you’re lucky, you can tuck the books in your bag and go eat the amazing stuff in the book.
Aaron Their has a new book coming out in August, which you should order. In the mean time, check out his first novel, The Ghost Apple. It’s your age-old story of snack food company dictatorship and captive foreign exchange students. Cuddle up next to the fire with this in hand.
Colin Winnette’s novel Haints Stay was released earlier this year—it’s a contemporary take on a Western, funny and gripping and violent. Diet tip: if you can’t seem to stop eating pie and cookies, reading about cannibalism may do the trick to curb your appetite and kick-start your 2016 healthy lifestyle.
Deborah Willis has a phenomenal collection called Vanishing and Other Stories. The title story is about a disappearing author, who leaves writing and mysteries behind. Read more about it here.