The Null Device
The Graun has an interview with James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem, in which he talks about, among other things, the mechanisms of "cool" and pretentiousness:
"I actually want to write a treatise in defence of pretension," he says. "I think the word pretension has become like the word ironic – just this catch–all term to distance people from interesting experiences and cultural engagement and possible embarrassment. Pretension can lead to other things. You know, the first time I read Gravity's Rainbow, I did so because I thought it would make me seem cool. That was my original motivation. But now I've read it six times, and I find it hilarious and great and I understand it. You can't be afraid to embarrass yourself sometimes."
The Cartoon Cave is the blog of veteran cartoonist Pete Emslie, who also teaches a course in cartooning. It contains, among other things, cartooning tutorials (with a distinctly stylised 1950s/1960s feel), links to theoretical materials (such as the 4 Degrees of Anthropomorphism), and some pretty nifty-looking doodles.
Along similar lines: veteran cartoonist John Kricfalusi gives an insider's explanation of the decline of Hanna-Barbera's animation. What killed it was, unsurprisingly, directives from clueless management types. Some things, it seems, are constant across industries.