Thursday, July 24, 2008

Just Throwing This out There . . .

I haven't really sketched anything in a while. Well, that's not entirely true.
I've doodled on some Post-Its at work, but nothing really came from them. I did come up with a pretty funny idea for some T-Shirt designs.
Kiss My Bum. That's all I'm going to say.
I work just about everyday in Illustrator, so I'm getting a lot faster in it, and seeing what it truly capable of doing, which enhances the things I can do when I get home. One of the things I was working on a while back is an Illustration of my Kids on a Rocket ship. It was looking pretty good, but a move into a new apartment and a bunch of unpacking and cleaning sort of sidetracked me. Here's the nose cone art for that rocket ship. I hope that you can appreciate the cuteness of it all, considering its supposed to be a simplified illustration for and about my kids.

Yeah, I know, sacchariney cute, right? Well, tough 'cause that's how I feel about those two children of mine! There was another sketch that I made one weekend that I'm pretty proud of. I was excited about the prospect of having some time to sketch and had mentioned to one of my co workers that I had all of this ambition, but not really much to sketch. He suggested that I draw someone playing a banjo. I think it had something to do with his passion for playing said instrument, as well as being a fan of bluegrass music.
Immediately, I got an image in my head of a bear, on a tree stump, picking away at a banjo with a big grin on his face. This is what came out:

Well, that's all I'm putting up for now. Until I get some of these KMB sketches done, and maybe some of my other ideas which were given to me by someone else (have to be honest, you know?).
Don't forget to comment constructively, about what you both like and hate about these two sketches.


Saturday, July 19, 2008

Taking it From the Top . . .

A new blog, a fresh new start. I've been alone, working hard on a new apartment, a new way to live and trying to squeeze every ounce of time out of every day that I can.
Unfortunately, that's left me with very little sleep, on the verge of some sort of upper respiratory virus that has me coughing up phlegm every morning, and very distrustful of every one I meet and every thing I do.
The things I've done so far are study, plan, and begin to execute some of those plans. I've learned that for every idea I have, I'm not as well organized as I'd like to be. I've learned that if the movie Mulitplicity were a reality, I'd like to be a part of it. I'm just finding that there's never enough time to do what I'd like to do and it's frustrating as hell!
My studying was done in the form of web comics.
I got hooked on a few and believe me, they don't cost a dime and I'm amazed at that. They're pretty well written and well drawn.
Some of my favs?
Well, Tyler Paige's 'Nothing Better' over at Webcomics Nation, is a great strip about two girls in college with extremely diverse ideas on their paths in life, their religious views and where they're going in the world.
Anything Dean Haspiel! Over at the Act•i•Vate! Site, he's got a bunch of strips that are really well done and paced. Which gave me some fantastic ideas for my own web strip.
The ideas are that I start up my own website. A place to post my sketches, link to my blogs, show off my portfolio, post my resume and generally market myself and make a few friends along the way.
Its ideally the quintessential website for all things me. There's professional stuff, personal stuff, and some funny things mixed in to help make all of the business things on there balance out.

To that end, I finally opened up one of my web design programs that I'm familiar with, but haven't really used. I poked through all of the templates and found one that looked good to me. Opened it up, looked at all of the supporting elements and realized that with a bit of adjustment, the site could look pretty good. So, writing copy for myself and designing some of the elements (banner, clickable links, getting sketches ready, etc.) for the page has been taking up some of my time.
So has planning out a web strip, รก la Dean Haspiel (genius).
Ahem, if I can just gloat here. Haspiel posts his Billy Dogma strips at a panel a time. The brilliance behind this is that he paces and controls the reader's eye a whole hell of a lot better that a whole page at a time. Thinking about it honestly, when reading or viewing a comic page, the eye tends to automatically wander. So, if you start to read the dialogue in the first panel, you have already seen that Johnny gets shot at the end of the page and can logically hazard a guess as to what is going to happen, now you're just going through the motions to learn HOW he got shot.
Semantics aside, I'm sure that you can understand as an artist and a storyteller, that it's important to me that people see the story at the pace that I'd like them to see it, right?
Of course I have a whole host of others that I'm extremely fond of, Joe Infurnari for one. A magnificent storyteller and artist. I became one of his friends on MySpace when he started working on this amazing strip he did called the Process. Its fantastic how he blends his creative process, fantasy and his reality to create that strip. I wish he would do more. :( Anyway, he's doing Ultra Lad! Over at Act•i•Vate! and it looks AMAZING! Again, I wish he would do more, and faster. (Believe me, I've written him and let him know I feel this way, so this is not any sort of mudslinging in the form of a blog or anything.)
This is pretty much what he's doing, building suspense, letting you really feel the emotion and drama that runs through the story. It's kind of my idea to copy that notion and do my 'Skies Over Gutenberg' as a web strip, one panel at a time.
Linked to the website that I'm building and also linked on this blog.
Now, I'm going to ask that you be patient, this whole website/wet strip thing isn't going to just happen. I have a whole litany of crap to take care of on top of this personal, yet professionally forwarding project. But if when it works itself online, it's going to be worth it.
Thanks for reading, I'll post some more later!