Thursday, December 27, 2012

City of Cards C3.35-36: HERE!

Yeah, two pages this week because these were so quick to get through it seemed like I might as well.

So follow up from the last week, this sketch was drawn in response to a friend's comment about Ace's attire (or really, lack there of):

Because He Can

To explain Ace's current mental state, I'd simply say the guy is in shock. Pretty much all of his behavior can be attributed to the fact that he doesn't know what the hell is going on in his life right now.

Which reminds me, I'm just about done with the Chicken Shack picture. Here are the two color palettes I'm debating between. Other than some inevitable tweaks, though, I'm ready to put this one to bed:

This has been an interesting process. Really, I think the big difference between what I normally do and what I did for the coloring this time was this time I spent way more time just playing around with what photoshop can do. That's definitely not something I usually do.

My hope when I work is that the lineart should be the core that holds a picture together, and that if the foundation is weak, no amount of filters and airbrushing can make something good (general thoughts, nothing about my feelings about how well I executed this one way or another). And, consequently, a really bad coloring job can ruin what decency the lineart might have had. This is a large part of why I'm taking the steps to learn how to do this.

That said, I did feel that I was able to use the skills I'd learned as a designer in a way I never had before, and eventually I hope to be able to do more pictures along these lines.

Maybe they'll be something other than a Chicken shack photo-op.

Anything is possible now that it's almost 2013.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

City of Cards C3.34: HERE!

I am very glad that the next chapter and a half does a good job of showing Ace's personality. The guys got secrets, but he's definitely not the complete brooding mysterious type.

Hey all! So the family came to visit last week and left me with a pretty nasty cold. No fun, so I'm playing a bit of catch-up on my plans to get everything ready for the next while. This includes a bit of course-work I'm behind on.

I posted the thumbnail a couple weeks back of my drawing plans. Turns out I decided to go a different direction, but one that'll probably be A LOT easier to color.

I'll probably do a little more editing on it, but right now I need to get it to the finished ink stage and get to coloring. I figure a lot of the detail work can be done in that stage (adding grit, texture, graffiti).

Other than that, I'm only my last three pages of pencils for Chapter Three. It's crazy, and I still don't feel like I'm totally ready to tackle Chapter Four, but I'm going to take the next couple of weeks to make sure my thumbnails are all done. If I can have Chapter Three completely penciled by mid next week I'm going to spend the rest of December doing inks and finishing drawing my mini.

Oh, and doing all the other stuff I need to do.

Hope you're all keeping warm and having a good holiday. Best to you guys!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

City of Cards C3.33: HERE!

First note: Family is in town for early holiday celebrations so that's eating up a fair bit of my drawing time. Things will be back to normal in a few days, and comic will continue as usual.

Am I backing down from the Reno thing? No way. I am taking the Neon Babylon idea to its fruition.

I've mentioned Reno before, but now that I am establishing this idea more in the comic itself I want to go a bit into why I'd choose that as the location for this story.

Reno was a city whose success was built on its decision to legalize divorce. That, combined with gambling, lasted the city a good many years and helped build the economy it has today. While divorce is a fairly common practice in modern society, at the time it was a revolutionary idea that shook the foundation of what was traditional marriage and personal freedom for men and women.

Think about what it meant to be able to choose to not remain in your marriage during the 1930s? Nevada was the only state that allowed this and people flocked to churches and casinos to get unmarried just like they might do today to get "married".

So, the foundation of the city was built on casting aside the past. It redefined love.

Now look at the city's secondary nickname of "Neon Babylon". First off, it just sounds that damn cool. Also, Babylon is a holy city. It is a bedrock of civilization, as well as calling up images of ancient civilizations that are now mounds of dust.

Society is built out of the ashes of the past. The very clay we use to mold our bricks is formed by the burned out remnants of generations past.

And, most importantly, Reno is not the most important city that has ever existed. It's not even Las Vegas. But there are more Renos than Vegases in our own lives. There will always be more not quite the bests, the once greats, the fifteen minutes (at that), than there will ever be New Yorks or Londons or Constantinoples.

Be proud to be Reno, through the good times and bad, and let the river run its course through your once brilliant main-street.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

City of Cards C3.32: HERE!

Yeah, okay, there's a lot I like about this page but mostly Plato's expressions. Actually, I always like Plato's expressions.

Summary of this past few days:

1) Kitchen sink not draining, water and gunk everywhere, repairs needed.

2) Burbank con thing where I met some very nice people, but was in general not at my peak communicative skill level. Also, Alpha Flag does some pretty cool stuff with color that I like.

3) Jeremy Bastian's artwork is surreal. It's the kind of art that is so beyond my comprehension that it ceases to be intimidating because it's something created by an un-duplicatable genius.

4) Massive power outage that pretty much ate Tuesday. On the plus side, I got to hear Christmas Carolers at the library while I was inking and charging my phone.

Summary of my work schedule:

1) I have so much to get done....

The online course I've been enrolled in has been interesting, though part of me is wondering if I'm doing it completely wrong. Who knows, we'll see, but at least I'm playing around with Photoshop in a way I hadn't before. Also, I hope to use the final version of this image as a special cover/print for Emerald City Comic Con:

You know, on top of everything else that I have to do. Oh yeah, and the holidays are coming. I can't promise any holiday art, but I'm a huge sucker for colored lights and excuses to draw festive stuff so we'll see what happens.

And once again, take care people. No matter what this time of year means to you, wherever you are keep warm and keep good friends close.