Friday, July 22, 2016

Watercolor Test, Paradise Square

Working on sample pages for this graphic novel that I'm pitching.  Considering doing the colors with watercolor.  A few obstacles to that:
1. Scanning and preparing files.  I have difficulty getting both crisp inks and the nuances of the watercolor.  Bringing out one almost invariably muddies the other.
2. Time.  Though textures (mud, thoroughfares, streets, etc would be easier and look better) go quicker with watercolor than digital, the page as a whole easily doubles the amount of time spent coloring it.  Maybe more.  Comics have a fairly tight financial margin to begin with, and I don't know that I could commit the time without a substantially larger advance, and I doubt that using paint would increase sales enough to justify the difference.
3. Production.  I can't get the inks that I like on watercolor paper, and so I need to ink it and laser print the line art.  The trouble is that the type of WC paper that I most want to use doesn't pick up toner very well, even when the printer adjusts the pressure on his machine.  The background in this instance was done with a dark brown color hold, for instance, and it printed very spotty, as are the dust clouds.  I've tried a handful of production techniques that allow for the degree of control I want/need in order to tackle the art, and haven't yet found one that works.
Anyway, I'll still fiddle with it, but I probably won't pitch with the condition that it'll be hand-painted, because I don't know if I can pull it off.  I may try instead the flat-color-with-crayon/black-pencil approach that Matthieu Bonhomme used in Esteban, or some variation of it.  The old 6th ward is a dirty, dirty place, and so I feel like there needs to be a textural element to convey that effectively.  If paint can't do it, something else will have to.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Warrior Women Wednesdays: THE FERNIG SISTERS

On April 30, 1793, the French Revolutionary Government's National Convention passed the Law to Rid the Armies of Useless Women, barring women from the military.  The Fernigs had, probably coincidentally, escaped this decree by mere days, having followed orders to accompany General Dumouriez. Discovering too late that he was not under orders himself but was, in, fact, defecting to the Austrians, the Fernigs fled to return to their role as soldiers for the French, but were seen as fellow traitors and refused entry.  
Some women continued to fight after the law was passed, but whether the Fernigs would have been among them is a purely academic question as they were barred from their homeland for much of the war.

Monday, March 14, 2016

PARADISE SQUARE Production Journal #1

I'm going todocument a project I'm looking to undertake from the earliest stages.  Here's the earliest stage.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Warrior Women Wednesday: Maria Bochkareva

Every Wednesday of 2016 (starting late, obviously... sorry!) I'm going to post a drawing of an action lady from history: presenting WARRIOR WOMEN WEDNESDAYS.
Partly it's 'cause I figured this would be fun to draw, but also because I grew up thinking that ladies were, with rare and high-profile exceptions (Mary Read & Anne Bonny, Calamity Jane, etc), supporting players in history's more rough-and-tumble moments. That isn't the case, and I thought it might be worthwhile to highlight fifty or so of the figures who strike me as the most visually or narratively arresting so that others might not be saddled with similar preconceptions.
Today's warrior is MARIA BOCHKAREVA.

History Star Wars: Wyatt Earp & Doc Holliday

Figured I might scratch the odd Star Wars itch by drawing historical figures as Star Wars people.

This week's:
Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Recent Star Wars sketches

Here are some ink and watercolor sketches that I did just before Christmas.  Star Wars!

Finn, Rey, and Poe Dameron from THE FORCE AWAKENS

Ewok X-Wing Pilot.  Just because they don't have advanced
technology doesn't mean they couldn't handle it.

Snowtrooper and an AT-AT (Imperial Walker) from THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK

Friday, December 25, 2015

dvent Calendar Day 25: Baby Jesus

Over the next month, I'll be offering thoughts on the Nativity set model, a large papercraft crèche that you can find and download here:

Advent Calendar Day 25: Baby Jesus

Merry Christmas, friends!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Advent Calendar Day 24: La Befana

Over the next month, I'll be offering thoughts on the Nativity set model, a large papercraft crèche that you can find and download here:

Advent Calendar Day 24: La Befana

La Befana is the Italian gift-giver, just like we get Santa Claus, the Spanish get the Three Kings, and the Austrians get Baby Jesus (he doesn’t come down the chimney; I checked).  Her original story is heartbreakingly sad, and its traditional alternative is kind of lackluster, so I’m offering a variation that marries the two.

The Three Kings, on their way to see baby Jesus, ask for shelter for the night at a rural house.  In it, La Befana (whose name derives from a mispronunciation of “Epiphany” and who probably has OCD) is busy cleaning, as she always does.  Learning that they’re taking gifts to a baby, she volunteers to go, too; her kids are grown and she’s itching to get rid of their old toys.  Following the kings, she gives Jesus the toys, delighting him, and in thanks he bestows upon her immortality and a magic hamper perpetually full of toys so that she can bring other children as much joy as she did him.  She also uses her broom to tidy up the manger for Mary.  You could eat off that floor.

La Befana now rides her broom from house to house, leaving toys for youngsters and flying up the chimney.