This goes out to all my prior students (all one of you over the years) that discovered I post to this blog! Hmm, having an old student reading my random rants on even more random topics, is that a good thing or a bad thing? Well, its a thing. Hope you like comics!
I’ve been avoiding this particular Calimbo page. The forced perspective and overlapping blacks have been kind of terrifying. But I’m running out of reasons not to work on it, so I dove in. You can see that I did a full-size-figure-it-out pencil sketch first. I used to do this kind of thing more often, but …View full post
I’ve been jumping around with these restaurant scene pages. This will likely be page 26. Here’s the thumbnail (with added text): As you can (maybe) see in the thumbnail, I originally planned to have more of a long shot of the two men at the table. But I decided that there wasn’t much gained with …View full post
Got a late start because of car issues, but still put in about three hours. Basically finished another Calimbo page. Really need to practice more on drawing/inking folds. I like ‘em, but I can’t quite pull them off. Worked some more with the white paint, and things went pretty well; but then I decided to …View full post
And another page down. Here Calimbo is reamed by his boss (for doing his job). The Thumbnail: The pencils: The inks. I wasn’t quite sure how to handle the table and backgrounds without adding a lot more lines or blacks which I thought might make the page harder to read. So I did nothing… And …View full post
May 16 2013
May 14 2013
This collection of tales involve the wall crawling vigilante during his time either wearing the black costume that was really an alien, or fighting against it when it found a new host and called itself Venom. I was pretty impressed with most of the stories and their various artists. I will point out that there never, ever, needs to be a story of a superhero meeting god, ever! It might also irk some people that this hardcover collection is something like a quarter filler, consisting of character notes, that I mainly skipped.
May 07 2013
A couple of fun little stories about the wall crawling vigilante in alternate worlds such as where Spider-Man is Spider-Ham! Don’t take it seriously and you’ll probably enjoy it.
May 05 2013
I’ve been avoiding this particular Calimbo page. The forced perspective and overlapping blacks have been kind of terrifying. But I’m running out of reasons not to work on it, so I dove in.
You can see that I did a full-size-figure-it-out pencil sketch first. I used to do this kind of thing more often, but I’ve gotten a bit brazen (or just lazy) recently and have skipped this stage. I figured there would be just too many mistakes/too much erasing if I went straight to the page. And the indentations that the pencil/eraser makes put difficult wear on the paper.
Anyway, it’s not quite looking correct, and I’m still figuring things out, but I should be able to finish this one up in the next session.
May 02 2013
This is a short collection of adventures teaming up the wall crawler and the super-powered family as they deal (mainly) with the master of technology and sorcery: Dr. Doom (or is it?). Not bad, although it is really annoying that a third of the collecting is just old repeats.
Apr 30 2013
Huh? Ok, Asgard is lies in a heap of rubble and extra dimensional monsters are invading. So far so good. But out of nowhere Thor decides to resurrect his evil half brother, Loki, you know, the god who helped cause all this death and destruction; bring back Odin, you know the king god who could have stopped all that destruction if it was so easy to bring him back; and top it all off with a couple of important gods getting themselves killed for no reason and Thor turning into a monster giant for a while, too. I say thee, nay!
Apr 30 2013
I’ve been jumping around with these restaurant scene pages. This will likely be page 26.
Here’s the thumbnail (with added text):
As you can (maybe) see in the thumbnail, I originally planned to have more of a long shot of the two men at the table. But I decided that there wasn’t much gained with the extra information (of the table and the men’s legs and the waiter behind them). And it would likely be a stronger image to see them face to face (without anyone else in the scene).
Here’s the pencils:
You can (maybe) see from the blue line that I originally planned for a smaller second panel. But I can’t draw small, and as much as I wanted Montressor to look cramped, I just couldn’t be so mean to him!
Here are the inks:
The enveloping black smoke didn’t come out as clear as I would have liked. I used white paint to separate the black-on-black layers, but didn’t quite pull off what I wanted.
And the final page:
Part of the idea here is to make Calimbo appear a bit scatter-brained (or at least he’s pretending to be…). Which is why his speech bubbles meander around and the topic is anything other than the point.
Still, the men sit face to face in a odd confrontation. Calimbo has Montressor, but Montressor isn’t sure what to think.
It didn’t come out quite as strong as I’d hoped, but Montressor’s smoke is black (in contrast to Calimbo’s white smoke) and it surrounds and traps(?) him (in contrast to Calimbo’s smoke, which breaks the panels).
Apr 29 2013
Welcome to another installment of Comic Picks of the Week. It seems nothing of interest to me comes out one or two or three weeks each month, piling my purchases into two or three Thursdays a month. Not enough interests me, especially from the big two. Even Dark Horse hasn’t offered much since Resident Alien, and the conclusion of that series was lackluster, feeling rushed after such terrific buildup.
Speaking of lackluster, rushed conclusions, the last issue of Planetoid, the series I raved about last installment of this series, really dropped the ball. I think the auteur of the book, Ken Garing, didn’t want to leave fans hanging and so wrapped up the brief series that I thought was going to be around for years. I would’ve preferred to let my imagination run wild with the idea of what might happen next…
Shopping on a very limited income means making very specific choices in reads, considering what it is I might easily find at the library, but balancing that with supporting series that might never make it to trade paperback collections if readers don’t support the individual comics.
I don’t know if I’m buying anything this week either, but there are some series from Image Comics I’ve been buying that have Trade Paperbacks coming out at the low, low price of $9.99. This price is so hard to beat for some awesome comics reading.
BEDLAM TP VOL 01 – I’ll admit I only read the first, extra-sized issue and found it fascinating and really creepy and I enjoyed the ideas presented within. Velocity Comics‘ Tom Batten describes the series by asking readers to consider what it would be like if the Joker decided to fight crime instead of causing them. My reading experience with the first issue brought me to lots of craziness and murder, but it all seems like it’s there for a purpose and not merely cheap thrills. Writer Nick Spencer creates an engaging world vaguely touching on the genre of the post-modern superhero with visuals by the uber-prolific Riley Rossmo. I do own the first five or six issues and plan to read them soon, finally catching up on many months of back-reading.
BLACKACRE TP VOL 01 – I recently read the first two issues, having found the first for free on Comixology. The world presented in the first issue was enough to pull me in to buy the print comic and then also the second issue. I’m not entirely sure I want to continue buying this series. While the first issue presents a story that’s always engaging to me, one in which some kind of law enforcement official is sent to track down another such agent who has gone “missing,” but in actually has switched sides, I don’t feel like enough happened with the protagonist in the second issue, and without that, I’m not sure I care what happens to him, so this may be a library read, if they get it.
GREAT PACIFIC TP VOL 01 TRASHED – I have read the first six issues and I truly enjoy this series. I was given the first two issues for free, as a push, by Collector’s Kingdom‘s proprietor Mike Bradley. Of course, only the first hit or two is free, but that’s OK. This was a series I’d seen the promo ads for and had a slight interest in it and I’m glad to have gotten that extra shove from the pusher-man. Imagine a landmass forming in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, made up of plastic and other debris. OK, you don’t actually have to imagine it, if Wikipedia is accurate, and that is the basis of this story. An oil baron descendent declares this landmass “New Texas” and plans to make it a sovereign nation while somehow profiting from cleaning up trash by somehow transmuting it into useable materials. On this island are some bow & arrow and spear-tossing Pacific islanders, underneath it is a giant octopus they revere as their creator, and many other mysteries lay in wait on this man-made mass that we’ve yet to discover, and oh oh oh, Uncle Sam is not happy about the young sovereign’s bid for internationally-sanctioned nationhood. And there be pirates and downed Soviet weapons satellites and pissed off relatives and cute girls. What more could a boy ask for? Hmmm… How does this series read for various types of women? Is this another male power-fantasy or something more engaging that will reveal a strong female protagonist with motivations of her own and who just may help this series someday pass the Bechdel Test?
Apr 28 2013
Got a late start because of car issues, but still put in about three hours. Basically finished another Calimbo page. Really need to practice more on drawing/inking folds. I like ‘em, but I can’t quite pull them off.
Worked some more with the white paint, and things went pretty well; but then I decided to erase and managed to smear everything. Gotta remember to let everything dry.
Apr 25 2013
Apr 24 2013
Odin is gone, Thor is in charge, nobody is happy, there is some She-Thor, then there is Mr I kill gods for a living, then there was a cool bit about Thor verse everyone, then reality stuck its head out (you can’t really destroy the Marvel universe, can you?), and finally I was disappointed.
Apr 23 2013
And another page down.
Here Calimbo is reamed by his boss (for doing his job).
The inks. I wasn’t quite sure how to handle the table and backgrounds without adding a lot more lines or blacks which I thought might make the page harder to read. So I did nothing…
And the final page. I really squeezed the text. I hate having hyphenation in my text, but maybe people won’t notice. It was kinda unavoidable.
Apr 21 2013
Finished inking the Calimbo page. Couldn’t decide if I should do something more with the desk and/ or the background. Decided to leave well enough alone, since word balloons will cover most of the dead space.
Also worked some with white paint. Still suck at it.
And then got started on the next page (26?). Because anytime I can begin studio time without staring at a blank page is usually a much more productive time.
Apr 19 2013
Punk Rock Jesus is a wonderful mess, pinballing from crises of faith to social media critique to the history of the Irish Republican Army. I suppose it might be an offensive story for some, but to me it reads like an artist struggling with his own demons and throwing it all on the page as he works through it. All your favorite political, sci-fi, and religious tropes are here, and they are rendered with highly detailed frenetic black and white art that is reminiscent of Chris Bacchalo’s early work on Shade.
I can’t really call Punk Rock Jesus a success, but it was a fun ride.
Apr 18 2013
My Drawing in Pubs class was at McElroys which is an Irish bar with lots of wood, leather and darts.
This first one is done with white and gray chalk on black paper. Chalk is not really my favorite medium, but I do think there’s lots of value in working on colored paper. It may be hard to tell, but this is a table and chairs.
This is a side table and lamp done in pencil.
And a light sconce in pencil.
Apr 17 2013
Beautifully illustrated by Simone Bianchi, the story is of an Asgard without Odin. Thor attempts to keep the peace between the various realms but forces of evil and chaos are at work. While it isn’t the best story every, it is very enjoyable.
Apr 14 2013
Apr 11 2013
Three tales from different authors about, well, Thor. Not very memorable.
Apr 09 2013
Here’s the thumbnail:
And here’s the finished product.
I may have overdone it with the blacks. I’m not sure that everything is especially clear. I also started using white paint for clean up and some outlines. It’s the kind of thing that you can do in Photoshop, but I really want to try to learn to use it better (as it turned out, the paint doesn’t work as well as I’d hoped, and there was still some work to do in photoshop).
The idea with this page is that we see Colimbo once again coming, coming—he’s unstoppable even if he is a bit bumbling and embarrassing in his beat up car. The noises and the smoke once again are not constrained by the panels.
Here’s a little something extra.
The car in panel 3 was originally going the other way, but it makes more sense for it to go from left to right (to get the sense of forward movement). The only trouble is—then you have to re-position the driver!
This was my first draft for panel four. (I couldn’t figure out a clean way to have the car face the other direction and still show you Calimbo’s face.) As you can tell, I decided to trim the image way down.
I would swear that most of the cars I see in comic books these days are stock images/magazine images that are photoshopped to blend into the artwork (i.e., the artist doesn’t actually draw them). But all my cars are drawn by hand! (Which explains why they may not look so good…)