Today’s ink is just a doodle, but a crucial doodle. I was playing with aliens. I need to come up with what the “Droloni” race looks like since I have 2 characters that are Droloni, Landri, co-pilot of the Mallard, and the antagonist, General Yzan. I’ve never done aliens before, so I decided to come up with a skull and go from there. Here’s what I got after a LOT of drawing and erasing. I’ve come up with a female skull with and without flesh. I also drew a male skull. Thoughts? Criticisms?
A slight deviation from my concept art, I’m combining business with pleasure today. Tangent Artists going to be publishing our first volume of collected comics, so I decided to work on the cover for said volume. The covers are going to be Tarot card themed, so here is Linus, the Hanged Man.
For this year’s Inktober, I’m doing concpet art and character design to prepare for NaNoWriMo. So here’s my first non-person design.
We’ve met, Zac, Lisa, and Henrik, so let’s meet the ship they have their adventures on. I give you, THE MALLARD
I modeled this interstellar fishing vessel after the crab-fishing boat Cornelia Marie. Like it’s model, this is a fishing vessel that must deal with, not only planetary waters and tides, but also the perils of space, atmospheric departure and reentry and solar radiation and turbulence, so this is the total air/water/space package. This way Henrik can always fish for SOME kind of animal. I kept the shape of the hull, and the wheelhouse. I added some thrusts and stabilizers, encased the prow with transparent titanium for observation. Also, the deck is enclosed with shields that can raise or lower when changing from atmospheric to interstellar.The deck is where all the fishing gear, launches, pulleys, winches and cranes are.
Also this boat’s origin is the Saturnal moon, Titan. Which has a harbour named for the UK town of …Ruislip… for some reason. I don’t even know. I’m kinda tired.
Any comments questions criticisms? Did I get something wrong? Leave a comment!
Continuing with my theme of concept art, this Zac Scott, Lisa’s older brother. He’s very small for his age, and twelve years old, so his eleven-year-old sister towers over him. Everyone thinks she’s the oldest sibling because of her height and confidence. Timid and brooding Zac, has trouble standing out and hates making decisions, preferring to let his sister take the reins. He has a satchel, in which he carries photographs of his grandparents, some of the only family records his parents had left. They are also some of the only images left in the Universe of Bansha, Ireland and Johannesburg, South Africa before Earth became unsustainable.
His clothes, like his sister’s are a mix of too big and too small. His shoes and jeans are clearly too tight for him, but he wears an over-sized shirt and zipped up jacket, these are other elements that make him seem thin and babyish next to his sister. So that’s Zac.
Here’s Day 2 and I reveal the first half of our 2 protagonists, Lisa Scott. I already knew that Lisa was an 11-year-old Earth refugee, but I was surprised by how much I learned about her while drawing her outfit and character design.
The gloves were fun, looks like she likes to pretend she’s a grownup while she tinkers with things, no doubt with that tool belt of hers, probably filled with mismatched tools with broken handles and other defects.
The tee-shirt she’s wearing is too small. Either she’s holding onto it for sentimental reasons, or because she couldn’t find a bigger one. Her socks (cut off in the picture) have no heels or toes, but I imagine she likes it better that way, since she prefers to wear flipflops. Perhaps, she’s like my girl and would rather go barefoot when she can.
That’s all for Lisa now. Stay tuned.
It’s that time of year again, folks! I might be crazy trying to do Inktober this year, but this is actually going to be less about drawing and more about learning to budget my time. It’s also about getting ready to start writing again. I’ve gotten so bogged down in old writing that I feel like I’ve forgotten HOW to write again. I really haven’t written anything new since 2014, and that’s a big problem.
So my 2016 Inktober album will be looking for inspiration and casting my book for NaNoWriMo. It’s going to be a pre-teen/teen scifi space opera, partly a comdey—you guys know me—that I’ve been sort of fleshing out with the help of my kids.
Today, I did an expression sheet for one of the main characters, Henrik Cates: the captain of the fishing star-ship, the S.S. Mallard. Want to find out more? Keep watching this site.
(Just a note: I will NOT be doing “Carpe Scream” this year. I just can’t do both projects, sadly.)
Fan fiction: it’s something all writers do (whether they’re aware of it or not). When it’s good, it’s an innocent joyride in someone else’s vehicle. Worst-case scenario, it’s a naive early attempt to be the next ____ (Tolkien, J.K. Rowling, George R.R. Martin etc.) with new names on the characters and a worn old plot device. In both cases fan fiction is written for the sheer love of a series, created out of a desire to see our deepest fan-desires put into words. There are thousands upon thousands of forums and websites dedicated to fan fiction, probably in numbers to rival the #1 commodity: porn.
While I myself have dabbled in the art of fan fiction, I decided early on, that if I was going to be serious about my writing, I should steer clear of other people’s works and instead concentrate on my ability to write original stories with my own characters and canon. I spent years building the worlds of CRIT! and Skeleton Crew among my other works and I think I did a good job. Fan fiction helped me build those skills, but I was ready to fly on my own now.
So I said goodbye to fan fiction and never looked back. I haven’t written any since 2004. I tell everyone in my panels that fan fiction is a skill builder—an exercise to build story-writing skills without the hassle of creating a new world and characters. It can help form new authors, but no self-respecting author wastes the bulk of their effort on it. Messing with copyrighted works makes publishers uncomfortable and it’s a sign of unprofessionalism.
At least, it used to be that way.
Now more and more big-name franchises are plumbing fan fiction for writers. This decade, entertainment companies have discovered that fan fiction is an untold wealth of hidden talent, and what is more, their fiction is a testing ground for how well they work with a given canon! Doctor Who, Star Trek, and other properties are taking note and are asking to see fan fiction from future writers!
…And I don’t have any.
I’d disciplined myself for so long, with the aim of building my credibility, that I’ve shot myself in the foot. I’ve lost 3 writing opportunities so far because they’d asked for a sample of fan-fiction and I’d had no time to write any.
I’m already struggling to make my mark on the internet. This just seems like an anvil dropped on my head. I also have to admit that I was wrong about fan fiction and lament for the stories I never wrote—ideas that have long since disappeared into the ether.
The game has changed again, and I’m left holding 3 aces in a game of Jenga.
Sorry for another hiatus there. I’ve recently made an addition to the family.
Say hi to Baby Bear! She was born on July 5th by C-section and is now a healthy 1-month old potato baby. She likes eating and being held and nothing else.
I’m going to start slowly adding more content but first I have to balance working when she’s asleep with bathing and eating.
Wish me luck! More soon, hopefully. Bye!
Stressed out. Thinking about Orlando today. Earlier today I saw a magnificent presence of God as a young man, ordained yesterday, said his first mass. Then I later saw the news and the death toll and the hatred and despair and it overwhelmed me. We’ve been given powerful tools as humans, to shape our own world. But now we’re forced to watch helplessly as everything but our anger and cries for justice are taken away from us. Made me think of this scene from Lord of the Rings, so I did a quick sketch. My heart goes out to the victims and their families and friends tonight as I try to figure out what I can do.
For now, I can write and I can draw. Goodnight.
“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo.
“So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
Now that the Rogue’s Guide is completed and launched, I’m turning my attention more to the Must Love Dragons relaunch and it’s been sloooooooooow going. A lot needs fixing which leads to more fixing and further flaws… you guys ever seen the money pit?
(Property of Universal Pictures)
At least the foundation is good. (I’m laughing as I type this because we just found out we have to replace the house’s trimming and get the roof inspected here at Wineberry House. Plus we have ants.)
In the meantime, here’s a draft of the new cover art we’re going to be using for MLD (some alterations in text, and art etc. pending). Overall I’m pleased with it. I love how Linus looks kind of cool, but also like you want to punch him in the face. We’re going to do similar half-face images for the other 2 books in the works. I like the half-face because it leaves a lot of room for the reader to fill in the rest with their imagination. I hate seeing an image of a character I like and not have it match the image in my head.
(Btw, my brother modeled for this. I think he did a great job)
The only other thing of note text-wise is that Wendria’s name will be changed back to Kiyana to match the CRIT! comic, since Both CRIT! and MLD will be launched by the same publisher, Tangent Artists. The Linus Saga, in essence, will be presented as a “novelization” of CRIT! despite the deviating story-lines. Nothing will change storywise other than the names and a few minor details, but the company feels we should unify the whole setting to better match our existing publications featuring Linus Weedwhacker.
Comments? Concerns? Think I’m out of my gourd? Leave a comment.