Friday, April 23, 2010

Angel VS Demon revision

Another revision based on some feedback from Drew Baker and Richard Luschek.

Kali update

Drew Baker was kind enough to give me a critique on the kali piece so I made some changes to it today based off of what he said. Ended up fixing up some other areas that weren't mentioned.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

This week

Recently completed a ton of revisions to two old pieces. I think they're much improved and revising them really helped me spot some mistakes that I apparently tend to repeat. Next up is Elorgo's Tale and Taishu.
I just purchased zbrush and have been playing with that since Monday. Working on a troll for reference for an illustration. Same illustration where I took the photos of the chopped up miniatures for reference. Definitely screwed some stuff up making this guy but I've learned not to make those mistakes next time. His legs are a mess at the moment because I haven't touched them. Not sure I'll mess with them since they might not make it into the final illustration.

Also, I bought a nifty gadget for my Gencon booth this year.
Last year I thought my panel was okay but the table was an absolute mess. I have to admit that I had a plan for the panel but not for the table. I didn't have a clue as to how to handle it so I just sort of laid prints on the table in piles.  I knew that for future tables I needed to get something upright so that it was additional art that could catch people's eye. Drew Baker and Mark Poole both had these pedestal sort of things where they'd have some actual prints. I think people found this to be an easy way to stop by booths and not feel awkward as well. Anyways, I found this thing for $80 that has a weighted base and spins freely from landscape to portrait format. I think I'll use it as sort of a catalog where I'll put a sticker on each page that says "available as 11x17 for $15" or "available as special edition 11x17 for $20.Run of 50" This year I think I'm going to print up a monster sized print of Taishu as that's what gets most people to stop and the print I had up of it was only like 13in wide. I imagine sales could only go up if I could get more people to at least stop.

If anybody knows of any conventions on the east coast where I should really get a booth let me know. I'd like to attend more conventions but I'm never able to keep up with when they are. I missed ConGlomeration this year and I'm really kicking myself for it. I'm also hesitant to attend horror or comic conventions because I don't know if I'd fit in.

Oh yeah, now I don't know whether I'll be at that book fair but I probably am going to use one of those self-publishing sites for the children's book so I'll post when that is available on amazon and what not.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Children's Book

I finished all of the art!!!
I'm ecstatic. You really have no idea how much this thing has stressed me out and weighed on my mind. If you read this blog, you're probably aware that my mother passed away on Thanksgiving but before that she'd asked me to illustrate a short story she had written so that my son, Finn, could have something to remember her by. My mother had actually asked me to do the book probably two years before she died. Working on it prior to her death always seemed like a morbid acceptance of her impending death and so I avoided it and told myself there'd be more time or she would survive. It was constantly on my mind though and I ALWAYS felt guilty when working on other projects during that time. Admittedly, part of me was very grumpy about being asked to do something I hated, knowing that I wouldn't and couldn't say no. I'm also one of those artists who doesn't care to see his work hanging on his walls. I think it would make me sick to my stomache. I dreaded and continue to dread the prospect of regularly reading a book to my son that's full of my artwork. I imagine it will have regular sidebars along the lines of, "daddy apparently had never seen a rabbit before when he did this one." It wasn't until near the end that I started doing some of the illustrations. After she died, I cleared my illustration schedule as soon as I could and worked solely on this book because I knew it had to be done and I didn't want the guilt eating me up for forever. At the same time, I think I also switched to working so hard on it to take my mind off of losing my mother.

I was frustrated with having to draw cute rabbits (mine may not come off as cute) and little girls and trying to find a style for this sort of thing. There was the temptation of being cartoony but I was afraid trying to find an entirely new design language and style would end up devouring more time than using reference and rendering. Trying to be really realistic presented a problem as well since I don't have any rabbits or little girls laying around to easily use for reference and I don't have much experience with rabbits to draw from memory. So the resulting style is somewhere in the middle and still lacks the playfulness that familiarity with the style or subject matter would have granted. I also didn't have much experience with having to carry the likeness of character and critters across 26 illustrations. Proved very difficult and I may well have failed.

Another part of mom's plan was apparently to have a bunch of copies printed up and have me at the book fair in my hometown where it's all local authors. She used to take me there as a kid and we'd pick up books by Barry Rudner. So I guess I'll go through with the booth there. Mom knew I didn't make much off of this fantasy art so I think she was hoping that this would make me a bunch of money and persuade me to pursue children's books. She always thought  I'd write children's books.

Anyways, I'm done now. Ada is going to do layout and then I'll have to find somewhere to have some copies printed. If you know a good place for the printing, let me know. Buying ZBrush today and am going to focus on it heavily for a bit. I had been holding off on purchasing it until I was done with the book because I was afraid it would distract me.