Sunday, April 24, 2011

Original Art Sundays #89: A Private Myth, p. 23

Well, the page is done, but due to Easter Sunday, I do not have scanner access for a day or two.
Have faith.
Here we go. First, I've corrected the numbering. Again!
There are 9 pages left to the first chapter, which should leave it completed around the end of 2011, if all goes well.

There are a couple visual devices here I really like. The "ice panel" is an old favorite, and I like it here better than any use of it I've made in the past.
I'm also tickled by the reflections in the floor, a device I last used in 1999, in a story I'll reprint one day.
My primary concern now is pacing.
While this is largely a story about ideas, it's also a story about people. It's been a bit of a chatty narrative for the last few pages, interspersed with some quiet action.
In fairness, some of my favorite stories work that way,
But things are going to start happening at an accelerated rate.
Unless I plan to expand Chapter 1 to 40 pages (a possibility yet to be ruled out), a lot has to happen in the next 9 pages to keep the story on track.
Next Sunday (day after tomorrow): an oddment.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Original Art Sundays #88: Tranny Towers, p. 15

On schedule, and eager for the next round!
Here's another page that gave me no end of fits with the details.
The publisher, Lavender magazine, insisted on art to size. My production options were limited to Xerox at the time, so I was reduced to Kinko's.
The result was that the Zipatone in the title bar, intended (obviously) to simulate a credit card, muddied in copying. I was finally able to correct it with a scan.

However, the image was a bit oversize for even a large scanner bed, which resulted in some edge cropping that needed correction.
If and when I do go to press with a collection of these, I'll do more production work on this page first. Interesting set of anomalies, working across technologies like that.
In narrative terms, I thought this page was a nice break from the heaviness that the storyline had held in recent episodes.
Next: whatever is up in the rotation, I think it's the next page of A Private Myth.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Original Art Sundays (Saturday) #88: oddment: sumi-e and haiku

The day before the next Tranny Towers page is scheduled for posting, I'm getting around to catching up again.
This oddment comes from coursework done in my Master's program on Haiku and suni-e.
While I'm too guarded a writer to ever make a great poet, I do enjoy haiku and related forms, probably because the brevity serves to limit my options for self-editing.
I enjoy the sumi-e technique a great deal. The idea that the brush contains all the values and the artist can release them all with one stroke is a very powerful, calming thing.
These three are not my best nor my worst. They're the ones that presented themselves as I was organizing a stack of old work.

This technique is quite versatile.
I've toyed with the idea of using it in comics, as Jon Muth did in the Sandman story Exiles, in Gaiman's final story arc The Wake.

Here's a You Tube that shows the scary talented Muth's brush technique.

It's all about simultaneous control and release, coupled with understanding of light and dark as facets of each other. You know- Zen.
Tomorrow, a "new" old Tranny Towers page.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Original Art Sundays(Monday) #87: Surrealist Cowgirls, it does this, p. 5

Now this page excites me.
The first new page of this story in more than 12 years.
It's interesting how much I learned in that time, and how much I've forgotten. Having done a whole Cowgirls story for 24 hour comic day really let me know a bit more about the characters.
Let me correct that. I knew it, but that story helped me codify it.
That story was originally intended as a Q. Gordyn Babcock story, but he became a side character.
The page.
Very happy with this one, or as Whalemule might say, happy.
A new character is alluded to, possibly two, if you count the snail.
The landscape is inspired by penman Harrison Cady. While primarily known for his moralistic children's illustrations and their flights of fancy, his work incorporated rambling labyrinthine panoramic landscapes that led the viewer in a deliberate path.

Tomorrow: an oddment.
Next Sunday: a Tranny Towers page, and we're back on schedule!
Well, for now, knock wood.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Original Art Sundays #86: A Private Myth, p. 21

After some foot dragging, I am finally catching up on my Original Art Sundays!
Here's page 21 of A Private Myth. Comments follow.

 I love the idea of this page. I like the writing, I like the pencils, I like the layout. I love the pacing!
The inks kill it.
I tried to give an ethereal sense, like the feeling you get at the end of a quiet day in nature when you blend into your surroundings. I went too far and the inks got so soft they became almost invisible.
When I reach the end of Chapter One, I will go back and rework the pages that I was less than happy with. I envision this as three 32-page books, each book a chapter.
Tomorrow, I will post the next Surrealist Cowgirls page. Tuesday, I will post an oddment. Then next Sunday, it's back into the rotation with a Tranny Towers page.