Saturday, 30 August 2008

Gotta Keep The Devil, Way Down In The Hole

D'angelo teaches Walt and Bodie how to play chess (click to full size it)

The Wire
is the best show on television.
Considering how voracious my appetite for entertainment usually is it's a small miracle that I've never seen it before recently. I bought the season one box set after Charlie Brooker went painfully out of his way to demonstrate how good it was.
And he rarely compliments any show.

The Wire is about a group of cops tracking down (mostly with the eponymous wire taps and other surveillance measures) an organisation of drug dealers (and then later port officials and then bureaucrats...) But it's more complicated than that. Each character is trapped in their existence, betrayed by the institutions they thought they could trust.

I think I like this show best for the same reason I usually talk to every villager in RPGs. There's a lot of dialogue (which if you miss you're screwed) and a lot of characters get fleshed out and developed. You believe that you're watching the real city of Baltimore, and not a bottle version like so many TV shows that traditionally have a main cast of about 5 and a million of interchangeable extras interacting with them.

I wish I could do the show more justice (both in my urrgh fan art, and in my 'review') but it's hard to do.

Just go watch.

McNulty and Greggs drive by Stringer and Barksdale

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

The Office Workers Are Happy

Probably because they're raking it in. (click to fullsize it)

This didn't actually come out too bad I think. Even though I didn't actually bother with any shading.

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Illustration Friday - Routine

I wanted to experiment with watercolours one last time. I'll probably try to move onto colouring exclusively in Photoshop now.

(click to show at full size)

Thursday, 21 August 2008

"Did you see the pool!?!? They flipped the b**ch!"

First of all I want to show a drawing that my brother coloured for me recently. It's an old drawing of the cast from an old web comic I drew called 'The Mi3'. Maybe I'll post some of it up here on slow days. (click to enlarge)

I've been watching a lot of Clone High recently. It's probably the funniest cartoon you've never seen. It's a 'what if' scenario where clones of historical figures are brought together and are in a contemporary high school. Abe Lincoln is a lovesick nerd, Joan of Arc is a misanthropic goth, Ghandi is a relentless party animal diagnosed with ADD etc.

I found myself drawing it with perhaps a little too much fervour.

Some of the shows best bits here.

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Illustration Friday - Detach 2

Despite the positive response I didn't really like the original version of this so I redrew it. I think it's a better drawing, except for Henry. He doesn't look round...he looks fat.

(click to enlarge)

Monday, 18 August 2008

Illustration Friday - Detach

I really need to not draw this sort of thing with the sketchbook on my knees...
(click to enlarge)

For those of you coming straight from Illustration Friday, new version here.

Friday, 15 August 2008

Hit Me Baby One More Time

Not doing an actual post today.

I read my blog statistics and apparently the most viewed pages are ones with song titles in the heading.

Hopefully this works :)

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Retro Sam - Deviant Art Part 1

First of all allow me to congratulate my brothers on passing their A2s. They both got their first choices for Uni, so well done Rob and Loz.
I still got better grades than you though ;)

I was going to post an update about colour theory/technique today, but I think I'll probably leave that until Friday or next week sometime. As I was pooling all my thoughts I sort of accidentally found my old Deviant Art profile. For some reason it is still linked on the side of this blog.

I used the site over a period of maybe my entire first year at University with a bit of a buffer of a few months on either side, which is why it says I'm 19 on my profile. (note I am now 21 woot me). I eventually checked it less and less after I came to the conclusion that I was never going to form or become an active member of an Illustration 'group' or community. Far too much of DA is amateurish teenagers posting their recent Sailor Moon fanfics and Bleach art which indulgently inserts themselves in there some how. I'm not going to link to any of it. There's no need, you can find all the anime bollocks yourself in a matter of minutes.

The few artists I found that I liked never seemed to return the favour. It occurs to me now that I was also posting reams of garbage and this may have contributed.
(click to enlarge, mostly at your peril as I never resized most of these)

Titled WoW Rush this was my first image posted. The colouring itself isn't actually quite as diabolical as I recalled. I find it hard to imagine I sat there for so long to do it (I have ADD and can't sit in any chair without fidgeting or spinning around or in regards to computers alt-tabbing to something with flashing imagery).

The blood on the swords is probably the best bit of colouring. What with the dire gradients on the hill, clouds, fire, everything else and the terrible 'rain', there isn't much competition really.

The colouring is still better than that atrocious line art. That Orc looks RUBBISH.

I'm glad I thought so at the time "It came out marginally better than I had hoped it would in the colouring stages (but still far worse than I had aspired it to)."

Can it get worse?

Yeah a little bit.

To be fair, this isn't in my proper gallery, but from my Scraps folder.
Quoting my younger self, "I think I did this for some project for school last year. I found it today and it was only half finished, so I finished it off and added a background quick. I don't really like it all that much but it has a certain specialness that I admire."

I'm not sure why I kept uploading stuff I didn't like.

It's not a bad concept for an Illustration, but that's all it is at the moment. I should have researched the crumbling buildings, landscapes, and goddamn that's not how water falls!


Now, this isn't actually all that bad, even though it's also in 'Scraps'.
For those of you not in the know, I agreed to draw a comic for internet buddy, Mark 'Frimkron' Frimston. 'Frisbee' is definitely the best of the bunch, with Kevin and Kat (labelled here as '?' because I couldn't be arsed to find the script apparently) needing some work on their designs.

It's a shame we never really did this project. It was supposed to be a bit like Doctor Who and seemed like fun.
Maybe one day...

Ok, I'm sort of scraping the barrel for rubbish art here as this was moved to the scraps folder FROM my gallery, as opposed to the random city and 'Kat' designs which were already in there.

I think my younger self sums it perfectly;
"UPDATE 12 Sept 2006: Why the fuck is this still in my gallery? It's awful. Awful glow from fire. Awful hair on Kurt. It looks like fucking fabric billowing in the wind. WHAT THE FUCK!"

This was for a College project. It occurs to me that my Design teacher was very patient with me.

I apologise for such a wordy post. Let me end with a collection of comics that still seem a little bit funny.

I think one of them got printed in the Uni paper. I can't remember which, the karma one maybe.

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

'Rain' by William Somerset Maugham

This is the last project I did at University, and the one I'm probably most proud of. It's a little self-promotion booklet based on the amazing short story 'RAIN' by W. Somerset Maugham. It's not a literal extract, as in I took several passages and arranged them out of order to tell a new story to fit the brief. The brief being something to do with Weather.

This is my favourite project from my time spent at Uni and I honestly can't understand why it's taken me so long to upload it. But without further ado, here it is.
(as always, click to enlarge and fully enjoy it)

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Illustration Friday - Sail

For Illustration Friday. Just some days early :)

Monday, 11 August 2008

Some Sketches

It may surprise you to learn that I am working on a new comic (Shock! Horror!). I'm not quite ready to show you any of it. This is because I've only done two pages and I want you, dear reader, to enjoy it fully for the first time and not in bits and pieces. That and when I start getting a bit behind on showing any of it I feel bad.
I'm uploading these sketches because I wanted to talk about my work process for a second.
(click to enlarge)

These are two character sheets, or development pages. This is how I get a feel for how a character looks, acts and lets me get comfortable drawing them before I commit myself.

Lucien, on the left, came to me pretty much fully formed. He is, in blunt, an arsehole. His mannerisms, style of dress and hair should support this. He dresses similarly to the style of the time but incredibly baggy. He waves his arms around a lot and yells. His hair (the blank bit will later be a flash of red) gives him a two-face effect. He's a maverick who can't be arsed to even dye the whole of his head. The drawing of a young Lucien at school best exemplifies what I mean. His shirt is undone and his tie isn't done up properly.

Barry (who in the comic is renamed Jim) was a little harder to nail down. I wanted him to be the Yin to Lucien's Yang, Laurel to his Hardy. Visually I wanted him to look completely different yet clearly of the same background/world/culture. Cartoonist's rules number 23 state that if one character in a double act is short and a bit chubby, the other must be tall and skinny. I won't tell you who I picked in the end, but you can tell me what you think in the comment field. Or don't, it's up to you.

Saturday, 9 August 2008

Tum Te Tum

I apologise for my absence. I've spent the past week lazing about while my folks were on holiday.
I did try to finish that colouring, but I really REALLY hated doing it. It's nigh on impossible to do properly with a mouse anyway. So I went in a totally different direction.

I need a wacom tablet.

Friday, 1 August 2008


Evening (or morning, how can I tell on the internet?)

Instead of putting up a finished drawing I'm trying something new, I'm going to throw up a sketch and what passes for stage 1 of colouring.
(click to enlarge)

I was inspired by this card from Magic the Gathering.

I should have perhaps drawn from it, instead of having a notion of it in my head.

Hopefully next post will look slightly better.