Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Elementary, really

Sorry about the squid of anger that was my last post. To make up for it, I come bearing fanart! ....sort of.


My friend Ana and I have been playing this great game called 221B. Brilliant bit of marketing--I wasn't sure how I felt about the upcoming movie, but now I am jazzed.

Referenced these posters for this drawing.

Was going to put words on this, but I don't have Clarendon on my computer. Sad day D:

Monday, December 14, 2009

really? REALLY?

Ok, kids, sit down. Let's talk.

As you may or may not know, I am all about creative commons licenses and open source software. My best work is done when I can rely upon the informed opinions of others. I rarely do a painting or draw a picture or do ANYTHING without outside input these days. And if you like something I've done and want to modify it in some way? Generally, that's cool with me.

That being said, there's a right way to go about it, and there's a wrong way to go about it.

The right way:

Ask my permission. Technically, you don't need my permission for most stuff, but man oh man is it an unpleasant shock if something you've worked on ends up in a place you weren't expecting, let me tell you. What's more? The piece your asking about may have been done on commission, and is therefore not available. If you use one of those pieces, we are going to have Problems.

But, like I said, if you ask, we can clear all those sorts of things up.

From there, we'll probably chat a little bit about your concept, but the fact of the matter is that you've flattered me enough by finding something useful in my art and by asking me permission that I will probably grand your every wish. I will ask for credit for the original art that I provided, and to be informed when it's done and where it will be displayed so that I can plug it.

Not too stressful, right?

Here's the wrong way:

I happen upon a piece of mine that's been modded hanging in the hall.

Cute, right? No, not so much.

Besides the fact that whoever did this did not contact me, we've got several issues. First, Ryan Claytor's name has been crossed out. Why? What is the point of that, other than to be vindictive?

Second, 'comics get me hot', really? REALLY? I find this upsetting on a number of levels, not all of which I am comfortable getting into on a public forum, so what I'm going to do now is put on my feminist pants and stand on my box. Caution: the box is full of soap.

Is this really the attention you (specific, mysterious you, not general you) think is appropriate? I can't speak for the intro comics kids, but the majority of the advanced class is female. How is this not going to alienate us? And beyond that, I'm sure we can easily get into a long winded discussion about women in comics in a large context, blah blah blah, so on and so forth and all it will come down to is that this is exceptionally cliche and sexist and quite frankly I don't appreciate it.

And now I'm off my box, so let's talk about how this was done, both as a measure of craft and as art. I'm not going to try to be kind, since I don't know who did this, but I will try to be fair.

The body is what you'd expect out of, say, most mainstream superhero team comics that happen to have a female member. Small waist, slender arms, muscular thighs, and enormous breasts that defy all logic. I'm over weight, and this poor creature's boobs are at least double the size of mine. I'm guessing that her superpower is crazy strong back muscles, because otherwise: ow. Ow ow ow. Fail.

I although, I do quite like her hair.

One more thing on the drawing front: her face. What happened? Are those supposed to be seductive pout-y lips? What is going on with her eyebrows? And I am all for giving women strong jaws and squared chins, but if you were going for sexy, this was a huuuuge roadblock for you. Not hot.

Try this version on for size:

Sorry about the smallness and the low res scan ness, but I've addressed a few facial issues, as well as a few body issues. But let's talk about the face. I've softened her features, made her jaw go back to her ear, raised her eyebrows so that she doesn't look angry, given her lips volume, and given her a few distinctive features (a beauty mark and a lip ring), since you chose whitey mcwhite girl as your subject. (Disclaimer: I am white. So very very white. Still tired of seeing white people in comics. )

Craft wise? There are two posters like this, and the one I posted here is by far the superior. The way the words were traced on top of the pasted on image was a nice touch, almost made me think you had gone and had a second poster printed. But no, of course not.

The paste job, as well, was top notch. And the placement was clever. It covered up the majority of my original image as well as my name. I'm really glad you chose to cover my name, you have no idea. And I like that you went to the edge of the page with this. It's not something I could have done, since I was printing a mass of them and wasn't willing to cut them down to size.

Not too happy that you covered up the credit I gave to blambot, though...but that was probably unintentional, so that's all I'll say about it.

Good job on the colors--> those do look very nice.

End of post was rushed, because I need to go fetch my laundry--there's a signing coming up, and I am determined to have clean clothes for it!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Ann Feldman Portraits

Taking myself a bit of an art break (the last two weeks grew teeth and gnawed off my legs--I'm taking today for myself to regrow them (an exhausting process) and also to go and enjoy The Princess and the Frog, which looks amazing) so I thought I'd take the time to point you in the direction of my aunt.

She's primarily a portrait artist, and her chosen medium is currently oil, though I remember that way back when she was first starting to get into this whole art thing she mostly did paintings on tiles and then fired them, followed by a long period of landscapes and watercolors, followed by a brief scarf making period, with some mosaics thrown in there for fun. Needless to say, it's been a crazy road.

But what it's all come down to is that she's a little bit awesome, and definitely one of my inspirations. She's been doing a lot of experimentation with palette knives and has been updating her blog with them.

More of her work can be found at her blog or at her website

(On a related note, I designed the website, and would love some critique--after learning some stuff about grids in typography this year, I'm already planning on doing an immediate overhaul on my website after I get it up, so, yes...don't remember where I was going with that.)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Sorry about the spam, guys

Should have put this up in my last post, but I want to give it some room to breathe.

This poster was designed by myself and colored by the ever remarkable Amber, to whom I would link, except that her website isn't up yet.

Please come?

Digital Native preview

I was thinking about it, and I realized that it really wasn't fair that I was plugging the signing without giving out any samples of what I'll be selling. Shame on me.

Just click on it to view the whole thing (sorry 'bout that--I'll change the layout soon so that hopefully these things don't happen anymore)

So now I offer you two really enormous pages for your viewing pleasure. (EDIT: I have now adjusted the html so that these are actually both visible on the page. GO ME!) These two were some of the earliest pages I finished, and probably one of the spreads I'm the most happy with.

Speaking of spreads, I'm actually pretty happy with my recent typography work as well. I'll have to convert that to pdf for a later post.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

An introduction

At the time of writing, it is 2:18 in the morning. It is the week before finals. The week when all the projects are due. I, like most of my peers, and exhausted and reaching the tipping point into the abyss of constant surliness, and this typeface is getting on my nerves.

What better time for an introductory post?

I know, right? There is no better.

I wish I could point you towards my online gallery, but, uh...as of right now, I'm having some serious troubles getting it to work across browsers. You guys know how that is, right? (all it takes is for one margin, SOMEWHERE, to not be set to 0....*shudder*) So, in the meantime, may I offer you my deviant art page? I do tend to update it fairly regularly.

But very rarely do I update it with in progress stuff. That's what this blog is for.

It's also for promoting upcoming events.


If you are in the East Lansing area on December 16th and happen to be free from 5-7, please stop in at 21st Century Comics and Games, where my classmates and I will be having an in-store signing. With real comic books and everything. I'm only a little bit excited.

But it's not just about me. If you've got something awesome and art related (or maybe just awesome) coming up that you want to spread the word about, let me know, and I'll do my best to give it a little bump.

That's all for now. See you 'round the net?