November 2014

19 November 2014

Inking, drawing, inking some more...

Brush, pen, india ink, white out over col-erase pencils.
Buzzfeed posted an article called It's Totally Mesmerizing To Watch Artist Draw Comics.  This is my life right now- learning to ink better. This goes hand in hand with cleaner, more detailed drawings. All this comes from studying and observing.

Actually, that's pretty much all I have been doing lately is trying to soak up techniques like some of what the artists have posted here. It's easy to get caught up in other ways to create art- like digital painting- but I remind myself that will come back as a need in time. Right now I need to get better at inking.

So far, I think I've been doing alright. I just need to keep it up!

16 November 2014

No Plan B's.

Pen and India Ink study of protagonist from graphic novel.
One of the greatest quotes I’ve ever heard- one that hit me right between the eyes- is one that I heard recently. Will Smith said, “There’s no reason to have a Plan B because it detracts from Plan A.” It’s so true. I’ve always had “lots of irons in the fire” but I could never figure out why I wasn’t making any headway into anything. I mean, I was busy, I had a lot going for me… but success just seemed to elude me.

Fear is a big part of it. I was screwed over by people I trusted, and instead of getting up and dusting off, I used excuses and blaming others for not moving forward… when really, it was because I was fearful of being taken advantage again.

For what? Fear may have kept me safe, but it’s also kept me hidden.

I’ve recently tried concurring my fear for many situations. I am finding confidence in my art and writing. Conversely, I am discovering people don’t always want to know how you feel. The price of facing your fears is high, but the benefits are far-reaching… John Steinbeck once said “And don’t worry about losing. If it is right, it happens — The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.” Fear of loss keeps you from moving forward.

Also, knowing what your Plan A should be is a gift. Not everyone knows what they want to do. “Follow your passions” doesn’t really mean much if your passion is something that isn’t sustainable. I’ve had many passions. I spent much time trying to decide what was the best fit for my life, so I experimented and made many new friends along the way.

Yep. Hard work. Day in, day out. You face it, and you work at it. You work towards it. I used to be so afraid of using the croquill pen. I tried using it when I was starting out, as well as a brush for my inks. The results were a big, gloopy mess. It scared me. I would look at magnificent artists work like Mark Schultz and dream the worlds I could create if I could just master those tools. But daydreaming isn’t enough. So, I finally took my fear head on and practiced. At first, I used ball point pens- innocuous enough. Then moved on to the more fountain type pens. I began to get annoyed with the limitations of those implements, and one day I took out the 10 year old croquill and ink (which was still fresh) and went to town. All those years of working with the ballpoint and fountain pen paid off- and my hand was steady. Now, when I use the croquill, I have a steady hand- and steady hands come from confidence- confidence which came from practice.

It is progressing. I am tidying up the plot, and twisting in some juicy subplots. I want to use a number of realworld props to help me illustrate my world better. One book- “Imaginative Realism” by James Gurney has been a wonderful guide to creating things to use as reference.