Posted by admin | Filed under Photos
Bit of perspective
Posted by admin | Filed under Trash
Writing on a laptop at a coffeeshop in Serendra. Humid day at the fort. For those confused, I’m in Manila. The capital of the Philippines. I live in Cebu, widely considered to be the Pinoy counterpart of Chicago… if this place was New York. And no, the American capital is not Washington. Pop.
Cousins and in-laws are either getting started on holiday shopping or talking about how shitty school or work was. I have a pile of trade paperbacks stacked up under an overpriced cappuccino. I honestly can’t decide whether I love this city, despise this city, or both. I’m a country mouse, and a homebody to boot. Jurassic 5 is the soundtrack for the early evening. Rap.
The comic shops are things of beauty though. Back home I normally get my monthlies from a friend Viking Alex and I call Creepy Comics Guy, but I’m here… so it’s literally like being let loose in a hen house. Screw the fox, I feel like a wolf. Cut to two days ago, EJ and I stalked between the shelves at FullyBooked and ranted about which runs were great or sucked shit. A few of the store’s regulars stared at us like we actually knew what we were talking about. Rock.
I shouldn’t stay long though. Too easy to get spoiled here. Too easy to get drunk. Too easy to hide. Too easy to get lost. So here I’ll mangle Luhrmann’s song and say Come to the big city but leave before it makes you soft. Jazz.
My coffee’s getting cold. The gang’s getting ready to move now.
And these comics won’t read themselves.
Hah! Made you look. No, I’m not getting married yet. I hear the first step to doing that is getting a girlfriend, but I haven’t had one in years. Comics and art (the mean mistress!!!) have been eating up a lot of my time lately, so the social life has gone out the window. This entry’s title isn’t totally inaccurate though, coz I’ve been spending a lot of time technically marrying my two stylistic influences into something I can call my own. Or trying, at least.
Realistic vs Abstract/Cartoony. Which is better? Which sells? Which makes for better storytelling? It’s taken me this long to realize that the answer is neither. Realistic adds a lot of believabilty to a scene, that’s a given, but the abstract style can pull off fantastic exaggerations in mood. Mignola plays a delicate balance between the two and it works exquistely in Hellboy. Realistic allows for your characters to be more relatable in whatever outlandish situation you put them in, but being able to rubberize their expressions and gestures makes for an incredibly broad spectrum of emotion and dynamism. Stuart Immonen plays with this and kicks serious ass every time a new issue of Ultimate Spidey hits the stands. Then I read it, cry in my bath tub, then slash my penis with a razorblade.
These are just two of the points as to why a stylistic marriage would come out awesome, and I’m pretty sure there are countless others.
Having said that, I’ve been trying my best two fuse the two sentimentalities into something I can call my own. I’ve talked about this in a previous entry, Shapes, and I doubt I’ll stop talking about it anytime soon. Been re-reading a lot of old MAD magazines to study Mort Drucker’s great caricature work. Good stuff.
Anyway… here are last week’s dailies:
MONDAY: Kicked off Marvel week with my favorite X-Man, Nightcrawler. He’s always been visually interesting and there’s never a shortage of cool poses to use on him. Spooky and athletic, in my head he’s like Batman and Spidey combined.
WEDNESDAY: Well I had to do something to counter Power Girl from last week, right? And Spider Woman is hands down the hottest superlady in Marvel right now. Never mind that she’s a Skrull Queen bent on enslaving us, still teh hawt. I might’ve oversized her boobies though — complaints?
FRIDAY: Fridays are always hectic for me coz that’s when I tend to fill my page quotas for the week, plus I do the podcast with my buddies. So from now on, I’ll devote Fridays to pose studies and the like. I’m sure you all can tell from looking at the logan sketch that my anatomy in the arm area could use a bit of work. but yeah, doing things like this every once in a while will definitely help make my poses more dynamic and shit.
Lastly, any Zuda lovers in the house? Even if you’re not, it’ll be good for you to head on over to their site and vote for my buddy Justin Jordan’s comic, Rumors of War.
He died on the battlefield, giving his life for God and Country. Johnny died a hero, but he didn’t stay dead. He’s been taken from his dying place to another world, another place, where a war has raged since the beginning of time. Resurrected for a fight that he can barely understand, much less hope to survive. Here, even death is no end to a soldier’s fight, the dead and dying returned to fight again and again. The Enemy is monstrous and the Ally is worse.
Posted by admin | Filed under Work
Image Comics co-founder Whilce Portacio recently released a video message to Filipino Comic Creators/Komikeros, I’ll shut up and let his words do their job.
Getting caught up on House episodes. I was relatively late to the whole TV-series thing, and so I’ve got a whole zoo of stuff I’m yet to watch. The Shield, CSI, The Wire, The Sopranos — you name it, I haven’t seen it. Unless it’s Entourage, which is the shit. My brother collects DVDs as opposed to my comics, so I sure don’t have a problem getting new flicks and shows. I should do a “things I watch(ed)” journal entry or whatever. Currently on season two of House. The Leonard-Laurie bromance is always fun. Doc Cameron is hot. And the soundtrack is flawless. Good show. Apparently a coupla years’ worth of Emmys can’t be wrong.
In one episode, Hugh Laurie goes, “I don’t work hard. I work smart.”
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Internet did it’s job perfectly and very efficiently distracted me from work this week. And that’s not even counting the hours I spent Wednesday morning glued to CNN for the election coverage. So… no, not a very productive week, work-wise. Only got a total of two (maybe three, if I tighten this WWII scene tonight) inked pages of OVERTHROW! out the door, though I did get to do revisions on some old pages. I’m quite happy with how those turned out, so it ain’t all bad. I’ve apparently arrived at some action scenes in the issue (finally!), and I work fairly quickly through those. For some reason though, I always hit a slump after every action page. I don’t quite know why that is yet, but the pre-work warm ups are definitely helping me not to cool too far down. More on those later.
Taking my sweet time with the concept sketches for the horror project. I’ve stumbled upon an approach that has somehow allowed me to maintain my style but adopt a whole new aesthetic to it. It’s subtle, but it’s there. Been studying the little differences in Humberto Ramos’ work between Crimson and X-men, that sorta thing. Buncha Hellboy trades are helping too.
I said I’d do a sketch a day this week, and so far it has helped a lot in getting me in the groove in the mornings (read 2 pm… heh…), so here they are, along with some commentary. They each took about an hour tops, that being the time limit I gave myself, me being great with deadlines and all:
MONDAY: I read a Red Lanterns book for last week’s podcast and I just suddenly found Sinestro cool, despite me never having been a fan. This is a shot of him inviting you to be part of his corps. My foreshortening needs work.
TUESDAY: Again, inspired by a previous episode of the podcast, I couldn’t resist doing a Darkseid piece after seeing the last page of Final Crisis #4. Nothing special to say about this though, it was just fun.
THURSDAY: Election day, so I couldn’t resist writing a little something extra on PG’s cape… clasp… thing. She’s actually a bit tough to draw without making her look top-heavy. i might’ve fucked this up.
Marvel stuff next week.
Posted by admin | Filed under Trash
FYI #1: I’m currently drawing a comic called OVERTHROW!, a superhero/political thriller written by Zuda veteran Justin Jordan.
FYI #2: One of my favorite things about using WordPress is getting to see my blog stats in the dashboard. Among other things, I get to see search terms people put into engines to find their way to my site.
Y’all tryin’ ta tell me something?
Posted by admin | Filed under Art
It’s finally November. Haven’t been able to post a lot of art lately coz I’ve been spending most of my time doing stuff that I’m not allowed to show. Can’t reveal shit, can’t tell anyone or the terrorists win. Justin’s been compromising national security by showing off inked OVERTHROW! pages on his blog though, which now feels to me like I’m standing naked in the snow, seeing as how Paul Little’s colors add so much to my drab crap. Feeling pretty confident that OVERTHROW! #1 (or most of it) can be wrapped up before MASK of MANOLO #2 kicks in. On that note, I’m posting the cover for the first issue. Solicits and website stuff along with the attendant artist profile juju should be up soon, I’ll make announcements here as I get the news myself.
Halloween is spent boozing up with cousins and siblings whilst re-watching old Filipino horror films. Crispy chicken skin from the nearby grill went pretty damn well with the malt liquor. Costume parties aren’t really our thing since we’re all just too damn lazy to put that shit together, but I live vicariously through my more disciplined friends, so I’m posting the costumes that didn’t completely suck balls:
1) Artist Paolo Gomez laying it on thick; 2) Komikero EJ Afzelius with his own brand of horror;
3) Artist/photographer Jan Rodriguez pays homage to Ledger; 4) Maia Layno (opening voice-over for the Tres Komikeros podcast) ain’t sportin’ anything scary, but hell, I ain’t complaining.
Every single time I’ve picked up the pencil lately has been to either work or do stuff directly related to work. I’m happy as fuck for the influx (influck?), but I realize I’ve sorta been going about it the wrong way coz it’s burning me out to some extent. So November will see me trying out a sketch-a-day sort of thing. Y’know, just to loosen up every day before work. No script, no audience (well maybe you guys), no guidelines, no mission. Just me, a blank sheet, a pencil, and a small chunk of time.
I did this Intersketching thing before, I just need to pick up on it again. I stopped it when my old PC crapped out, and then I simply forgot about it when I was… blessed… with this new one. Anyway, this sketch-a-day shit is important to me coz I somehow forgot that before I had deadlines to meet and contracts to fulfill, it was all primarily about loving to draw — I somehow lost sight of that a little bit, so I’m starting the dailies again to remind myself of the childish thrill. It’ll also serve to polish the ol’ style somewhat, which won’t hurt.