Marriage

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:

nightcrawlerMONDAY: 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.

red-skullTUESDAY: Nothing special to say about this piece.  I don’t read Captain America, and I’m not a WWII buff.  I just wanted to do a villain portrait.  Call it an M.O.

spiderwomanWEDNESDAY: 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?

lokiTHURSDAY: Loki.  As a woman.  I know, I know.

logan-poseFRIDAY: 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.

::: ::: ::: Tres Komikeros episode 11 ::: ::: :::

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.


Under the Influence(s)

For a good while now, Sundays have meant Drink and Draw Sessions for me and a couple of fellow artists here in Cebu. It’s always good to be able to take a break from the work week with fellow bastards, yeah? It’s also healthy to mix two of your favorite activities into an afternoon of decadence, yeah? If i knew any cute female artists who drank as much as me and the boys, my life would be complete. Sorta. Kat‘s not here anymore, and she’s married! Damn it!

Viking Gamer Man can’t make it on account of his being a tool who prefers to drink with officemates after spending the whole week with them already. Mike and Leandro show up. We pick up pencils and spend the afternoon drawing crap and making fun of things — each other’s art not excluded.

Along the way, Leandro points out to me that perhaps it would be best if i ditched the Madureira flavor my art as it is tends to scream. I can’t help it. Joe Mad was practically the first artist I really noticed as I was getting serious about my craft. Him and Jason Pearson.

And it makes me sick sometimes.

Don’t get me wrong. I still love their styles. They will always be my favorite artists, but in a medium as fickle and shallow as comic books, I have to admit that Leandro’s words rang back and forth on my braintongue as I tried to justify why I was drawing how I was drawing what i was drawing.

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Influences are healthy… just as idolizing is healthy. And though I don’t see myself as a clone, I’m definitely trying to distance myself as much as possible so as not to make the influence so obvious that even my originals and non-referenced stuff look like swipes. I’ve seen it happen to other people, it’s not pretty.

Been studying and digesting a lot of Immonen, Ottley, and the guy who does Brit lately (I’m sorry, I’m sorry…), and if all goes well, I’ll end up with a manga-esque style that’s blocky yet smooth (it’ll be that weird) and comes across as high-energy. A pinch of Gabriel Ba wouldn’t hurt. Middleton for sure. Leinil and Mignola’s black-spotting for good measure. Hughes’s women. Maybe even Campbell’s acting. Coz, well, all this reminds me of a question a friend asked me back in high school. He asked if I wanted to be the next Jim Lee. And I don’t know. I guess It’d just be nice to at least maybe be the first and only “John Amor” so to speak.

Nightcrawler studies from yesterday.