Monday, October 31, 2011

Return to Never

My newest comic project is actually an old project revamped. Again. The characters of this story were first created when I was a teenager, rewritten into a finished book just after high school, then rewritten into another book as a NANOWRIMO project, and finally turned into a comic. As is the nature of this story, I've decided to redo the comic. The last version of Never had lost its way. I was taking much too long to get to the point and in the process the plot got completely lost. Combined with the fact that the illustrations weren't consistent in any way, size shape or ability, I figured it was time to give this story another shot.

Why not move on to something else? It's a comfort thing, I guess. These are characters that I grew up with. They are the first thing I think of when I'm considering writing a new story and it's always a difficult decision to move on and try something new. However, rewriting the novel for NANOWRIMO helped me to start writing again, and this time I'm hoping it will help me start to draw regularly again. My goal is to update with some sort of regularity. But I've promised that before and have failed miserably, so let's just say that I will update as often as I can, generally on Monday's. I can promise that the month of November will be consistent.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

A face in shapes

While we were at the gallery doing the drawing thing, we spent some time drawing a head that had been sculpted by one of the artists. It was very interesting using geometrical shapes to try and recreate something 3D. It's much easier (in some ways) to copy someone elses painting or drawing, because they have already found the shapes for you, all you have to do is see it how they did. With something real like a statue, depending on which angle you view it, it will have different shapes and lights. I never got to the part where I'd shade this drawing in and make it look more realistic because I really liked how subtle this turned out. I'm going to have to do some of my own observational drawings using technique I think.

Monday, March 7, 2011

In a Cafe/Gallery

Yesterday I went to the monthly drawing session that the Confederation of the Arts Gallery hosts. I met up with a couple of friends and we drew our own versions of some of the work that was on the walls. Same sort of deal as last time, but this time the focus was on finding the shapes rather than on the shading. Despite the fact that I teased one of my friends for stealing my 3b pencil leaving me with a 7b, I actually really enjoyed using the softer lead. I'm so used to drawing my comics that I don't often use anything more than my mechanical pencil which is limited at best. Apparently I just want everything to be dark and smudged.

This sketch is based off Kathleen Munn's drawing "In a Cafe." Apparently she was one of the first Canadian impressionists, long before the Group of Seven, but she was never very well known since she was a woman.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

A little silly

Sometimes the day just needs a little silly to help you get through it. Today seems to be one of those days for me. Of course, along with the strip above, today is NEVER update day. Click the linky to the righty. Or something.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Edinburgh Castle Gate

Apparently I haven't drawn anything new in years. Either that or everything I've drawn I've already posted online. Anyway, this is a sketch I did while sitting on a damp bench at Edinburgh castle, waiting for the rain to start up again in 2007. It seemed like every time I went to Edinburgh castle it was raining, which you might say "of course, Christina, it's Scotland, and you were there in the rainiest summer they had had for years" to which I'd reply, "but it never rained when I went to any other castle."
I think there's a message there, but I'm still not sure what it was.

Today I also posted a HallHogs comic. This seems to be the week of comics for me. Probably because  I've been avoiding doing other more important things. I think there might be a message in that too, but I'm avoiding figuring out what it is.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Schedule and such

Another shaded oldy that I found. It's not often that I attempt detailed wide shots. I don't want to say that this is why, because this is actually one of my better attempts -.-' Anyway, I like some of the details in this even if they aren't correct perspectively.

ALSO! Big news, sorta. I maybe accidentally penciled a couple of pages of Never. And then maybe sorta inked and coloured one of those pages. So go ahead and check that out if you want. Don't expect this to become a regular thing since I really do want to post at least my first full chapter of Hired Magic, and doing two stories is a lot of work. I will try to post some more pages when I can though. So much for me being done of Never.

ALSO! Did you notice the logos to the right there>>>
Did you?? Huh? huh?? Anyway, I finally stopped being lazy and made links to each comic so that it's easier to find the one you want.

Monday - Hired Magic
Tuesday - Nothing for now....
Wednesday - Maybe Never, maybe something else...
Thursday- Again, nothing for now. A girl needs to get homework done after all.
Friday - Hired Magic

And now you know.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Ghostentines Day

With a new comic starting up, I thought it was appropriate to post an old drawing. This is one of the first drawings of Illyia that I did. Originally she was for a completely different comic, though somehow she made her way over to Never. It's not often that I do shading anymore. It's almost always ink work now. I think the part I like the most about this one is the shading, especially around the ghost things.

So happy valentines day. I really should have posted the first page of the comic today since the chapter is called Love Letter, but I didn't. Instead you get ghosts in a graveyard. Now that's my idea of romance, haha.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Fun funness

Since I'm almost at a point where I'm going to start posting this comic online, I think it's time to post another picture of Tris. This one shows Cole's face as well. (If you saw the post of the two different styles for the first page of the comic, he's the person hidden under his hood.) This is the style I'm going to use for the colouring, which I think will work for this comic. It's nice and clean and compared to a more detailed shading technique it doesn't take a long time to do so I can finish pages fairly quickly. Quick is key for this comic. That and fun. I want these characters to have a lot of fun, even when their lives are on the line which will help me have fun while telling the story.

Hopefully that fun feeling will translate to the readers. You'll have to let me know either way.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

I have no idea...

While I attempt to colour and letter the pages for the first chapter of a comic I'm playing with, I decided I need to do at least one character sketch of the main character. Somehow she came out a whole lot more evil than she really is. Tris is a high energy magician who is always competing to be as powerful as any male. I think the people in the background must have deserved what they got. They probably called her weak or something.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Seeing Double

Today's drawing is sort of a before and after look. The first version of this comic page is coloured directly from a pencil drawing with some black lines added in photoshop to give it a bit of pop. Originally I had thought about doing an entire comic like this. There are some things I like about it such as the shape of the castle and the girls face, but a lot of it feels too rough even for me.

The second version is inked and shaded. All the same colours are used in both versions, with the shading of the pencil of the first one working in place of the colour shading of the second. Honestly I like both for different reasons and dislike them for some of the same reasons. If that makes any sense. Either way, there's a sense of what happens to a drawing when you start putting ink on it. There are a lot of things that you can't do with a pen that you can with a pencil.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

It's funny how characters can stay with you forever. Blenia and Alexander have been with me for about 12 years now, existed in two full (bad) novels, a good 80 pages of a graphic novel and many false starts at other stories.

Like best friends, they've been with me through good times and bad, distracting me when I should be doing other things, and encouraging me to return to writing and drawing after long periods of not being able to do either. Sometimes I feel as though they hold me back from doing new things, but other times they are the only reason I keep going.

I recently found a bunch of my old writing. Within the mound of loose leaf and half blank scribblers I found one of the first attempts I had made at writing about Len and Alex. They were so different back then. So innocent. That's what I've been trying to capture with the character drawings I've been doing lately. I've made Len and Alex young again. Returned some of their playfulness, and allowed Alex to smile.

Although lately I've been writing stories that don't revolve around these characters, I feel better knowing their around.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Abandoned Church

Not a new sketch today but one I did in 2007 when I was in Scotland. Aberdeen to be exact. They have some of the most beautiful architecture there some of it thousands of years old. All that was left of this church was the tower. The rest had fallen in or had been knocked down and turned into a parking lot. The rest isn't being protected by a heritage society since there are way too many old buildings and not enough funding to protect them all. This church was deemed to be one that didn't have enough history behind it to even have some sort of sign put up to tell the curious anything about it.

As I sketched this in the park across a river from the church, a man sat on the bench beside me. Not unusual since Scotland in general seemed to have a lack of seating during the summer months. The fact that I found anywhere to sit at all was pretty amazing. While I sketched, I could feel him peaking over my shoulder, as will happen to anyone brave enough to draw outside. When I was about to set down my pencil, he leans over and says, "You draw often."

It wasn't a question. I smile at him and nod.

"I try."

I'm always modest when it comes to my art. I'm well aware of the many many people who have much more talent than I do. It's not that I don't think I'm worthy, or something, I just know that I have a lot of room for improvement. Not an original thought from an artist, I know, but a necessary one if the artist has any interest in being the best they can be.

"No," he says. "You can draw."

And then he stands up and walks away.

I smile and close my book. I may not be the best. I will probably never be the best. But I can draw and I will continue to draw often.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Coloured Friday

I realised today when I attempted to draw that I don't have any sketchbooks. I think I had some, but I have no idea where they went. They probably ran way for fear of having their pristine pages ruined. Do you know how long it took them to get their pages that white? And what was I planning on doing but rubbing graphite all over them. That stuff never comes out.

Anyway, this drawing was done on a pad of paper I found that I hate. It's just a little too big for my liking and using ink on it is like drawing with water on paper towel. I'll probably have to replace my ink before I try using that pen again. Some how I finished without crumpling the paper up in rage, but I ended up buying a new sketchbook so that I won't ever have to deal with that again. At least until the others come back to liberate the new prisoner, er sketchbook.

She looks a little more crazy than I intended. She's supposed to be a troublemaker that's devising a plan. And while she's from a new story I've been playing around with, the fact that she looks a lot like Len is intentional.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Quick Sketches

Since I haven't been doing any comics lately, I think it's time to put up a couple of quick sketches.

I did this sketch a few days ago at the museum during a free drawing session for the public. It was pretty fun, and I got to draw with my mom, which is always neat since she has such an interesting style. This is based off a photograph currently being shown at the gallery and is drawn with a regular mechanical pencil. (I got chastised for that, though the woman leading the session had to admit I managed to get more depth in the shading than she expected)

I was attempting to work without using lines and focus more on lights and shadows. Parts of it I succeeded I think. Lighting is something that I really want to work on in the future.

This second sketch is not by me at all but by my friend Brenda. That's Len from Never--the story that never finished--and her character Sandra from In the Air. Poor innocent Sandra is being corrupted. I love this picture! She did this for me during Fan Expo '10 to cheer me up during a particularly hard stretch. Definitely succeeded.