Friday, January 22, 2010

grOw/cOmic#4: Good Progress Made

I made some really good progress this week on the new grOw/cOmic series. I completed the 7th page in terms of pencil drawings. Normally, I could finish more than this is the same amount of time; however, the first 5 pages have a lot of new characters (which I am getting used to drawing), as well as a large number of characters in every panel, which makes the process a lot more time consuming. Some panels have 7 or 8 characters in a single shot. I am passed this part of the story, so the next few pages should go quicker. To show you some of the detail, as well as the amount of individuals I had to create, here is a full page preview from the beginning of issue 1.

I am also very pleased with the drawings. Drawing so many new characters is a daunting task -- getting used to each character's nuances and traits, as well as making them consistent from frame to frame. But, using more reference materials, as well as drawing in a larger scale (11"x14.5: instead of 8.5"x11") is making a huge difference!

I was also working on the 3D models for the backgrounds. I tried something new this time: Google's SketchUp, which comes in a standard version, which is free. It is quite easy to use. Plus, the fact that a lot of furniture models can be found online free, it made creating the dorm room and other backgrounds MUCH quicker to create. While not a full renderer, it is sufficient to create backgrounds that I can then lend my Photoshop skills to flesh out more.

Enjoy the preview!

Monday, January 18, 2010


As mentioned in my Jan 2, 2010 entry, a number of simultaneous projects in my "real life" job came crashing down on me at the end of 2009 and into 2010. As I predicted, this work would seriously delay the start of grOw/cOmic #4 until mid- to end of January.

However, during the last few weeks, I had a couple of instances of down time when I was just waiting for the client's response. During this time, I managed to pencil the first 3 pages. I am also trying something new this time, and so far, I am pleased with the results. I used to draw the cOmic pages on 9"x12" paper. Taking a cue from my success when drawing the last grOw/stOry (#12), I am now drawing each page about 40% larger, on 14" x 17" sheets. This allows me to draw each frame larger, allowing for more detail, and an easier time at accuracy and consistency. When drawing faces, the slightest shift of a line can make all the difference. By drawing larger, a minor shift will be even less noticeable. So far, this new technique has worked very well, and my hand/wrist have been a lot less strained when it comes to small details.

The crushing workload I mentioned earlier is coming to a close. I hope to start on pencil drawing more pages in earnest soon -- even starting this week! In the meanwhile, enjoy the preview pencil sketch!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy New Year !

It's been a while since my last update, but its been a few weeks of time consuming endeavors and events. First, of course, was the typical holiday season — filled with fun, presents, family, and revelry. Then, we got hit with the worst of that East Coast snow storm — one that set an all-time record snow fall for Long Island, NY (in a single storm) at 27+ inches. Then, at year's end, when it was supposed to be slow between Christmas and New Years, all hell broke loose on my "real life" work front. Sometimes, I swear, all our clients get together, and plan to hit us simultaneously.

So what news on the "grOw" front? Well, due to all of the above, it is not as far along as I had hoped. I wanted to draw all during the last week of the year, getting at least 10 pages of pencil drawings done for the newest grOw/cOmic (#4). Alas, none of that happened. In fact, that may not happen until the mid-, or even end, of January. But it is too early to tell. A few projects coming down the pike are really set to eat up my time. But, as usual, when clients drag their feet, I have open spaces of time that I may be able to make some progress.

Not that no progress has been made. In the last few weeks, I refined the script for "grOw/cOmic#4", as well as planned out (in thumbnail sketch form) the first 4 issues (that's about 78 pages) of the 6-issue series — which is quite a bit of work, just nothing to show or preview just yet. At the beginning of any new series, this is quite typical.

So hang in there! I hope that 2010 will be a year of more new releases than 2009 (which had 5 releases; 2008 had 7 releases).