Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Alterna Originals Sketch Cards update - Adam Wreck card complete

Adam Wreck - completed card.

Back in mid April I posted about the Alterna Originals Sketch card series that I'd be working on for Alterna Comics. At the time I promised I would document my creative process for these cards and post it here. This is the first trading card series I've worked on so I've been taking my time and making sure I put forth my best effort. That said, I initially drew all five cards before stepping back and taking a good, analytical look at them. 

I was happy with two of the penciled cards and the other three just didn't seem good enough to me. So, being my own strictest critic, I went back to the drawing board and have re-drawn two of the three so far. My second attempts were much more to my liking. 

Rather excited by the fact I could hold four penciled cards in my hands that I was pleased with I immediately moved on to inking those cards and left drawing the fifth card for another day. 

Four sketch cards, inked and ready for paint.

Above is a sneak peek at the four cards in the inking stage. I'll get to back to the other three cards in a future post, but today I wanted to show the inked version of the Adam Wreck card, top left, which is stage two of my production process. 

Adam Wreck - pencil sketch.

Above is stage one of the Adam Wreck trading card - simple, clean pencils. Keep in mind that these cards are tiny, only about 2 inches by 3 inches, so a simple and clean layout is essential. I have to say, I've never really worked this small before. It has some pros and cons. One, because it's so small, the work gets done quite quick. On the other hand though, it's tough to get in all the detail you want at this size. Pencilling and inking this small wasn't the biggest problem, but painting posed a bit more of a challenge.

I chose to work with watercolour as I feel it's a classic medium and I just don't like the blendable markers that many artists work with these days. Besides, I feel I can learn a lot more by teaching myself the classic methods of painting which will, in turn, carry over to digital painting. Watercolour is certainly not the ideal medium for use on these cards though. The paper stock, while thick, is closer to bristol board than watercolour paper. The paint is much quicker on the card paper. By this, I mean, it sets into the paper almost as soon as you lay it down and there isn't much chance of reworking the paint by applying more water, etc. In fact, by applying more water the card paper quickly begins to deteriorate. So, it's a touch and slightly tedious process. On top of these technical challenges I really haven't worked with watercolour a lot recently and as a result I'm a bit rusty. All in all though, I'm relatively excited with the results on the Adam Wreck card and I'm excited to move onto the remaining cards.

Oh yeah, and I still need to get a fifth card in the works.

Leave me a comment if you like and be sure to check back soon for a look at the rest of my completed cards.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Pin Up Girl

Got up early this morning and fleshed out one of my lunch time doodles from earlier in the week.

Here's the original doodle.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Alterna Originals Sketch Cards

I finally received my sketch card blanks in the mail last weekend from Alterna Comics. I'll be drawing 5 sketch cards for their Alterna Originals Sketch Card Set. Of course this past week was incredibly, crazy busy and I've had to sit on these cards without being able to start drawing them yet.

Tomorrow I'll be attending the Wizard World Toronto Comic Con and on Sunday I should finally be able to start work on the Alterna cards. Of course I'll post lots of process photos here so definitely check back and give them a look!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Debra Morgan from Dexter

Just finished watching the 5th season of Dexter last night and now onto the 6th. Finally getting all caught up! In the meantime though I was inspired to do a quick and cartoony interpretation of Debra Morgan.


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Student Community & Leadership Development poster concept

Here's a rough poster concept I put together this evening for work. I think this drawing has one of the largest number of characters I've ever jammed into a single piece. I'm pretty happy that they all pretty much fit together and seem to be interacting with one another. In the past I've had problems with multiple characters in a drawing looking like they don't all belong in the same space. 

Thanks for looking!

Trailer for the Total Recall trailer makes its debut. Huh?

Is it just me, or are trailers for trailers a bit much?

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Whitfield - something new in the works

Just a little teaser of something new in the works. Hand drawn pencil and ink followed by colours in Photoshop. Still a work in progress.

John Carter (of Mars) - my quick thoughts

This looks like a cheap dime store novel cover. Not even that good. Certainly not something you want - need - for a  blockbuster movie.

While the rest of the world was stampeding to see The Hunger Games this weekend I dodged the crowds and ducked in to see John Carter. I felt it was my duty as a died in the wool fanboy to show some support for a character and a story that is the inspiration for so much of the science fiction and fantasy that I obsessed over during my childhood and to this day. So much has already been written about this movie, so I'll attempt to keep this short, personal and to the point, in hopes of avoiding a rehash of what many others have said.
Frank Frazetta's classic interpretation of John Carter.
Right off the bat I am really not sure what everyone is complaining about with this movie. There was an overwhelming tidal wave of negative press, particularly on the internet in the weeks leading up to the film's debut. My impression shortly after the film started and now, after the movie is over and I'm home, is that I thoroughly enjoyed it and had a whole bunch of fun watching it. Perhaps if I was older and grew up with the original novels, maybe I'd hate it. But, I didn't and I don't. Up until this point I have only read some of the Marvel comic books of the 1970s and based on those, this movie is pretty much what I would expect. I thought the story was well executed though it was obvious that a LOT of material was being jammed in to the 2 hour and 12 minute running time. Even still, there were only one or two points where I thought the film may have dragged a little. As with any movie of this type, the acting could probably be a little better, but it was by no means horrible. I always try to cut the actors a little slack in these effects driven movies because I can only imagine how tough it must be to perform in front of a giant green screen, opposite another actor wearing nothing but a green leotard who the director insists will eventually be an 8 foot tall, four armed alien with elephant-style tusks sticking out of his face. And if you compare it to the acting and the dialogue of something like the Star War prequel trilogy, then this material is Oscar worthy. The set designs, vehicles, costumes and creatures were all very well done in my opinion and the acting of the animated creatures was rather charming. All worked exceptionally well in enabling me to be sweat away to a distant world and maintain that illusion for the duration of the film. This is almost certainly something I'll purchase when it's released on Blu Ray.
This was my first introduction to John Carter of Mars.
A marketing campaign does not make a movie and this movie had a horrible campaign. It's sad really. The title should never have been changed from John Carter of Mars to just John Carter. That makes absolutely no sense. The "of Mars" portion of the title is crucial to the story, the theme and the main character's arc. And with source material as old as what is behind this film, there really needed to be a solid Drew Struzan or Struzan-style poster. Something like that would have at least captured the attention of the uniformed masses - those individuals having no previous clue as to who or what John Carter is and his significance in genre history - and communicated to them at the very least that, "oh, this is gonna be something rollicking and fun like Star Wars or Indiana Jones".

For more informed reading about John Carter I recommend Ty Templton's thoughts on the film.

I came across another solid and interesting article that compares the massive box office failure of John Carter to the record making box office success of The Hunger Games.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Michonne Revealed! The Walking Dead, Season 2 Finale

Hands down, the single greatest geek moment of the weekend was The Walking Dead, Season 2 Finale revelation of fan favourite character, Michonne. Occupying only several seconds of screen time, this is easily one of the best conceived surprises of the entire series thus far. In a weekend chocked full of greatness, including picking up the new iPad 3 on Friday and seeing Van Halen in concert on Saturday, it was Michonne who really made me jump out of my seat on Sunday evening.

What was your favourite thing this weekend past?

Monday, November 14, 2011

Sebastian Bach, WIP

Sebastian Bach, former lead singer of Skid Row, has always been one of my favourite metal/hard rock vocalists. If you haven't already done so, I highly recommend checking out his new album, Kicking & Screaming.

Pencil on 110 lb marker paper, still a work in progress.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Comic Book Culture

There is just so much more to comic books than superheroes. I love superheroes, but fully understand they are not everyone's cup of tea, so much so that they tend to turn a lot of people away from comics. This, to me, is sad, because comics are a simply amazing art form - the very first art form I learned to appreciate. I already know that comic books have so much more to offer than just beefy heroes in tights, but this article is for those that have not yet made this realization. Read, discover and enjoy.

PS - just click the title, "Comic Book Culture" in order to get to the iFanboy article I'm talking about.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Residence Life Bookmark Project

Spent all weekend on this project for work. Pending any tweaks or edits, this image should wind up on a bookmark by the end of the week. I'm too tired to do much of an explanation now as it's pretty late here and my eyes are  buggy out of my head from staring at the computer screen for far, far too long.

Here's the basic process low down: hand drawn, digital inking with Illustrator, coloured with SketchBook Pro, lettering in Photoshop.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Wicked Witch of the West

Fall is here and Halloween is fast approaching. Summer time is easily my most favourite time of the year, but Fall is very special in a different way. It gets cool and cozy as the temperatures drop and the leaves fall from the trees. Dusk comes earlier and the night grows longer as the Earth tilts away from the sun. My imagination always starts to run wild and often takes a turn toward the macabre in the witching hours and there's just more of those hours at this time of year. Thus, I thought it most fitting to creep into the season with some aptly wicked subject matter. She's probably the most recognizable witch in history - The Wicked Witch of the West from The Wizard of Oz.  

This is pencil on 140 lb, cold press watercolor paper, approximately 10 x 15 inches. 


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Babydoll from Sucker Punch, WIP

Admittedly, not a great film, but damn if there isn't a lot of awesome character designs and visuals. I felt the need to churn out my rendition of the main character, Babydoll.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Hornet, WIP

A couple weekends ago was FanExpo - Canada's big comic book and popular culture show. I'll probably get around to posting some photos from that eventually. For now though, I'm posting my penciled rendition of Hornet, a villainous character from Heroes of the North - a Canadian produced, episodic, multimedia franchise consisting of video webisodes, comics and novellas. A rather ambitious and impressive project indeed. Suffice it to say, having the real, live Hornet, as portrayed by Marie-Claude Bourbonnais (below), at their booth was a rather major attraction.

I'll definitely be interested to see how Heroes of the North develops going forward. For now though, I think I'll scour their website for some contact information and see if I can't send them my fan art. Who knows, perhaps they'll like it enough to post it on their site.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Harry Potter - Friends and Foes, WIP

Harry Potter - Friends and Foes, pencil on 111 lb Canson drawing paper. Still a work in progress.

With the motion picture release of Harry Potter 7.2 I realized that the end of an era had arrived for a particular generation of young folks. I realized that Harry Potter was the Star Wars of this particular generation. Having only watched up to the third movie, it was high time I got caught up. So, I've been watching Harry Potter movies non-stop for the last several weeks and felt more than a little inspired to pay tribute to an amazing story and incredible set of characters in my own way.

Hope everyone likes!

The Fonz - Happy Days

This guy is the reason I pop my collar and will always do so. Original and eternal cool - Fonzie.

Pencil on 111 lb Canson drawing paper, work in progress.