Thursday, June 28, 2012

You'll see the world like a bird

Sketch dump! :D I'll be coloring some of these and posting them to my Tumblr, so be sure to visit.

I looooove gender-swapped fan art, but it really bugs me when people essentially just apply costume ornaments from a dude-character to a chick in a swimsuit.   That kind of fan art is about as true to the character as this is true to Santa:
"If Thor's beefy for a man, he should be frickin' beefy for a woman," said Tally to no one.

That's a little comic from my ALA Anaheim trip last weekend.  By the way, that was a good time.  I bought signed copies of Smile from Raina Telgemeier and July Diary from Gabrielle Bell, was surprised to sell out of books at my Image signing, met tons of awesome people, and even got to go to Disneyland.  I would definitely go to ALA again, and am considering the Seattle conference this winter.

People in L.A. show a lot of skin!  I had a bit of culture shock.  I feel really self-conscious when I wear a tank top.  Nonetheless it was nice being in that warm, predictable climate for a while.

Something weird happened on Monday.  I'd spent all weekend doing the convention and hadn't had a chance to sketch for fun in daaaaays.  My family made a last stop before the airport in Huntington Beach, and I told them I wanted to just sit on an inconspicuous bench and draw people for a while.  5 minutes later, a nice woman asked me if I did caricatures!  I said sure and drew her, her husband, and her son for about 15 minutes.  She offered to pay me but we settled on her buying me ice cream xD  It was bizarre but also really nice to think that I might be able to survive if I was stranded somewhere with just my sketchbook and pencil.

And on with the DC fan art.... :D

My mental image of Catwoman comes from...

A) Darwyn Cooke,

 B) Adam Hughes

 C) Batman the Animated Series


Friday, June 22, 2012

Imagine living in a box

I did another series of movie reaction comics.  This time the film is Pixar's Brave, in theaters today.  Here's a spoiler-free text review before the spoiler-full comics:

This movie is fantastic.  If you think that our tastes are at all similar, or you have a heart or a mom, you should go.  The bottom line is: this is a well-crafted, beautiful, fun, surprising, and touching film.  It has been advertised in a cringey, slapstick way to get children into the theater, but don't worry: this is not a lowest-common-denominator animated film.  It's another Pixar masterpiece.  Quite a bit of the movie was withheld in the commercials, and it's WONDERFUL.  You are in for pleasant surprises.  I recommend watching it in 2D; the film is a little too dark in 3D and some of the lovely details and textures faded out.

THESE COMICS CONTAIN SPOILERS.  Go watch the movie first -- these probably won't be funny unless you've seen it, anyway.

And all of the talk about changing your fate ("You can rise to meet it if you choose").
And the closing gate and trying to escape into the woods.
And the misty, forested mountains.
And the animal mom protecting her human child. 
And the animal mom at risk of becoming an actual demon.
Horses, in my mind, are this feminine symbol of freedom and power and grace.  ...I thought that was a well-documented thing, but apparently it's just an association I have.  I was looking around the internet for any writing that had been done on it, or a catchy name for the trope or something, but came up empty.  ANYWAY, women riding horses = overwhelming 'FUCK YEAH' response in my head.

One of my friends pointed out that the triplets are always trying to steal buns/cakes from Maudie that look like boobs, complete with berry nipples.  And now I can't unsee that subtextual subplot wherein the triplets are on a quest for Maudie's goodies xD
LOOOOOOOVED THIS.  Commanding a dead silence by walking?  So cool.  And that austere expression on Queen Elinor's face?  Just...GUH. PERFECT.
And then Merida demonstrates how much she has grown and come to understand and appreciate her mother (and the power she wields) by performing it just like her.  asdf;ljk.  One of those moments that is so perfectly foreshadowed it's shocking you don't see it coming.  PERFECT.  PERFECT!
Also, Merida...even I can sew better than that.  I mean really.

Cool/funny things that it would be repetitive for me to draw because they were done perfectly in the film:
-"Legends are lessons.  They ring with truths."  (And so do Pixar films)
-Little Merida!  Especially the teeth--somehow they captured little-kid-mouth just right in her design and expressions
-One of the triplets lip synching perfectly with his father during the bear story
-The crow.  Just delightful.
-Every single instance of Queen Elinobear moving in an effeminate way despite her altered stature 
-"I've decided to do what's right and break tradition."  SO much love for that line.
-Merida going toe to toe with her father in a sword fight and winning?!
-Cutting his peg leg out from under him!
-Momma bear getting superbear strength when her daughter is in trouble 
-Mor'du's spirit rising from the back of the rock
-Naked triplets!  Perfect timing, comic relief
I just added a donate button to this blog.  I am by no means starving, and I appreciate your traffic on its own merits, but if I raise a few dollars on these review posts it will help justify continuing to make them.  Thanks again, everyone!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Now our time is all our own

I've been trying really hard to diversify my faces and draw better men.  I've been looking at a lot of resources, ranging from painters like J.C. Leyendecker to modern artists like Phobs and Kreugan, and dozens of other awesome people that Tumblr has pointed me to
I've found animation character sheets in particular to be helpful.  They contain lots of different face shapes from every angle, making every expression, in simple line art! 
I've gone to cafes and tried cartooning a few people around me while I drink my coffee.  First I draw them fairly realistically, then I work off of my own drawing to push their features further and further and imagine how they would look making different expressions and from different angles.
I was in a slump on Monday, so I tried that Kreugan tutorial linked above and traced photos of male faces in Photoshop (pulled from Facebook to get some real faces and diversity, haha....not sharing!).  Then I made the background layer invisible and studied my own  line art, looking for the distinguishing features and proportions between different people's faces.  From there I tried cartooning them by hand in a sketchbook to see if I could retain what made them look like them.  It really helped me to pick up little details I can employ, like that 'v' or 'u' shape some people have in the center of their upper lip.
I put my sketchbook and my favorite tools next to my bed and I've filled a page every night before bed for a couple of weeks.  Here are some colored pieces:

I'll keep working on it.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Telling me to be ready

I got to attend a sneak-peek of Pixar’s Brave last night.  I made reaction comics like the ones I did for Prometheus and they’ll go live next Thursday, but for now here’s some fan art.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Tweet out to all the peeps who'll work along

Fan art for Prometheus: David! 


Yup, posting fan art on a Saturday night.

Related: this song is pretty excellent.