Friday, July 29, 2011

Gut Reactions.

Today's images serve two purposes.

The first is to give you a little taste of how Mite is being handled in the book. When he's not in extreme close-up, he's just a speck, which is fun because I get to play around with how a virtually invisible character affects his surroundings. That's him pummeling a thug with a stomach shot. Thug never had a chance.

The other purpose is to show a little process. While most of this panel stayed the same in the end, I realized that I was unhappy with Dust Bunny's pose during the inking phase, and I wanted to rock something a little more dynamic. Also, the power blast coming from the thug's stomach didn't really encompass a "foomp-ish" feel. So I axed it.

The absolutes of the creative process keep reintroducing themselves throughout this whole adventure. One of the reminders I'm constantly getting is that I don't get it right the first time a lot of times. I don't power through pages. I pencil, I wait, I stare, I get a Pepsi, I ink, I stare, I ink some more, I stare...and it goes on like this through the day until, through some miracle, I'm looking at a finished page by 3am. The whole process is slimy, yet satisfying.

At any rate, everything is moving along nicely. Thank you, again, to all who have supported or backed this project. I'm amazed at how many people are continuing to reserve their own copy of the book! It's just awesome. Keep spreading the love, and I'll be sure to keep the updates comin'!

Foomp, there it is.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Bunny Talks.

Well, I am speech bubble-less.

Only 4 days into the video launch of Dust Bunny, and the goal has not only been met...but exceeded! And people are still continuing to purchase the book. It's really encouraging. Just seeing this kind of awesome support come in has had a direct influence on my own energy while putting the pages together. Knowing that there are people even remotely interested in what I'm doing with this passion project makes constructing this comic even more invigorating. And I am truly humbled.

As a token of my appreciation for all of you who have contributed to the project's success thus far, here's a modified page from the actual novel. I was going to leave you with blank word bubbles, so as to not spoil any of the story. But I thought this was more entertaining.

Please continue to share Dust Bunny with people you know. The comic has gained a lot of steam over the past few weeks, and I'd love to see it continue! It's only because all of you have taken a moment to share the website, video, or "Like" it Facebook, that it's gotten this far. So thank you, again!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Tales from the Script...

After only a couple days of launching the promo video for Dust Bunny, I've received quite the flurry of responses; a lot from people I've never met, and even a couple from international buyers...which is very encouraging. Thank you to all who have pledged, and really shown support for this project.

Getting deeper into the art, I decided to print off a hard copy of the nearly 200-page script, so that I could make a few final tweaks. This is included in one of the rewards for pledging towards the comic, and I thought it would be nice to throw a picture of it up, along with a couple of panels from the first few pages, so that you can see what you'll be receiving...

...which is a worm shooting chlorine out of a tommy gun. If you think you misread the sentence before this one, I'll recap: "...which is a worm shooting chlorine out of a tommy gun."

See, now you can say you've seen that. Bucket list accomplished.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Dust Storm.

This is it, 'Lizbeth! The big one!

After a week of tweaking and fine-tuning this video, it's finally ready for the public eye. And though we are forever locked into a stalemate of power, I must once again thank Joshua David Matthews for his tireless efforts in helping get this thing off the ground.

Since this stage of the project could potentially be one of the most influential, my time and efforts have been siphoned away from actual pages and pumped into developing the promo video, as well as the new website. I'm very happy with how they both turned out. But I'm eager to jump back into the meat and potatoes of what this is all about.

At any rate, enjoy the video. Pass it on to anyone who you think might be interested. Funding is great, but support is crucial. The more readers I can sweep up, the firmer a foundation I feel I have to stand on.

Thanks again, dust fans! Onward we go!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Whisper Words of Wisdom. Edit Me.

This weekend is bringing some really cool developments on the novel's front, and I'll be sharing them all with you very soon.

I was up with Joshua David Matthews last night until around 1am, tweaking everything. He edited the video while I edited the art. And though our friendship is destined to end in a battle to the death, I'm sure he'll agree that watching a collaborative effort such as this one take shape is really rewarding. We're in the post-production stage of everything now, and I think Josh has got it all rendered out and ready to go. I'll be trucking over there later today to see the final vid--

Scratch that. He's on his way over now. Look at that. Real-time updates.

Onto the next page...

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Go Green.

Very cool things on the way.

Today I took a break from the art table and stepped into the studio to cap off the production phase of what could possibly be one of the most important developmental steps in my journey with Dust Bunny.

Joshua David Matthews came through for me and put together a tiny, (but awesome) crew in order to help make this next chapter a reality. For me, what's to come not only represents the undeniable commitment being made to this project, but also the passion that drives it forward. To take the process off the paper and submerge it into this medium gives the entire concept a new dimension, and I'm absolutely thrilled about the whole thing.

Over the course of the week, I'll be working with Josh (more like looking over his shoulder and telling him how to do his job) on putting together an edit that transcends "what" this book is, and touches a little bit more on "why" this book is. The hope is to share it with all of you early next week. I appreciate all the support and traffic that you guys bring to this blog. Please continue to talk about it and pass it on to others that you think might be interested. You have a bigger hand in this than you realize. And for me, it makes for an exciting first experience.

As well, a thousand thank yous to Pikey Holdredge, Whitney Hess, and Kyle Watson for taking the time to crew the set today. Your efforts are greatly appreciated.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

All Work and All Play.

Go with me for a moment, won't you?

When I wake up in the morning, the first thing I usually do is go right back to sleep. I have 2 alarms on my phone that go off, without fail, every day at 7:45am and 8am. I've come to the conclusion that they're just a means of making me feel like I lead a normal life (like when Mel Gibson had to keep buying copies of "Catcher in the Rye" in the movie Conspiracy Theory), because I silence both of them and just roll out of bed when I feel like it.

The next thing I do when I wake up is swallow this looming feeling of guilt and laziness. Not because I've done anything wrong, or because I feel like I lack in productivity. I gobble these emotions down because everything that I do as a professional artist is from the comfort of my own home. No office, no assigned parking spaces. Just my apartment, my computer, and maybe my pants. I don't even have to get dressed if I don't want to. And I think there's something to be said for the scantily clad working man who didn't compromise his ethics in order to show up at his job with only one item of clothing on. And while I am, indeed, working from home - paying my bills, providing for myself, and the likes - I just feel guilty that people are out there, in cubicles, wearing ties and button-ups while I sift through my fridge, belting out whatever song is on my iTunes. Have you ever heard a grown man sing along with Taylor Swift? No. And you won't. Because you're not allowed in my house during work hours.

So, the image above is a process piece from page 9. I'm currently inking page 11, and things are going really great. It's invigorating to see how much has been accomplished with this book in only a week and a half. Tomorrow, Josh and I will be meeting up to begin "Phase 2" of this novel's production process. I'm really amped about it, and I'll be posting that update by the end of this week, hopefully. So stay tuned.

On a side note, I recently purchased, and at some point, I'll be putting a site together to accompany this blog. Until then, enjoy the simple teaser image.

Monday, July 11, 2011

A Chip off the old blog.

Today marked the near completion of page 7. A few tweaks here and there, and it'll be solid. With the necessary history lesson (and the more environmentally driven artwork) almost wrapped up in the first 9 pages, I'll be ready to move into more character based work this week. And I'm really pleased with how everything has come together up to this point. I can already see my art improving since page 1. So, it's quite invigorating.

However, as productive as today was, half of my creative time was split between the above image's page and Joshua David Matthews' film Dawn...

It was laborious and meticulous, but we finally found the voice for his film's branding. This is the final poster for his movie. We tested out a number of on-location photo concepts, but in the end (and maybe it's because I'm in graphic novel mode) we went with something a bit more stark and representational. Collectively, I think we're both very pleased with where this ended up. And for me personally, it was a nice opportunity to stretch my legs in other areas of design.

You can also see the theme carried over into the website, as well as the really sharp press kit that we put together for the film. Once again, if you haven't taken the time, go check out the blog for Dawn. And check out the trailer on the main page above. It's good stuff.

Speaking of dawn, it approaches with every waking moment. Time for the bedness.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

No news news, I guess.

Nothing crazy. Just thought this turned out really nice (well, the full page...which I'm resisting the urge to post). It's a little snippet that tunes us into the origin of Basement City, as well as some of the conflict that accompanies our antagonist.

"What does it mean, Brett?" I promise, as soon as I finish the remaining 152 pages, I will let you know.

Big updates are on the way in the form of video, so stay with me!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Spoilers are for Cars.

Four pages in 3 days. Not bad.

Why yes, nerd that noticed, the canvases are in RGB. But don't worry, I've already taken care of it. I'm sorry I called you a nerd.

Tomorrow, I'll spend the day going back over these first few pages and detailing things that I missed. But the more I develop, the more excited I get. So I like sharing. And in that, I'll be keeping myself in check so as to not give away too much. I won't be sharing every single page as I finish it. And I saved this image at a small enough size so you can't read the dialogue...

You little Shifty McSneakypants, you.

Monday, July 4, 2011

On the one.

One down, almost. It's got another couple hours to go, I think.

First impressions count for a lot. They often times set the tone for what's to follow. I find it a rare occasion where a film's sequel trumps the original. The apex of the thrill just isn't there on the second round of the roller coaster. And the second helping of delicious collards seldom satisfies you like that first round did.

Well...that last one may not be true. Lawdy ha' mercy. I love a collard.

Either way, it's not an absolute, but generally, it applies - first impressions do matter. This applies to you too, Mr. Clever Catch Phrase T-Shirt Guy, who doesn't like the looks he's getting.

I feel like today's post is a little more fulfilling than the past couple have been. And possibly a bit more interesting. I've discovered that in order to fully embrace the world I want to convey to my readers, I can't just be a comic book artist. I have to be a graphic designer, an architect, an editor...and wear a number of other hats. I actually sat down to illustrate this page yesterday, and realized I hadn't designed the most important structure in the story. So, after 2 days of toiling with it (and a trip to Target - yes, Target) - to gather some reference and/or inspiration on how to handle this complex, I finally concocted something I was satisfied with.

You'll notice very little physical ink on the original. I love perspective, especially linear perspective. I love it too much to leave it to my own judgment (with or without a straight-edge). So, while the bottom character got a nice brush-over, I relied on more precise measures to achieve the layout for the building that I wanted - like, some good ol' Photoschloppin'. And I'm glad I did. This page probably took me twice as long as the others will, simply because of the precision I was seeking. But once again, first impressions count. I do plan on shipping this baby out to publishers. So,they need to see that I have some idea of what I'm doing.

And since I don't have any idea what I'm doing, I need to be able to fake it.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Thumbnailin' it.

You'd think I was claustrophobic from the way I can feel this closing in...

What you're looking at here are two shots of the thumbnails in process (spanning pages far). I'm almost wrapped on the prep work. I anticipate about 30 more thumbs, and I'll be ready to dive into the full pages.

The end of June provided a snafu or two in my work flow - one of the biggest being moving everything I own into a new studio. So, out of necessity, I've pushed my start date back a week. In the end, I think it'll have been worth the patience.

I openly admit to being intimidated and nervous about taking on this book. It's a huge commitment, as I've previously expressed. But I think it's healthy to admit these fears, as long as they don't fuel an excuse train. Excuses are probably the easiest slope to slip down. They're nothing but a gateway drug into full-out apathy. I started into a diatribe of why I can't stand laziness, excuses, and people hiding behind amendments to fuel selfishness...but I deleted it, realizing I' entire point to today's post...

...which was to show some hard evidence that the pre-production process is nearly complete! Having been thrown off by a few of life's unpredictable variables, I want to make sure that I've prepped myself to the best of my ability before launching into the full assault. I'm not aiming for perfection, as even in the production phase, things are always subject to change here and there. I truly just want to make sure that I have everything tight enough to satisfy my audience in the end.

Remember when "Lost" did that? Yeah, me neither.

Friday, July 1, 2011

New Character Page!

Extremely productive day. And it's only 2am.

First off, take a minute and check out the new character page! You can also find it by clicking on the icon to the right of this post. There, you'll find a few basic profiles of some of the main players in Dust Bunny. Some you've seen, if you've been following. But I added 3 new images tonight.

And then there's this.

This is a logo I recently did for my sworn enemy, Joshua David Matthews, who just wrapped on his new film "Dawn." It's a patient western about a man coping with an unbearable loss in his life, and his struggle to accept that loss. The description I just gave doesn't do it justice, but I don't want to spoil anything. The film is still in post-production, but the trailer for it should be up soon. And I'm telling you, it looks amazing.

Anyway, Josh has been instrumental in helping with some of the technical elements of Dust Bunny's online launch (some of which you haven't seen yet), so I would encourage you to take a gander at the Dawn Website. You can also "Like" the Dawn Facebook page.

This update had more links than Zelda.