Patreon 28 Update – Out of Town

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Quick update: I’ve been wicked sick (back to back colds, maybe even the same one just super extended?) and I’m now getting ready to head out of town for Viable Paradise, a writing workshop on Martha’s Vineyard.

Everyone keeps telling me how beautiful and amazing Martha’s Vineyard is, however I read that there are ticks all over the island. I’m packing tons of tick repellent, because ticks are awful. I plan to bring enough tick repellent that I can share with anyone who wants some!

Also, the fact that it’s an island that you can only get to with a ferry (that’s a kind of boat, right?) which is a little disconcerting.  The weather forecast also mentions rain and chilly weather. For a desert rat like myself, there’s going to be some extreme culture shock, but I know I’m still going to have fun. I’m also bringing copious amounts of green chile salsa, because green chile salsa is the best thing on earth, and I know there will be people who’ve never had any, who NEED to know about it!

Let me think. I also plan to take walks along the shore, while staring moodily out at see, while composing poetry. That’s something people do on islands, right? Perhaps I’ll try my hand at quoting Byron or Shelly, although, no, now that I think of it, that’s too close to that unreadable stretch in The Invisibles comic, so maybe I’ll just wander around looking for neat rocks. That’s more my speed.

(Also, I use the word “also” too much. BUT, if you do get The Invisibiles reference, I’m sorry. That’s a terrible stretch of scene, and it’s sooooo boring I never managed to get past it an finish the comic.)

Work-wise, I’ve been catching up on commission work, however I did manage ONE drawing of my own in the past three weeks:

I’m not a big fan of Zero (character from Borderlands 2) but so many people at comic cons keep asking for prints of him. I still have a few other characters I want to draw from Borderlands 2 – Gaige, Axton, Sir Hammerlock, Ellie, and Scooter.

Okay, I have to go finish washing clothes so I can pack before I leave tomorrow (I tend to leave stuff until the last minute. This is not a wise way to travel.) I’ll catch y’all up when I get back! Take care until then!

-Jenn

Patreon Update 17 – Draw!

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…That title is supposed to be a bit of pun between the fact that I’m going to talk about how I can’t really draw guns well, and about… well… drawing. So… I dunno. I don’t think it works, as a pun, but as a title, it’s okayish.

After update #16, I worked on the following layout work:

I generally enjoy layout work. I always feel like it should move quicker than it really does (after all, it’s just a few scribbles to show what you’re REALLY going to draw – so how hard can it be?) but this took me almost all of Friday to draw.

Even though I really enjoy layout work, there’s always little worms of doubt, and so I find myself moving panels around, resizing pencils, questioning if the way the story is written can tell the viewer what is happening if you take away all the text. (And as usual, I’m not sure that it does, but this is the best I’ve been able to come up with.)

I started inking a little bit on Friday, and then did most of this work yesterday, on Monday.

I avoided inking in the pistol in the middle panel, and even inked some of the next page and last two panels (which I don’t have a screen cap of at the moment), until I couldn’t avoid it any longer. I ended up using a bunch of references (I couldn’t tell you what they are, technically if my life depended on it) and managed to cobble together something that looks vaguely pistol-ish.

(Pencil version and ink version)

Then I added frogs everywhere, and called it a day!

Patreon Update 16 – August Already

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I’m not sure how I miscounted, but I did it. So we’re just going to go with what Patreon says is actually update 16, and not quibble over numbers. Goodbye post number 15, we never got to know ye!

This is where I left off last week, before I got hit by a ton of commission work:

I’m still a bit behind on commission stuff but I wanted to at least get this week’s comics done while it’s still THIS week. I spent what felt like forever drawing frogs yesterday, and trying to make them look like little monsters, but still frog-like.

I then drew the crowd of soldiers, making their last stand. I didn’t have the heart to draw too much detail, so I silhouetted some of the soldiers, and really liked the effect:

I then started going in and drawing the background. I wanted the water to look dark and dank, with bubbles and scum floating on the top. I also included more frog silhouettes (I liked the way the soldiers came out, so I wanted to carry that through with the frogs.)

I finally finished this today (less than a few minutes ago) and will update it in a little bit!

-Jenn

Patreon Update 14 – Still Under the Weather

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I’m still a bit groggy and feeling down, but I wanted to share with y’all what I’ve been working on. The pages still aren’t where I’d like them to be, but that’s okay, we’re just going to go with it and move on with our lives, right?

I went in and touched up the last two panels on the previous page, adding more shadows, and moving the frog’s attack from the last panel to the one on the left. Again, while I don’t really like this page as black and white, I think it’ll look much better in color (should that day ever happen!)

I started the next two-page spread. I spent most of one day penciling things in and moving things around. Looking at it now, I realize I need to move “The few of us who had our weapons out” up slightly, so it’ doesn’t block too much of the panels below. I don’t consciously use a “rule of three” when I work but I know it’s there: the fact that the text is cutting off half the face in the 2nd panel on the 2nd page is unacceptable. If it cuts off 1/3 or even 2/3 that’s fine… just not 1/2.

Below: I started inking the faces, my favorite part. I really like trying to evoke emotion in my characters, which is why I like this cartoony style so much over the other styles I used to draw in.

I also found a ton of references for frogs and toads, so I’ll be drawing those little suckers in later today, so you can see what everyone is fighting!

-Jenn

Patreon Update 13 – Monday Thoughts

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It could just be Monday, but I’m really not into this page I’ve been working on. The upside is that it’s almost done and I can start working on the next two pages! Each new page spread has the chance to be a page spread I really like!

Here’s what I was working on Thursday (or was it Friday?) of last week:

Even the frogs (which I usually like drawing) seem flat and boring. While I know that I want to show the group of soldiers sitting around chatting, I wasn’t quite sure what to draw for the last two panels. I drew the guy getting hit by the frog tongue-lance, and then him flat on the floor, but that’s too similar to a scene that’s already finished that’s coming up in the next chapter:

So instead of redrawing Robert’s death scene (and I’m bummed too, because I really liked Robert!) I drew Rodgers (also, note the similar name) as he’s teetering, right before he falls:


I’m worried that it’s overkill to have to images of him as he’s loosing his balance, but I REALLY like the way the gun sketch looks on the left, so I might keep it in. (That’s a terrible reason to decide how to do panel layout, but I’m telling you: it’s been a rough week, and I’m sort of flying by the seat of my pants these days!)

Here are the frogs and the last panel inked. You can see where I’m still indecisive about the lower left panel:


The full page (everything but that last dang panel!)

And now, all I have standing between me and finishing this page is that last panel. I’m probably just going to ink it, as is, just to be done with it and move on. But first, I’m going to stare at it for an hour or so, then draw some other doodles in my sketch book. Then maybe I’ll tentatively ink it, then delete what I’ve done, then re-ink it, and then finally get frustrated with it and call it done.

It’s just sort of how the donuts get made, I guess! Here’s to hoping the next page spread is more inspiring!

-Jenn

Patreon Update – July 23th 2015

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12 – The Week that Got Away

I saw someone else numbering their posts, and I thought that was pretty cool. They’re up to 380 or so! I hope to get there some day!

This week got a bit out of control from me, and I spent a little longer on commission work than I should have. That said, I did manage to get a page drawn yesterday, and I’m hoping I can get a little more drawn today and tomorrow. Here’s some screenshots:

Above: what this page spread looked like last week. I have some vague pencil drawings in almost all of the panels, but nothing really concrete (except in panels 1,  2, and 3)

Above: panel one was a quick portrait, and I didn’t even think to take a screen cap of it. Panel two is an establishing shot of the bookstore that the soldiers will be hiding in. I tried to do a white crosshatch on the outside borders of the panel, and I don’t think it worked as well as I wanted it to. I think that technique might work well for flashbacks – and although these are all technically flashbacks, I don’t think it works well. That’s okay though, not every panel needs to be perfect!

Above: after drawing the damp and moldy boxes in the foreground, I started drawing the soldiers exploring with flashlights. I realized quickly that they probably wouldn’t walk around without their guns at the ready, especially in a city-state as dangerous as Pangaea.

Above: tried to draw the soldiers so it implies they have lights on their guns. Maybe duct taped? Maybe held in their off hand? I don’t know. I’m making this stuff up as I go!

Above: the final inking of the panel with more clutter and junk coming down from the ceiling.

Above: last panel on the page. Soldiers eating rations and hearing a weird “singing” coming from the back rooms that they’d already explored!

Okay, I’m going to try to get as much done today so that I’ll have something to post tomorrow as well! If not, I’ll see you all next week!

Patreon Update – July 16th, 2015

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(Typodblog note: Sometimes I post public stuff at my Patreon blog as well!)

Hi all! (I’m leaving this as a public post because the art is on youtube anyways)

Instead of doing a series of screen caps with me blathering on about them, I thought I’d switch it up this week and show you a sped-up video of my work for next week’s page. I’d already done most of the upper left panel and only had to work on the soldiers walking through the city.

Back to work for me!

-Jenn

 

Patreon Update – July 9th

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(Typodmary blog note: I’m still really behind on moving my posts from Patreon to here! Sorry for the delay!)

I’ve been trying like crazy to complete as many page spreads as possible a week. Yesterday I managed to finish this one, which was a pretty simple job: a group of soldiers exploring a destroyed storefront.

I started out with the above soldier. I was using references, but they weren’t quite right, so I did a lot of “making stuff up” because that’s what I do. I also have a tendency to start inking before I’ve finished penciling everything, as you can see below.

I think I need to do a series of turnarounds for the soldiers, a series of drawings that show them from every angle, and what their gear and supplies look like. I want to have a basic design (knee pads, knife at belt, backpack, camo cape) but also have little modifications that each soldier might have made to their equipment.

Drawing the soldiers was the hardest part of this, mostly because I know so little about soldiers OR guns, but I know a LOT of strangers are more than willing to come up to me and tell me why I drew an AK47 wrong. I guess I just don’t care enough to draw all the little details, and I make up stuff a lot – I think that drives some people crazy.

Also, I just realized as I was writing this that I used two different gun references in this drawing, which is why only two out of three guns have similar end barrel thingies.

Hiding the inked soldiers, I started working on the backdrop. I wanted to add graffiti and more signs to the storefront, but I also didn’t want to lose the soldiers in the clutter of lines.

Above: the finished page spread. I forgot to draw the camo pattern n the middle soldier’s cape, so I might have to go back in and fix that. Or I might leave that for when I color it.

My computer is headed over to a friend’s house later tonight, and he’s going to fix it up so it runs a little smoother, so I may not be updating much this weekend, but I’ll return next week if nothing else!

-Jenn

Patreon Update – July 7 2015

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July 7th’s Patreon update was a little short, but I still want to share it here. It’s neat to see the double page spreads all in one piece, sometimes!

I wanted to share a sneak peek of xxxtremor – the giant monster that helps the kids save their city. All that stuff happens later, right now, just a first real glimpse of her:

These pages will be going up later this week, but I’ve been holding on to them for so long it’s been driving me crazy!

-Jenn

Patreon Update – July 6 2015

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Please consider pledging to my Patreon! And now, on with the update:

 

I am uncertain if I’m updating too often, and flooding your inboxes with junk email, so I’m thinking of just updating before I update comics, or maybe twice a week instead of five times. Let me know if any of you have thoughts on this.

Back to our regularly scheduled update: today I finished the last of the current page (and I still have to upload it at the website) but you can see some shots of my progress:

Above: I fixed Jame’s face to look a little more like a kid’s face. I need to go and fix Eugene’s now that I’m looking at it. Dang it, and here I thought I was done!

Below: James and Eugene waving to Bethany. I know I want her sitting on a broken building, so now I have to add the pencils and inks for that.

Below: forcing myself to add more pencil work before I start getting carried away with inks. I have a tendency to ink before I really pencil and I think it’s a bit of a bad habit.

Starting to fill the page up with shadows and highlights, plants and little details to build the world.

Started adding spraypaint on the buildings, and if you look to Bethany’s left (our right) you’ll see a teeny tiny little spray paint bottle. I’ve been telling a story in my head that it’s Bethany that’s been adding to the graffiti of the city, but instead of “pro-monster” slogans, she’s been rebelling against her cultist family by writing things like “squidies suck.”

Later tonight I’ll finish formatting the page, and upload it to the Era of Great Wonders site!

I also need to scan in my weekly monster drawings, as well as send out the pdfs for those of you in the $5+ tiers!

-Jenn

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