Ok, all I’m doing is throwing some colour on already existing sketches. You got me.
I’ve always loved Dr Who. Back in 2009, in a fit of panic about leaving my day job and deciding to be a full time artist – I hit the acrylic paints and painted up some stuff (I’ve blogged this before! sorry – nothing new here!)
Here’s those paintings again. I’d like to fire up the paints again, but I’ve moved over to water colours, and, to be honest, they’re a LOT faster…
So, Dept of Monsterology has had a long gestation, and, at time of writing, issue 2 is out there in all good comic shops- I hope you’re enjoying it! (and if you don’t know about it, it has Fish men monsters, Giant Cthulu statues, Dinosaurs and Hopping Chinese Vampires… and that’s just in the first two issues).
Back when Gordon and I were putting Monsterology together I did some pre production art that wasn’t quite there, here’s some of it:
For those not in the though, Harry Wilmington is a character from the creator owned series I draw called “Dept. Of Monsterology”, written by Gordon Rennie. He’s the big guy in a metal suit you may have seen me draw (Harry, not Gordon). He’s also a brain in jar, in a crab-robot body.
I’ve now drawn three of these little one page illos, for no other reason than ‘just because’. I keep thinking I’ll quickly run out of ideas, but for everyone one idea I’ve used I’ve erased three other ideas (that may or may not come back in).
There’s no story as such, more just me playing with the body language of Harry’s crab shell suit, and picking some silly thing for him to be set against. As I progress, they may get more involved looking or they may pick up elements of a story (but I’m not counting on it.)
By the end of the month, I hope to have 31 pages of it. Then we’ll see what we’re gonna do with those. It might make a fun sketch book type thing. And I need one of those.
(as an aside, Gordon views this as ‘non-canonical’)
November is a tricky month.
Contained within it’s dank, dark days is the anniversary of my mum’s death (10 years this year), my son’s birthday (9 this year) my wife’s birthday (not telling) the anniversary of her younger brother’s death (a particularly dark year) and it would also be her brother’s birthday.
So it’s been a grim old decades worth of November for us.
To counteract that, and to try and help me get my creative juices flowing, I’m doing two things: daily blogging (this will be the third day on the trot, go me!) and a daily sketch.
Why a daily sketch? Well, sometimes the prospect of drawing a full page of art is just too overwhelming to even start (stealing time away from family to draw makes it hard to do anything like a full page, and knowing that makes it hard to even do anything – paralysed with indecision). A daily sketch, building to a full sketchbook, might be just the ticket to unblock me. I haven’t settled on a theme, though the first pic (drawn on the first – I’m writing this on the 2nd, and it’ll be posted on the third!) is Harry Wilmington, our brain in a jar / brain in a giant robot suit, prodding … something.
Harry Wilmington is, as far as we can tell, some sort of man in a robot suit (though slightly more of this is revealed in issue 1 of Department of Monsterology).
The first version of Harry I did was pretty simple – based on early diving suits (hard shells, with small eye sockets around the entire head of the suit – good example here.) Unknown to me, as a non-gamer, this would draw inevitable comparisons to Big Daddy (from the game Bioshock) since we’re clearing going to the same well. Harry though IS some sort of hard shelled robot suit.
But version 1 of it, was pretty simple – and I got through about half a dozen pages before I reevaluated Harry and felt I wanted to add something a little peculiar – some sort of decorative edge to him, some gilding. Which meant redrawing every occurrence of Harry.
Here’s one of the redrawn pages as it was originally and as I redrew it.
episode one also features a cool reveal shot of Harry, that, on my first attempt I got a little carried away by the reaction shot of Emma Hampton (who joins Team Challenger on their mission, and in some respects, is the readers way in to the story…)
This is the original page, which I cropped in tighter to Harry – as it was really his moment. But I still like the body language on Emma.
I have been goofing around with water colour sketches.
As a rule I don’t sketch much, it feels like it’s time spent away from actually drawing comics. BUT – I should be sketching, it’s a way to play with ideas and techniques that I don’t get to do otherwise, and a way to rehearse drawings that I may end up doing properly later.
I’ve had a little box of water colours for an age now, and thought it’d be fun to get them out and play with them – last having used them over a year or more ago for nothing more than a couple of sketches.
I’m pretty pleased with the rsults, so much so, that I think, when I sketch at conventions, I might just sketch water colours – they’re fun, and easy and don’t take much more effort than fully inking a sketch (in fact, they don’t need the precision of inks to make them look good – just a some water and away you go)
Here’s something I just did – it may be the nicest sketch page I’ve ever drawn (most sketch pages composed of bits of arms and legs, etc)
(Annoyingly I haven’t figured out a way to scan them and get the lovely subtelties of the originals, so it’s not just as nice as the original…)