Viewtiful Joe

This thing on?

Thought I'd break my LJ silence by proclaiming that sweet_opiate is awesome.

And PAX has managed to sneak up on me. Our passes arrived this past week, and I've taken Friday and Monday (to recover! heh) off work, so we should be set!

Not sure if we're going to be there for all three days, I guess that depends on how the first day goes. I have *no* idea what one does at these things, but I imagine we'll find something. It is a nerd-fest after all!

Recent Art

Updated: Images are now coming from LJ's Scrapbook, and resized in the entry so that they're not gigantic and hard to scroll ;) Click to see full size versions.

It's been awhile since I'd done any drawing, after a flurry of it last year. In fact, looking at the file dates on the work I'd previously scanned, it looks like it's been nearly a year since the last drawing. Maybe it's a summer thing, or a coincidence, but I just recently picked up the pencil again.

Here's my most recent stuff, in the order they were created:

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MegaMan Boogie

Another Game done!

Today, Big Blue Bubble officially released the latest game that I ported to Mac OS for them, Home Sweet Home. You can find the game and download a free demo from here:

This makes the third commercial game that I've ported for them, and that has my name in the credits =) Cool stuff!

One of these days I'll get around to working on my own game though. No, really ;)

More sketches.

All the art will appear after the cut, as I didn't want to shrink the images.

First, I forgot to include my sketch of Val (Valeria from Fantastic Four, Reed & Sue's daughter). I did this one before the "Surprised Sue" and after the first Sue.

I Decided to try something that wasn't originally a drawing, so I took one of sweet_opiate's magazines and tried to draw the cover. I decided to try the entire torso and arms/hands too, as I haven't really done those previously.

The face came out OK, the torso is passable. The arms and hands are terrible (there were even worse before Rae showed me some things and fixed the slightly). Still, I thought it was OK for a first attempt at applying what I've learned so far to a photograph.

Then, while visiting silly_boy42 and fllngrdian this weekend I decided to try and draw a fairly complex cover art of X-23 that I had. My goal had been to try and draw long, flowing hair for the first time. But I ended up trying the body again anyway. Despite the ridiculous level of detail the original artist put into her clothes, I did everything but her necklace (until I ran out of room on the paper). I think it came out awesome, and it's the best piece I've done yet. Rae gave me some pointers on the hair for next time (I failed to do it in a cartoony style to match the rest)

Part of the challenge on this one was that I was drawing from a finished work; meaning that it was already inked and colored. The colorist had obviously had the benefit of Photoshop (which is typical), and he masked a lot of the details I've had before about the choices the penciler made. I wish I had more original pencil art to learn from, but that stuff's expensive =)

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On learning to draw

I don't really have an appropriate icon for this. Let's just pretend that bear is drawing in a sketchbook for now.

I've wanted to learn to draw since elementary school. I've always been very interested in sketches and comic style art (of the comic book variety much more than the newspaper comics). And immensely jealous of kids in school that could just whip out these amazing Ninja Turtle battle scenes in the course of 40 minutes. It seemed to me to be an ideal way to ignore math class, so I was forever trying to do what they did. I'd watch how they did it, but couldn't discern any rhyme or reason to the pencil movements. I'd try to copy their sketches to no effect.

They drew Ninja Turtles who looked like our beloved cartoons, I drew a Ninja Lemming that was an oval with legs. I think he was a lemming so that I could throw the failure that he was to me off a cliff and not feel bad about it.

But for Christmas, sweet_opiate bought me a sketch pad and pencils as a sign of encouragement. We also had a book called The New Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain sitting around. So, after much internal struggle to get over the "I'm just going to fail and be even more disappointed" voice in my brain, I sat down and gave the book a shot.

It actually spends a heck of a long time talking about her theory of the way the brain works and why she thinks her techniques work. (She does digress and say that the reason WHY could be totally wrong as she isn't a neurologist, but the techniques themselves have worked for her countless times nonetheless) She's been an art instructor since the 70s, and indeed the first edition of this book came out around then.

Anyway, one of the first things it has you do when you finally pick up a pencil is to try and draw something as you would without instruction. The purpose being to give you a benchmark against which to look back and measure progress. I was really reluctant to do this because I knew the results would be awful. But eventually I produced this horror:
Pre-Instruction drawing

Sorry for the 'bleedthrough' - the scanner sees through the thick paper, and I've been using both sides of the sheets so far because I didn't want to waste good paper on this terrible work.

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Rae had a chance to take a week off from work recently, and I had leftover vacation days I had to use before the 11th. So we decided we'd take a local trip and decided on Philadelphia.

We also decided to try taking the dog with us as an experiment. That part wasn't too bad, thought I don't think we'll be doing it again =)

The city was beautiful, cobblestone streets, brick sidewalks. It was generally quite clean too, and historic things were everywhere. There were war memorials next door to the hotel, and South Street was within easy walking distance. Another big plus of being in a city was the ready availability of Vegan/Vegetarian eateries. That's quite different =)

The highlight of the trip was a visit to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, which was featuring an exhibit on Frida Kahlo - a Mexican painter who is one of Rae's favorites. I have to admit that I'd known next to nothing about her before, but the tour was pretty interesting. I even saw some pieces that I liked, which I wasn't really expecting. Afterwards we took a quick, mostly targeted trip through the rest of the museum seeing masterpieces from most of the big names.

But we didn't see a crowd until we were leaving - mobbing the statue of Rocky. Go figure eh? =)

The hotel itself was the only low point of the trip, but I don't want to dwell on that since we had fun in spite of it. Suffice it to say that, the Sheraton Society Hill is absolutely not worth its price.