Sunday, June 30, 2013

Tiny Teen Titans

sketch cards
Color pencil and ink on Bristol Board.

I'm not especially fond of big-headed character design (also know as “super-deformed” in Manga circles), at least not to the point where I’d make it my primary style. I’ll admit, however that what looks good on 2-1/2" x 3-1/2" cards are big heads, either as portraits or Charlie Brown proportioned folks. As I prefer to draw full poses over portraits or busts, I started to draw this style for cards.

Here toward the end of one of last year’s conventions I drew the Teen Titans of the 2002 animated series’s designs. This was before I’d seen any thing of the DC Nation shorts and much before the new, yet-to-be-announced Teen Titans GO! series.

I was hoping to sell the cards as a set, but later Robin and Raven would be sold separately breaking up the set.

[bigger @ tumblr]

TAGS July 04 & 05, 1994

07/04: That’s What Sneeze Said

07/05: Polly Alley Sniffle All Day 

July 04: Polly (penguin) suffers from the symptoms of seasonal allergies, and yet manages to conduct herself for a positive guest experience by stifling it just long enough. This certainly is derived from my own struggles with pollen season. It’s been almost a dozen strips since Monster had been placed in a prominent roll in TAGS. This was an effort to develop the cast of character more. There’s not particular reason that Polly was chosen to have hay fever. If anything, I must have felt it was her time to by featured in a couple of strips which converged with my want to try some allergy gags.

July 05: If it isn't the sniffling and sneezing that comes with hay fever that gets you, then it’s the drowsiness and other potent symptoms of the counter-acting medicine. Carolyn (raccoon, 6th appearance) is the front-of-house lead doling out breaks. In her hands is an over-sized break sheet which are really more pocket-sized. One would think the size was necessary to contain the word “BREAKS”, but it just reads better that a tiny scrap of paper. Polly (22) has has marks on her nose which if successful stands in for a red, irritated nose. If not so successful, Polly looks like seagull. Oh for the want of color.

This second strip in particular is another example my fascination with using sound effects as visual elements. The joke structure there may require a fourth panel payoff. Sara at what is referred to as “bevees” has had two previous appearances, but obviously doesn’t need to bee seen (i.e. take up valuable panel space) here. See, there’s a reason for almost everything?

Off of the top of my head, I think my technical pen must have been clogging up or some thing. That’s the only reason I can think of for the scratchiness of the art. 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Mini Heroes

Ink on paper
17.78 x 16.193 cm (7" x 6.375")

I definitely had the Heroes Convention on my mind when I did these steam of consciousness doodle during a morning meeting.

[Robin detail at .tumblr]

Monday, June 10, 2013

Red Capes

HEROES CONVENTION, Charlotte, NC June 7-9, 2013 — I had another spendid time a Heroes Con this past weekend. It’s encouraging to get a few folks looking for new adventures of Tuff-Girl, which I had with last year’s issues number 2 of Unstoppable Tuff-Girl.

I did plenty of commissioned convention sketches too.

And when not busy doing that, I did some speculative sketches, often featuring my go to subject, Supergirl.

At one point on Sunday, I sketched up Big Barda of Jack Kirby’s New Gods. If I didn’t sell it by the end of the Con, it was something that a friend of mine might like to have. Well, my friend is going to have to wait for another time for me to draw Big Barda.

[bigger images at monotonae.tumblr]


Thursday, June 6, 2013

Heroes Convention - 2013

The Heroes Convention folks only this week had up dated information including table assignment information.

This year the convention has grown to about twice its size of the past few years! That means twice the fun!

Heroes Convention
Charlotte Convention Center
501 S. College St.
Charlotte, NC 28202

Fri. June 7 - Sun. June 9, 2013

Visit me at the Monster Enterprises table, Artist Alley: AA-430

Monday, June 3, 2013

Cartooning Mondays

(clock-wise from top-left: Dash the Dachsund, a Chihauhau, Marbols the Cat, intern bird, a pig, Hilarity Hare, Hilarity (again), a sheep dog).
Sketches. ink on paper, 2013
Have I never discussed Cartoon Mondays on Monotonae? Well, then this is going to be a poor introduction to it. My apologies.

Above in the mix of anthropomorphic critters are Dash, Marbols, Hilarity and an intern bird. They were created for my attempt to make a weekly comic strip at work after I was hired at Cartoon Network in 2001. You see, I thought I’d be able to find a few free minutes at days’ ends here and there. I thought I’d be able to do a little work satire to blow off steam or deflate some of the ridiculous aspects of the job, much as I had with BackSTAGE and STAGElights when I worked for Disneyland’s French Market Restaurant, Second Hand Comics at Disneyland’s New Century Timepieces, and mini-poster series at Disney Consumer Products. It turned out that free minutes were hard to come by. The strip died after, I don’t know, maybe two dozen irregularly posted installments.

A few years later, I pitched it to the Network as an idea for a series of two-minute shorts.

Now it only lives in my repertoire of things I sketch at work, I think largely because there’s something about a character by the name Hilarity that just shouldn’t be allowed to fade.

The Parrot Trap

birds, sketches, 
ink on paper, 2013

First I drew a bird that looked like a parrot (top left). THEN I drew it’s perch, whose design became like the ones for the performing audio-animatronic parrots of Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room. Then I drew the rest. “I may as well stick with the theme,” I thought.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

120 [m ] : D.B.D. ID

 In the summer of 2009, Cartoon Network tried a competition show called “Destroy Build Destroy”. On it, typically, two teams of young people competed in a three-stage battle where they 1) destroyed some kind of machine; 2) designed and built some kind of contraption from the remnants; and 3) used what they built to be the first to have accomplished a wild task - all with expert assistance.

They might have framed the competition of the likes of “Math Geeks versus Athletes”. To that end the Illustration group was asked to submit icon ideas for the different teams they planned for the first season. The guidelines were that the icons would have to work displayed small on screen.

The icons most difficult to create were for team pairings defined by age or size differences, say “Kids versus Parents”. I suspect that this was so because they’re contextual descriptors, in that a figure by itself neither immediately describes either kid nor parent, small nor big. It’s similar to the situation where a regular sized drink is not necessarily the medium sized drink, until there’s a small sized offered, and for that matter also a larger sized one.