Sunday, August 31, 2008

Short update

I finished the Star Trek cover I'd had for a while. I wish I could bring myself to do more unrelated/graphic design covers as apposed to the sort of splash-page covers I have been doing. man I wish I could do the covers for the superman/batman/catwoman/supergirl shows etc. But I guess I'm holding down the fort for the more boring covers, I could draw superheroes all day long - do, lol - but it's hard to make something as calm as star trek visually appealing, I guess maybe I should appreciate it - maybe I'm learning more this way - rather than doing something I already know I'm good at or capable of. I'll post more on that when it officially comes out so I can talk about it, I finished my redo of pg 18 rough for James' and I's comic. I also did character sketched for Phil's comic and talked with him a bit. I finally have 2 days off coming up and I intend to use them, I got the final sound fx scripts done for episodes 1-8/11, so I need to finish that up, and should probably make it priority. I also found out about an amazing band called, August Burns Red - which will influence my drumming dramatically. Apparently the video of our 2nd practice did not turn out but we might get recording room this next time so that we have it down. I couldn't get to sleep till 4:30 am last night after working for 11hrs, good thing I don't have to work until later today. I've also been listening to allot of Massive Attack which is really good in a different way. Also here's that cover from the last blog when I was talking about the FF issue.

Monday, August 25, 2008

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

The Good:

I had a great second practice with Phil and Carlos, we arranged the songs in the order we will play them for shows and played them in that order. What's even cooler is we got the set on tape, we'll have to see how the recording quality is though. If nothing else they're going to make it a cd for me to practice by.

I got all the breakdowns done with James of the 1st issue of our comic. He wants to ink his own stuff so it could be quite a while till this first issue is done considering he has about 17 of the 22 pages to do. The next issue is more me though so it should go faster.

The Bad:
I dont know what type of paper to use because mine is not good for inking, its the crap blue line pro stuff and James had a tablet of 14X11 bristol paper and just started drawing (like i warned him not to) and inking, I explained that it was not proportional to 11x17 not to mention the image area was suposed to be 10x15. He was shocked, and eventually we settled on that he would do his pages 9-1/3x14 to stay proportional to the 10x15 of a normal comic. Well he's got a few weeks in Florida to work on it so hopefully he gets a lot done. He's so easily distracted and it's very frustrating to try to help him, show him, do it for him and then come back the next day and either he's forgot the stuff we worked on, lost it or is distracted again. I have too many things to do and like my old friend Ben, he is usually 2-3 hours later than he says he will be, so I've had to go to his place just to stick him with some times.

I've been procrastinating the Star Trek cover because my waccom tablet has stopped running on my computer so coloring is going to be a bi**h.

No one has replied to my email about needing help for Terra Novus, I think I just need to record the voice tracks with me, Robin and maybe a few other friends that will help. It's no wonder I have not had too many collaborations - someone else always falls through and nothing ever gets finished. I guess it did take me about 6 months to write the scripts though. I still need to do promo's for the show - meaning posters etc. Posters for needing voice actors, auditions etc and get them approved and around scad. Most importantly I need to finish the "sound fx bible" and "music que bible" for the guys so they can get started, my vague and quick emails have not been enough for them to start anything so I'm hoping a specific list with details and descriptions should get them pointed in the right direction.

The Ugly:
My computer crashed, again, it was working so well and then it just quit in the middle of me doing something. Every few restarts I'd get it for a few minutes but then it would die again, till it got to the point that it would just load the windows start up progress bar and stop - a few minutes later say "can't find hard drive." I took it apart, cleaned it, vacuumed and found a wire that wasn't plugged in (not sure if it happened when I moved or when I opened it) but when I closed it back up it worked again. So now I'm copying all my stuff to my external drive.
Now I need to start the process I tried to forget and reinstall everything, AGAIN! I'm pretty sure it was the driver for my old parallel scanner that has messed it up both times so I will make sure to leave that one out this time, it also has a problem with removing itself. I still hadn't sorted out and mixed all my old i-tunes and old files with my new ones, I'm not sure what's the same and what is new between the hard drive and my new computer. I think there is a way to sinc them together though so one is the same as the other, however that could slow my computer and if there was a problem they would both have it.
I'm going crazy working so much, my girlfriend wont be working much less during the school year, she tried getting a job at a bakery, she has other options and we'll just have to see how things work out. I think I'm going to have to turn down a manager position so I can say no to working so many hours during the school year. The projects I'm doing I don't know if I would be able to do at any other time in my life with the people I'm doing them with so I think it sounds like oportunity knocking at the door and I'd rather take that than the money. It's idealistic but I got a raise anyway, so if I could do it before I know I can do it now.
We tried drinking green tea again after about a year and 3/4 w/ no cafine, she says it helps her I think it puts me more on edge.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Keeping Busy

So I have 2 comics to ink and pencil for Phil as a prelude for his movie.
I'm doing monthly covers for the Star-Trek: Defiant audio drama.
I have a 10-issue story I have to co-write and pencil and ink with James.
I have to record, direct and produce all my 11 episodes of Terra Novus before the beginning of Winter Quarter.
I have a job.
I will have school coming up here pretty soon - full time student.
I of course have a girlfriend.
And just became the drummer for Xyris, and will have weekly practices as well as upcoming shows I need to plan around.
I think I've got my time pretty much planned out for me, I really want to be able to do them all and will try my very best, this could be a very productive and rewarding quarter - if I can make it!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Inspirtaion - What I want to and have been reading

Man I've been reading some good stuff, if only I had the money to buy it. Here's what is currently inspiring me.

Graphic novles:

DC - Superman: Doomsday – ok so obviously the new omnibus, awesome but expensive. After seeing the new WB animated movie I was intrigued much more by the special features detailing the creation of the comic book arc and have wanted to read them ever since. There are alot of classic anatomy things I can learn from Jurgens and Brendings too, their good most of the time.

MARVEL - Astonishing X-men: Unstoppable - grew to love the art and always loved Joss' writing. I’ve only read the 1st graphic, I need to read the middle 2 before this one but my girlfriend has read them and loved them. Just knowing that there is an end is nice, so often in comics things are left so randomly ambiguous and open-ended.

DC - Simon Dark vol. 1 - Awesome art and very cool jigsaw/slipknot looking character.

MARVEL - Moon Knight - Vol 1. the bottom – (I did want to get the original “essential moon knight’s” since I always did like him, and guiltily Dark Hawk, but Sinkevitch did some really cool stuff when he was kind of in his Neal Adams) broken, pill popping and alcoholic moon knight broods over his bloody encounter where he cut the face off one of his enemies killing him (or so he thought) right after he was tossed down from the rooftop of an alley breaking his legs and bones w/ every fire escape he hit. Amazing art by Finch and even better writing and commentary on what a super-hero is, how far he can go etc.

MARVEL - Spider-man - One more day - heard the plot synopsis from a friend, amazing artwork. Peter dodges a bullet that kills Aunt May and makes a pact to trade his love with Marry Jane for her life back, leaving him only one more day before he forgets her entirely. The idea being if they are soul mates they will meet again, kind of like Goto's comic.

DC - IDENTITY CRISIS - Awesome art, awesome story - One of the few thing's I’ve been interested in from Dc in a while. Plus it has a artist/writer interview in the end - all for 15 bucks.

Image - Wildstar – still trying to see if this is collected in a graphic yet or not, I read an article on it in an old “comics magazine” and was excited.

MARVEL - Essential Fantastic 4 Vol 7. - I heard and have been waiting for this one, issue 141: reed is forced to shoot his own son (turning him into a vegetable and "shutting down his brain") as his powers threaten to grow out of control and destroy the whole world, despite his decision the team breaks up, sue considers divorce. In the next few issues, on his own the thing gets into trouble w/ no one to help him and Reed goes out to dinner with Medusas (I always loved the Inhumans) only to find Doctor Doom (like Darth Vader on cloud city in Empire Strikes Back), then jealously fights Namor for Sue.
Medusa: You can't blame yourself like this, you did what you had to do.
Is that good enough, will that bring my son back, will it make my wife love me again?
-It's so dark and so good. He becomes so conflicted it's amazing, though the art isn't top notch in the issues following.

Both X-men and Fantastic 4 have come out in their entirety on cd for about $40 which is what I should probably buy, FF even comes with the entire silver surfer collection now. But if I got the X-men one I'd get to see Neal Adam's do X-men, old JRJR in what I consider his prime.

I wish I could cheaply get the Daredevil book Frank Millar wrote with JRJR's art, it now comes in an omnibus with Frank's work and Sinkevitch's Electra book. Awesome, but oh so expensive.


Comico comics - The Elementals - I bought issues 1-30 off of ebay but promised myself I wouldn't start reading them until I got done writing Terra Novus. I found a few issues in the quarter bins in NY and I had dying for some more ever since. It's superheroes from an indie standpoint, no rules - sex, gore, violence - does it cross the line?

Epic comic's - Powerline Saga - Al Williamson, who also worked on Elementals - amazing realistic art, more realistic superheroes.

Marvel – Ghost Rider: Spirits of Vengeance – it was dark and drawn by the Kubert kids in their prime so you know it’s good.

Marvel - Morbius the living vampire – had all but the 1st issue and I’ve been holding off on reading it till then. Eventually the artist changed but the 1st 10 issues or so I’ve loved since I was a boy.

Vertigo – Scarab – Have all but one issue so I have the same problem as Morbius. Amazing art, psychedelic, Gaiman-esk writing – awesome.

In other news:

Legion of Superheroes Tv show – so it’s not a comic and it’s cancelled now but I watched the 1st 4 episodes w/ my little brother and they were actually really good. I don’t like the art as much but I can stand it for the stories and the change in season 2 and the finale for season 1 look to set up some pretty interesting dynamics. I’m looking forward to watching some more.

I should be able to start writing the 1st issue of me and James’ 10 issue mini-series tomorrow, we’ve worked out the plot roughly and the 1st issue rather tightly. I get new ideas daily and if I have the time and we stick to it we could have a very cool story here, longer, serialized and very fun to work on, highlighting both of our styles.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Xyris is a Go!

I'm a drummer again! And more seriously than ever, I've messed around with Justin and Nash, recorded and edited jams and even created a cd with Dan and Justin in "Comfort and Chaos," played a few bits and recorded like two songs with Tyler in "Instrumetal," talked and met and had to eventually leave before we started a dream theater inspired band in Co, played a practice that I was not asked back in "Die like able" in Ga, and now am officially the new drummer for Xyris, with Carlos and a guy I met from work named Phil. They are right up my musical alley, and headed toward the stuff I want to be doing, heavyier prog-based music. We played a few of their songs and I caught on fast and even jammed a few with suprizing sincapation. We should be playing shows after a few more practices, I need to get a carpet so that I can map out my drums for shows. Were practicing in a place called "5 below" where you can buy 3 hours with their amps and drum kit, studio etc for 30 bucks. No big transport needed, no need to annoy neighbors etc. I'm scared for my drum set, it's a piece of crap and I don't know how it will sound live, or if I practice on another kit and play on mine if it will feel wierd. Anyway for not drumming for close to 6 months, except for a few times, I was very in shape and rather pleased with myself. I can't wait to play a show with thee guys! Hear them at their website or their myspace here
ps: they say I can do whatever I want with the drums, considering my style is not that far out what they're lookinbg for.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

11 scripts - Terra Novus is finished!

I finished my scripts 2 days ago, I was home all day it rained all day, the scripts got so much better the more I got into it. 11 scripts between 12 and 18 pgs each, which officially makes it the largest longest thing I've ever written or completed. Yay!

I think I might get to film part of the last script as a teaser for the show, it should be pretty cool. It would be a 1st person view from Android 808, otherwise known as Bob. The two men say some incriminating things in front of him because they think that he's turned off little do they know he is on and recording. So it would have a heads up display and stuff kind of like the 1st person shots in the beginning Robocop.

It will be kind of like the Dharma initiatives orientation video. It wont make any since but might stir up some mystery about the show. Heres the one from lost.

I just added this under the updates for the group "SCADRD (scattered) Savannah College of Art and Design Radio Dramas)

"So it doesn’t look like were going to be able to air the show this fall, due to everyone being out of town for the summer. But I have finished all 11 scripts now.

Now I need a few people that would like to get together and just casually read the scripts for temp dialog, so we can record them and start adding temp sound fx and music. That way we can start to judge timing and especially with a radio play to see if the audience can understand all the bits from the sounds alone, since reading the script is quite different than just listening.

Im getting together a sound fx bible and music bible as well, for those of you that are doing that, so that it is not necessary for those guys to read all the scripts. I will also try and get together voice character descriptions, like what accents etc they will have. That way people could either pick who they like, think they can do, or audition for.

So if anyone is interested or back in town, I would like to start soon, these episodes could take anywhere from 15 mins to 45 mins to record each, we could do one at a time or whatever each actor has time for and then mix them with the other actors when they can record their’s.

Let me know what you guys think, and if anyone is interested. If you’re not, maybe you can put the word out - I’ll be putting together posters to get more help and designing promo stuff for the show as well.

I’m going to have a separate promo poster for each episode so I also need 11 artist that would like to do some posters.

Sorry for the long wait, but I think we are finally ready to get this show on the road. Z"

Monday, August 11, 2008

Inspiration and Pressure

Inspiration - in any art form it is vital. As soon as summer hit I stopped, stopped drawing, stopped writing -the want was there but the pressure and the inspiration were gone. I was able to write 7 of 10 episodes for Terra Novus while in my last quarter of last year and then stopped when I started getting too much home work. We've been working 40hrs + this summer and got a raise, and for some reason I started drawing and writing again. Both have suffered setbacks but it's also a time for cleaning of skills. You are stripped back to what is really left, what you really know and it shows you what you were just faking and what you need to work on. That's a optimistic way to look at it. But really the biggest thing that I can hope for is that the work that I do will be inspiration for someone else and I will add to the cycle of artists creating and inspiring the next set of material.

But practically I should finish the final episodes in this next week. After a gridlock of about a month, I started rereading and editing the first 7 scripts - I just finished today. Seeing how much the scripts got progressively worse I know I need to edit. It seems like such a shadow of the glory I meant for it. I only had 2 scripts to go and I got writers block for two or three months.

Now after much inspiration and pondering I'm back at it. I had even prevented myself from reading unrelated material so that I wouldn't get more distracted, which I plan to reward myself with when I'm done. Everyone has kind of fallen through, been out of contact or out for the summer - My plan at the beggining was to finish the scripts and have the first few shows done by the time school started - looks like I'll be putting it off for a bit longer. However this quarter should be fairly easy and I hope to make the most of it since last quarter last year was hell.
Batman was amazing but like Watchmen was for the writer of Batman Begins, it only served as a bar I knew I could never meet in that media.
PS: major inspirations for my radio drama include Lost, which took a break until January and Flash Gordon which I've finished the 1st tape and the second is ruined. Both of which stopped me in my tracks. Not to mention a short stint working with James on his story, but he's turning out to be as reliable on projects as his friend was at the comic shop for him. I hope it happens, we even planned out a 10-issue story ark, but who knows.

Artistically I started doing some emotive art and it was really a launching point for finding myself again. It's dark and egotistical but somehow making pictures of myself that I hate beautiful or even just cool makes me feel better about it. Anyway check it out at my deviantpage.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Batman: DK

ok before i get started on batman
frozen tapioka pudding = delicious.

how do i watch anything after this movie? anything i was working on, any movie i have, comic book i've read, project i could do... i don't know if it will ever come close to this film. im in a state of awe this morning after seeing The Dark Knight last night, the ending was my favorite part ***pseudo spoilers***
when this movie pushes the idea that batman is more than a hero, harvey is that hero because he works inside the rules, batman is something more. he takes the blame for two-faces killings to clear harvey's name even in death, even knowing this the commishioner calls in the police to hunt Batman. Batman says he is whatever gotham needs him to be, he endures it because he can. He can take that weight on his shoulders so that the city can keep hope in the public hero, the white knight, the late harvey dent and what he did for the city. They also talk alot about either "dying a hero or living long enough to see yourself become the villian" and give the example of Ceasar, that he was given all power in a time of need to protect the city and he took over it like a dictatorship. So Batman considers hanging up his mantle.
Joker keeps changing his story about how he got his scars, all of which are terrifying and tragic but amazing at the same time. Two face's creation and backstory is rich as well, blaming Batman for chosing to save him and let Rachel die, even though my girlfriend says that joker switched the addresses and Batman was after Rachel. either way he tries to make gordon go through the same thing. some fo the cops, specifically teh ethenic female that calls gordon's wife from teh house at gunpoint and one of the larger cops look like "montoya and bullock." her design on the show was very similar to elisa's on gargoyles. ok so maybe i could watch gargoyles but nothing else after this movie!
He talks of how she was going to wait for him, even though alfred has a letter from her saying she was going to marry harvey. they say the truth is not enough (also works and the movie plays to the point of the city hunting batman) that sometimes they need something more.
batman begins was good, before i saw this movie - allot of things were, now everything seems so trivial. this movie has shook me to my core and redefined what i thought a movie could be (not just a superhero movie), what a story can show, what a hero is, and what is important.
this movie is so much less linear than the first, there were enough scenes, plotlines and reversals to fill two or even three regulkar movies. it was like each plot point came at you so fast i didnt even have time to let the full impact of it set in before another was introduced. it was not like batman and robin where they crammed in as many badguys as they could so that it would feel bigger than the last one, and cut out everything important about the characters, this was all about the characters.
as many people have said, "heath ledger was not in this movie, joker was" and that is so true. he was so different there were only a few scenes where i was able to catch something of his normal manerisms voice etc. he took everything jack nicholson did right and added on it, because it was nicholson-eske, and the way he kept licking his scars at the sides of his mouth like a dog was so wierd, and he did it so casually. amazing, amazing, amazing.
batman did get a little gadgetey for my taste, the sonar vision so reminiscant of daredevil or batman forever. sticky bomb guns, etc - it was kind of like a james bond movie. i did love his bike though. im stil not sure how it works through, it was something like the left and right tires of the batmobile rotates to line up and had something like independant 360 degree mobility, very agile, very cool. i kept thinking his cape was going to get caught in the tire though. i liked that the spikes in his arm shot out but i guess im kind of partial to the batman in the gray tights and classic black bat logo on the chest with no yellow, kind of like an alex ross batman. i still think keaton looked like a better batman, and i like his suit better. batmans voice is a little over done, sounding like a metal singer - im kind of partail to kevin conneroy from the animated show's version.
i also was looking forward to and found the anime segments of google video, just type in "gotham knight part" and you'll get them all - still need to watch them - i think its about the only thing i can watch at this point. lol