Sunday, February 27, 2011

Roller Girls Versus

I noticed today that it's managed to be two weeks since I posted To be fair though, there are a couple of posts by me over on the handmade family blog, so you could go check that out, follow it, and suggest it to all your friends, acquaintances and family if you want. Or you could just go check it out. There's some pretty cool stuff, and my wife is putting up content about her work too, so that's pretty rad... and I'm better about putting pictures of the girls on there too, ha-ha-ha!

Okay, on to the real reasons (excuses) for not posting in two weeks. First, we've been accepted as vendors in a local hand-made cooperative, Fusion. More on that in the next couple of days, as we're working like crazy to get ready for set-up (I'm supposed to be designing our signing right now, actually). The second reason, is this new cover for the fine folks at Hex Games... Roller Girls Versus! I decided to take a different approach to it, and it kind of blew up in my face and took way longer than it should have. On the plus side though, I think I learned a couple of lessons and maybe earned a couple of experience points towards leveling up. I'm not going to jabber any more tonite, because I'm pretty beat, and still have work to do before bed.

Here's the pencils.
and here's the colored version. I pretty much just painted over the pencils this time, but there's a lot more going on than usual. Like I said..."trying something new". Ha-ha-ha! I hope you all like it.
Until next time, take care and be good.
Your friend,

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Problem With Magna Doodles and a "Failed" Daily Life

I don't know if any of you have ever watched the show "Pokemon" or not. The show revolves around a boy who travels the world looking for cute little monsters to trap...or collect. Whatever. He then trains the little guys and takes them to tournaments to fight other pokemonsters. Like a cock-fight with superpowers. I imagine that trying to catch pokemon is only slightly easier than trying to catch a drawing that a two-and-a-half year old has done on a Magna Doodle. I'd been trying to get a good picture (heck, any picture) of this drawing since she was drawing jack-o-lanterns in November. Each new thing from that girl simultaneously thrills, amazes and saddens me. Really, it's one of the most difficult and at the same time rewarding things about watching them grow up. And we've just gotten started!

I started working on some new single illustration "Daily Life's" this week. I'd found this list of 100 themes by Robin Hall at Bubblegum Bullet. While I do have plenty of stories, it seems like it could be fun as well as a good exercise to fit them into the themes...sort of diversify my portfolio, or something. This first one is "Introduction", I'll get to the story in a minute... Ha-ha-ha! First I want to talk about the art. I know that's unusual with the Daily Life drawings, but I don't like this and want to do it over. So I'm going to talk about it.
When I started the Daily Life drawings, they were simple warm-ups that allowed me to work in a relaxed manner and experiment with new techniques. That hasn't changed, but I've been a little surprised with how well they have been received. I'm working on a new cover for Hex right now too, and wanted to try something new... a new way to draw and color the art. So I did this one first. There are a lot of things I like about it, but I don't really care for how the pencil went down on the paper. Originally, when I bought this pad of paper it was to do pencil drawings on. I liked the rough texture and thought it would be a good match. It isn't. So I am switching to a smoother paper next time (either smooth bristol board, or I might try Reeves BFK again), and will try again.
This past weekend I went up to Green Bay with some friends to watch the Super Bowl (Yes we knew the actual game was in Dallas, but you have to watch the Packers win all the marbles in GREEN BAY). For the party, AA (that's double A) made some great pizza using pretzel dough for the crust. There was a lot of work to do in the kitchen, and the game was going to start soon, so I offered to help. Chopping vegetables. I was thinking later how odd it is to greet people coming over with a hand-shake from one hand, while holding a knife in the other. Not the kind of introduction we normally want to have.

Justin told me the other day that I write a lot in my posts. Is it too much? Are you all thinking "More art, less words Jeffrey!"? Leave a comment! Let me know! Until next time, then. Take care and be good.

Your friend,

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

More Resolutions, and Some Daily Life Drawings

I did something out of the ordinary at the library the other day...I actually talked to two people I didn't know. Not at the same time, either. This might not seem like a big deal, as I don't think I come off as a particularly shy or introverted person. And really I'm not, but getting the conversation started has always been a stumbling block for me. What do you say to people? Small talk (at least what we think of as small talk) just seems so...I don't know...small. On the other hand, you can't exactly open a conversation by talking about comparative world religions or how Sam Raimi ruined "Spiderman 3" and ways the movie could've been saved. Perhaps the problem is just that I'm over thinking it.

On that note, I made a resolution to myself the other day. I always tell people, that when it comes to school, blogging, forums, or heck, even just life, you get out of it what you put into it. This sounds like good simple advice, but it's hard to live up to sometimes. As a step in the right direction, I've resolved to comment back on comments received within a day instead of waiting until the next time I post. Also, I'm going to start commenting more often on the blogs that I follow. I know I always appreciate hearing from all of you out there in the world, so...

Okay. That's enough drama for the day! I did some new water colored character sketches of the girls and me as I continue to work on some new Daily Life ideas. I've started writing several stories that I think are pretty good, and have the thumbnails for one of the funniest things that happened over the Christmas break all done and ready to move on to a strip. You heard me. A comic strip...I hope you don't mind fart jokes. Ha-ha-ha!

There's also another reason I've done this set of watercolor portraits. We're using them as part of the promo, logo and ad portion of the new venture that Amy and I are working on. Pooling our resources, we've decided to form a new company "Handmade Family", focusing on gifts, accessories, games, and decor for growing families. We've set up a new blog for it, as well as an etsy shop to get things moving in the right direction. We have a couple of more plans to move forward, but will have to wait until they are a little firmer before talking too much about them. You can check out the blog here: Handmade Family. We'll be posting projects (both new, and in progress), events, specials, and whatever else strikes our fancy, so be sure to check in!

Whew! It's been snowing like crazy around here this week, and Amy's been home for the last three days. It's been nice having her, and we've gotten a lot done. I hope you all are all safe and warm. Until next time, take care and be good.

Your friend,