Thursday, September 13, 2007

Girls with Slingshots fan art

Okay, this will probably be a quick post since it's so late. Just finished putting the final touches on this... some fan art of "Girls with Slingshots". I wanted to send Danielle a one of a kind "thank you" for the time she gave me on Sunday at the Baltimore Comic Con.
You probably won't get the joke unless you are familiar with Girls with Slingshots. And if you aren't, you really should add it to your list of web comic reads. I just discovered it a few weeks ago and if it isn't obvious by now, I'm loving the strip (maybe too much?).
Anyway, here is Hazel and Jamie at a comic book convention...

Currently listening to "Timespace" - Stevie Nick's Greatest Hits


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

New Capes 'N' Babes concept sketches

Hey gang,

After attending the Baltimore Comic Con this past weekend and talking with Brad Guigar (Evil Inc.) and Danielle Corsetto (Girls with Slingshots), I decided to revisit and re-vamp my original web comic strip idea, Capes 'N' Babes.

I have decided to add a couple of characters that will drastically change the look and feel of the strip. I thought you all might like to see some concept sketches I just created for the two big characters I'm adding to the strip.

The first one is Roy. Roy's a werewolf. I won't go into too much details about his origins here except to say he's not your typical "turns into a werewolf every full moon" kind of werewolf.

Here's some Roy concept sketches for you all:
Original Roy sketch I did last night:

ROY #1:

ROY #2:

ROY #3:

ROY #4:

ROY #5:

ROY #6:


Next Character: B.C.
BC is LOOSELY based on my next door neighbor - at least in terms of looks.

Here's B.C.:

I haven't done a lot of background writing for B.C. yet... mostly just working on his visuals right now.

Hope you all enjoyed!

Currently listening to WOLF FM (an internet radio station on iTunes)


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Monday, September 10, 2007

The 2007 Baltimore CamicCon...

Well, the Baltimore ComicCon was this weekend (Sept. 8 & 9th). Thus far, this is been my eigth or ninth year attending the Con. Each year, it gets a bit bigger although it's still not qute as big as the Pittsburgh Comic Con, but it's getting close. How do I know? Costumes.

That's right. I said costumes!

For the last couple of years, There's been a sudden trend for people showing up in Baltimore dressed in costumes. This year had the biggest number of costumes showing up. Saw a Spider-man, Blade, one Jedi but LOTS AND LOTS of Star Wars Stormtroopers, Imperial Officers and at least three different Darth Vaders. So 2007 takes the prize for the most  costumed attendees at Baltimore ComicCon then any previous year. If this trend grows, can a costume parade/contest be very far behind?

Evil Inc.This year, I decided to go to the Con for the sole purpose of seeking out Brad Guigar - the writier and artist of Evil, Inc. A few months ago, Brad and I started up a bit of an e-mail exchange about my CMX Suite strip and he has been gracious enough to take some time out of his much busy Eisner-nominated life to give me some very welcomed tips about CMX Suite and ways that I could improve the strip. So one of my main goals this year was to personally seek him out and meet him face to face. We've had some great e-mail exchanges but there really isn't any substitute for meeting someone and talking with them face to face. It's even a bit more special when you've known the digital persona for a while but you finally get to meet the flesh and blood persona.

I had a great time talking with Brad (maybe too much as I was probably keeping him from selling more stuff - Sorry Brad!). In any case, I really enjoyed talking to him and I'm looking forward to seeing him again next month at the Small Press Expo in Bethesda, Maryland. I also really appreciated "talking shop" with him as well... whether it was about web comics or the daily grind of the graphic design/web design world we both share. And as I told him before I left on Sunday, maybe by this time next year, I'll be in a booth beside him peddling my Capes 'N' Babes stuff. That has to happen as I'm really growing tired of being on the sidelines watching the game. It's time to start playing and maybe with a revamped Capes 'N' Babes, I can finally start doing that.

Girls with SlinghotsThe other person I'd like to mention very specifically is Danielle Corsetto. Danielle not only shares the same name as my daughter but she also writes and draws Girls with Slingshots. I just recently discovered Danielle's work from an interview that was posted on Comic Book Resources. I don't know... maybe I'm weirdly attracted to people who are doing web comics AND are graphic designers or currently working in the design field. Danielle was a graphic designer who is now doing Girls with Slingshots full-time - just as Brad is a newspaper guy - so maybe I'm drawing inspration from them. If they can do their strip five days a week and still do the "real job gig" thing, maybe I can too.

Anyway, as with Brad, I specifically sought Danielle out. I made my introductions on Saturday and came back on Sunday and had a great conversation with her as I was asking for some real world advice. Danielle, thanks for taking the time out of your busy sketch log and sitting down and sharing with me some things that worked and didn't work for you. You didn't need to do that - especially from a guy you only just met the day before. I hope my questions didn't backlog you too much. But I want you to know all of your answers were greatly appreciated and will definately be put to good use.

This year was very unusual for me in the sense that I almost never seem to make it a habit of actually conversing with the people I very much admire. I don't know why. Maybe there's a bit of starstruck crap in my head... maybe there's some sort of "Wayne's World - we're not worthy" thing going on... I don't know, but what I do know is that one person I was really looking forward to seeing (again) was Mike Wieringo. He normally attends every Baltimore Comic Con since it's (almost) local for him but with his sudden death a few weeks ago, maybe there was something that finally clicked in my head that said "Dude! Time is wasting away. If not NOW, WHEN, stupid???". And so I tried to make it a point to force myself  to introduce and talk to people I admire - not as "superstars" but just as regular folk who are genrally interested to meet people who admire their work. The strange thing is, online, I'm never hesitant to strike up a conversation or e-mail exchange with another artist that I like or admire. One of those people that I've had planty of online conversations with is Franchesco. Last year, I did a caricature of Franchesco and Joe Pekar and posted it online to a forum they both frequented. I met Joe Pekar last year and talked to him a bit and he remembered it. This year, I did the same with Franchesco and he too loved it as well. He even asked another fan to take our pics together (I have one too but need to get it developed) and we chatted for quite a bit.

On the last day, I made it a point to stop by the Image booth and talk to Kris Straub and Scott Kurtz. Every year, I say the same thing... I'm going to talk to Scott and introduce myself but for a variety of various reasons, it never seemed to work out but this year, Sunday afternoon seemed to be an ideal time to talk with them. Sometime last year, when Kris and Scott were having fun with their Aviators, I had posted a stupid little thing on this blog where I thought Kris - in Aviators - sort of resembled on of the characters form Reno 911. It was just a silly thing to amuse myself since, as a caricaturist, I really did think Kris' facial structure resembled the character from Reno 911. Kris doesn't look anything like the actor from Reno except when he's wearing those Aviators. Anyway, he was a good sport about it and even posted a comment on my blog about it. He was even more of a sport as I talked to him about it on Sunday - which is always tricky because, as a caricaturist, you never know how someone is going to react to your humorous take on them.

My big bragging moment with Scott came when I introduced myself and he commented that he was, indeed, familiar with my work. That was a pretty big shocker for me as CMX Suite is a tiny little web strip that not many people seem to know about. I've sent him a few e-mails here and there but I know how popular he is so I never expected any reply or anything. Besides that, CMX Suite was always designed for a very specific target audience. I think I always understood it was going to be very limited in what I did - or could do - with it. It's still fun to do but if I take anything away from my brief moment of talking with Scott (as well as everyone else this year), it's that I really DO need to do my own stuff. And maybe... just maybe if I get off my lazy butt and really apply myself to Capes N Babes, the next time I meet and talk with Scott, he'll be more then just familiar with my work.

Curently listening to How Far We've Come, by Matchbox Twenty


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