It’s been a while since I’ve posted but you haven’t missed anything. I really haven’t had much time to draw at all. Work has been what I always hope for: busy during the day and no late nights. Since that’s usually when I get my drawing done...
Suze and I went on vacation a week ago, back down to Harker’s Island, and had a great time (as did Toonces and Charlie) with her parents. I’d written out an entire post about it but deleted it after realizing it would be a boring read to anyone but us and we were there so we didn’t need to read it.
However, during vacation, I did a lot of walking and, during those walks, I worked the kinks out of the fifth chapter of HAND ME DOWN HORROR. When we got back, I wrote the script out in five days. That’s the quickest one yet. It’s got a few wrinkles that need smoothing but it’s the most action-packed chapter yet and I’m really looking forward to starting chapter six. I’ve got two more chapters, I think, before I’m done. Then I’ll do a quick rewrite to fix some trouble spots. Christian and Todd have been making some nice suggestions—thanks, guys!—and I’m going to be incorporating those. I really hope to be drawing by January.
Speaking of Todd...Todd and Sharon are coming down for a visit next month and Suze and I are really excited about it. Not only are we looking forward to seeing them outside a convention setting (fun but draining), it’s given me an excuse to do some much-needed work around the house. I got the back yard straight (much to my neighbors’ relief) a few weeks ago. This past week, I turned my attention to the inside and I got the second guest room in order. It had become a storage room in the last few years, sort of a catch-all for anything we didn’t know what to do with. Thankfully, it’s now a guest room again and I couldn’t be happier.
In the course of moving the stuff in there to a more appropriate place, I came across some great items. This room was where we were storing Mike’s non-artwork belongings and since I haven’t really looked through much of it since we packed it up, I found some nice surprises.
One of them is this drawing of the Swordsman that was tucked away in a folder full of copies of other people’s drawings. (Mike got lots of stuff from aspiring artists and kept some of it.) Sadly, it was a little damaged (not by me!) but still beautiful. This looks like one of his later drawings and I could swear I’ve seen it somewhere but can’t say where. Still, in case somebody out there hasn’t seen it, I thought I’d post it. I really love this drawing. Not only did Mike nail the character, I love how everything in the drawing, even with a minimum of detail, has real weight to it. Just look at that sword. And I love the lines. He was really varying the line weights to great effect. Damn.
I also found some photos I’d never seen. Lots of them, actually. There were some great shots of Mike, including a bunch of them with the family. I grabbed a few shots off the top to post here but I’ll be posting more in the future. There’s some great shots of Mike with his friends in the biz that I’m sure will be of interest.
This one took me a while to place. As far as I knew, Mike had never met Kevin Smith. Then I realized...that’s not Kevin Smith...THAT’S ME! I’ve struggled with my weight all my life but I think this photo represents me at my heaviest. I was around 300 in this photo and for a minute I didn’t even recognize myself. Especially with the beard. Other than a failed attempt in college, I’ve only had a full beard once in my life. I tried again a few years ago but it came in gray and I shaved it with a quickness. Once I realized who the fatty was, I was able to place the locale. Other photos in the stack confirmed it. This was one of Mike’s signings at his friend Paul Rogers’ old shop in Lynchburg, DOMINION COMICS. I honestly don’t remember when this was but I’m sure I made the trip just to see Mike. I usually only got to see him in person two, maybe three times a year so this was probably an opportunity not to be missed.
I’ll end with this one. It made me laugh out loud. And not just because of my shirt (now long gone, fortunately) my ridiculous shorts or even my pudgy, bearded face. What made me laugh was seeing Mike hoisting our good friend Don into the air...and Don enjoying it. Back then, getting Don to smile at anything was no easy task. I’m having this one framed.
I’m going to have to keep this one brief because I’m pretty busy. But I wanted to go into the weekend with another sketch. Adam’s friend Mike Gagnon was Baltimore with him and asked for a Nova sketch in his sketchbook. After Adam’s and Craig’s (still not done yet) sketchbooks, I didn’t think my heart could take it and there were only a few hours left in the convention at that point. I worried I might rush it and that wouldn’t be good. So Mike agreed to let me do a standalone sketch at home and mail it to him. It’s probably only half-way there as I type this but Mike was nice enough to allow me to post the scan early.
I enjoyed this one though the pose wasn't particularly original. As I told Adam, I like drawing Nova's leg stripes and when he flies all you see are speedlines. That left arm is a little horsey, too. (You can imagine the jokes Christian is making right now.) I chalk that up to the angle of my desk. And my laziness. Add proportions to the list of things I need to work on.
That said, doing this sketch gave me a reason to draw and with all the moving around I've been doing at work, it's difficult to get in the mood or even find the time. So I was grateful for the opportunity. It was a lot of fun playing with the grey-tone markers too.
I hope you like it and I hope you have a great weekend.
(Craig, don't worry. You’re not getting a Nova. :) )
I hope everyone is having a great Labor Day Holiday. As frustrating as my job is these days, I'm still really glad to have it. As one of the talking heads on TV said this morning, this year, Labor Day is just another day without a job for thousands of Americans. Here's hoping that situation is resolved very soon.
I've been spending most of this weekend cleaning up our back yard in preparation for Todd and Sharon's upcoming visit as I've let it get a little messy over the last year with all the projects I've been doing. The patio is done now as is Suzanne's box garden. Unfortunately, the detritus of all that work made the back yard look like a construction site. Or worse, Robert Kirkman's trailer park. (Sorry. Couldn't resist since he just won a Harvey!) Our neighbors have been very understanding but I felt it was time to hitch up my pants and haul off the leftover sand, tarps, rotting lumber, etc. We also ripped out the rest of the fence that was destroyed by that awful storm back in 2007 while we were in Durham. I'm exhausted. But I'm looking forward to a relaxing Labor Day, grilling out, hanging out with Christian at Legend and doing some drawing. Speaking of which...
Adam Hutchinson was thoughtful enough to send me a scan of the Question sketch I did for him in that priceless sketchbook of his. I think you can tell I was nervous as hell because I didn't get too fancy with it. Thanks, Adam! I hope you like it.
Okay, have a great weekend folks. I hope to scan Adam's friend's Nova sketch before I send it off so that will probably be my next post.