Thursday, August 7, 2008

A Big Ol' Post.

Hey everyone!
I am back stateside and posting this from my Aunt's home in Michigan (one of my favoritest places to Aunt's house that is...not necessarily Michigan in general: we have a love/hate relationship, MI and I...). I am glad to be back "home" (one of them, anyways) and I'm slowly getting excited to kick this school year off! Anyways...I figured it was time for a proper piece...enough of this smudgy crap, eh? Well, I'm not sure if this qualifies as "proper"'s more just a glorified doodle/game with my friend Lia.

Well, as some of you may have heard...I've been introduced to Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-Long blog and it's all Lia's fault. I love it. If you're reading this and you don't know what I'm talking about, then get y'self an education here. And if you like it, the whole thing's 4 bucks on Itunes!

It's a supervillain musical by Joss Whedon (creator of FIREFLY!!!) and it has reminded me why I love superheroes and comics in a big way. Good fun. Not because it's shiny or particularly well-produced...he made it all out-of-pocket during the writers' strike. I love it because it's sincere...because it has heart...because it's freakin' adoreable and I love musicals. I also love superheroes and this summer has been a good one for those of us that do...more on that later.

SO...we both got buzzed about Dr. Horrible and Lia started doing inspired-by we challenged eachother to a superteam-off. This is the result. Her current submission to the grudge-match it a hapless team of evil-doers called the Doominati. So, since it's summer my sister and I (both Doc Horrible fans) put our heads together, setting out to create a truly lame team of heroes and...well...without further ado, I present: The Good Intentions Association!!!

They are (top-down, left to right):

GREEN T The Obeast
Salma Nella
and Flambeaux

So, since this is the blog where I can bore everyone with process sketches, here are some process sketches! I did each character seperately, after getting a basic idea of how I wanted them to fit together, which wasn't a bad call per-se but I wouldn't do it again...there's just a bunch of compositional opportunities you miss when you do that. But anyways, that means I hae individual lineart for each character...I had to kill some babies along the way (for the sake of composition, babies = parts of the drawings that are precious to me...stupid stuff like Rash's shoulder and Salma's hip) But here at Happy Rock, our babies are on display!


And, for the first time I thought I'd try something like this out...I saved a few in-process versions of the finished piece. It wound up being pretty much entirely useless tutorial-wise...since all the important parts are the parts when I get "in the zone" :p

Basically, I block in the flats as I go along...generally I like to block in the flat colors for everything first, since it's my least favorite part. I make sure the flats are deep tones, so I can work up from them (I like painting the shiny parts :)) And as I go along I do a lot of quick layer masking and tweaking in Levels and Variations. In the end hopefully you have something coherent!
If anyone is ever interested in seeing something like this, but...y'know...more helpful...let me know!

So, that's that for the G.I.A.
Also: I went and saw The Dark Knight and Wall-E (finally!) And really enjoyed both. I think Wall-E is more instantly lovable. I had mixed feelings about the Dark Knight until I saw it twice and in IMAX. my verdict: much better the second time, MUCH better in IMAX! Still a little bleak, and IMO, frequently visually underwhelming. Does anyone else feel that way? I miss wayne manor and the narrows and the oranges and seeping sewer-vents and the slightly exaggerated sense of urban decay. It all seemed a little too normal...which i understand was all done in the name of realism, but c'mon...have a little fun! Essentially I was just bummed out by the visual lack of romance to the whole thing...and too much overhead lighting! I mean, I get makes the Joker threating and spooky because he's out in daylight, but I really don't like the grim, utilitarian look. Just my opinions. Otherwise, those are really minor complaints...the film was pretty amazing. And seeing it in IMAX brought alot of the fun back into it. I recommend both...I have little to say about Wall-E besides that it was freakin' adoreable! Now I just need to see Hellboy 2....

I hope I haven't bored you to tears with this enormous post! Bless you for reading this far if you have :) Now, I still have work to do...more soon!




Anonymous said...

i'd love to see a breakdown of your drawing process - i've always been more of a pencil-and-paper doodler, and my initial attempts at color have proven somewhat frustrating. i really like how bright your colors are, and it would be awesome to see how you move from one stage to the next as you finish up a drawing.

~overtninja (i'm on deviantart too, if you care to look ;p )

captain brushpen said... on fire. Your heroes are GENIUS. Couldn't possibly pick a favorite horrible pun or excellent idea out of the group! The character design is fantastic (stretched lobes= win), but one thought about the coloring: I know that they're good, and that some of them (all?) could be said to be nausea-inducing in the wrong situation...but why all the pink? Giant pink shirt, red flames, pink rash, and peptobismal background?

Cory said...

Very cute post Nick, read it start to finish, fun stuff :)

Anonymous said...

Nick! It's your 2nd Cous Andy! Just wanted to say your work is amazing! I really enjoy reading your blog and admiring your incredible illustrations. Great seeing you in NYC recently. Hope to catch up with you again soon. If you ever want to visit NYC, my door is always open -- mi casa, su casa! Be well.

baby sister said...

regarding your critique on the movies...opinions are like a$$holes, everybody has one :)

Your Aunt whose house is one of your favoritist places :D ..cheese..

poetsforpeanuts said...

I'd definitely love to see more step-by-step stuff from you. Although I'm familiar with the method you use, I tend to favor a method (currently) that is more like Julie Dillon's work ( She does everything in black and white and then adds the colors to it in layers set on overlay and multiply, then finally paints on top of that for the final details. What are your thoughts? As a developing artist, I like the black n' white method because it helps me focus on depth, but I like your method because it pops so well. :)

And dude... I LOVE the colors you used on the superhero pic! You hardly ever see proper superhero costumes in such dazzling colors as bright pink and snot green... and is that a fish in her hand? Wicked. The sheer clash of the colors is what makes the designs so awesome, they stand out in such a cheerful and eye-catching way, yet add just the right amount of characterization, in my humble opinion. :)

Good luck with your future stuff!

anima Base said...

Very lovely artwork~~ NICK!
I love your drawings and color technique.

Anonymous said...

Wow. Those are some crazy character designs. :]
I've been snooping around your blog for a while and decided I'm completely in love with your art. I may become your stalker (in a non-creeper way, if that's possible). XD

MI is the greatest place to be! I'm really missing it right now. :/ Can't wait until summer break comes around and I get to go back.