Jul.16.12 at 01:49 pm
For those in the area, I've confirmed that I'll be tabling at the second annual Castro Valley Pride on July 21 (at Castro Valley HS), and San Francisco Zinefest September 1-2 (in Golden Gate Park/San Francisco).

About shows, in general:
I always assume that nobody knows who I am or reads my work (Google tells me otherwise but my brain refuses to acknowledge this?), so I'm usually caught off-guard if someone I've never met namedrops my comics at an event. Suffice to say, if you see me at a show and you say "hi, I read your stuff!" I might look like a deer in headlights for a second while I process this but you'll pretty much make my day/week/month. I sometimes get a little busy when I'm behind the table but I'm always happy to answer questions or demonstrate techniques or take cheapie sketch commissions. So, you know, FYI.

In unrelated news entirely, here's a sketch of Monday that I uploaded last week:

Monday in Trousers by ~cozyair on deviantART
Jul.08.12 at 11:14 pm
I recently wrapped up the last bits of stuff I was doing on my next Erstwhile comic (it runs later this year, I'll be sure to link aggressively when it starts ^^). I thus had a bit of freetime this weekend in which to just sketch around for fun.

So, uh, enjoy ;)


Captain Monday and Iron Foyle by ~cozyair on deviantART

I am a nerd, but you guys knew that, right? Right.
Jun.17.12 at 11:12 pm
For those interested in the artistic process, I took some progress photos while I was working on page 66 so you could see how I set up the page :) And then explanation of what I'm doing, in case random photos aren't explanation enough.

Anyway.


Rather than a formal script, I have a list of what needs to happen in each chapter and how I think that'll be accomplished. I then start to breakdown each scene by taking notes (see my handy portable notebook there). By "notes" I mean I'll jot rough dialogue between characters, key actions, key visuals (if any), and other miscellaneous details.

I know my writing shorthand well enough that these brief notes give me all the information I need for setting, emotions, what the characters are doing, etc. If I have time, I try to make the dialogue as final as possible at this notes phase, but if I'm crunched for time I usually have to finalize it later on. I am trying not to let myself do that, it's not very efficient :P


I then roughly chop the scene into pages based on my notes and work out thumbnails of the first page (I try to thumb a couple at once if I can). As I thumbnail I am basically taking my notes and fleshing them out visually on the page instead of fleshing them out verbally in a script. Depending on how clear the scene is in my head, this can go really quickly or it can be super slow.

This page happened pretty quickly (maybe it's a poor example? Usually I have to cycle through at least 3-4 thumbnails). I knew I wanted to end on the panel that emphasized Rook's bike, and it was just a matter of shuffling the other panels around until the overall page looked right.

The dream pages have been my favorite so far because I needed them to look "different" from when Foyle wasn't dreaming. Since the main Missing Monday pages are very linear and boxy, the dream pages needed to be flowy and full of curves and diagonals.



Yup. These are how my pencils look. Glorious, right? You can see that I improved upon my thumbnails and split the second panel into 2 panels. It looks better on the page and lets me show both Rook's enthusiasm and Foyle's utter lack of enthusiasm (instead of focusing on just one of their faces).

I should probably explain the red pencil because I get asked about it a lot. Erasing is annoying, especially if you tend to press into the page heavily like I do. By using a tinted pencil, I can skip erasing altogether and just use Photoshop to remove all the red from the image. This works just as well with blue or yellow (though yellow, how would you even see it to ink it?).


Since my pencils are pretty lose, the meat of the drawing happens when I ink. Maybe this is a horrible way to work, but I find that refining too much at the pencil stage makes my art look really stiff and unappealing? Winging it a little keeps it more energetic.

You can see in the photo that I usually have a couple previous comic pages on my desk while I'm working. I use them to check for consistency ("how did Foyle's mom style her hair?") and flow. If I'm not at home, I'll frequently go to the website on my phone and flip through the archives to check details as well.

I ink the panel borders first with a thick brush or brushpen. In each panel I start with the main thrust of the action (usually the characters) and work my way outward into the background. I start out with a skinny tipped felt tip pen for most of my inking. As I work I'll go back with the skinny pen or switch to a medium tip pen to tweak, refine, or add extra line weight to things. You can see the difference between my "first pass" inking and my "refined" inking if you compare the top and bottom panels in this photo.

When I'm done, it looks like this:


This is what I scan into the computer. I put a red star next to any panel where I need to do digital inking - usually this refers to sections that need to be corrected/redrawn/fixed, but it can also refer to details I prefer to add digitally, such as Rook's tatoo.

For an example of how much I correct, you can compare Rook's face to his face in the final page. When I finished inking I was horrified at how much his face looked like a meme face, so I felt I should go back and fix it to avoid distracting people ;)

From here on out, it's all me and Photoshop doing the shading and lettering. Um. Tada?
Apr.19.12 at 11:48 pm
Ff, it's not like we haven't been waiting a year for them to kiss or anything ;)

Well, a year and change, technically.

For those who aren't on deviant art, I drew a little thing to celebrate the anniversary of the strip back in March (which... I thought I had linked before? How did I not link this before!?). You can see it here:

Happy 1st Year, Missing Monday!

I feel very pleased to have reached the one year mark with this comic and to look behind me and see such a massive stack of vellum and think "those are all pages for this!" I had the hardest time getting this comic off the ground once I settled upon the idea of doing it (history of this comic: blog post for another time!), so to see it finally start to shape into a real thing is very exciting to me. I look forward to another year of storytelling!

In unrelated news... Now that I'm settling into the Wordpress site, I've started to go back into my archives and add transcriptions when I have some free time. The transcriptions I've had time to make are pretty spartan with an emphasis on dialogue, but I am definitely open to feedback or suggestions for how to improve.

There are other features I want to add to the site, as well, but... well... top priority is getting the comic done each week! So we'll see when I have time to tweak to the site :)
Mar.03.12 at 07:43 am
Well.

Changing over the site ended up being a bit more... intense than I originally anticipated (I should have done this long ago and not waited until the verge of my first anniversary. Oops!).  We're starting new without the archive of news posts and without the few little notes I made on comic pages last year, but otherwise everything ported over smoothly.

I need to step away from web details and catch up on actual comic making for a little while now, but I'd ultimately like to flesh the site out soon, add more content other than strictly comic pages. Soon, soon.

In the meantime, please enjoy the comic!
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Convention Schedule:

 

SacAnime

January 5-7, 2018

Sacramento, CA

INDY PRESS, TABLE TBD

 

Emerald City Comic Con

March 1-4, 2018

Seattle, WA

ARTIST ALLEY, TABLE TBD

 

CLEXA Con

April 5-9, 2018

Las Vegas, NV

ARTIST ALLEY, TABLE TBD

 

Rose City Comic Con

September 8-10, 2018

Portland, OR

ARTIST ALLEY, TABLE TBD