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Entry #5

JB and Dax: Quick Update

2016-01-18 19:05:22 by Emersomatic

Don't worry, no ranting about my personal life here.

If you're the one or so people who's been been following me and is eager to see me really take off as an artist, you're probably wondering just when the hell my first official comic is coming up.

First off, I don't plan to start releasing the completed pages of JBnD no1, until I've actually completed a variable amount of them. I want the pages to be released at a consistent rate, so the plan is:
1: overcome artistic hangups (see below)
2: finish enough physical pages until I've set into a predictable production pace
3: add digital etc. and post online 1 complete page as soon as I'm finished with 1 physical page.
3.5: continue posting complete pages at the same rate after completing physical pages
4: make a poster to represent the series' pilot issue.
5: continue work on the next pilot's script.

As for the aforementioned artistic hangups, there's something that I very much tend to neglect in my practice: color. I get so obsessed with the story that I want to tell, the narrative and political implications of the characters' demographic and costume designs, whether or not I want X to even be metaphorical of Y, and so on, that I kind of forgot about the nuances of applying color to the page. That's a hell of an extended brain-fart, considering that I've always known that I wanted my comics to BE in color rather than monochrome, and I've just kind of assumed that I could handle it with the tools that I planned on using: first considering doing the color all in Adobe Illustrator, then Manga Studio, but I think I've decided on Copic markers. They were an expensive investment, but I really enjoy the process of applying the ink directly to the paper. I feel very connected to the piece that way, and there's a certain coziness about the texture that physical pieces have; tiny little mistakes make it feel honest and organic, and if it's absolutely needed, I can still correct the color in the digital processing.

Wow, I just realized what a tangent that was right before getting to that last bit. So, the specific thing about color that's been holding me up is the fact that the first few pages of JBnD specifically call for a city at night. I wanted this city to look less like New York (or the dozens of other major cities that look exactly like it, or DC's several fictitious cities that stand in as a metaphor for different aspects of the-city-so-good-they-named-it-twice) and more like the humbler, slightly ramshackle urban zones that I grew up with, that are caked in yellow-orange lights at night. Problem being, I had never practiced coloring cities like in the York/Lancaster/Harrisburg spectrum, let alone practiced how to draw things in colored lights like the ones we see in my hometowns.
Therefore, every time I sat down to ink the first page (sketching it was no problem) I kept worrying about how that ink was going to translate to the colored version, hesitating, laying down a little black, hesitating again, laying down a little more black, getting up to walk around my room, getting a snack, walking around some more-- you get the idea.

I think I've solved the problem now, though, so tune in every now and then for a crude snapshot of the first page, a likely sign that the complete works are on their way.


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