turtlesoup: turtle (a bespecacled, short-haired cartoonist) clutches her head in dismay (oh my head - wtf)
[personal profile] turtlesoup
Oh hey! Sorry, I know I disappeared off the face of the earth for awhile there ... I was really pretty burnt out after last semester. Needed some time to recuperate with the family and such. Now I'm back at CCS, where they believe in starting off your second semester with a bang, by dumping we poor first-years right into the infamous SILVER AGE PROJECT!

Why am I speaking in histrionics and all-caps? I guess I must still be a little bit in this mode:
um yeah haven't cleaned my working area in awhile

Cover designs by various of my classmates, including Cole Closser, Sasha Steinberg/Sophie Goldstein, and Joyana McDiarmid/Romey Bensen/Vinnie Ferris/Adam Whittier.

Essentially: my class was divided into three small groups, each with a faculty "editor" (overlord might be more like it) and assigned a genre to work in. We then had two weeks to create a full-color 32-page (plus covers) comic book that remained true to the styles and conventions of mid-60s American comics. My group, headed up by the rather incredible Jason Lutes, created a superhero team which is a fairly obvious homage to the Fantastic Four, and attempted to emulate the classic stylings of Jack Kirby. (Not the least bit ambitious, us.)

I've never done anything like that before: the anthology project was a thoroughly solo endeavor by comparison. We worked around the clock, spread out over classroom tables passing pages back and forth so that different people could accomplish their various individual tasks (Penciling characters, or backgrounds, or technology! Inking along similar lines! Organizing the computer files! Designing ads! Coloring alotted excerpts!) It was in many ways a strange experience--I've never inked another person's pencils before, or worked within the traditional four-color palette), and exhausting, but it's kind of amazing to have the finished book in my hands. Several of the faculty have commented that it's designed to make us feel as though we can accomplish everything. It also makes me relieved to live in the era I do, I must confess; I would not want to live by that working model.

As I said, I'd never inked another person's pencils before! I surprised myself by enjoying it a great deal, but then, I always find inks soothing. I was assigned to do the entirety of the six-page origin story, which I also provided backgrounds for, and later colored. Here's a page from the middle (scanned, because I don't have the files right now); script by Joyana McDiarmid and Jason Lutes, character pencils by Laurel Leake (who drew all the characters on all thirty pages of story, doing a fine job of emulating Kirby the entire time). Includes my small attempt at the famous "Kirby krackle" effect:

always that pesky cosmic radiation


I also realized a small high school era ambition, and created a parody of one of the famous Charles Atlas ads I grew up reading in my mother's old comics. I chose to stick very close to the original, and I'm pleased how it came out! Concept and script co-created by Romey Bensen:

in just seven days?


And finally, here's a preliminary model sheet for one of the characters, Shift (AKA "the mysterious Dr. Zee"), a shapeshifter who has a very intense personal link with the strange cosmic substance that granted hir abilities:

I didn't name hir, but can you guess where the name came from?


Now that we're through that particular gauntlet, the rest of the semester is looking very bright, with many more opportunities to really play with my own ideas, outside the confines of strict assignments. (At least, in part.) I can't wait to get started. In the meantime, here are a couple more fun things I've drawn recently:
who you gonna call?

I've been participating in these ridiculously fun postcard exchanges with my friend Dea lately! We started by each drawing a couple of our own characters and mailing them to each other (you may recall the drawing of my Luce and Mickey in this post), and then we drew each other fanart of those characters! Hers are exorcists living in a post-apocalyptic future (although they still have shampoo, ahem). It's a story I really want to read someday!

Check out her two gorgeous contributions to the exchange:
I bet these ladies know that soapstone isn't soap!

my weirdo characters have never looked prettier


GUHHHH, her linework is so graceful. I just want to die. I love the way she draws hair, hands ... and wings. I am so grateful for my talented friends!

Also, here's the holiday card I designed and then completely failed to send, to my great embarrassment ... I really was totally wiped out over vacation.
totally true to life

One of the founders of my school refers to Vermont winters as "cartooning season," although sadly, there hasn't been much proper snow this year. Just a lot of very unpleasant slush and rain.

I leave you with some silly doodles I drew yesterday at a local cafe ... I've discovered that the best way to get me to sketch spontaneously is to hand me a bunch of colored pencils and some scrap paper. Note to self for future conventions. (The octopus is my quick re-creation of the splash page of Agents of A.T.O.M., as it happens ...)

one sizable cephalopod


Excelsior!
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