turtlesoup: a murkey silhouetted figure rising out of the swamp (beware the swamp bride)
Ah, so much for a promised "return" to regular posting. Apologies, friends. The last several weeks have been a mishmash of smaller assignments and various distractions from my larger comic projects; I'm looking forward to soon being able to settle into a more regular schedule with those and provide regular sneak peeks and updates.

Here's some catching up in the meantime, though.

One of my last real homework assignments for grad school was to create a four-page comic based on a dream. I selected a relatively simple one (as opposed to one of the hectic and deeply surreal mashups my brain regularly serves) in order to spend time experimenting with media and atmosphere. We were required to start from a splash page/cover containing a central image from the dream, and the first word that came to mind in relation to it.

splash page: a stream of bluebirds rise up from a monochromatic post-apocalyptic landscape. titled 'release.'


Here there be zombies, but no gore. )

Also, it's been more than a month, but I'd like to share a little of my Halloween art as well! There IS some gore under here. )

That's all for now; apologies for being light on the words & news. There should be more very soon, I think! In the meantime, I do post to my tumblr fairly regularly, but be warned: I post suggestive, and even downright pornographic, material there regularly.

a curvy girl in an enormous ballgown asks what you're trying to protect yourself from
turtlesoup: a green-haired girl in a collared shirt & vest holds her fingers up to her head like devil horns (guardin' angelically)
Gosh, is it March already? Postable art is a bit fewer and farther between these days, as our second semester is a little more spread out and long-term-based. I may start finishing up some of my quickie in-class assignments eventually (I'd like to), but in the meantime, we did complete one project recently, more or less ...

Emily 'meets' the dragon princess


We were assigned to create a dummy for a children's picture book (mostly just rough, sketched-out pages with a handful containing "finished" artwork, like the ones above). I have a deep and abiding love of the format from my childhood, and spent a good deal of time revisiting various treasured favorites to get myself in the mood! Honestly, in the end, I don't think this is my kind of storytelling, but it was an interesting experience, to be sure.

A few more glimpses. )
Now that's over and done with, we've moved on to what I've been waiting for all year ... the final project, which basically tasks us with drawing the best comic we possibly can over a course of about nine weeks. As the assignment sheet itself says, no pressure there or anything.

Being the sort of student who has a pile of half-baked story ideas sitting around waiting for me, my choice of subject matter isn't very surprising. )

So yes! I am very busy ... not sure if I'm more likely to be quiet, or randomly rambly, in the weeks to come, but there's a very good chance of substantial comics by early/mid-May, at any rate!

I'll leave you with more fanart of my friend Dea's exorcist characters, Autumn and Kara, who are deeply fun to draw. They are badass. Also, it was so great to just let go and indulge in fiddly tiny lines to my heart's content. (I am incorrigible.)
ghost-battling badass
turtlesoup: a green-haired girl in a collared shirt & vest holds her fingers up to her head like devil horns (anathema - abstract thought)
They don't call the first year "CCS bootcamp" for no reason! What follows is quite a sizeable art dump, for which I apologize. The last few weeks have really gotten away from me - I haven't even managed to cook for myself, for the most part! But the faculty seem to have taken pity this week, and hopefully it'll be a bit easier to get a handle on things ... ride the wave instead of getting crashed around by it.

I climbed a mountain and fell off a small rock.

Last week, my class took a trip up Mt. Ascutney (the mountain we'd previously been sketching from a poet's back yard), so this diary comic is a sequel to the previous one. It's a little less ... deep, but I like the way it kind of inverts the first one: from the sublime to the ridiculous. (I remain amused that I sat that close to a precipice--though there were a few big ledges just below me, I couldn't have fallen far--and then managed to fall off a small rock.)

You might recall that, some weeks back, I mentioned the facebook project my class was working on together. Each student had to screenprint a portrait of some kind, and draw a bio for the facing page. Behold, my first attempt at screenprinting. )

During the very end of September, CCS played host to the International Comic Arts Forum, an international academic conference, which was a pretty fascinating experience. (There's a write-up over at the Schulz Library Blog.) I discovered that I'm definitely still, in some sense, an academic; still inclined to analyze as well as enjoy (and create) stories, and ... somewhat frustrated when a presentation doesn't draw a conclusion from its material. There were some really fascinating talks; the panel on Race and Class was perhaps my favorite, although CCS senior Kate Moody's talk on the so-called "death of print" was particularly scintillating as well.

We also held a sort of miniature, all-CCS convention during the conference, where my classmates and visiting alums set up tables to sell our work to each other and attendees. I tabled with four of my classmates. )I was thrilled to finally have the chance to check out what the second-years have been doing (we have precious little chance to bug them about it these days!), and it makes me wish I could fit minicomic reviews into my schedule, because seriously, my school is full of amazing people and you should read their stuff. Maybe I'll do some in celebration of winter break; I can't promise.

Also, this happened:

do I not look like me?

Conventions do always involve rather interesting conversations and feedback! It got me thinking a bit about the nature of autobiographical comics ... how if you do them for long enough (even when you're taking distinctly non-serious, episodic approach, as I generally do), the "you" on paper becomes a character just slightly distinct from the person you are in real life. (It also made me think that I need to start taking more care not to draw myself in t-shirts all the time. I'm given to wearing a lot of collared shirts and neckties, and that fedora is becoming sort of a signature accessory.)

Exhausting as ICAF was (as a CCS staff member, I worked for much of those three days, when I wasn't tabling), I was grateful for the homework assignment we had that weekend. My artwork is ... a little intricate? While I've certainly grown faster even in the short time I've been here, my process is time-consuming and meticulous, and often results in very very late nights (which I enjoy, but pay for later). That week, however, we were assigned a short comic on a "journey" theme, using Ed Emberley's Make A World.

In which I play with stick figures. )

More recently, I managed to more or less drive myself into the ground with our latest project, all due to my still absurdly slow process, a bad stretch of art block (school does not allow for this!), and a little bit of life outside of school (I do kind of want to have one). That project deserves its own post, once I've reworked the cover, but I do have a little bit of non-schoolwork to share as well ...

This past weekend, a very dear friend of mine got married back home in Western Massachusetts, and I was lucky enough to attend. I wanted to make a personal gift for the couple, which isn't something I've ever really done before. Fortunately, we had recently learned a little bookbinding, and they happen to have a highly comickable inside joke! My friend is a devoted fan of The Wrath of Khan; her wife, on the other hand, is not quite a Star Trek fan. My friend's wife has famously given many hilariously incorrect recitations of the plot of this movie, which she's sat through numerous times. I drew four comics based on these retellings and bound them into a book; this one is probably my favorite. )

It was a beautiful outdoor wedding in the height of New England fall, and everything turned out about as close to perfect as I can really imagine. There was, however, a tense moment; the day before was very rainy, and the area of the lawn where the ceremony was supposed to be held was briefly flooded. (The spot they used instead was gorgeous!) My friend posted some very picturesque images of her feet immersed in water, and I was hit with this nagging inspiration to draw a fantastical bride standing in a pool of water.

It's nice to have a little artistic energy back! (Last week was kind of terrible.) This wound up becoming much more creepy than ethereal in execution, which I blame on the season:

she does.

It looks like the cover for something, doesn't it? Hmmm. (Clearly this image has absolutely nothing to do with any real-life events or people, although I do find myself working marriage into various project ideas right now; it was an inspiring celebration.) I don't have a story right now, but you never know.

I'd better stop bombarding you now, but I'll be back soon with a thoroughly un-fantastical adaptation of one of Aesop's fables, because apparently I'm contrary like that. COMICS.
turtlesoup: a green-haired girl in a collared shirt & vest holds her fingers up to her head like devil horns (Default)
So first of all, remember that anthology submission I posted about in July? Today I found out that I got in, which is pretty awesome. It's called Inbound 5, the fifth volume of a biannual publication put out by the Boston Comics Roundtable. I'm told it'll probably be out by the end of the month. :)

Anyway, here's a new Turtle strip (getting really close to filling out that mini, now!):

run for your lives!

A little more blather than usual. )
turtlesoup: a green-haired girl in a collared shirt & vest holds her fingers up to her head like devil horns (Default)
where many women have gone before

And that's all she drew - for now, anyway. Hopefully I'll have the next new strip done sometime this week/end! (I need to pick up the pace - honeybee infestations and admissions season at work have really slowed me down this month.)

Oh, I also recently did this random art meme I picked up from deviantART: do the time warp )
turtlesoup: a green-haired girl in a collared shirt & vest holds her fingers up to her head like devil horns (Default)
(Moonlight Destiny, for those of you who never had that phase.)

henshin yo?

This strip was also originally published as a guest strip for The Littlest Elle. I met [livejournal.com profile] sae because of the whole Sailormoon thing. ;)
turtlesoup: a green-haired girl in a collared shirt & vest holds her fingers up to her head like devil horns (Default)
eat your heart out, Bella - oh wait, Edward already did

As I said to A.L.: "ten years, and I still can't draw David Bowie."

In spite of being rather lower in technical quality than a lot of my other strips (in my opinion), this is far and away the most popular thing I have ever posted to an online gallery site (deviantART, in this case). I hope it's because many of the people who "faved" it actually got what I was saying? (Far too many of them were clearly just "Team Jareth," but oh well.)
turtlesoup: a green-haired girl in a collared shirt & vest holds her fingers up to her head like devil horns (Default)
fangirls much?

I drew this strip as a gift for my best friend; it recalls a history of pop culture-based in-jokes (but they're often related to fairly obscure pieces of pop culture). It's pretty incomprehensible to most people who aren't us, so I won't be including it in the Turtle Soup minicomic . . . but it means a lot to me, and I'm also pretty proud of a lot of the technical stuff in it. :)

In panel order, this strip refers (often vaguely) to: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Farscape, The Sentinel, Due South (seasons 3 & 4), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Mr. Darcy Takes A Wife, and "I'm Not Okay" by My Chemical Romance.

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