Old Drawings and New Cintiq

I decided to break in my new Cintiq by working on a few old drawings from about a year ago.

I fixed the placement and position of Nova's arm, hand and head from the original sketch. Also finished Erika, who was only loosely scribbled in. I'll want to finish this one soon. I like it a lot and sort of makes a series of the two of them on the beach... though I keep putting them in different bikinis.

This was a little doodle in the back of a notebook once. I inked it like... forever ago and I colored it last night. This character is from a comic book I never finished. The first 7 chapters were published by Radio Comix back in the day. I've been kicking around the idea of re-working the characters and setting, and using the same scripts, I might re-draw it in a more storyboard-like fashion.

This is one I finished a long time ago. I just decided to clean up the line work a little, color the lines, instead of leaving them simply black and then switching the composition of the characters. Only minor tweaks... but I like the image and I wanted to clean up some of the things I didn't like about the original one I published to Deviant Art.

Another work in progress. I fixed up the characters proportions and adjusted their heads to have them looking at each other... rather than out into space as the original two sketches had them do. As I was working on this I decided on the setting and started to put in all the easels. I might play with the composition more... make it less obvious that I'm covering that horribly drawn foot. Though I do like the foreground element. I might use the original pencil sketch on that page, even.
And lastly a super wide-hipped version of Erika. The original sketch ended at her knees... and I could never get her legs to look right to me... until last night. I realized what I wanted was to widen her stance like this. Made it look like she was actually able to stand. Anyway... it's a simple doodle, and so I didn't go crazy with the color, just a simple monotone.


The Bandit, The Crab and The Satchel

So I've been working on a short animated film off and on for awhile now, and I thought I might share some of the early work I did over the past couple months.

This is the main character, who I've simply been calling "The Bandit". I do want to come up with a name for her, or a more elaborate bandit name, because at one point she's supposed to be boasting about herself a little. I've also re-worked her outfit a little since most people assumed she was a boy. I wanted Tomboy, sure, but I didn't want her to be so ambiguous that people would assume she was a boy. Especially since she kisses the other boy, I didn't want any Brockback Mountain comparisons.

This is the antagonist/love interest character. The idea for him is that if the Bandit is athletic and tall, then he was going to be short and un-athletic. He's the son of the local sheriff and is always trying to prove himself to his father. He makes up for his lack of athleticism with his intellect. Underneath his oversized hat will be an assortment of gadgets and weapons that he can use to try and capture his classmate, the aforementioned Bandit.

Here are some storyboard pages I did. I've re-worked some of the connecting shots that didn't work... unfortunately I haven't put them in these examples. BUT! As soon as I have a properly timed animatic, with at least the sound effects added, I will post that on my Deviant Art site... or youtube... or something.

And hey, look at that... some early renders of the CG models. I still need to finish the boys hat, some details (like buttons, his wristwatch and such) and then I'm going to get it textured. I have a friend from work who has offered to help me with that.

And one last model. I need to fix the hat some more. The shape is off a little, and I had to make it a little smaller than the T-Pose, since it covered her face from almost every angle. She needs a lot more detail work than the boy does. And you can see that I've added a skirt sort of thing to her so that way, hopefully people will pick up on her girl-ness.

So since I'm showing this stuff off I might as well get this out here. Since I'm working on this as a portfolio piece, I'm looking for people who are ALSO looking to work on some projects for their portfolio.
For the early stuff, I need help with rigging the characters. Granted I do still need to get them textured, I already have someone looking to add to their portfolio by texturing them.
A big thing; I need voice actors for both the boy and the girl. I'm also hoping for natural sounding voices and none of the usual forced "kid voices" you get with some cartoons.
And lastly, once I get everything ready, I'd love to work with character animators. The piece is already about 3 minutes, and even if I were to animate half of the scenes myself, I'd love to have help from others.

If you know anyone who might be interested, please let them know.

Oh yeah, I have a blog...

It's been like two years since I've posted anything here, so I figured it might be time to post some sketches... stuff that's not ready for my portfolio or deviantart account.

So, first post for the new year; a friend from school, Derek, has been putting together a fighting game and has asked me to do some characters. And since he was missing a large character I started coming up with a big burly bouncer character who, naturally, works at a strip club and uses the girls for all of his special moves.

Here a work in progress of a group shot of the bouncer, named Owen, and the ten girls I'll use for all of his special moves. I've got some notes next to each girl with thematic ideas for each one. The Hearts girls will be used as projectiles, stars are the shoryuken type characters, and so on.

The image on the left is the first finalized design I did of Owens, and came up with the name. At the time I drew this I was thinking there would only be one girl... and she's not very developed at this point. To the right I have some sketches of the move set I'll be working on for him. The only thing not shown are his ultra moves, which will consist of pole dances, shaking dollar bills from the opponent and a dog pile from all the girls.

My first stripper design and my other favorite. She, and two other color palette swaps, will be the projectile girls.

This is one of my favorite designs for the strippers. She's also one of the last that I came up with. She has a sort of Betty Boop feel, I think. Because of the hair I guess. I wrote down that she would be used in the Stripper Pile move, but I think I might want to use her for he pole dance combo instead.

Derek is saying I might have to put them in bikinis if the pasties prove to be too raunchy. Oh well.


More from Character Design

Okay! I keep putting off posting this stuff... and I'm sorry. So here are all of the worthwhile drawings to come out of the last couple character design classes.

So this is my first attempt at a more 'toonier' version of the character. Not the best design, there are some things about it I like, and lots of things I don't like. As you can see Zembillas didn't care for the distance with the legs. I might come back to this idea and see where I can take it, but before that I started on...

A version that was supposed to be using more 'human' proportions. I was, however, still caught up on exaggerating proportions, and wanted to have a wide hipped character. For some reason I've been interested in wide hips recently.

Completely misunderstanding his directions, this was the next drawing I did. Better, but another problem I've always had, I extended her legs too far, and the torso is too short.

Getting closer... not quite there.

I gave up on the all the superfluous details and focused on the anatomy only... still not right. Zembillas' corrections are on the side and in red.

Finally I got the proportions to an acceptable point with this drawing.

NOW I can add the superfluous stuff!

And finally do the rotation. The back 3/4 view and rear view were redone, actually, since I had made some mistakes with my original drawings. I'm going to be doing a rotation on that little medusa next... it'll be a challenge, but hey, that's the reason I'm taking the class. I'll try to be more diligent with these posts next week.


Returning from the dead

It's been awhile since I've posted here. I hate that I've taken so long to post here, but I'm going to try and force myself to post more... to that end, I'm going to be showing off some of the stuff I'll be doing in my Character Design class... and possibly some of the other classes if I do anything worth seeing.

So with no further ado...

We're supposed to have a theme for the semester, and I decided on Greek Myth, finally. Mainly because I wanted to do Medusa in a cute style, but also because I remember really liking the Odyssee when we read it in Highschool.

These are a couple variations... I like the third one best, but I was struggling with the body, and you can see the red line from my instructor, Charles Zembillas. I of course feel stupid for not realizing it myself, but I know I'm going to get a lot out of this class... and I look forward to the challenges I'm expecting from him.

And finally, this is going to be my protagonist character based on the greek hero, Atlanta. I read some quick blurbs online about a lot of the heroes of Greek Myth looking for my protagonist... I only knew I wanted to avoid the obvious ones like Heracles(Hercules). The story of Atlanta was just so much fun; she's abandoned in the forest because she's born a woman, raised by a bear, kills a Satyr that tries to rape her, goes on all these great adventures, is almost made an Argonaut, and when her father decides to forgive her for being a woman and find her a husband, she makes a deal that she gets to behead any suitor that can't beat her at a foot race and win her hand in marriage.
I just got the idea that, in my version of the story, all of these other Greek Heroes take the credit for the deeds that she does; this way I can have her face off against Medusa and her sisters and have Perseus take the credit for it and fulfill the request made by Polydectes.

Anyway, it's late, I need to build a character in Flash. Oh yeah, and even though these drawings have different dates written on them... I actually drew them tonight. I just kept forgetting what day it was. -_-;

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Gagaku and Nude

Well, we're moving forward with our presentation to Tokyopop. I got an e-mail asking for all of the character sketches I'd finished. Thought I'd line them up and post em here. I got all the dead ones on one side, and the living ones on the other. From left to right we have, Yuuki, Kotone, Yasu, Kasumi, Pol, Nova, Erika, Vega and Karl. There are more supporting cast, but I haven't finished designs on them yet.

This is the pencil sketch for my recent finished piece on Deviant Art. I thought some people might like to see the sketch before the lines were vector traced and I did a sloppy paint job it. Enjoy!


Rising Stars of Manga Entry

Here is a black and white version of the below image. This was a highly modified version of the initial sketch I did for the color piece. The background for the color piece was where I made all of the corrections to the perspective of the room, so when I decided to use the initial sketch for this black and white version of the flyer, I had to go in and do lots of corrections in Photoshop. I like the way it came out almost as much as the final color version.

Speaking of the final color version, here's a direct link to the Deviant Art posting:

"For the past year or so now I've been working on a new story idea with Erick Melton, who handles all of the writing and characterizations for our published works. I was inspired to do this story with the idea of submitting it specifically to Tokyopop's Rising Stars of Manga contest. And as I stated a few days ago in my journal, Erick and I have been chosen to be one of the 24 top entries for the contest.

The people's choice voting is going on right now, and I would GREATLY appreciate everyone going over and voting for me here at Tokyopop's contest page.

You do have to register with Tokyopop's website to vote, though. So... register and re-register as many times as possible!! (I'm kidding)"


Work Time Doodles

So all I have are a couple work doodles... or one doodle and one work in progress, really.

This one is of Nova, and is being fleshed out from an actual work doodle that I did awhile ago. He head looks a little lopsided to me now, so I'll probably work on that. I want to add another character in a bunny suit with her, so once all that is worked out, I'll probably post again.
I know bunny girl suits are pretty sexist... but... I like them. *hangs head*

I doodled this one today... on a whim, really. Throughout the day I kept adding to it. A little shading, a little white out... a little pink hi-liter... and once in photochop, I tweaked the colors and deleted some notes that were peaking through. I was slightly inspired by this animation I'd seen on www.stage6.com of, I think, the end theme song for Tokyo Tribes? I have not seen the anime, and I get the feeling the whole show doesn't look like this animation, but if it did, I would SO watch it.

Here's the video on YouTube:

The style reminds me of this guy who was in a couple of my life drawing classes and my oil painting class. EXTREMELY talented guy. I wish I could remember his name, I'd like to look him up sometime and see if he becomes anything.

Ekendayo... Dayo... something like that. man... now that's going to bug me for the rest of the night....


Otakomi and yaranaika revisited

Loose Sketches! So a lot of the work I've been doing has been on a project I was paid for... oh... a year ago? And the client doesn't want any of the work posted online... which means, I don't have much to post here on my sketch board. So instead, I'll start finding sketches I like from awhile ago:

This one, of a character Erick Melton and I created named Ms. Daiguchi, I actually did today. I took a quick and sloppy pen drawing I did while on the phone at work and did a more fleshed out pencil sketch while watching the Colbert Report. I'd recently redone her design (maybe someone will remember her from a drawing on my DA account? Probably not) Anyway, I'm not sure how much of her character I want to go into right now, but I had fun drawing this somewhat deformed version of her.

Okay, now these are some old sketches. Again, you might recognize them from a group shot on my DA Account, although these are my attempts to revamp and normalize the designs. The project has not been picked up, and Erick and I are contemplating where to go with it next... I kinda like the idea of a web comic sort of thing. Even though web comics get tore to pieces on a lot of message boards.... I really like the little one with the hot dog on a stick... but I can't seem to recreate that look in other expressions, which makes me sad.

Same as above. I like her spats. I picture the character being a bit more active than some of the other characters, and sneaking around digging for scoops, so I thought she might wear something a little less revealing when crawling around in heating ducts and such.

And finally... reposting an un-altered version of this sketch. I'm not sure why I started goofing around with it last time. I didn't MEAN to at first. It just sort of happened. So, for anyone who prefers their sketches unaltered, this ones for you. (and me)



So Erick and I submitted something to Tokyopop for their 2007 RSOM contest, and this is one of the main characters, Nova. I really enjoy drawing this character, for obvious reasons. She doesn't dress quite THIS lightly in the story we submitted; which does take place at 3 A.M. when she's woken from her sleep, but I was... bored. Yeah.
(I had to explain to Erick what Yaranaika was a reference to... and then explain why I know about THAT manga.)

Here's page seven from the submission... this is one of my favorite pages, mainly because I had to go back and redraw it to better match the dialogue... I have a bad habit of NOT putting the dialogue balloons in when I'm sketching out the pages, and with this page that created lots of issues with the space, and the expressions not matching. So I completely re-drew it with the dialogue balloons in place and the words there on the page and in my head. I think it helped to create a unified flow, and from now on I'm going to sketch the balloons in while working out the layout. I also think I'm going to start to draw the balloons on the page freehand, because the one thing that still bothers me about this is the static look of the balloons. (not to say that's the ONLY problem, mind you) I should also point out, that Erick went in and paired down the dialogue a bit so that it would fit better.

A new Year

I'm going to try doing things differently for awhile now. Rather than rattle on about things, I'm going to focus on simply posting art and talking about those things.

I drew this for one of my nephews when he was staying at our place for Thanksgiving. He's always asking me to draw him things, and I actually had some free time, so I agreed. I tried to cover as many things as he asked for, robots, big guns, army men... the Fio look a like was for me, though. I got inspiration for the robot from looking at some designs in a Summon Night art book I have, and believe it or not, the guy was inspired by Gears of War. 9_9

I'll post more later.


PS3 4-Ever

I don't know why... just felt like being weird. There were these guys that quit their jobs, risked being dumped by significant others and probably worse, so that they could camp out in front of Best Buy and get a PS3 before everyone else... and their situation just seemed so... absurd to me, that I felt like doing some fan art of one of them.

Of course, last I heard, they were all shoo'd away by upper management. Hang in there guys... I'm sure you'll prevail in the end.

Quite honestly, PS3 doesn't have enough really solid launch titles for me to really get worked up about it. But then again, niether did the Xbox 360, and now I'm really wishing I had the thing...


I like Mahou Sensei Negima a lot. Love Hina was the manga that got me really into buying the small pocket sized sort of manga they sell in the book stores instead of the floppy comic versions I had been getting through regular comic shops. Part of the reason I prefer the collected manga rather than a 22 page monthly release is because manga is not paced out to be read once every four weeks. In Japan those telephone book manga anthologies come out like every other week, so you're constantly getting updates. That system doesn't work in the US for some reason... As much as I wish it did, so the next best thing is to wait for a Tankoban(sp?) or trade paperback to come out, and then you get a nice chunk of story. That was infinitely more appealing to me. That, and the nearest comic shop that carries the eclectic range of titles that I enjoy is in another county, in Pasadena. Of course, now that I'm not going to the comic shop, I'm missing out on a lot of locally created books, and I do feel bad about that.

But that has nothing to do with Negima. I liked Love Hina because I'm a perv and I liked the fan service and the over the top silliness of the book. I had to read through it a couple times, and listen to a friend of mine analyze the series before I actually came to like Keitaro. But I didn't have that problem with Negima; I immediately liked Negi, and each time Akamatsu would put the spotlight on a new girl in the class (of 30) I found reasons to like that character as well. I also enjoy Negima, because it's not just a harem fan service anime; sure those aspects are there, but he's also spliced in some real fun and intense action scenes, especially in the later volumes (the ones Del Rey is going to be publishing soon) and so when I had heard way back when that there was going to be an anime, I was really excited.

See, unlike many Love Hina fans, I saw the anime and the manga around the same time, and I actually liked them both. I felt the anime had a much more stable storyline and didn't deviate from the plot as much as the manga did. But the manga is fun BECAUSE there's so much more deviation in it. I would not be happy without the other. Unfortunately, that was NOT the same feeling I got watching the Negima! anime; the animation was crappy, the colors were pastel and often times just WRONG (Chisame went from light reddish-Orange colored hair to DARK green) and the fan service was handled VERY strangely. It was like, they were putting in all the fan service that was mentioned in the manga... Without servicing the fans. Case in point, the library island adventure underground when the Baka Rangers and Negi are escaping the Golem, the elevator is over the weight limit, and so they get the bright idea to strip naked, thinking the excess weight of the clothes is putting them over the limit. The manga gives you the service along with the absurdity of the situation, but the anime only shows the side of the elevator and their clothes being thrown out. And then of course, the biggest problem with the anime is the ending, and for anyone who is watching it, enjoying it, and does not want it spoiled, I will say no more.

So does this mean I think Negima HAS to have fan service to be good? Absolutely not! The new series, Negima!? (with a question mark) is INCREDIBLY well animated, well paced (so far) and has NO panty shots, and so far no bath scenes. Yet it's incredibly enjoyable and fun to watch. It's taking the events of the manga and mixing them up, obviously changing around a few things, but that's all right by me. It's not an insult to the manga to do that, in my mind. I mean, I liked the Love Hina anime and that was altered from the manga quite a bit. And if you want fan service, well, just get the OAV "Negima!?: Haru" (Spring). That thing is choked FULL of fan service, and is still animated incredibly well and funny, too. On a side note, the new Negima anime is being done by a lot of the crew that did Pani Poni Dash, which was one of my favorite anime of last season and is coming to the US by ADV, I think. (Yes!) And oddly enough, Pani Poni Dash was ALSO about a ten year old teacher. o_o;

Anyway, I must prepare for work now, I felt like making a post for some reason, and to also try out blogging about anime and manga, which is something I think I might do from time to time. Take care.

A Ninja is fine, too

Alright, so this is my second day of having this blog and I thought I might as well make another post and try to get into the habit of posting here. I realize I need to eventually take the time to break out the ol' html text book and see about customizing my blog template. Coding things by hand is not my strong suit, but I realized there are probably tons of blogs that look just like mine and... I just feel I should make SOME attempt to look a little different, no?

Anyway, I'm keeping this post short because I told myself I'd respond to someone's e-mail tonight and I still haven't done it and it's now almost 1 AM. But before I go, a quick description of the character I just posted; some people who know me know that I've been kicking around an idea to do a 4 kom styled story about a school that's filled with anime cliches and such, and one of the early scripts involved the Booster Club being a group of ninjas crawling along the cielings of the school. Well, I decided I wanted to have a head of the booster club and used Strider Hiryu as a starting point when designing this nameless ninja. I also think I want to goof on 2X2=Shinobuden with the other members. This one I intend to ink and color similar to the other pieces that I posted to deviantart back in the summer of this year.

That's it for tonight. I'll post again this weekend, I think.


First Post

So this is my first post on this blog. I kind of wanted a place where I could post sketches and doodles and other things that I would normally just let sit around and never show to anyone. Sort of a no pressure kind of thing. I mean, I'm working on a website to showcase my favorite pieces, and then I have Deviantart, but I kind of feel pressure to only post things that are 'done' there. I know there's a sketches section, but I dunno, I kind of like this idea better.

I'm not sure if I'm planning to have any sort of schedule to post here, but I think I should probably aim to post SOMETHING at least once a week. Sort of keep myself working and keep myself writing. I've had a bad tendency recently to not draw anything, and if I feel like I should be posting sketches and shit here, maybe I'll make more of an effort to draw stuff.

Obviously I'm also using this blog to ramble... and maybe eventually I'll think of some sort of theme or some shit as well. Anyway, it's late, I have a another long day tomorrow so until then enjoy this rendition of KOS MOS I've been doing today. I printed some images and production sketches of the version 4 KOS MOS from Xenosaga III and I must say, what a confusing fucking design. I love it, but god damn, it was a pain to figure out. (I plan to ink this later... probably in Manga Studio EX, I need to get better and quicker at that program)