Tuesday, January 18, 2022

 I did some more fan art! This one is the knight called Perrane in his beast form, from the awesome webcomic The Forgotten Order.

As usual, I am a sucker for shapeshifters.

Wednesday, October 7, 2020

I did another fan art for the podcast, Hello from the Magic Tavern. Or rather, for one of their spin-off podcasts which is called "Earth Games", where the fantasy characters in a fantasy world play games from Earth.

In one episode, they played the New Yorker Cartoon Caption game. They described each cartoon on the podcast, and joked that "listeners should draw the cartoons and send them in to us" and so I thought I would do that.

But, because I am a smart arse, I thought I'd draw ALL of the cartoons in one picture, and include the fantasy podcast characters.

If this makes no sense, then please just enjoy these pretty colours.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

I put down the graphic novel so I could concentrate fully on writing my fantasy novel (I thought I could work on two major projects at the same time, but I just couldn't). I wanted to keep my art going so I did some fan art.

I really enjoy listening to the fantasy comedy podcast Hello from the Magic Tavern, so here is Chunt the shapeshifter, who (for magical reasons) once turned into a seahorse with badger colours.

I listen to a LOT of podcasts and music when I'm doing art!

(I realise now that I did this piece three whole months ago. Oh boy, time flies on lockdown.)

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Pencilling the new graphic novel!

I spent last year writing (short stories and a novel) so I've only recently returned to my next graphic novel, "Rumours of Wolves".

Here's the first page: layout sketch on the left, and pencils on the right.

This page was a horror to figure out, as it's an establishing shot and there was so much information I wanted to get in there. I used Maya to lay out the building, horses and people. 3D is more accurate, but my original rough felt more organic. I like to find a balance between "technically correct" and "looks nice", so when I do the inking, I'll freehand it over the 3D lines to get some wibble in there.

For the last graphic novel, I pencilled on paper and then scanned it, did corrections, then inked digitally. This time, I'm drawing it all digitally---all on Photoshop so far, but I want to move to Clip Studio Paint as it has some really nice comics-specific features.

My awesome friend Grace Crowley who does the webcomic Magellan gives me feedback on my pencilled pages, and she suggested adding horse poop on the ground for realism. (Okay, technically she didn't say that the horses had to be in the process of pooping, but I couldn't help myself.)

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

New website!

At last! I've been meaning to update my website for a while with a pretty header full of fantasy bling, and now it's a reality!

I looked at using Wordpress, but I found the templates restrictive and annoying, and Wordpress has so much extra stuff that I don't really need. Also, it needs regular updates (and so do all the plugins!). I ended up just coding this thing with PHP so I could put everything where I wanted it, my way.


So, hop on over and have a look. All my books are listed there with pretty samples you can ogle.

You should definitely buy books. They're nice books. You will like my books. Buy my books.


Saturday, August 25, 2018

First pass of layouts completed!

Wow, so this next graphic novel is going to be 50 pages with 4 pages of epilogue. I had no idea how big this thing was going to be until I finished the first pass of layouts.

And here they are, below! That's a hell of a wad. (I really give myself a lot of work to do, don't I?)

I'm going to let it sit for a while and come back to it fresh so I can improve on it. In the meantime, I'll be working on my website.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

New graphic novel: layouts

I'm now working on my next book, a fantasy graphic novel called "Rumours of Wolves". This story follows on directly from "The Penance of Borund the Bear", showing the fate of Duchess Karria.

The story is complete, so now I'm teasing the detailed synopsis into a script with thumbnails, and then into rough layout pages where I figure out the action from panel to panel.

Apart from close ups, each panel means answering a bunch of questions. Is it an establishing shot? How much of the environment do I need to show? Does the story make sense from panel to panel? Am I introducing a new character here? Can we see his face at this camera angle? Who's talking, in what order, and how much? (Even the dialogue balloons need to be thought out, so that I can place the characters the right way in a scene and with enough space around them for their speech.)

I use very simple models and mannequins in Maya to figure out the perspective and composition of the trickier panels. This lets me play around with camera views, and highlights problems I might not have considered (for example, thick stone walls mean you will have deep windows!). The more problems I solve at this early stage, the better.

Here's an example scene: three riders on horses, and a fourth character standing nearby. I have poseable 3D mannequins, but at this early stage, I don't bother posing them yet.

(Oh, and transparency allows me to see inside the buildings, too!)