Just because it’s February doesn’t mean we can’t still talk about last xmas, right? Well, tough, I’m doing it anyway.
At some point, several years ago, my siblings and I declared that we didn’t want to exchange gifts around xmas time anymore, being that we were all self-sufficient adults and all, but we’d still give gifts to each other’s kids. This was supposed to extend across to our parents not giving us anything anymore (which they completely ignored) while we secretly got things for them. Eventually, we “kids” started coordinating on a group gift for mom and dad. We’ve sent them to plays, musicals, concerts, etc. This year, in light of our ever expanding families and busier schedules, we decided the one thing we knew mom and dad would really want would be a whole weekend with all of us together again, under one roof, with no where else to be. I think we all lament how little we see each other these days, so it was an easy sell for all of us. The problem was, we weren’t sure where mom and dad would want to go (how far of a drive to a rented house) or what time of year. We really needed their input, but we still wanted to give this gift to them for xmas. It was decided that I, being all arty, would come up with some kind of card or something to let them know our plan and the need for their input, which my sister would print, frame, and wrap (my brother, despite being days away from becoming a dad for the second time, put in a ton of time researching house rentals and such). Of course, I turned to my pal, Plunger Monkey, to help me out (mom and dad are fans).
This quickly became much more elaborate than I was originally intending, but when an idea hits, ya gotta run with it. I had a ton of fun designing and drawing this. I had to edit things a bit to get it down to one page, so there’s a bit of confusion figuring out which panel is panel 4, but otherwise I think it works. I’ve been watching a lot of comic book coloring tutorials these last several months, so this was a great opportunity to play with some of the things I learned. I also created the front and side of the Box O’ Squid separately and then warped them into perspective, which was a cool process. I didn’t have time, or ideas, for backgrounds, so I resorted to the standard comic strip gradient. Working on this really made me want to color IPMDT at some point.
As far as other art current events, I’m on my last illustration for The Witch Series books that I’ve been working on (minus going back to tweak things here and there, probably), so I’m on schedule. Once that’s done, I’ve got another author looking to hire me, which is great. I want to make a push to finish 10 Things and get it published somehow, perhaps just on Amazon. I need to get the t-shirt thing started up (won’t all of you be surprised when I actually pull that off, considering I’ve been talking about it for, like, 2 years now?), I’ve got a few more designs kicking around my skull. It would be nice to dip my toes back into Revery, plus I have some graphic novel projects that I’m excited to collaborate with my wife on. I’ve been working on a character concept illustration on my tablet at night, one that I’ve been working on for months because I keep putting it down. I may actually finish it in the near future. I’d like to start using the tablet to go do some landscape/environment studies. I love that kind of art, but I’m pitiful at it and it’s starting to impact some of the illustration work I’ve had to do lately. I’m really only scratching the surface of my potential projects list (yes, I do, indeed, keep a list).
So, as usual, a ton on my plate, never enough time. I have no shortage of things to work on!