The dark days of December are eating me. I think it is a common feeling to have when trapped between two bitter seasons. But the chill has severely restricted my passion to work on the webcomic right now. Sorry. Alas, our special bond has been born through broken promises. And I’m working so much right now for my business I can’t breathe.
That, mixed with the fact that I’m having a wonderful surge with the Pixelton book. It is magic and satisfying and daring and everything the webcomic isn’t right now. I think it will be worthwhile.
What exactly have I been working on? Take a look at a ton of stuff I’ve never shared before…
The above is a list of the files for the completely new and amazing Pixelton adventures. The orange and yellow means inked semi or fully complete. The neat thing is this list is now colorful for greater then half. I’ve been aiming to add at least one new page to this complete list per day.
Here is a quick sample that doesn’t show much (or color). This book is HUGE though. Should be about 14 inches horizontally.Â But it wasn’t always this way!
The above was the first sketch for Pixelton. Kirby was originally a bear, and a pretty generic one at that. I went ahead for a good year writing with the boring bear Kirby leading the fight. Close to ten minutes before I started the pencils for the book I made a rash decision to switch the character to another originally named BRINGA. BRINGA was orange and had big triangle ears…
But that wasn’t before I spent months working on collateral with that damn evil bear.
This is the first sketch and color test I created. As you can see I was trying to do the thing in pencil and color behind. It didn’t work. And in the end this test showed me pencil wasn’t the way to go. I let this color test stall progress for months as I wondered what to do instead. Check out Fil’s original yellow tan, but he always had the crazy demeanor to contrast the passive bear.
Here are two animation cycles I made using evil Kirby. They’re pretty bad but made in vector format as Pixelton was meant to be a completely vector made book. This would allow me to get the stark contrast I wanted with the ease of having sets and editable characters.
For example this character (named “El Diablo Rojo”) was made in many poses…
…so he could be used on any one of the many Pixelton sets…
…to reflect each background in obsessive detail. I even set them up with parallax scroll in mind. Each set has a ton of props that could be included.
Remember that map I shared in the works a few months back? Here is the vector edition. You can zoom into the city and see billboards and text. Working on this drove me insane. I decided vector may not be the way to go. I was tired of vector and was worried about the book. At this time my last book, Nothing Left to Lose was just being released through Diamond in the start of 2006.
The point in all of this is that if you keep trying you find something that works. I ended up going around full circle back to line art after two years of pain, but would the story and art be as realized without it? Who knows. I’m guessing no.
The above is a view into the story arc of the Pixelton book. But this was one of about 50 and with each successive revision I got more interested. The story is still growing and will up until I’m ready to let it go. I want this book to be special.
( I highly recommend reading STORY by Robert McKee. I read it at exactly the right moment to try and turn things around.)
To make things you care about you have to be a little crazy. Posts like this remind me that crazy is okay if it makes you (and a few nice others) happy. Thanks for reading.
Written in the future for the past,