With less than minimal fanfare, this past Thursday was the 200th episode of ‘Sects! The path there was comprised of 174 dailies and 26 Sunday editions. It really doesn’t seem that long ago that I was celebrating the 100th episode. As I contemplate this milestone, I am pleased by many things.
I am as excited about this comic strip today as I was 200 episodes ago. That doesn’t mean the ideas always come easily, but even in times of writer’s block, I can’t wait to dive into creating the next episode. I also take frequent peeks back at older stories, and I find that most of them hold up against what I’m doing today. It’s nice for me to see that the earliest ideas I posted when I was less confident about the comic are now ones I can look back upon and be proud of posting.
Meanwhile, another anniversary happened today. I made my first post of any kind on this blog back on July 25, 2014. It’s hard to believe I’ve been at this for a whole year now! When I first started, I had a completely different comic strip, From Where I Sit, that actually helped get me a guest invitation at a local comic book convention. I still have some unpublished stories from this comic strip as well as other ideas that I hope to get back to eventually. This comic strip actually passed 100 episodes itself before I put it on the back-burner to go full-steam-ahead with ‘Sects.
In between then and now, I’ve also posted other random things that I’ve drawn along with some funny (or at least things I thought were funny) bits of prose. I also have another comic strip, Fringe Kisses, that has itself ran for 50 episodes as a random single-panel gag cartoon.
In totality, this blog has over 400 posts encompassing all the comic strips and other things I’ve blogged so far. It’s only fitting that nearly half of them belong to my current comic strip, ‘Sects, since I’m perhaps the most proud of it out of anything I’ve done on my site.
So, as I begin the second year of blogging… I hope everyone who has found me and followed me so far has enjoyed most of what I’ve been doing. Thank you to everyone who found me early and has stuck with me… thank you to all my newest followers who continue to find me somehow in the rat maze of the Internet… and thank you to everyone who helps spread the word around and keeps telling people to check out all my online nonsense!
I hope to continue bringing you more, and better things… and possibly a few good surprises in the weeks and months to come!
Ok, so maybe not all the time… but the regular lineup is changing here on the blog.
From Where I Sit is going on hiatus. It isn’t going away permanently, this was a planned transition. ‘Sects is going to replace it on the Monday through Friday daily schedule. From Where I Sit will come back from time to time when appropriate and when I have ideas for new episodes. Thanks to everyone who liked it, and even to those who didn’t!
Meanwhile, Fringe Kisses will still be here on the weekends… though eventually ‘Sects will also begin having its own Sunday episodes as well with a slightly different story than the daily-fare.
So… look for the first episode of the new comic strip ‘Sects shortly, and daily from now on… and please let me know what you think of it!
Lightning has struck again! A couple of weeks ago Castle tread into territory I had previously visited in a comic strip. Last night’s South Park on Comedy Central has now done this as well!
Without giving too much of the story away… last night’s new episode “The Magic Bush” had a B-story (hah, that’s funnier than I intended it to be) about drones! Once again, this is territory I visited practically in the beginning of my “From Where I Sit” strip.
Check out “Droning On” and see why you too should be worried about drones and the robot armageddon!
In addition to writing and drawing, I also like to play around with animation. There are some fun things you can do fairly easily with animated GIF files. From time to time I will post things I am playing with as well as perhaps revisiting some animations I have created in the past.
Up first is a simple animated logo design created from my “From Where I Sit” logo. The animation here is meant to drive home the sitting notion from my comic strip by literally sitting that last letter.
This next one is a rolling version of my 45rpm adapter. I initially thought of a simple rotation, but I like the slight bouncing effect that was kind of accidental when I was processing the files so I left it that way!
It’s all too easy for an artist to become so obsessed with a particular illustration that he finds it impossible to consider complete. You have to be mindful of this sort of thing, because you will never finish anything if you can’t learn to drop the pen and walk away at some point. But what drives an artist to think this way?
Those of you who follow my “From Where I Sit” daily comic strip will recognize the above as my in-truck setting. It is a low-detail illustration of the driver side of my Silverado truck. There is no great detail in the drawing, as it is meant to be high-level suggestive to the reader of the view from behind the wheel to put the unveiling story in a particular place.
The picture on the left is my original drawing, and one I used for writing several comic strips even though something about it kept bugging me. One day it finally hit me that I had completely forgotten to put a few streaks on the glass. It is such a minor thing that I had just forgotten to do it, but something in my brain kept nagging at me that the picture was wrong.
Those three lines are the only difference between the two illustrations, and yet it is like night and day in terms of what I wanted to show in the design. I immediately went back and corrected all the strips I had written after making this change.
Above is a simple Santa Claus hat for some upcoming Christmas-themed stories. This time the difference between the two illustrations is only two simple lines that form a sort of V-shape near the bend of the hat. Clearly the illustration on the right looks much more like a hat that is folding over itself and toward the viewer than does the one on the left.
These are Christmas lights for another upcoming story. The difference here is the simple teardrop on the illustration to the right. While there’s nothing really wrong with the illustration on the left, and in context you have no trouble seeing it as holiday lighting… the illustration to the right again does a better job of being a light bulb by insinuating the glare on the surface of the glass.
So, three examples of relatively simple illustrations that are viewed completely differently in the absence of just a line or two. It’s a constant struggle to be able to put the pen down and call something complete, and this is why. The Devil in the Details is sometimes a single line and you feel like if you look at it long enough you will find that one perfect line that makes the entire illustration complete.