Sunday, January 3, 2016

"Noosance Moosance" Video + Pages

   Introducing a very special production: once again I joined forces with the talented Seth Danielson (Frontier Scientist up at Troth Yeddha/UAF) , whose awesome picking brought the infamous Buck Henry to life. Always a total honor & joy to collaborate with another artist with his skill, and such an outstanding experience to hear a piece come to life so completely.
   Here's a direct link to the tune, and some tech protips for YouTube viewing that some folks might not be aware of:
-->There's a little cog-wheel symbol under the main screen that you can click on to show a range of playback settings – hit “quality” and then select the top one ("HD/720p") instead of the default resolution. It'll take a bit longer to load especially with a slow connection speed like I have at the cabin but it's worth it. Also next to that is a little box icon to change a setting from "normal" to "theater" mode so the viewing window is bigger. Enjoy!(more below the fold...)

As usual, it all starts with a doodle...

   This is the centerpiece that was debuted at the Ursa Major show: a four page long work about a mysterious visitor to the cabin. Above and beyond the process creating the piece from initial doodle, to script, then pencils, inking and shading (done digitally - at some point there will be a watercolor version on the original pages), it was also an interesting - and challenging - experiment attempting to sync individual panels in time with the tunage. A couple sections weren't as successful as they might have been (ex: the long verticals with the cat and dog sped by a wee bit too fast, and conversely the bigger panels that contained two lines of verse each dragged a bit slower comparatively speaking) had the entire piece been formatted with this end result in mind, but overall everything works just fine. Story of my life...


   A while back I used this piece as ongoing demos for the summer studio course in Cartoon + Comic Arts. As mentioned here numerous times, I find it instructional to have current projects - both big and little - underway at a table off in the background, as it's useful as a prompt for discussion and/or pointers in technique.

Satellite studio + creative juices

   Personally for me this was a much, much longer narrative than the usual single-panel fare, where I had the relative luxury to pace a story out and extend compositions across a bigger canvas than I'm used to. It's always fun to stretch out and play with multiple pages and panels, designing with factors such as pacing, timing and rhythm in mind. And then again to have it all evolve into a totally different hybrid medium again is a wonder to behold.

thumbnail roughs

   Projects like this always make me think of the world of animation, in particular the big-budget productions from major corporate studios. Watching the seemingly endless fine-print credit crawls points up how, much like many a mainstream comic book, so many - if not most - of these sorts of things quickly escalate beyond simple collaboration into team efforts on a massive scale that require layers and layers of bureaucracy. So more often than not the result is a big ol' wad of tasteless chewing gum that's had all the flavor chewed out of it. I've counseled many a student who aspires to be a effectively no more than a cog in the wheel of industry (only marginally worse than a link in a chain), and any hint of individualism is subsumed to fit the sanitized, homogenized house "style." Fortunately technology has advanced to the point where much of tools of the trade are within reach of any aspiring talent, which can empower completely unique artistic expressions (ex: the video was put together in iMovie). This is akin to the rise of alternative/independent comics, which stands in creative contrast to the franchise mentality and trademarked properties of pop culture. Forget the degrees and all the expensive tools and equipment: when it comes right down to it, all you really need is a pen and some paper. It's your story, you tell it like it is.


   Here's a link to the four final pages posted in the "Comic Arts" Picasa folio, or scroll below and click for a larger image. Enjoy and thanks again for reading.

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