I BET THAT IF TWO KIDS LIVED IN THOSE TWO HOUSES THAT THEY WOULD COME OUT ON THEIR ALMOST CONJOINING ROOFS OUTSIDE THEIR BEDROOM WINDOWS AND TALK AND BE BEST FRIENDS AND FALL IN LOVE.
I will not write fluff to that. I won’t. No.
LUCY I FOUND IT
But what if instead of two kids, it was, say, a kid and an old woman? And at first they just ignore each other and keep their blinds down and curtains shut, but then the kid climbs out onto the roof one spring morning to get a frisbee and she’s got the window open bc it’s so nice out and she tells him to cut that out, it’s not a jungle gym and maybe the kid shows off a bit and nearly falls, and the old woman catches his arm…. anyway, so sometimes they leave the windows open and the kid’ll show off his comic books or asks what rhymes with ‘beautiful’ (and it’s totally for homework shut up), and the old woman tells him about all the protests and marches she took part in, and asks him the name of that one cute pop star (it’s absolutely for her crossword now shush). And the old woman gives the kid relationship advice, and doesn’t tell when he tries a bit too much of his parents’ liquor cabinet one time, and the kid comes over and shows her how to use the smartphone her daughter bought for her, and doesn’t tell when she sneaks a cigarrette out of said daughter’s bag. And when the weather’s too bad to open the windows, they tape silly pictures or notes to the glass for the other to see (the kid makes sure to make his extra big so she doesn’t have to admit her eyeight isn’t what it used to be), and when it is nice the kid will sneak over and leave seashells on her windowsill, because the old woman said once she misses the sea, but she can’t travel like she used to. And one day he peeks in her window and sees her on the floor, and calls 911 and basically saves her life because she had a stroke and nobody would’ve known in time otherwise. And when she finally gets back from the hospital, just for a while because her daughter’s talking about a retirement home where she’ll have plenty of medical care and lots of friends her age, the kid comes through the window and then pulls another kid through the window who he introduces as his boyfriend, and says he wanted her to meet him. And she sniffs and interrogates the boyfriend in proper elderly relative fashion, and then declares him worthy of her boy— barely. And when she finally does have to go to that retirement home, the kid still comes to visit her, and always leaves seashells on the windowsill.
I’m not crying or anything
I am omg
Uh, one night my dog leaned against a wall because his back legs decided that they were done. And those kinds of stories never end well and this one wasn’t going to be different. We put him down the next day.
I’m a writer and that is the first and easiest trick we all have. Uh, it’s true, so it’s not cheap. It happened. Lying is kind of the cheapest trick of all, but still to come out here and lead off with my dog died is uhm, about as courageous as taking a stand against child abuse. But I did it because I want you on my side and I only have 4 minutes.
His name was Captain Applejack because he spent for year in the dog navy and would not be called mister. And anytime a dog owner says, “Who’s a good boy? Who’s a good boy?” The answer is always Captain Applejack.
I was actually on a deadline so I did what writers do and I compartmentalized. I stuffed it into a box and put it next to the other boxes marked, like, dad issues, and high school crushes and then I got on with my day. Uhm. I write comic books and my career was ending so I wanted to meet my deadlines. My worm had turned in the way that the worm turns for people in popular entertainment. There’s no retirement plan where I come from. There’s just one day people stop calling and the work stops coming. You don’t get hired anymore.
I was launching a book called Hawkeye and if you saw the Avengers movie he was the guy… he was the first archer in the history of cinema to run out of arrows. Which is a very kind of true moment for him. He’s the regular dude in the avengers. And as a kid I always liked him because he was the regular guy. He came from Iowa. I lived in Iowa for God’s sake! It just seemed to make so much sense. He was a bad guy who made good. And he would like, drop his g’s when he spoke and he’d get so wrapped up in his thinking he’d get lost in like their super mansion and stuff. He was very human and he got to be an Avenger and that’s what I liked about him and now it was my chance to write him. This is before the avengers movie come out and they were looking for opportunities to make that cast of heroes a little more visible.
When you work for someone like Marvel it’s a shared universe where everyone is playing with the same toys in this strange imaginative game all at once. And because of the movie and because of a couple of other things, Hawkeye was everywhere as I was supposed to launch my book. And I could sense that there were people that wanted him here and wanted him there: “Well I’ve got him on the moon on Tuesday, and you’ve got him underwater on Wednesday, what is he doing on Thursday?” And that I decided would be my take. My book is what he does on Thursdays when he’s not an Avenger. It’s where he goes… my book was going to be about where he goes to change his pants. It was going to be very slice of life, small ball kind of stories.
It was supposed to last 6 issues and it’d be done. And nobody thought it would do better than that because it has never as a character ever done better than that. It was… and then I’m putting him, you know, in pants in an apartment building it was commercial suicide. But as my career was ending I had nothing to lose and everything to gain by writing books that I would want to read.
But my dog was dead and my first issue wasn’t happening and I wanted to cry and be alone and be sad and grieve and mourn but I had this stupid comic book that I had to write. And I had the ‘what happens’ but I didn’t have what it’s about. I knew in this Hawkeye story we were going to meet him on Thursday afternoon when he’s not an avenger and there’s a neighbor in his building who’s getting kicked out and what Hawkeye is going to do is he’s going to buy the building so she doesn’t get kicked out. Cause he had a bunch of… yeah I know, right? Dynamite, dynamite stuff!
And I came up with these kind of tricks, if I’m going to do this small ball stuff, like, there’s an issue where he just wants to buy tape. There’s an issue where he just wants to hook up his DVR and people keep bugging him. And he’s… so… Like, small things and I came up these different things I was going to do, we’ll tell the stories all out of order, and we’ll do this and that and in a way to kinda keep it compelling… and try to keep it compelling and keep it interesting a little more than just: “This issue Hawkeye buys tape.”
The honest truth was I didn’t care about the building or Hawkeye or the neighbor getting kicked out ‘cause of my dog. And then I pulled out my first trick. And I gave him a dog.
Yeah. So when Captain Applejack was a puppy I found him under a car. And he was so sick and so little and uh… so mangy I didn’t know if he was very young and very sick or very old and about to die. He was wrinkly. So I gave him to Hawkeye. I gave him this beat up mutt who was neglected and ignored. And as I started to kind of write and give him this kind of emotional thing he was connected to, like, the character’s anima appeared. That was it, it wasn’t a hawk it was a dog. And then I got the book. I understood what the book was. I knew what happens. I knew what it was about. And if I couldn’t save Captain Applejack, Hawkeye could save Lucky.
Spoilers, the dog lives.
So I wrote it in a single day. I wrote it… it was a very bad, very sad day, but I wrote it in a day. And it comes out, and the response is impossible to ignore. And I do my very, very best to ignore response at all, at all costs. But a fandom roared, or barked as the case may be, and like we started to immediately get fan art and crafts. While Hawkeye might not have the best sales in the world I’ve met literally everyone reading the book and they were dressed. Uh, but it’s he’s just wearing pants so it’s super easy, it’s pants and bandages. My editor said “People love the dog” so it’s the dog. And this entire corner in my career was turned.
If I said ‘miraculous’ it would actually insult real miracles but I don’t know what else to say. I was on my way out the door but it turned out the door was revolving and I was right back in and my entire life turned around. And everything in my career exploded off of this book. I tried to save my dog, and he saved me."
Here is “Knot”, a short comic I drew to sell at Mocca and TCAF this year. The printed version is going to be SO PRETTY. I’m in love with the cover (which I will post later).
I just wanted to do something fairy-tale-like that talked about doubts and frustrations and how to deal with them. I’m really happy with how colorful and adorable the story turned out to be.
If you enjoyed “Knot”, please consider reblogging it and/or checking out my ongoing webcomic Namesake! HUGS TO ALL OF YOU!
To steal a music term, the hook of a song is that thing that, well, hooks you in and makes you wanna remember the song. So how does that pertain to design you ask? Well early on in the DA:I project I decided to treat the appeal of the characters I designed not through the eye of the beholder, compiling massive reference sheet of beautiful people and picking features I found appealing. Instead I decided to look through the lens of the narrative, and find their hook. I just found beauty too subjective, too mushy too, too, well lets just say I didn’t find it adequate. Luckily for me a lot of the talented people at Bioware believe in narrative so it wasn’t a hard sell to change the thinking and discussion away from “do I like what that looks like” to “does that visually say what we want”.
In the above example of Cassandra. Her hook is her power and authority. So then the trick was merely to use visual language to tell that story. I no longer had to justify what I thought was attractive. Her face became all about her aggression. Through the angle of her facial structure to the angle of her ears. It all became about giving her a strong aggressive forward visual flow.
— Casper Konefal (x)
i know i said that i was regulating fandom stuff to the new blog
but come on how can i not reblog this?
Shane Prigmore CORALINE action to add to my wall of inspiration…
drawlin for the moleskine group show at Spoke Art this dec.
get shit done | a playlist to get you through your work (and help you feel like a badass)
i. sky battle ii. prologue iii. pacific rim iv. armies assemble v. hogwarts’ march vi. ithe son of flynn vii. fight on the flight deck viii. earth ix dream is collapsing x. nick fury xi. i am the doctor xii. fighting in the market xiii. main theme (extended) xiv. gotham’s reckoning xv. the black pearl xvi. courtyard apocalypse xvii. i am iron man xviii. muttations xix. the lighting of the beacons xx. black widow kicks ass xxi. flight xxii. the avengers xxiii. the battle xxiv.end titles xxv. sons of odin xxvi.the shatterdome xxvii.the end of all things xxviii. hassansin attack xxix. requiem for a dream xxx. welcome to scotland xxxi. outlands xxxii. sledgehammer v2 xxxiii. enterprising young men xxxiv. warriors on the beach xxxv. rise xxxvi. the council of elrond xxxvii. now you see me xxxviii. frost giant battle xxxix. the labyrinth xl. the sands of time