Wednesday, October 31, 2012

An Apple a Day... #49 and 50

Parts XIII and XIV

Some notes on parts XIII and XIV:
  • By the time part XIII was finished, I had realized that Zordon had become pretty repetitive in his description of "the power." It was something I noticed about the way Zordon would explain concepts to the Power Rangers in the tv show. He would constantly over-explain simple concepts (typical in a kid's show but, I mean, come on, man, get to the point!) So, I decided to have Edward call him out on it in part XIV.
  • The last panel of part XIII is, in my opinion, the best drawing of the command center I had done. It's success won't be replicated and, speaking with the blessing of foreknowledge, represents the point where many of my background drawings start to look like poo. (Not ALL of them, mind you. There are still some cracker jacks coming, just you wait.)
  • The purple text box bit in panel four of part XIV is a direct and shameless reference to the Legend of Zelda.
  • I'm not sure what's going on with Edward's hair in some of these panels. It's really all over the place. Also, the green coloring isn't very consistant from page to page (I think I eventually standardized it, but, who knows.)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

An Apple a Day... #47 and 48

Parts XI and XII

Some notes on Parts XI and XII:
  • Part XI marks the beginning of Robot's second, The Solution.
  • The backgrounds in this act were some of my favorites to draw (despite there really only being, like, 6, different ones total).
  • The colorization of Edward's hair and eyes is symbolic for two reasons. The first is the obvious call out to his ranger color (much like how the Power Rangers would wear clothes that denote their ranger color when they were at school). The second reason will be revealed after the conclusion of Act Three.
  • Zordon is really fun to draw. He's basically a blob with a face.
  • I chose green to be Edward's ranger color because the Green Ranger was my favorite ranger as a kid.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

IN PROGRESS: Balloon Cat - Space Roughs

These are two mood tests of Balloon Cat's space scenery. The top render seems to imply that Cat is in more danger than he realizes, whereas the bottom render evokes more of the loneliness and isolation Cat experiences on his journey. (Honestly, if these images were in a higher resolution, they'd be great as promotional posters for the film.) 

Friday, October 19, 2012

An Apple a Day... #45 and 46

Parts IX and X

As stated before in the story/concept writeup, Robot is a tale of woe, told in three acts: The Problem, The Solution, and The Consequences
The three acts, while being a chapter structure to the story, also represent the blocks of time I spent working on Robot. For example, from May 21, 2011 (the supposed "Rapture Day") until August 24, 2011, I worked on Robot for (what seemed like) a good stretch of time. I was taking a contemporary art class at the time and my notes got mixed in with the actual planning and rough drafts of the pages for Robot (all the rough and pre-visual work for Robot was done in a sketchbook, versus the digital methods I used for Moustache). This was kind of cool because it was almost like Robot took on an alternate form: A story between the actual story where Apple, Edward, and other characters would comment on my notes and continually complain about the lack of actual progress I was making on Robot at the time. (I called these little interludes "commercial breaks" but, by the time I got to Part X, I was over their charm and, promptly, put an end to them.) The actual lapse between the completion of Act One and start of Act Two was only about  two days.
Some notes about Act One, overall:
  • The design of Robot changed between part one and part eight. This is because when I began roughing out Robot, I hadn't settled on a final design for the robot character. Therefore, when it came time to show his silhouette in the final panel of part one, I made it of a generic tin can robot. I continued to use this generic sort of robot design all the way through (Rough) Part XV. When it came time to actually reveal the robot in the cleaned up version of part 8, I used the initial tin can robot shape, but made it lankier. (Embarrassingly, Robot's design continues to fluctuate throughout the remainder of the comic. However, this can attributed to a slight stylistic change in Act Three.)
  • The District runs Robot's installments as "Pages", while I run them as "Parts." Essentially, it's two different names for the same thing. However, I would argue that calling them pages implies that the story is meant to flow seamlessly throughout its run. This is not the case with Robot. In fact, if you were to read Robot straight through, page to page like you would a normal comic book, you would find it to be a hastily written story with enormous plot holes and missing character development. This is because Robot was conceived as a weekly comic, wherein I took into account the amount of time that progresses in the real world when writing each part. This little fact is especially important to keep in mind of Act One when it's read through, again, all at once. The inclusion of the weekly delay in Robot's posting is essential to the pacing of Act One overall, as well as its jokes. 
    • One example is between Part IV and V. At the end of Part IV, Edward is about to be accosted again and, at the start of Part V, he bursts in on Apple using the toilet. This scenario is humorous, sure, but becomes funnier if you imagine Edward being held captive by the Robot for an entire week versus, what, like an hour? At the start of Act Two we begin observing the events in, basically, real time. 
  • The comic is called Robot, yet the titular character doesn't show up until Part VIII. This was done intentionally, as I wanted the story to develop slower than in the previous two stories.
  • I use the term "accosted" to pretty much serve as a euphemism for molestation. It becomes fairly obvious in Part VII when the farmer claims the robot "touched" him. (C'mon, what did you think that meant, really?) I did this to skirt around District's fairly strict language and content guidelines. 
  • While molestation, itself, isn't very funny, the townies' use of the term really only denotes an unsolicited hug. This is important when setting up the robot as a character that is perceived as worse than he actually is.

An Apple a Day... #43 and 44

Parts VII and VIII

Some notes on Parts VII and VIII:
  • I had, at one point, seriously considered doing a short little side comic about Klaus' experiences with the robot. It would have been reminiscent of that scene in Frankenstein where the monster meets the little girl. It would've ended with Klaus and Robot holding hands and walking into the sunset.
  • I don't like Will and Grace, which is something I've passed on to Apple and Edward. I'm still not entirely sure why I singled that show out in Part VII.
  • Generally, I'm not pleased with the layout of Part VIII. I don't think it's very intuitive when it comes to actually reading it. However, I also don't feel like reworking it for the time being.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

An Apple a Day... #41 and 42

Parts V and VI


Some notes on Parts V and VI:
  • I find that there is something, inherently, humorous about an apple using the toilet.
  • It is implied that Apple continues to poop for a while after Edward bursts in on him.
  • The news broadcast was a convenient way for me to quickly validate Edward's experiences for Apple.

Home Improvement.

Last fall (I know, I'm a year off here), I created an animation centered around the four seasons. In it, Apple goes through a full year of home repairs as outside forces continue to destroy his house. Does Apple deserve this sort of punishment? Yes. He was a pretty big jerk in the early comics and this is just karma. Recently, I've gotten used to the notion that this animation is a precursor to Robot in that it explains why Apple now lives in a tree stump and it gives a little insight into Apple's initial frustration with Edward at the beginning of of the story. This animation also really helps to bridge the gap between Moustache and Robot in a way that harkens back to An Apple a Day's initial concept - story snippets that don't serve as complete narratives by themselves and thus, sometimes, required some imaginative interpretation from the audience. So, in that sense, each season would serve as a different comic strip where Apple's house would end up damaged in some way.

Anyway, I think I'm done blabbing about the concept behind this animation. Let's watch Apple's house get destroyed.

Titled, Home Improvement.


For fun, I switched the music track to something more porno sounding. Hence, we now have the sexy version of Home Improvement.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

IN PROGRESS: Balloon Cat - Model Sheets

I've been working on a new film recently titled, Balloon Cat, as a part of my Graduate thesis. In brief, it's a film about a cat who, tired of his daily kibble, decides to go outside and catch himself a nice, tasty bird for lunch. When things inevitably go wrong, Cat has no choice but to follow through with the consequences of his decisions as they lead him on a through a journey into space and, ultimately, his own subconsciousness.

Below, I've showcased a few sketches and model sheets for Cat and Bird.

An Apple a Day... #39 and 40

Parts III and IV

A little bit of commentary for these two parts:
  • Apparently, Apple wears his polka dot thong on the weekends. He also seems incapable of tying his robe closed when he has company over.
  • Yes, I did only color Edward's hair for that gag. No, I'm not ashamed to admit that.

Monday, October 15, 2012

An Apple a Day... #37 and 38

So, I've decided to go ahead and repost Robot here anyway. However, I think it'll be done in double posts. This serves two purposes: First, it allows me to quickly catch up with the District run of Robot and, Second, this layout will be more reminiscent of what Robot would look like if it were physically published. Below the comics, I've added a short write up about the story of Robot and and the general concept behind it that I wrote when I began retrofitting these comics to storyboards for an animatic. (Hey, if I'm going to redo past blog postings, I may as well add a little extra content.)

Robot: The Animation is dead in the water at this point, but the story and concept write up still apply to the comic. Well, enough of my blabbering. Onward, to the comic:

Parts I and II

The sudden arrival of a robot in the woods shakes a community to its roots. Told in three acts, the story follows the exploits of a Edward, a well-meaning, albeit annoying, yogurt tuft, as he tries to convince his friend, Apple, an apple, that he has been accosted by a robot. When the two hapless heroes go investigate Edward’s claims, the robot is nowhere to be seen, lending justification to Apple’s belief that Edward was simply messing around. The truth is revealed in a news broadcast vindicating Edward’s claims, forcing Apple to eat his words. Whilst Edward gloats, the Robot continues his reign of terror, with seemingly no end in sight. By the end of the first part, it is clear that something must be done about this menace and the universe has chosen Edward to be its savior. 

Okay, I’m finished kidding around.  Honestly, the above synopsis is way more serious than this story demands. In short, this is a stupid story about two friends, a robot, and the misunderstandings that come with being different in a town full of 1950’s McCarthy-era views on society and how different and exotic beings are probably evil and therefore, threaten the established norm.

This story arc is a direct continuation of a comic series I started roughly two years ago called, An Apple a Day…  As its name suggests, it follows the exploits of an Apple and his friends as they live their lives to the best of their ability. Originally conceived to be a daily comic strip, my laziness got the best of me and the comics have become more weekly based. Recently, I’ve crafted multi comic story arcs, beginning with a story called, The Bet. I won’t go into detail but, suffice it to say, I then crafted a sequel to the story called, Moustache, that, if one could believe it, was even dumber than the previous tale. Robot, is the third story in this arc (despite the fact that I have been working on a robot-themed story since the genesis of the comic two years ago).  

The three stories play together as a loose trilogy of events. The Bet is a tale of Love, Moustache is a tale of Envy, and Robot is a tale of Woe. The Woe part applies to the robot, who, despite his “menacing” appearance and societal perception, only wants to be accepted and loved. Unfortunately, society is not ready for him.

Sunday, October 14, 2012


This is a short scratch on film animation I created in my Experimental Animation course. It's set to the song, "Kristofferson's Theme" by Alexandre Desplat from the film, Fantastic Mr. Fox.
Titled, Kristofferson.


It's been quite a while since I've put any work into this old blog. Actually, it's been a long time since I even thought about it. It would appear, at first glance that I haven't done any new work since August of 2010 but, that is not the case. The thing is, I had set up my own website, which had a blog, and I simply migrated these posts over to it. Things were good for a year or so. Then stuff happened and that website went down. The best part about the website dying is that I never backed up the blog - or any part of the site, for that matter - thus losing all those newer postings, seemingly forever. So, Ive come back here, put a new coat of paint on the old "Captain's Log" and will be starting fresh.

A few notes:

  • I've gone through and taken down any old Moustache posts from just before the website transfer occurred in December 2010. 
  • The post directly below this one has a recent date on it, however it's simply a reformat/repost of the six "Bet" rough posts. The new post contains all six parts in a new embedding and retains the little blurbs I wrote about the comics in the first and sixth posting. This helped me clear up some of the crummy html work I did and helped to streamline the blog refresh a bit.
  • At the top of the blog, I've added a few pages: Demo Reel, Resume, Story#1: The Bet, Story#2: Moustache, and Story#3: Robot. The first two page headers are fairly self-explanatory (i.e under Demo Reel, you'll find my current animation reel, and, under Resume, you'll find my current resume). 
  • Under Story #1, you'll find the cleaned up versions of all six pages of The Bet that was promised, oh so long ago.
  • Under Story #2, you'll find all twelve pages of Moustache, the pseudo-sequel to The Bet. Moustache has the distinction of being the first series of my comics to run on SCAD District.
  • Under Story #3, you'll find the current batch of An Apple a Day... comics. It's a forty page story arc about a robot whose actions are largely misunderstood and the actions taken by Edward and Apple to stop him. They are currently running on District and due to a contractual obligation there, I can only post them after they run on District's site for a week (This explains why, even though the story has been written and the pages are completed, there are only twelve parts currently available for viewing. Sometimes, I fudge the rule though). 
  • Individual Posts concerning An Apple a Day... comics #19 - 36 will not return, instead they'e been moved to their own respective pages for convenient reading/viewing. I remain undecided on whether I will post comics #37-76 individually. 
One more final, overall, note: the remainder of this blog (after this first page) retains the original formatting from when this blog was being primarily used. I only updated the posts on this first page so that the blog doesn't look too wonky upon first visit. 

Okay, I think that about does it for my updates. I hate doing a full text post, but this one was fairly necessary to do, given the amount of time passed since this blog was last updated. 

Saturday, October 13, 2012

An Apple a Day... #19 - 24 (Reformat)

An Apple a Day... #19 - 24 (Roughs)

Original Text From Posting of An Apple a Day...19, August 5, 2010:
"If I keep making comics loosely based around Twilight, people may begin to think I'm a fan.

I'm not.

But I feel that this new obsession amongst young people today has to be commented on in some way just like Harry Potter, Star Wars and a myriad of other things before it. (That's not say it hasn't been commented on, at great length, already. I'm just fashionably late to the party.)

This is my commentary. Stupid comics that entertain me as I draw them."
Original Text From Posting of An Apple a Day...#24, August 5, 2010:
"Before this silly series of event concludes, I feel I must apologize about my poor excuse for legible handwriting. It's terrible, I know. It got pretty bad in some areas and I tried my best to clean up the truly illegible spots. Also, the drawings, overall, took a noticeable decline. However, I feel that lends this particular series of strips a certain character. All of the pages are scanned from a sketchbook and the drawings and crappy handwriting reflect this. For whatever reason, I think it works out alright in this instance.

Also, it's important to note that these six comic parts are still rough sketches. They will be cleaned up and made sensible soon.

Okay. Now, onward to the end."