I'm hurling these ideas around right now for a book called Rememberlands that I'm soon going to shamelessly hurl at Scholasitc's Graphix imprint. It also may have found its way, expensively, in the mail to Pixar.
That is a spring-loaded VW Bug, yes. I'm calling it the VW "Hopper" and you can't stop me. Unless you are Volkswagen.
These are from a HOT minute back. I never posted them for a few reasons... the cheesy model strut, my obvious hard-on for manga styling regardless of actual content, my equally obvious penchant for boys with hair and rad jackets.
Sometimes, as an "artist" in some niche, you lose touch. You kind of forget what the rest of the world sees when they look at what you're doing. It's like being in a fishbowl, in the dark, in the museum of Modern Art, listening to Bjork.
These simple sketches are just progress work for a character. For a lot of animation groups, the steps leading up to a finalized design are, well, important. These "action shots" of Kenzie help explore her range and her physicality. If there's anybody out there that likes to nitpick acting, go ahead and do it.
Sculpting is awesome, guys. It's like the best thing ever. Anyway, this one was quite the endeavor and parts of it really pleased me and other parts fell short. It's a perfect metaphor for life, or something.
The goal was to create an engaging but evolutionarily believable animal. I enjoy a more animated look, so the combination got me something like a very, very texturally detailed cartoon character.
This is one that looks better in Real Life. It turned out there was no way to shoot this without getting his head in front of that very crowded turtle shell. I took that into account when making Trojan (scroll down or see right) who photographs beautifully. A lot of times, simpler is better. The Hildyfoo (yes) plants a garden in his shell as an adolescent. He uses it to impress the ladies, in hopes that when he grows up to be a big island they will live there. Mmm, nature.
The sculpt is of him hunting materials for his garden. The surprise rat in the tree is just bonus.
I honestly did these a while ago, while I was learning both mediums. Most of the time I learn to hate anything I did more than ten minutes ago, which I'm pretty sure is some kind of prerequisite to being an artist, but these managed to go un-hated for well over a year and, well, now here you are looking at it.
They've got weaknesses due to their age, and maybe I shouldn't show you, but I figure it's like walking into a costume party and finding out it was really black tie. You just gotta carry that shiz off.
I met a man from Pixar today. He seemed relatively unaware that he was in league with the rockstars of the animation industry; he demanded neither groupies or difficult to obtain street drugs. I was at least prepared to block off the area with a velvet rope - purple, I thought - but it turned out he was pleasant, genuine and very eager to check out others' artwork.
He said to me, among other things such as "hello" and, "Mel, wasn't it?" that they like to see all the sketches leading up to a finished product. The earliest sketches of Trojan are lost in the annals of some sketchbook somewhere, but these begin with the silhouettes. You can see how crappy he nearly looked. Whoo.
From there I worked up some lineart, some action shots to develop personality, and some variations of tack. (This horse is so big a rider has to sit on his crown). Check it out, if you dig this thing.
Silhouettes give me a starting point to pick a good shape. You have to get the cruddy ones out first.
Some tack ideas... Blogspot seems hell-bent on showing these out of order.
The personality is probably the crux of the whole thing. You should really click on this one.
Compared to the average horse (and unicorn,) Trojan is a huge beast. He's a mutant. Really.
Trojan here is part of a property pitch for Warner Brothers known as "DERBATHON". If that word alone doesn't seize your mind with the needle-like teeth of intrigue and toss it around like the fat kid in an inflatable moonwalk, then I just don't know what else I can do for you.
Trojan is Sculpey Firm, Apoxy Sculpt, blood and tears. He's about a foot and a half tall on his base.
Five guys, one house, no money. It's a story many of us are familiar with, and by "us," I clearly mean "aspiring artists." The Leftovers is a rip-rollicking tale of love, loss and the unmarked crap you find in styrafoam containers in the back of your fridge.
These are a few of the pages. Pencilled inked and toned by yours truly, unless you have a problem with it, in which case the inker TOTALLY killed my pages, man.
I split a lot of my time between graphic novelling (heretofore referred to as "Granoveling") and sculpting and finding things to eat, so work on this has been touch and go. However, it will eventually have its own site.