Gimpy, of Hustle fame, has begun his webcomic anew. Here’s to many more updates from the great man that is Gimpy!
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Entries related to webcomics, mine or otherwise.
A couple days ago I posted about some goals I had. Specifically, I was going to update my comics every day, and when I felt I couldn’t for whatever reason I would spend the time coloring the Morrowind Comic.
Well, I was very rash. I made that goal in about a two hour window when I was feeling well. I haven’t felt that well in a month or so, and I probably won’t feel that well again for quite some time. I do, however, want to keep the goal. And it’s gonna be hard as nothing else to do so.
Here goes my extreme force of will. Let’s see how long I can go before breaking!
So I bought Photoshop, as you all know. And I also bought Poser, which some of you may not know. And a friend (tek_hed) recently gave me a Wacom tablet. And I do so love art, even if I’m not the best at drawing it and find it difficult to force the pencil to touch paper at times.
And what have I been doing about it? Nothing! I’ve got all these neat toys and nothing is going on! I think it’s about time I got the ball rolling again and started up with my comics and stuff. So I’ve set a goal!
Goal: Update a comic a day, round robin style. If I’m in a slump with ideas or just feeling lousy, color the Morrowind Comic instead of making a new comic. If there’s no comic to color, force myself to draw at least a one-panel filler for whatever comic is next in the rotation.
For those of you that don’t know, I’ve been feeling worse and worse the past few weeks. I’ve been tired, lethargic, having annoying and persistant headaches, exhausted, and I’ve just generally not felt well. I’ve been visiting doctors for months, and had an MRI (that was expensive) many blood tests, and finally I had a “sleep study” done.
According to the MRI I have a healthy brain with healthy, normal sinuses. According to the blood tests I don’t have an ulcer or infection or low iron or anything, and I’m not even malnourished.
But the sleep test! Finally something that came back positive! I’ve got sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is when one stops breathing during the night, pulling them out of REM sleep so they can fix the problem.
So the solution is to get a CPAP (That’s a P, not an R), which fortunately is just a machine. Some sleep apnea requires surgery to fix, but most people only need a “Continuous Positive Air Pressure” machine. Basically a small air compressor that keeps air flowing in through their nose to keep the airway from collapsing.
It’ll probably be another couple weeks before I can get in to do another sleep study so they can find out the pressure to use on the CPAP. But I might as well do what I can in the meantime. Like waking up.
I think it’s about time I start up Trivium and the Morrowind Comic again. My little stress/sick/whatever escapade has kind of died down, and now I’m merely busy. And I’d like to continue them, but if I don’t start up soon I’m going to forget how to do them.
I don’t like deferring things. When I put something off, I tend to either forget about it, or find other reasons to put it off. I have reasons not to be able to finish a Trivium today, but I’m going to set the goal that before I fall asleep tonight I will have a Trivium inked and uploaded for your viewing pleasure.
Wish me luck!
Currently I’m focusing my time on finishing http://www.boosterlogic.com/. I wanted to have it done by today, but things didn’t work out as well as I’ve planned, so I’m hoping to get it done by the end of the week.
After I’m done binging on that, I plan on outputting three or four or more Morrowind Comics for a couple of weeks. At the same time my website goals are, in this order: 1) Give Gimpystick greater functionality, 2) Build a news engine for Skaarjonastick.com, 3) Build a gallery engine for Skaarjonastick.com.
Once I have the news/gallery engines in place, however simple, I can tinkler with and customize them at my leisure. The hard part is just going to be getting a good base implimented first. For those that are unfamiliar with my habits, I don’t like using pre-built software. I like to build things myself. That way they do exactly what I want, when I want it, and I can more easily change anything when I want to because it’s in my style.
The hard part for me is going to be getting a new visual layout. I want something that I can use all over the site — for Trivium Entertainment, my Morrowind Comic, this site, the galleries, Gimpystick, and anything else I have. I’ve asked around for some help, but everyone I know is as busy as I am. We’ll see what happens, I suppose.
After I’ve spent a few weeks on my own website, I’m going to see about getting a job. Of course, with how communication is going with a friend of mine, I may end up with a 9-5 job before I want it.
I’ve posted a few things recently that I wanted to put somewhere in one place. They’re “art/webcomic tutorials” of sorts, but more about planning and mental states rather than actual drawing.
Advice to someone thinking of starting a webcomic
I’ve noticed a lot of people that said, “I’m going to start a webcomic” but didn’t succeed. Here’s what I think about creating a webcomic:
Webcomics should not be created because you want fame and fortune. Webcomics should be created because you either have a personal purpose for it (for me, I wanted to get better at art), or because you simply have a passion about drawing or comics. They also require dedication, be it a daily, weekday, two/three-a-week, weekly, or even monthly. Passion is a fleeting thing. One day you may be all abubble with it, and the next you’re hunched over wondering what you were so excited about. Without dedication, you’ll never get through the dark spots where passion wanes.
Let me tell you… a daily comic will drain you like nothing else. I’m spending hours a day updating Trivium. Even a weekly comic can be agonizingly difficult if you don’t have the passion. A webcomic is a big undertaking.
I recommend creating a dozen or so strips/pages “off the record”, using the full creation process from pencil-and-paper to ready-to-show, to see if you can really do what it takes on a regular basis.
The mental state of an artist.
I have a theory about how an artist is supposed to think. I’ve encountered a number of very, very good artists that insist that they’re terrible and their art has so many problems. I have yet to encounter an artist that is perfectly satisified with any piece of art that they have created. I find the whiners very annoying, especially when they obviously have talent, so I decided on the best type of behavior that I should follow.
1) Always be happy that you’re drawing. Draw because you love it. Honestly, graphic arts is a terrible, terrible business field. It’s saturated, if nothing else. Art is something you’re going to be doing because you love it, not because you want to make money off it.
2) Focus on how much you’ve improved, not how “bad” your existing art is. If you compare your art to other people’s art, you’re only going to end up hurting yourself. Compare it to you own art: your older pieces. (Never throw anything away, and make sure to date them!) Go back as far as your childhood drawings if you need to, but focus on the improvement you’ve made, not how far away you are to drawing like another artist does.
3) Never be satisified with your work. The moment you’re satisified, you will stop improving.
Advice to someone thinking of starting their webcomic over
First, the comic is yours. You do whatever you want with it. If you really want to start over because you know you can make it so much better, then by all means, do so.
Second, don’t you dare start over.
I’ve read a lot of webcomics in my time (I have over 100 on my list that I read regularly) and one of the wonderful things about them is art evolution. I’d show you an example of my own, but I’ve only been dong this for about six months, so I’m going to show you the first and latest Schlock Mercenary, which started five years ago.
Amazing, isn’t it? And if he had started over every time his art reached a new level, he wouldn’t have as many readers as he has, and he wouldn’t have gotten near as far in the plot as he did. We’re always learning, and there’s nothing wrong with improving over time.
So apparently Google indexed me recently. I’ve gotten a few hits from people searching for “inking tutorial” and went looking — I’m somehow result number six (on page one). I wonder if people just don’t have them or if I used some kind of obscure wording that people don’t normally use.
I really need to get this site looking prettier. It’s hard to read right now, and has a placeholder banner at the top. How embarassing. You know what… how many people actually looked at this index page last month. Oh wow. Almost 700 page loads? Ya… I’m embarassed.
Off the record, Gimpy, the author of Hustle (webcomic), has plans to restart it. A month, a year, who knows. He didn’t like the start, and a new one is planned. So look forward to it, because Gimpy’s a funny guy with pretty art.
And I think found a friend to encourage me to start drawing in the Gimpy Stick sketch gallery again (yay!) so that may start getting updated once more.
Threw up my todo list on the left. I think I oughta start working on it.
I’ve got a few new ideas and some old ideas, and I wanted to write them down somewhere. I figured here is good enough.
My current plans for the Morrowind Comic are to finish it before Oblivion comes out. I’ve heard dates ranging from October to December for a release, so I’ll just have to try to get it done as fast as I can. My goal of two comics a week hasn’t been going very well, but I’m still trying to get as many done as I can.
I’ve said a few things about after I finish the Morrowind Comic.
1) I’m never working on two comics concurrently again.
2) After I finish my Morrowind Comic, I’m going to try getting my proposed figure tutorial going.
I may not be the best at drawing, but I’m good at figuring things out and troubleshooting, so I should be able to provide some information in the tutorial that’s useful.
It was also mentioned that I oughta make an inking tutorial so people can be aware of how I ink my comics. It’s been mentioned that the linework on them is very clear. I’ll see if I can’t get some kind of tutorial like that up and running sometime, too.
Well, I woke up this morning (at 1:30am) wide awake and with an inspirational idea.
I’m going to start another webcomic! What? I’m a fool? Well, maybe. But there’s a reason for it, and I feel this reason is valid enough.
Morrowind Comic, the way I’ve made it, requires a full-page of art and all kinds of mean nasty stuff. I think I’ve outdone my abilities on it. I hate not finishing things I start, so I’m not going to stop work on that. But I have a little more free time and a little more confidence, and a higher drive to become better at art. The advice I keep getting from my friends is practice, practice, practice. With Morrowind comic I practice about once every week and a half.
This comic I’m making, called Trivium Entertainment, will be about a video game company. It will be silly, update daily, be a simple 3-panelish style comic, black and white, and hopefully be baby steps and tiny bites enough that I can work on it “daily”. Working on a Morrowind Comic issues takes hours upon hours for me. I put too much into it. So by making something like this, it should be less serious for me, and easier to do!
I may not be able to explain it properly, but I got inspiration and I’m not putting it down when I got it. To start up another webcomic while I’ve got these two going without having more skill, time, and resources… now that would be lunacy. But this is just foolish. I can handle foolish.