Xemnas (A Sketch)

Yes, I finally got a copy of Kingdom Hearts 3 and started playing it recently. (Don’t spoil anything! I’m still only one world into the game).

Kingdom Hearts is a game series I have a lot of fondness for in my heart, despite all of its issues. It was the series that convinced my teenage self that video games could be an art form because it prompted SO MANY FEELINGS (instead of just rage and frustration at the mechanics of whatever game I was playing).

This was the series that helped me get through high school. Not just because of its cool game-play or its silly character moments, but also because of the fandom.

Yes, I was one of those fans who giggled at the idea of rearranging Xemnas’ name into “Mansex.” Who loved all the crack comics comparing Saix to a puppy and having Demyx and Roxas use a laser pointer to torture him. I even devoured so many hours of a video series called “The Stupid Files” where a fan with a LOT of time on their hands spliced comedic audio samples over Kingdom Hearts cutscene footage. It was like a precursor to all the abridged anime series’ out now.


Kingdom Hearts as a game series has a LOT of issues. I am not a fan of the fact that the spin-off titles, or “interquels,” change the core mechanics of the gameplay. I did not like the card system of Chain of Memories, but I ESPECIALLY hated the Tetris-inventory mechanics of 358/2 Days. I could not finish either of those games because of those gameplay mechanics.

As a fan of the series, I feel like a lot of those in-between games could have just been made into movies and be JUST as effective. Most fans of Kingdom Hearts I know only ever watch the cutscenes of the side games and play just the anchor games (the anchors being games 1, 2, and now 3).

That’s the thing that being a fan of Kingdom Hearts has taught me: that you don’t have to consume EVERY FACET of a property to be a big dork for the thing.

I will never play the interquel games. At most, I will watch the cutscenes. Heck, you can watch videos on YouTube summarizing the lore of Kingdom Hearts so far and – ta-da – you’re now caught up to the series without having to touch any of the crap side games.

(358/2 Days, why did you have to SUCK?)

That said, I’ve been playing Kingdom Hearts 3 so far – on Proud mode! I haven’t touched a new video game in 13 years and I can play Kingdom Hearts 3 on Proud Mode without dying. That…actually might be more a statement on the game’s difficulty than on my expertise. But that aside…

Playing Kingdom Hearts 3 reminded me why I love this game series in the first place. It’s fun to play (at least the anchor games are). The characters are stilted but they’re still fun. The dialogue is cheesy but it works. And GOOD GOLLY JEEZ, the fact that you can play as a character interacting in Disney worlds is great. I’m looking forward to the Toy Story world the most because those were some of my favorite movies as a kid.

It’s a game series made for people who are young at heart, who need a little light to combat all the cynicism and self-awareness that the video game industry is saturated in. And thank goodness for that.

That’s all I’m going to write for now. I could talk for days about this series.

Thank you for reading.

You. Are. Awesome.

Old Art Canvas Collages

Yesterday I spent a good chunk of my day on something I mentioned in my previous post.

I took some canvas I bought, some old sketches from my high school days, and some Mod Podge, and I made collages.

Here are some photos of the final results.

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I even have a few close ups of the first one…

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And some close ups of the second one…

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You may have noticed that there are smatterings of sketches of Kingdom Hearts or Hunter x Hunter characters in the collages. I’ll be talking about that in my next blog post.

So why did I do this?

Well, I didn’t want my old sketches sitting in a box being unused and unseen. I wanted to start making a large catalog of my art, so that the artistic transformation can be seen more readily.

As time goes by, every artist improves in their craft. I am no different. I look at these sketches, the first set dating to 2006, the second set dating to 2007, and I see such a huge difference between them and the art I make now.

I wanted these sketches up on collages to remind myself of how far I’ve come, and see the progress I have made.

I intend on making more collage pieces with my other older sketches. My goal is to make one collage for every year. That way the progress can be more noticeable.

But this is just a personal project.

For now, I still have a lot of freelance work to do, so it’s back to the drawing board with me.

So what do you do with your old sketches? How long has it been since you looked at them? What are your thoughts on your old work? Let me know in the comments below!

Thanks for reading and I’ll see you on Friday.