Outside of My Comfort Zone…In Sketches

Earlier this week, I updated my blog with the following warm-up sketch:

warm up sketch of nautilus and riley, original characters

I then looked at it and went, “Man, I need to practice more variety in body shapes and types!”

That prompted me to sketch THIS:

warm up sketch of galileya, original character

Her name is Galileya. She’s an agent of a super secret organization that destroys planets and does other intergalactic missions. I want to write a story about her and her coworker, Agent Sinclair:

Agents Sinclair and Galileya
Agents Sinclair and Galileya

The problem is I have no story for them that has anything resembling a plot. So they’re still a work in progress.

Back to this week.

After I drew Galileya, I was like, “But man, I need to practice drawing things that aren’t people! What can I draw?”

Well, one morning my cat was on my bed, grooming herself. So I got out my sketch pad and my ink brush, and got to work:

warm up sketches of cat grooming

That was tricky to do, since she kept moving on me.

I should probably just wait until she holds still, like this:

gray cat bree bree

BUT EVEN THAT IS FLEETING BECAUSE CATS DO WHATEVER THEY WANT.

So I went, “Dude, I gotta practice drawing things that hold still! But I’ve drawn most of the objects around me twenty times. What’s new on Pinterest that I can use as a reference?”

I found this image:

If you took this picture, please let me know so I can give you credit!

And I went, “PERFECT! I need to practice landscapes so I don’t have crap that looks like this”:

JamieRobertsEnvirons1

So I took the reference image above and drew this (with some artistic license in rendering certain things):

landscape practice sketch from reference

 

I still want to practice landscapes and environments, though. Because

a) It would make my current comics projects even better, and

b) the projects I have in mind for the future are sci-fi/fantasy works that require a LOT of visual development and technical know-how, which I don’t have a lot of yet.

So what do you draw for practice? Let me know in the comments below! And if we keep the conversation going, I think we can find new things for us to practice drawing so we don’t get too comfortable.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you on Tuesday.

P.S. I actually drew MORE than this stuff this week, but those other sketches are exclusive to Patreon subscribers only. If you’re interested in supporting what I do, go to Patreon! There are tipping plans for as little as $1 a month.

Also, I am aware that the Patreon page is under Christian Beranek’s name. It’s our joint effort under the umbrella of Validation. Any money raised there is split evenly between the both of us so we can both keep producing the comic.

If you want to go the more direct route or support my other work, there’s also a tip jar over at Johnson & Sir‘s page.

Ok, that’s it for now! For real this time!

Youmacon Fast Approacheth

So in my hurry to get ready for Youmacon and also keep afloat on commissions I’ve been asked to do, I…lost track a little with Johnson & Sir. I missed an update last week. But rest assured! It’s back to a normal update schedule now! You can read the new page here.

Here’s a preview to further entice you:

johnson and sir page 61 promotional panel for webcomic

I’ve also been working really hard on my new webcomic Charlie & Clow…

And it launches tomorrow! Read it at its own website. It even comes with a surprise!

charlie and clow header image bar
This is not the surprise I’m talking about. This is just to show off a taste of what’s to come.

And in other product-launching news, Validation is now on Patreon!

patreon screencap

In case you haven’t heard, Patreon is a voluntary subscription service where you can donate as little as $1 a month to your favorite creators. In exchange you get gratitude and really cool perks! Christian and I would really appreciate any support you can give over at Patreon (and if you’re broke, spread the word on social media! That helps, too).

In even more product-launching news, I added a new listing at my store: Avengers Assemble! In bookmark form, of course:

avengers assemble in bookmark form, available for sale
Click for fuller view.

If you’re interested in ordering a set, click here.

The rest of this week, I will be MIA, as I’ll be with my family and then immediately going off to Youmacon. I won’t be a special guest there, but I’ll be attending (probably in costume). I hope you can find me!

As such, I won’t be updating on Friday like I usually do, because I’ll be either on the road or at the con. So you’ll see another update on this blog next Tuesday!

In the meantime, I’ve got comics for you to read: Validation on Mondays and Thursdays, Johnson & Sir Tuesdays, and now Charlie & Clow Wednesdays! So there you go.

The Comics Train Keeps Chugging

So I forgot to update this blog sooner. I’m very sorry! Things have been pretty manic in my studio.

I’ve been finishing up work on a new series of comic strips K. Ferrin asked me to make. Here’s a peek at one of them.

K Ferrin Comics
Click to enlarge.

Of course, Johnson & Sir and Validation are still updating regularly. I love the conversations my readers are having and the comments they’re leaving! Seriously, I read the comments. All of them. And I love you (but not in a creeper way).

Charlie & Clow will be up online soon! The goal is to have it online October 29! Here’s a peek at the cover:

charlie and clow cover for webcomic
Click to enlarge.

It’ll be available to read at www.charlieandclow.com (don’t try to go there yet. I’ll be building the site over the next week).

I’ve also been working on a short story penned by the fabulous Kristen Kellner. Here’s a peek at one of the panels in progress:

short story sneak peek for comics anthology
Click to enlarge.

I’m on my last few pages of this short story, and hopefully you can read it all online soon!

Also! There’s another new comic in the works. I’ve been keeping it relatively hush-hush because the writer is still writing it, but they want me to provide the art for it. We’ll be doing a KickStarter for the project in November. (Like, three-weeks-from-now November. Holy banana pants!) Here’s a color and style test I did for it…

color and style test for new comic
Click to enlarge.

And here’s a look at one of the possible designs of the logo (it’s still a work in progress)…

seeing him webcomic logo work in progress
Click to enlarge.

Like I said, the writer and I will be doing a KickStarter to fund this upcoming webcomic in November. I’ll hopefully post more art for it as I make it!

So…yeah. I’ve been making comics like a madwoman. Gotta’ remember to take a day off.

Be on the lookout for Charlie & Clow launching on October 29th! I talk more about the details of the story in this post.

Thank you so much for reading and putting up with my tardiness. I’ll see you on Friday when I talk about the Superhero Ladies series.