Friday, June 29, 2012
Well, it was a long night last night, but I have that video I was telling you about yesterday. Check it out...
(I always remember AFTER I've finished ARTing something that I should have done some screen capturing so that I could make a video of it, alternatively, I also seem to forget just how long it takes to prep these videos before I can release them. I spent all of last night just getting this ready to post...)
But... that being said... it is fun to see it. I may have mentioned this before - but seeing the cursor move around (and sped up!) makes me forget that I have NO IDEA WHAT I'M DOING!!! haha
Anyway, I hope you enjoy the video!
Till next time,
Thursday, June 28, 2012
Got something fun for today. I sat down at lunch yesterday to 'doodle' out an image I had in my head. I actually managed to knock most of it out during my lunch...
And I finished the inks and coloring last night...
* This was inspired by a design that Neil did a little while back...
I had given Neil a couple of copies of a pencil sketch / paper doll kinda thing so that he could quickly sketch a couple of different designs for stuff that he thought Aina would wear. Call it a 'fashion study'. This is one of the designs he gave back to me with, and I loved it... I've been meaning to do something with it... but didn't have the idea till yesterday. Admittedly, I took some liberties with the design.
I should have a video of the inking and coloring process on this up tonight...
Well, that's about all for this time,
Tuesday, June 26, 2012
Trying to get back into a semi-regular posting schedule... and I haven't been doing a very good job of it. I'm gonna 'shotgun' tonights post. It's gettin' late... I'm gettin tired... and my back is really buggin' me tonight... (not sure what's up with that!?)
Anyway... here's a sketch I was working on tonight. Something a little 'fun' I'm working on for an upcoming project.
[caption id="attachment_214" align="aligncenter" width="864"] A nasty piece of work...[/caption]
Next up is a doodle of a 'possible' cover idea for 'something else' we're working on... Wow... I'm full of secrets tonight... haha!
[caption id="attachment_215" align="aligncenter" width="612"] Mockup of a cover idea... still needs a BUNCH of work... I'd like to take this a little further... but we'll have to see what time I have...[/caption]
Ok... and a couple more 'fun' little images. I had so much fun w/ the Lil' Kid Leather that I did a while back... I did a few more just for funsies...
[caption id="attachment_216" align="aligncenter" width="864"] These still make me smile![/caption]
Wendi LOVES these... She thought I should do a 'kiddie' version of Celeste as well - pig tails and all. So I obliged... these are still a little rough, and need some work... but they were fun nonetheless...
[caption id="attachment_217" align="aligncenter" width="864"] Really need to add some color to these...[/caption]
Well... that's it for tonight.
Hope you enjoy!
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Signed 11x17" Prints are $5.00 / ea (Plus $3.00 Shipping* for first print and $0.50 for each additional)
Signed 8.5x11" Prints are $2.00 / ea (Plus $3.00 Shipping* for first print and $0.50 for each additional)
*Orders of different sized prints will be combined into a single mailing tube - so if you order an 11x17" print and an 8.5x11" print, you'll only pay the $3.00 shipping for the first print, plus $0.50 for the 2nd print regardless of size. (Apologies for the shipping costs on these, the first part of the $3.00 is to purchase the mailing tube, the rest is to cover the shipping costs)
So save yourself some coin, and order a bunch!! I promise you'll love them! Hang them on your wall, on your refrigerator, next to your desk at work. Put one on your door, over your bed, next to that picture of your dog. Cover up that embarrassing picture they took of you at the last company picnic. The uses are endless...
Oh... and if I didn't mention it earlier, Every print will be signed by me - Neb!
Hurry... Go... now... Get em' while they last! Before we sell out, and they're gone!
**All profits from the sales of books and prints will help go towards the printing of our next book (which we'll have ready by the end of the year).
Thanks everyone! We appreciate your support!
***And don't forget! We still have the 2012 Stomping Ground Field Guide available! Don't wait - ORDER NOW!!!
Monday, June 18, 2012
Well, we survived ACE. We had a blast, and all the work and effort we put into getting ready for the show... payed off! I'm glad we managed to get it all done, and I'm proud of us for putting our stuff out there, and representing. Ego Comics is GO!
[caption id="attachment_180" align="aligncenter" width="202"] Stomping Ground 2012 Field Guide to the Necessential and Strangerous[/caption]
If you didn't see the post on www.egocomics.com, go RIGHT NOW over to our store and get your hands on a copy of the book we printed up for ACE. The Stomping Ground 2012 Field Guide to the Necessential and Strangerous is available now through our store on Storenvy. Books are $3.50 each (cheaper than we were selling them at ACE), but after going to the post office, it looks like shipping is going to be $3.00 each. So if you factor in shipping, each book will be $6.50 total. We will discount shipping on orders of multiple books. We have a limited number of books available (
54 at last count We're down to 51) so if you want one (or three)... order soon - before we run out!
I'm also working on getting our prints put up there as well - but I need to find out shipping costs on those (as well as find a cheap source on mailing tubes). As soon as I get those up, I'll let everyone know.
The 2012 Official Ego Comics Camping Trip
Well, in other news, as per 'the plan'... Neil and I took off early from work this last Friday, and headed out to one of our favorite camping spots, just a ways past Jemez Springs. We've been to this particular spot at least once before (possibly twice, Neil seemed to remember another time - which I don't remember - he's probably right, as these trips do tend to blur together in my head).
[caption id="attachment_171" align="aligncenter" width="700"] This is our spot. Notice the giant boulder on the left... home to many a camp fire.[/caption]
We both needed this weekend, after the show... to get a little perspective. To rest / relax / recharge / re-focus... to be surrounded by the sounds of nature, the rustling of trees and the chirping of crickets.
[caption id="attachment_172" align="aligncenter" width="700"] This is the view from our camp site. Yeah... it's pretty much awesome![/caption]
Unfortunately, as our fair state of New Mexico is in the midst of an already devastating fire season, pretty much all of the forest areas are under EXTREME fire danger... so, as you can imagine, there is a ban on any and all open flames... i.e. No campfires. Admittedly, that does take a lot of the luster out of planning a camping trip. There is something primal and visceral about 'making fire'. Something beyond just warmth that you get from sitting around a crackling fire, surrounded by the shadows and sounds of the forest, after the sky darkens, and the stars start to emerge over your head.
[caption id="attachment_177" align="aligncenter" width="700"] My favorite picture from the trip.[/caption]
As much as that part of the experience was sorely missed, we still needed to be out there. We made due with the use of a battery powered lantern.
[caption id="attachment_174" align="aligncenter" width="700"] Not a very good substitute for a camp fire... and not nearly as warm.[/caption]
This camping trip... afforded us a much needed opportunity to break from the 'production' aspects of our work (which we've been wrapped up in for the last month or so now), and immerse ourselves in the 'creating/plotting' aspects of our story. Specifically - to work out a couple of lingering 'elements' that we have to lock down before we set sail with the story proper. We made some progress (never as much as we'd like, but progress nonetheless) towards wrapping up a couple of annoying little threads from the story. One of the biggest challenges with a story as big as ours... you have to follow all the threads and know where they all go... we are, and have been concerned about doing something only to find out that it doesn't work later on down the line... and after twenty years... we have a LOT of threads to track down. But as I said... we made some progress. And ideas abound.
[caption id="attachment_176" align="aligncenter" width="1200"] Panorama shot... A ways further down from our camp site... this is another place we like to camp... stopped by here on the way back home to have a quick lunch.[/caption]
We had a good time. We enjoyed the peace... the quiet... let our minds wander and wonder. We re-focused our efforts. Came up with some good ideas, may have fixed a few problems. All in all, it was a good trip.
And now we're back. Another one of our plans executed.
Inspired... and ready to work.
Atomic batteries to power... turbines to speed... ready to move out...
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Before I even start this post... I want to say a quick thank you tooo... well, you!
Whether you've been checking out my blog and supporting me from the very beginning (Thanks Wendi and Megan!), or you're someone that I've collected along the way, Thank YOU for reading! I made a decision, early on... that I wasn't going to do this blog for the attention or "adoration" of my fans... but for myself. This was me... trying to find my voice. Trying to find a way to communicate through and with my silly little 'drawrings.' I'm proud to say that somewhere along the way, I feel like I've accomplished some of that... which isn't to say I don't have a long way to go, but I have come a long way too.
It's been nearly a year now since I started 'blogging' (not that I consider myself a 'blogger' by any stretch)... but I have managed to rack up 81 posts. Kinda impressive when I think about it... Sure, it could be more... and I know I've had a few 'dry spells' along the way... but I kept at it. Here's to year two. Cheers!
Ego Comics Infotainment Group wrapped up our first official comic book convention. Albuquerque Comic Expo 2012 ended on Sunday night at 6pm. It was a three day event, spanning Friday, Saturday & Sunday. We've both been working hard to get everything that we planned ready for the 'really big shoe', and a lot of our time and energy has been aligned towards that very goal. In the meantime, I know that some other aspects of our lives have suffered... especially towards the end as we made the 'big push' to get it all wrapped up. A special thank you to my/our families for being supportive and understanding that this was something that we NEEDED to do.
And boy, did we.
20 years. This has been 20 years in the making. Neil and I met in an art classroom during my freshman year of High School. A shared admiration and desire to draw and create stories brought us together... and we've been creating Stomping Ground (in one form or another) since.
This convention was the first time we've EVER put our little creation 'out there', beyond our own families and a couple of close friends. Nervous... you betcha'. But proud. No expectations. Just our intentions... our art... and our words.
A very wise, and incredibly talented man, I had the privilege to meet at the show (Kody Chamberlain - Artist and Creator of Sweets.) said to me (and I've heard it before - but it still rings true,) "You build your audience one fan at a time." I feel like we got started on that. Somehow, my drawings and Neil's words actually caught the interest of a couple of people. It was really cool, and inspiring to watch people walk by our table... glancing this way and that at the plethora of great and wonderful things to see at this show... and every once in a while, watch someone slow down, and actually stop... to look a little closer at something I drew, to see that little spark of interest, ignite into something more. And it was even cooler to get an opportunity to talk to someone about it. And even cooler still, when that person handed over a few of their hard earned dollars just to take it home with them. What a wild, wonderful and strange experience... to get a compliment from a stranger (unsolicited) that my stuff was 'cool'... or that they actually enjoyed my artwork, and to actually exchange money for a drawing. This is the First of the things I learned during those 3 days... My drawing and Neil's words... have value. I have a strange view, and somewhat skewed sense of value and what things are worth. I was not sure if anyone would pay $5.00 for a picture I drew. They did. I'm not saying that they sold like gangbusters... but we did sell a few. We made a few 'connections'... and that's all anyone on this rock can really ask for, isn't it? To connect to another person through something you love. And to get paid for the experience is just the icing on the cake.
The Second thing I learned during this show... was that you HAVE to network. You have to connect. To other fans, but also to other artists / creators / writers. We're a community. There are things to be learned... things to be inspired by... and some very generous and awesome people out there who are just great to know. I had the pleasure of meeting a couple of new creators and artists at the show. I totally 'geeked out' about getting to talk to Andy Kuhn for a while. I came across his work at the Albuquerque Comic Con in January of this year. Can't believe I hadn't heard of him before, but something about his work just really caught my eye, and I was an instant fan. It was awesome to get to see him again, and 'talk shop' a little. I gave him a copy of our book, and he kinda giggled that he used to play in a band called Stomping Ground. He asked me to sign it! That was pretty awesome! Wish I had some disposable income for this show, I'd love to own some of his art (but of course with the kids - nice things don't tend to last too long in the house... *sigh*, probably better I didn't but it would still be nice to support such a talented, and super nice guy!) Before the end of the show on Sunday, I went over just to say thanks, and tell him it was nice talking to him, and as I was walkin' up he said "Hey Ben", That was a highlight! Sorry... I told ya', I geeked out a little bit! I look forward to talking to him more in the future.
On Sunday, the show was slower, and Neil and I took turns walking the show... didn't have much of a chance to really see the rest of the show on Friday or Saturday... so the slowness provided for a little more exploring. While walking around Artist Alley, I was just kinda on the lookout for something that 'jumped out' at me. I noticed a couple of uniquely beautiful pieces, and really admired the line work, use of color and detail of the prints on display. After chatting for a few minutes with the man responsible for creating them, Devin Kraft, and mentioning that I was an 'exhibitor' too, he offered to walk with me over to my booth, and check out my stuff too. We strolled over and he seemed to genuinely take an interest in my work, and we talked for a while about styles, inspirations, indie books. And he took me over to meet Chris Brunner of 12 Gauge Comics. Somehow we got sidetracked along the way, and ended up talking to Kody Chamberlain - who just released Sweets. It was very interesting chat, and I got some sensational insight into this whole 'comic book artist' gig from Mr. Chamberlain, and that whole experience was a real eye-opener.
Devin and I agreed to exchange books - (ART TRADE = AWESOME!!) and he gave me a copy of his book - "The Devil and Dr. John", and links to the other books that he had online. If you get a chance, click that link, read the story, and check out his other work at Cheshire Cat Art. The man has some serious talent, and a real eye for design / layout / composition / color and some beautiful lines, and I'm looking forward to reading the rest of his books and checking out the rest of his gallery over the next couple of nights. I already have a couple of favorite pieces, and I'm going to have to see if I can buy a couple of prints next time I see him. Also, Devin was sharing a table with Logan Pack, another incredibly talented illustrator. I didn't get to talk to Logan as much as I would have liked, but the guy is awesomely talented!! Check out some of the prints that he had for sale here... awesome work!! And I can totally see why he sold so many of this image... it's gorgeous...
Right before the show wound down, I ran over to tell Devin thanks for talking, and that it was nice to meet him, and we got to talking again... he offered to give me a quick critique of the books I had given him... and it was positively insightful. Confirmed some of my own suspicions, and reinforced some of the things I'm doing right, and provided some much needed ideas about a few things that I could do better.
I spent a little time with the guys and gals of 7000bc again as well. It was great to see them all at the show - and I enjoyed talking to both Bram and Monica Meehan of the completely awesome "Raised by Squirrels" series, and Peter Ziomek and his brother Paul - (Who just put out their graphic novel "Fakin' the Funk"!) I also got to meet and talk some digital kung fu with David "ArtAssassin" Harrigan! And I'm sure many more. Apologies to anyone that I forgot... exhaustion and the fuzziness of the late night is once again setting in.
Oh... but before I sign off... the Third thing I learned... We're not doing another con like this until we release our book. It's simple. But it's a fact.
The plan is simple. The 5pg short story we published in the back of our sketchbook/field guide... is going to be continued for 7 more pages (total of 12)... 5 short stories focusing on a handful of our prominent / pertinent characters (sort of a Stomping Ground Zero issue)... we'll collect all those into one book, and then we get started on issue one.
6 months... and we got a lot to do. Time to start doing.
Now... I'm off to bed.
***And Deron (I hope I spelled that right) I promised you something on the last day of the show. If you read this - I still would like to make good on that. If you have a chance, please reply to this post or shoot me an email at email@example.com and I'll see about getting those to you somehow.
Friday, June 8, 2012
Just finished day one at ACE. Running on 2 hours of sleep (in the last 48). I'm a little bit tired... (so please forgive any misspelling or poor grammar)
But before I get ahead of myself, I'm happy to report that we got all 200 books printed / bound / trimmed (in the nick of time), 50 copies of our 2012 Coloring Book, and a boatload of awesome looking prints... not to mention business cards and bookmarks all done. We did it... by the skin of our teeth... but we finished everything we planned on doing for ACE.
So... how did the first day go, you ask?[gallery orderby="post_date"]
Day one of ACE... was an absolute blast! We actually sold a few books, and prints... gave out a handful of business cards, and bookmarks. I got the opportunity to talk to some people that were actually "genuinely" interested in our work. WOW! That part was awesome! I got some totally unsolicited positive feedback! WOW! Actually had people come up and pay cash money for something I drew. Or a book full of art and words about our characters. WOW!
I feel pretty good right now. Tired... but good!
I've been told that Fridays is usually the 'slow' day... so we'll see what happens tomorrow. For now... I need to get some sleep... much needed sleep. Tomorrow should be fun!!!
Now... what t-shirt to wear?
Monday, June 4, 2012
As you have probably noticed... it's been a little quite around here for the last couple of weeks... all efforts have been put forth towards finishing our Albuquerque Comic Expo promotional pieces... it's been a long/busy couple of weeks... but some good news.
I hold here, in my hot little hand... the near-finished, final proof of our ACE Exclusive Sketchbook / Stomping Ground Primer.
This is getting the full "fine toothed comb" tonight to proof-read and check for any mistakes/misprints/misspellings...
If things go according to plan, printing will be done on Wednesday night, bindery and trims on Thursday, and we'll have them back just in time for the show on Friday. There's a few more projects that need finishing... but we're definitely in the home stretch - and it looks like we're going to cross the finish line w/ everything we planned too.
Hopefully we'll generate some interest for our property - and who knows... maybe we'll even sell enough to break even! (Cautiously optomistic!)
Hopefully you can all make it to the show this weekend... and if you can't make it to the show, check in for updates over the weekend, as I'll try to keep ya' posted on how we're doing. And of course there will be a big post after the show...
Thanks for reading!