Monday, October 5, 2015

Kitchen Table Stuff InkTober 4

InkTober 4 is a jaw-dropping, iconic, sleek panorama of stuff on my kitchen table. From left to right: Vitamin C tablets, a clock, 2 handmade glass vessels (they are bright orange). One apple. One milky way bar. Hershey's chocolate bars. Box of "table water" crackers. Thick ceramic tile with the Japanese sign for "happiness" on it, also orange with black design. I omitted the messy parts and the crumbs.

Sepia tech pen ink on sketchbook page, 8" x 3", October 4, 2015.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Sir Bopfinger InkTober 3

Continuing with my Medieval-era projects, here is an InkTober rendering of the funeral effigy of a German knight, Sir Walter Bopfinger, whose monument is dated 1359. I'm amazed at the variety and craftsmanship of the suits of armor I've been looking at. I'm also amazed that they were able to move, let alone fight in these metal spacesuits. The heraldic adornment is also fascinating and I guess they really did display the heraldry both in battle and in peacetime, so you wouldn't end up spearing your own guys.

Brown Pitt tech pen ink on sketchbook page, about 3.5" x 3.5", October 3, 2015.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Hair Salon abstraction InkTober 2

Fresh hair for me at the salon I have frequented for decades. There are such longstanding relationships in my life. I've written a daily journal for forty-seven years. Yes, since 1968. I've known some of my friends since the 1970s. I've been drawing with technical pens since the mid-1970s. Now it's time for "InkTober" a challenge among blogging artists to draw and post an ink drawing each day of the month. (InkTober 1 for me was the sea worm of the October 1 posting.)

InkTober is natural for me because I use ink for almost all of my sketching. This drawing was done while waiting for my hair dye to take effect. You can see the abstract patterns of the cleaning equipment and the folds on the customer's plastic protection robe. No iPhone or iPad was used in this image and the grey areas are artifacts of the scanning process, but I think they look kind of interesting so I'll keep them even if they are not ink.

Pitt black technical pen on sketchbook page, about 5 1/2" x 8", October 2, 2015.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Sea Worm

Here's a little sea creature drifting through the waves. I remember these fearsome-looking but small sea worms from my childhood when they were sold as bait. You cut them up and baited your hooks with them for shoreline salt water fishing, where you could catch a bluefish or even a striped bass if you were lucky. Sea worms could bite but I never saw that happen to anyone in our fishing expeditions. When I was a kid I never worried about whether worms or minnows or other live bait suffered or felt pain when they were cut up. Now I do think about it although I am told by references (online, fishing line) that these creatures don't have enough of a nervous system to feel pain. That goes for shrimp and lobsters too but when I see the doomed lobsters in the tank at the supermarket I feel sorry for them anyway. And that doesn't stop me from eating seafood. My sea worm above is not a biologically correct rendering and its head is fantasy. It's been a long time since I did any ocean or lake fishing, and now I would hesitate to do it in case it hurts fish. Nevertheless there are cans of tuna in my cupboard.

Original drawing with digitally inked additions, about 6" x 3 1/2", October 2, 2015.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Alaric, the Magical Youth

The young hero of this story is Alaric Morgan, Katherine's main character in many of her Deryni books. "The King's Deryni" features Morgan in almost every scene, as he grows up from a page to a squire, learning how to fight with swords and bows and lances, riding and jousting and doing all those medieval knight things. And he does everything well, he outdoes all the other boys in training. There's hardly anything he doesn't do well! Not to mention that he is tall and strong and flaxen-haired, with the brilliant grey eyes that are a characteristic of the magical Deryni. I am waiting to see what happens to him in the rest of the book.

In the sequence I illustrated for the graphic novel, Morgan is 14, and already expert as a youthful wizard. My portrayal of him might look a little young, now that I'm reading his story again. I am thinking of ways I could make more graphic sequences based on Katherine's work, perhaps taking a chunk out of one of the books and making a short graphic out of it. First let me finish the "King's Deryni" to see how the author changed the story I had to stop illustrating.

India ink and metal pen on illustration board, about 3" x 6", sometime in 2002.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Medievaloid World

This image of a castle-like building is an excerpt from the piece I am currently working on, a book cover for a digital edition of a fantasy book by Christopher Stasheff. Like Katherine Kurtz, Stasheff created a "medievaloid" world full of knights, ladies, wizards, villains, royalty, and magical children. But unlike Kurtz' more realistic world, Stasheff's world is (mostly) humorous, with wisecracking elves and snarky faeries and slapstick jokes and some seriously bad puns. There's also an amusing mixture of science fiction and Catholic church theology. The title I'm working on now features a self-styled "archbishop" on a power-grab, who must don knightly armor and fight in single combat with the hero of the book, who rides a robotic black stallion endowed with artificial intelligence. This building isn't large in the picture, it appears behind the figure of the "archbishop." 

Photoshop, about 6" x 6", September 29, 2015.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Deryni Graphic Panel

As I said before, I am currently immersed in the medieval world of Katherine Kurtz' Deryni, reading her book about the boyhood of her hero Alaric Morgan. Many years ago I did some sample pages for a possible graphic novel based on a story about Morgan and how he did magic to empower his King (the bearded guy at right) so that he could fight a magical battle. I drew my graphic pages in black and white inkwork, no color, which would be cheaper to reproduce. This is a panel from page 7. The teen-aged Deryni wizard, Alaric, is at the left.

I wanted to continue the graphic novel but the story seems to have changed as it is re-told in the new book, THE KING'S DERYNI. Katherine Kurtz is a good friend of mine and she said that since she had re-told the story with some other features not in my comic, it wouldn't be possible to finish it because it was obsolete. I guess when the author tells you the story changed, you had better accept it. She runs Deryni Reality, not me. I still have my own original graphic novel with Enlil the volcano wizard and the eruption of Mount Etna.

Old-fashioned india ink and pen on illustration board with computer-printed lettering, about 7" x 5 1/2", sometime in 2002.