Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Forever Famicom!!

so... Forever Famicom drops June 1st!! it was a really fun opportunity to get to do all the art stuff for this project - i mean, nintendo makes up a special part of my childhood... with all the fighting/bonding me and my brothers had, and all the adventures we got through. on top of that, i'm a huge fan of what K-Murdock and Mega-Ran are up to - both in co-op, as well as in their own respective single player games. definitely two guys worth keeping an eye on in the music world.

i figured i'd post all the art without the logo (which logo design i'm actually really proud of.. heh,) the type, and whatever else over here. to check out the more "official" stuff, head over to K-Murdock's, and while you're at it you can even preview the tracks over at Mega-Ran's. if you're really feeling it, you can pre-order the album from either sites, and come June 1st you'll be able to check the whole thing out at their bandcamp page.

the album does not disappoint - i got a piece of the audio action early on, and it does NOT disappoint. literally had the whole thing on repeat for a week.. haha.. seriously. these are just two awesomely creative guys with some really cool friends making great hip hop, with powerful allies of nostalgia, nintendo, and nerd core glory furthering their heroic musical campaign.

while on the subject of nerd core, i discovered "The Chrono Mixtape" a while back, and to my strange surprise.. some dude (DJ Nerd42) took the instrumentals, and FLAWLESSLY puts the vocals from that fort minor album over the top.. it's like........ so weird how well it works.. haha.. Chrono Tied - check it out if you dare.

and lastly, something a little different.

this is "Gob." ...short for Goby. you know, like the desert? but more like the fish with the awesome underbite that forms symbiotic relationships with the tiger pistol shrimp. real, REAL name is "Goblin." ....or Gobble. heh.. more on that later.

anyways. this guy's sort of like, the main character from a story i've had in my head for a while now.. the plan is to get him and all his friends and everything out of my head, on to paper, and watch it all magically transform into a graphic novel.

not much else going on. life is still life, good is still great, bad is still worse, using Wal-Mart's shopping carts like a giant scooter to my car intentionally parked ALL the way at the opposite end of the parking lot (for obvious reasons) is still REALLY fun.. can't complain about anything, really.

Monday, May 24, 2010


last semester, during an intermediate computer apps class (photoshop/illustrator) our instructor had us try and contact people who were making awesome stuff digitally. the idea was that we'd all come back and share everything in class, exposing each other to awesomeness and learning at the same time - i figured, who else to try and contact and share stuff about than the legendary PACMAN!!

i'm not talking about the yellow dude who's got a penchant for devouring disembodied spirits and little dots around tight corners and mazes, who also recently made a cameo appearance on google.. i mean THIS PACMAN.

this guy has always stood out to me and is one of my favorites, because of his ridiculously awesome and creative sketches, among other mighty abilities he wields in the name of art. check out his website, his blog, or his deviantART. i'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

anyways, the man was awesome enough to get back to me and respond to some interview questions - i tried to refrain from geeking out too hardcore, and smothering the dude with random questions, and keep it oriented towards the class i was taking. here it is for your reading pleasure:

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-How/When did you first get serious about creating art?
I always knew that I wanted to do something with art but it wasn't until high school that I
started to get recognition for what I was doing so I decided to pursue art as a career.

-Do you have any "art heroes" out there at the moment who get you pumped to draw and create? who and why?
Yes, there are a few artists that I "stalk" online all the time. James Jean's skill level and subject matter is amazing and always gets the creative juices flowing. Jeff Soto and Tomer Hanuka are always inspiring as well.

-I love seeing people like MF Doom, Fat Jon, and that really fluid graffiti-esque flow show up in your scribbles and doodles. Would it be safe to assume that the whole Hip Hop movement has a strong affect on your style and/or your subject matter? What are some things that you'd say have the strongest influence on your style, and what you like to doodle in general?
Yes, music has been a very strong influence in my art. I'm usually listening to music whenever I'm drawing something and it's taken from whatever is playing at the moment, from the underground hip hop scene to indie rock. I never really did graffiti but was more into the characters than the actual lettering. I'm usually drawing stuff that appeals to me, from robots to pandas to tattooed girls.

-You seem to have a really good balance between great line quality, and awesome rendering. I see you pushing stuff both ways. From pieces with strong graphic design elements, to a more rendered and modeled look, and also achieving interesting and fun results inbetween from mixing the two. Could you tell me (as much as you want) about your process - getting your line quality, rendering, use of texture?
I begin by sketching something out very rough, then using a light table to trace my lines. Or I scan the rough sketch and draw it digitally. Once I get the line art the way that I want, I start with the colors. I leave a lot of open lines because I like doing a lot of detailing in the coloring stage of the piece. As far as combining graphic design elements, it's just about adding a little extra 'oomph' to the image. If it's too boring, then it needs something that compliments the drawing without overpowering the entire piece.

-Could you walk me through the basics of what you do to take something from an idea to a finished product? (I feel like this question seems sort of repetitive of the previous one, but I mean, just an overview of how you work from start to finish - without going into the specific details of the linework, etc, if that makes sense.)
If I hear a song that I think would make a cool drawing, I start sketching something out in my head. Once I get a nice composition and subject matter, I try putting that down on paper and
take it from there. It's a lot of trial and error and sometimes the final image ends up looking completely different than what I had first imagined.

-How much would you say your traditional foundation plays a part in what you're able to do digitally?
It helps a lot. Working digitally is just a tool. Many people think that just because it was done on a computer, it must be easier. It's not as easy as it seems, it's taken me years to learn how to fully take advantage of what you can do digitally.

-Are there any weaknesses you see to doing things digitally, or things that you try not lose from your traditional work?
Definitely. There are certain strokes in your line art that won't ever mimic what a pencil can do. I also think that pencil drawings are a lot easier to manipulate than drawing digitally. The 'undo' option is the best thing from a digital standpoint as I'm sure there are many artists who say, "Where's my undo button?" while working in traditional media.

-Since you've started working digitally, have you seen your style change progressively in any ways?
Yes, while I'm drawing something I'm already thinking of how I'm going to color it. So there are certain things I leave out which I wouldn't have left out before. It's as if my line art has gotten simpler but at the same time my coloring has gotten stronger.

-What advice would you like to pass on to anyone at novice or intermediate
levels attempting to strenghten their digital craft?
Practice as much as you can. I started using Photoshop when I was 13 years old. Just playing around getting to know the program. Once you know what the program can do, the possibilities are endless. There are even different ways to get the same result. Look for online tutorials if you're stuck, as you'll learn something new that would then develop into your own personal technique.

-Any advice you'd like to pass on to somebody just trying to "get themselves out there" more, for freelance opportunities, comics, toys, ANYTHING, from your experience - I just want to help create and promote all things awesome and positive through any creative powers I happen to possess!
I started an online gallery on deviantart.com around 7 years ago while looking for an art community to post my drawings. Through other artists on that site, I found out about art forums and art battles. I took part in that for years and people started taking notice of me. Once you've posted enough around these art circles, other artists will start recognizing your stuff. It's a great feeling. Go to comic book conventions and rent a table to sell your art. It's great exposure. Open your own website as well, as it will show whoever is looking for an artist that you have your own portfolio and it speaks volumes to the client.

-Finally, are there any shout outs, current/future projects out there you're working on you can talk about, or anything else that you recommend us keep an eye out for?
There will be a few of my tutorials published on a couple of issues of Digital Artist magazine coming out in the next couple of months. And if you ever fly on Virgin America Airlines, take a look at my illustrations on the safety manual :]
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i actually got a lot out of this - there was some good stuff in there that i hadn't really thought about or tried before.. plus it was awesome to actually interact with one of my idols on a more personal level. heh.