Archive for June, 2008

June 27, 2008

Too Much

woof.
The comic has been sent off to print (finally). Had a lot of trouble sorting out all the tech bits for proper pdfs (appending all pages into one file, assuring it was at proper dpi, assuring all fonts were included, assuring images were at max resolution with proper compression). So i just ended up going with 300dpi tiffs of each page. hopefully this won’t lead to more delays. (groan). I need to put up some recent work on my Deviant Art account. hmm.

Currently, i’m trying to land a small job for a local filmmaker, designing costumes and making concept art. I drastically underbid, because i figured it’d be a great portfolio building exercise. Nerves are slowing me down. but it should be pretty kick ass work, even if i don’t land the job.

Still fucking around with the logo for Carrie’s IncognitoCostumes business. I didn’t quite understand what was wrong with this “Scissor fairy” icon i worked up, so I just settled on a simple icon using the letters “I” and “C”. Put it on a business card mockup that i thought was kind of brilliantly retro (like 140 years retro) and bleak. I’m not sure if she’s happy with it, but she’s asked for a few further tweaks. hmm. While settling that, I’m planning to just put up her webpage with current logo/fonts. So it will move forward.

My game pitch “Fun Funeral” was selected by the local PAGDIG learning project 1 group, so i’ve been putting together a slim design document to help everyone discuss and nail down the details. Worked up 4 specific “macabre puzzles” (which could easily be reused/tweaked for multiple uses). But had planned 5. These are like genres of puzzles. hmm. Several ideas for the 5th, but none seem up to par with the quality of the first 4.

Need to finish my vidHero t-shirt design (had to drop the original simple design of the logo on the chest with “H” extending up to the throat and down to the belly, because the printer can only handle a 13″ square area). Planning to put the logo inside a personalized/weird video tape diagram. Just haven’t had that spark of inspiration to nail down the specifics of this video tape diagram. Took a few photos for reference. lightly worried it’ll end up either too boring, or two blocky (like a heap of macaroni on your chest. I’m thinking of this old Pearl Jam t-shirt in particular. It was cool when you studied it, but from a distance it just looked like a block of shit).

My plan to whip up a quick fun board game using business cards on a backing board has ballooned into 3 separate games. Ie, the first concept didn’t play very well (too much math calculation distraction), and ideas to fix it have split off into their own solid concepts. The idea was to just let two people play out an epic fight. But now i have a separate “Hospital Bills” (number-modifying card game) and “Three Act Deciding Moment of Art” (overlapping tiles) games, which haven’t been playtested to ensure they are fun/concise enough. Still brainstorming through the original idea, trying to think up a more unique approach to the limitations of card size and board size. The original idea of just ripping off this cool fencing card game has proven very elusive. blechk.

And there are tons of other tasks piled up as well. short videos of “Spaceship to Hell” and “Brain Cell”. Writing up reports for solid fuel website. Redoing a daredevil art submission for a contest that is already over (the art i did submit was kind of embarassingly shitty, and i have this new doodle in my sketchbook that perfectly captures what i was thinking). Several scripts have been written for a “Mind Molds” strip, and just need to be drawn. I set up Paypal with my business checking account, and now need to figure out shopping carts here on the site. Need to write up the final script for issue 2 of vidHero (integrating some recent cool ideas for crazy layout tricks). Supposedly, I was going to finish the first draft of the vidHero movie script by the end of June (but now i’m waffling on the seemingly cliche “first time out adventures” nature of it).

bleh. this has all left me exhausted. Currently I am staring at a wall dreaming of vegging out with some video games. erf. Guess it’s break time!

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June 11, 2008

We are Killers

Just finished absorbing all the tasty details of the criterion DVD set for Ernest Hemingway’s The Killers. Really damned satisfying look at the story, the ’46 “classic film noir” approach to the movie, the “solid student film” version made by tarkovsky, and the ’64 “bad ass pulp” take on it. Also includes Stacy Keach reading the short story, along with critics dissecting, and studio notes, and actor interviews. Really amazing to see such a short story interpretted and laid out in so many different ways.

Mostly i’m astonished how much i still care about the very simple idea of “a tough guy who’s lived a bad life, but won’t fight back when his Killers show up.” Something about it is so awesome, that you can approach it from tons of different angles and it’s still pretty interesting. why? WHYYYYYYYY???

Anywho. In vidHero land, I’m finishing up the cover art (eek, color. ugh), and have decided to go with a 24 page print, and just include a concept letters and art 2-page spread, and an advert for Jonason’s upcoming comic, James and Robot. Credits and copyright inside the front cover, solid fuel pimpage inside the back cover. The plan is good. Just need to execute.

Instead. I’m about to blow 50 bucks on gas to drive down to my folk’s house and do some laundry. discuss recent events. wee. While this has always seemed pointless from the front, it has always turned out very inspiring on the back end.

One the comic is done, I’m planning to finish off this “space battle fx sequence” for Alan Winston’s star wars fan film “Jedi 6: Queens of the Sith”. Just 5 years late! woo hoo! I think it has a lot of potential, based on the blue screen acting (being funny), and the high impact comedy action that is planned. But i can’t decide if it would be better to complete it as a sub par computer graphics animation (with perfectly controlled timing) or with sub par paper mache and models (celebrating the lack of budget and time, but less likely to be well timed). Part of me really wants it to be a great action sequence demo reel. but this probably isn’t important to the movie. hmm.

After this, the plan is to finish the vidHero movie script (with an eye towards shooting over the summer). But part of me wonders if i shouldn’t just shoot a trailer and try to seek funding to shoot the full script. Seems wise to leave the pain and suffering of shooting a 90 minute movie to a less “crazy” idea. For many months, a little voice has been wondering why one would write a big crazy fx laden super hero action movie, but shoot it as a no budget bullshit amateur video. slim chance of success. WHEN DO WE LEAVE!

Now part of me is wondering if the current structure for the movie is all wrong. just like the comic, i sense that it’s a relic from an old mindset that only cared about being funny. I don’t think comedy is my forte. And after dwelling on the whole mass of Ernest Hemingway’s “the Killers” it seems clear that my movie pitch was schizo, and embarassingly shallow (in both structure and characterization). I’m thinking maybe i should excise the whole first half hour (of hospital-based vigilante training gags/backstory) and just focus on making a movie about a city vigilante. The hospital segment seems like it’s own story, and has little to do with the movie’s ultimate goal (of violently critiquing the body of work of a certain fame-fringe director).

I’m more and more obsessed with the idea of making contained art projects that function as aggressive critiques on failed directors. I think there’s something in floating in this idea that has the possibility to be a very modern/challenging evolution of art. It ties into this idea i have that critiquing anything art related has become pointless, since everyone is now an artist. The abuse of art, action, and criticism, could cross the gap between criticism and art in a way i don’t think i’ve ever seen. But it’s also almost overwhelmingly likely to come off as a pretentious. Like an geeky moronic tribute to the genuine motivations of the french new wave movement. That is, if anyone can even see past the first layer of each project. which will no doubt be a shitty layer of failure. hmm. SO BE IT?!?!?!?!

So. This is the approach i’m sticking with for today. 🙂

I’m not sure optimist is the word to describe someone who knowing walks into a train wreck of self expression on the off chance it might make their life worth living.

June 10, 2008

You say Pijamas, and i say PIZRH#@B!ARRR!

Erk. I’m rather sick right now. Fairly congested and dizzy. Soooo, to briefly rant about trivial details (and pretend they represent progressssss!), here’s what I accomplished today:

– purchased chicken wire, paint, spray snow, Obi Wan’s jedi starship toy from Episode3, several kinds of tiny halogen light bulbs, 2 sample metal parts for chain link fences (which look like one of vidHero’s shoulder projectors, when held together). Most of these are elements for a jedi space sequence I’m planning to finish off for Bravado Entertainment (only 5 years late!). I guess I’ve already started. hmm.

– sawed a fine piece of wood in half, and screwed 7 supports into my wall, to finally finish this shelving project i started a couple months back.

– thought a bit about what to write in the first issue of the comic, in lieu of a proper letters page. Many ideas and complicated pun filled thoughts. But ultimately I haven’t typed out a word. erk.

– watched the 1964 version of the Hemingway’s The Killers. Loved it.

– bought some food. Cooked BBQ chicken legs for dinner (for moi, and the 2 roommates).

– bought the book “how to make web comics,” and am 110% sure it was a wise decision. now i just have to read the damned thing. and think about it. and implement it. bleh.

and in possibly related news (of creative processing), Carrie and I sang a certain song last night, for our friend Kshawn to put in his documentary. I thought it was kind of hilariously perfect. And he seemed to enjoy the final cut i sent him (of COURSE! how could anyone resist it’s rough imperfect charms!). but he also seems to be making it clear we’ll need to do another take. which I expected. but … somehow i hoped wouldn’t be necessary.

erf. so that is all. monday is over. time for sleep. must shake this head cold. erk.

June 6, 2008

May I Bleed to Death Beneath the Burnside Bridge

Page 20 bummersthat headline was another alternate title for issue two (been fiddling around with various goofy/bad phrases).

in related news, Issue one is officially done. sent it off to 2 pals for thoughts. will print out on my crappy printer for other friends to review/comment on.

But really, i think it’s close enough. Only planning to entertain advice about glaring typos. All other feedback can be applied to issue2, cuz this bitch is cooked.

Next up is the cover (color! eek!), and then prepping extraneous pages to flesh out the print run (letters, copyrights, sketchbook, previews, etc.).

So I want to be excited! but instead i’m kind of exhausted and defeated by the process. woof. more later.

June 4, 2008

mmmm hmmm.

well, two good friends have commented on the “final” revision of issue one.

a little disconcerting that it appears the issue “works much better” now. but is also totally derailed from what jonason was thinking of when initially helping me write the script. it’s no longer about two movie geeks going to the movies. now much more of a rumination on Joel Schumacher and his movies (to a fault? is it too much Schumacher for any audience to enjoy? or not enough? wha?) and it’s pretty dense with text again.

i’m a little bummed at the moment, as I’d hoped to put it to bed happy. so i’m thinking i’ll go back and try to work in more of jonason’s dialogue where/if i can, to preserve some of the character. not sure if this is possible but will try. and then i’ll put it to bed angry. Hope it works despite the total change of tone.

It’s like turning Clerks into Daredevil. Kinda worried that it’s just massaging the worst of both genre’s (failures?) and not nearly daring enough.

Hoping strangers will be able to pick it up and enjoy it. that is the only remaining goal. urgh. And vaguely praying that it will indeed get better in the remaining two issues. and that Jonason won’t just jump ship completely because it ain’t his style of story anymore. eek. urgh. sleep. work.

 

June 2, 2008

seedy questions for bleeding fools

page 14 revisedthat title is one of many alternate titles for issue two. wee.

I’ve reworked the first issue. hopefully much improving it. hmm. just sent off 72dpi versions of each page to trusted confidants for the final critical review. Very exciting to think it might finally be done!

and by done i mean : something i could manage to be vaguely proud of.

which would be a big step forward. I’ve been working all night. so maybe it’s the mid morning optimism illusion. maybe i should have slept on it. I can already think of a couple things to add in. but, at some point you have to shoot the engineers and barrel into production. that’s a paraphrase of some advice my dad likes to give me everytime i see him.

mostly i keep thinking “I can live with rough art, and i can live with a cliche story. but i can’t live with confusing art or a badly told story.” woof. anywho. progress. a bit late for the Olympia show this weekend. probably. but progress feels good. i’m eager to put it to bed and move on to the multitude of other aspects to this vidHero project. And eager to put some more time in on the various entertainment time sinks. crack crack crack.

right now, its time to sleeeeep.