Thursday, August 20, 2015

Fall courses are enrolling now!

Come see me this Wednesday evening at the SVA Illustration and Cartooning Info Session and learn more about my three classes, Cartooning Basics, Figure Drawing for Cartoonists, and Inking Comics. Continuing Education classes start in only a month. Sign up soon.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Kiwi Kite Cartozia Jam

We've just posted the final panel of a rhyming comic jam, Kiwi Kite's Song, on the Cartozia Tumblr.
It's the latest of many many innovative approaches to jam comics pioneered by our genius editor, Isaac Cates

This time, the governing rule was for the creators to play Tag. A player tags you. You draw the next panel. You tag another player. Simple and fun. In addition to Isaac and me, the main players were Shawn Cheng, Caitlin Lehman, Mike Wenthe, & Lupi McGinty (who was joined, entertainingly, by her daughter, Az). Other guests who popped in were John Chad, Joey Weiser, Lucy Bellwood, & Sarah Becan.

Another of Isaac's commands was that we not spend too much time on our panels. I addressed that by seeking ways to simplify my compositions and reduce the amount of story information. That's something I find it easier to preach than to practice. This challenge was most welcome and did me a world of good.

The printed minicomic will be sent as one of the fun bonuses for Cartozia subscribers. Subscribe here.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Cartozia Tales: The Song of War

No comic's complete without a spit take.

I'm growing impatient for our groundbreaking comic anthology, Cartozia Tales, to start getting the recognition it deserves. It's world creation as a creative game. It's so fun to make, it brings out the best in all its contributors, resulting in a really delightful product, packed with inventions, surprises, and fun features. If you haven't seen any of the issues yet, I have to tell you, you're really missing out.

I'd like to share with you one of the chapters I've contributed, this time for Issue 5, set in sector 7, the frozen southwest corner of our imaginary world. Every issue, editor Isaac Cates calculates and casts dice to assign each contributor the task of continuing the ongoing story in what's, for them, a new sector of the map.

In the first issue, cartoonist Jen Vaughn initiated the sector 7 story, "Vagabond." It introduced a girl, Sylvia, and her pet Jenks, who are traveling to the southern islands. Sylvia is known as a "war child" but her passion is for music and she wants to learn the Frost God's Song.

In issue 2, the cartooning team of Isaac Cates and Mike Wenthe have Sylvia acquire two traveling companions: incompetent magician Ibbacod, a bird person from the distant north who seeks employment from the Red Clan chieftain, and Voren, a sword fighting Phibbit who rarely speaks. Voren fends off an attack by a Mask Bear and the team acquire its enchanted mask.

In issue 3, Lupi McGinty has Voren don the mask and find the mysterious Library Stairs, guarded by singing Aria Sphinxes. The ancient librarian sends him away with a scroll containing The Song of War.

Shawn Cheng, in issue 4, has the team befriend Donar of the Red Clan, a Snow Devil prince, who leads them to the village he inhabits in the trunk of a Mother Tree in the hope that Voren, a master of ancient languages, can help treat his ailing father.

Which is where I took over and treated our heroes to a bit of dinner theater:

I like to work little artistic and literary allusions into my comics wherever possible. A special "no-prize" (ahem) will be due the first person in the comments to peg the inspiration for Donar's father.

These characters have had more adventures since. Issue 7 is just now coming out. Come see.