Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sabbatical, Day Nine (Good, But Bizarre)

I awoke this morning to a punch in the face.

That was literally the first thing on the page I drew today: my character, The Pro, getting laid into by one of the big powerhouse bad guys of the story. Gotta say, even when I thumbnailed this one out, I really felt like I captured a good punch. It looks like he almost took my head off. Usually punches in comic books are so perfunctory that even the biggest fight scenes can make you go "'Eh." I rarely look at individual moments in super-people fights and feel like anything tangible happened.

Not this time. I was determined for this moment to register with the reader. And the best part is that less than a page later, I get to return the favor...with a moment that really makes the most of our fair city.

Also, I tend to sweat the fine details of a page to an almost obsessive degree. I drive myself nuts a thousand and three times every day with this, trying to make everything fit just-so. If there's a scene with a lot of bystanders, I have to draw them all out. Every person. If there's a scene with a lot of video monitors visible, chances are I'm drawing stuff on the screens. It gets ridiculous, and I have to remember some of my favorite artists (Alex Toth and Mike Parobeck spring to mind) were masters at keeping it all simple.

On the plus side, detail or not, I've never felt this comfortable approaching new pages. Something's going right here.

Now over a week into my time on this project, the surreal nature of my workspace has started to sink in. My days basically revolve around our studio now; it's my home base. I step out of it during the day, certainly, but it's where most of my waking hours are spent. And it's bizarre. Good, but bizarre.

I've made a point to mentally reserve the studio for drawing, and that alone. I can usually fall asleep anywhere, even on the floor - seriously, I do that all the time, especially during the summer - but now when I need a power nap I always go to my room. I'll bring light snacks or beverages in with me, but when it's lunch time I go downstairs. No exceptions. I want my brain on the task at hand in there.

This is not counting the numerous moments during the day when I spontaneously burst into song and/or dance along with my iTunes catalog. That's acceptable workplace behavior. I've been able to get away with it at my day jobs for years, so why stop now that I'm working from home, right? (Of course my day jobs have been mostly at night, and unsupervised...but why quibble? I'm a pretty non-forgiving boss, and I'm okay with it.)

Of course, it's all nothing a good punch in the face wouldn't cure.

More to Come...!

Today's Music: LL Cool J, Eric B. & Rakim, Will Smith, Coolio

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