Monday, March 5, 2012

Issue Two, Page One

Here we go again.

I'm not on sabbatical now, per se, but I do have time to work on the book and a new deadline, so we'll see how this comes together. The plan is to debut H.C.I. #2 (of 6) on May 5th, and I'll give folks a heads-up as to the where and when as the days draw closer. Suffice it to say, I'm at the drawing board again, and in many ways it's like I never left.

I actually started the preliminary work for this issue a while back, and kicked it into high gear last week by jumping back on my layout scroll. For those of you not familiar with this, I start most of my issues now by throwing a long roll of paper on the floor and blocking out the pages in black marker (highlighted with whatever else is laying near me). It looks like this when it's completed:

From beginning to end, from end to the beginning...
that's right y'all, I'm winning! 
I actually started on this months ago at PIX (the Pittsburgh Indy-comics eXpo) where I was seated at an eight-foot long table, and was rather inspired for two days. Sitting down on the floor to pick up where I'd left off, I realized two things...

1.) I'm getting older. Sitting on the floor for extended periods of time? Used to be no big deal. Now? Cramp-inducing!

2.) It wasn't flowing as smoothly as last time. At least, not right off the bat.

I spend more time at this stage debating the arrangement of everything than I'd care to admit. The reason I started working this way was because of the free-form, stream-of-consciousness manner that the storytelling unfolded.  I could work in a straight line, or circles, or jump backward whenever I wanted. Stray thoughts and conscious decisions all had a place, and somehow the best ideas tended to make it to the next stage. Great, right?

A detail from the scroll.
(If you can actually decipher what
is going on here, please explain it to me!)
Except I now find myself already at a stage where I've already got some content out there that readers are familiar with - I'm committed - and trying to make it flow with what's happening in this issue and the four issues beyond it. This is scary stuff! I don't wanna miss something obvious and down the line have fanboys call me out over things I should have easily caught, but oh well, it's canon now. Sorry.

Of course, it's mine, so I could always "DC's New 52" it up, but what's the fun in that, right?

Although...maybe I'll New 52 it up now, and just cut to the chase. No one will see it coming, and it may drive up sales. I'll be creating a place for new readers to jump on, in case they missed the first issue.

For size comparison, from left: Issue One (top),
thumbnail sketch of page one (bottom), enlarged print of
thumbnail sketch, final pencilled page!
Or maybe I'll just keep drawing. That may be the way to go, especially considering I pencilled  page one today and I actually liked it. There's already a rhythm at work in these issues, which hopefully you will all be able to detect when #2 is done.

Okay, mark it on your calendars: HERO CORP., INT'L #2 arrives Saturday, May 5th! Schedule it into your AVENGERS movie weekend. 
And yes, this means I've also got more blogs coming. Come back soon. I actually need you for something, friends. Something that will be music to our ears...or my ears, at least.

Today's Music: Fistfight in the Parking Lot; The Motorpsychos; The Forbidden 5; The Hi-Frequencies; Local Honey; Bill Deasy

1 comment:

  1. Totally great! Can't wait to read this.
    The story is epic in its scope and the way it is illustrated.