Thursday, May 17, 2007

HANA PART 1: Third page, three musketeers

I normally follow Lewis Carroll's advice and start at the start, continue through to the end, and then stop. I like working through a comic book in its correct order. You discover things on the journey as you go. You watch interactions unfold. Certain characters talk and certain characters are silent. You have to figure out why they step forward or back. For this project I decided to start on the third page first.

Why? Because I had no idea what I was doing. I know I needed something fast and effective. So I got to playing. I also had to show NBC something that they would like. I played and toyed on this page for ages. It was a nightmare as I was making it up as I went along. Eventually I got the look I was going for. I replicated it again on page 2, and then again on page 1. I sent it off to NBC, nervous as hell that they wouldn't like it. It was so different to anything they had published before!

Obviously I got the go ahead. But I don't even like to consider what would have happened if they hadn't liked it. I'm going to go more into my technical process later. I'm really very happy with it, and I want to do more of this in the future.

Panel 2 has probably one of two really weak likenesses of Hana. I beg forgiveness that I was still trying to figure out what I was doing.

What's interesting is there has been a script change on this page. The original dialogue from Hana on panel 3 read:


HANA: Have we all forgotten what you've done?

I have no idea why Aron changed it. I liked the original, and it reads better with the art. With the revision it doesn't make as much sense as to why she shows the incisions.

There's one other stage that I go through when I begin a comic. That's the research stage. I recruited Ryan Gibson Stewart the site moderator (is that correct?) of HEROES WIKI (see the link to the right). I threw him a bunch of unusual questions from so far left field Marx woulda struggled to see them coming. I will go into this more next post.

Dr. Chaos already mentioned this on the 9th Wonders boards, but my stomach fell out when I saw Ted clean shaven. They didn't tell me about that! I was really disapointed. Who the hell lets someone shave in a maximum security Guanatanamo bay-like cell? Wtf?!!

I've also got a great idea for a competition regarding the final episode with the prize being original HEROES commissions. Keep your eyes peeled here!


The Polsons said...

OOOOOH! Possible awesome swag!!! :bounces up and down:

ROTFL on Lewis Carroll... yes, that is often a good idea. 8-) It's knowing when those parts are actually happening that's the trick...

Re: Shaving -- prisons usually require that inmates be clean shaven and have short hair so that they cannot hide things like weapons. I only know this because it's been a battle for Native American prisoners to have long hair, which in their culture is not ever cut unless a close member of their family dies. Just FYI, so you know they're not being ridiculous. Ha. But he still had enough scruff on the show and it was dark enough in your comic that I actually didn't notice. 8-)

BTW I sent Ted Raimi a link to your blog... 8-)

ryangibsonstewart said...

Any "weak" likenesses on this page is far outweighed by that awesome hip tilt in the 4th panel.

Yeah, that Primatech barber sure did a number on Ted, eh? No worries about the continuity. Maybe radiation makes facial hair grow faster? Ah well, Sylar gave a pretty major haircut as well.

rinibini said...

I don't know why you're bothering to apologize about Hana's likeness... personally I thought the profile on the right of panel two was perfect! And I didn't notice the whole clean shaven thing either. I think I'm so used to seeing Ted with stuble that I'm blocking out the recent shows in favor of how I remember them in my mind.

Again awesome JOB!! So have you been partying for the last few days now that all the stress of a full time job and another full time job are over?

Kelly J. Compeau said...

It's too bad about your rendering of Ted not coinciding with the show but, hey, that's not your fault, Jason. They should've told you.

KJC (who is SO going to win this competition)

THE Bald Bob said...

This page was one of my favorites. I love the dark blue colors in the night. The picture of Bennet pointing to the satellites on the next page was by far my most favorite, mainly because of the combination of your drawing and your coloring. But this page was what sold me on your coloring, and the Alaskan overload was what got be hooked. Awesome job.

AcidBurn133 said...

That sucks about the line being changed on the 'marked' panel... I read it and thought "wow, that really makes no sense", I liked the original line a lot better, but they're the writers...
As for Ted, he looks better with facial hair, anyway. It sucks that they didn't give you the heads up, but I don't think it takes away from your art or the story in the least bit. :)
And for the record - the coloring syle is amazing! It's so three dimensional, without looking like 3-D... heh. That makes a lot of sense...

HERO said...

I might've missed any dates, but what is the time period between the first script you get for a comic and any revisions? Can the story change during the week before we get to see it at all?

That's wild to think how "fresh" the stories are that you create, knowing that an international crowd is gonna see it soon after you submit it. Well, I think it's pretty amazing to think about it like that.

And if an announcement's made at the San Diego Comic-con about hard copies of these graphic novels, that's cool to see how this great stuff goes from concept sketch to something tangible we can hold!

Can you give hints at what you'll be doing for the 9thW crowd of which wb7 helped ya think? Just wonderin'.

CurlyMarie said...

Well, I've been composing a post in my head for three I finally get to actually type it up! (I'm traveling this week, so I don't have the regular computer access I would have at home.)

My reactions to this graphic novel. First, I felt that this one really lived up to the name "graphic novel" instead of being a "comic." It has a "weighty" quality. I don't mean to say that this is "serious art" and that other comic books are not--that would be insulting and it's not really what I mean. But there is something tangibly serious about this one.

You've gotten the likenesses really well; I love the drawings of Matt Parkman, even though he's just in the background really. I see that there are some places where the likenesses are stronger than others, but I don't think I was pulled out of the scene by any that were glaringly "off."

I'm fascinated by the color choices. I'm now understanding what you meant when you talked about a "monochromatic" look. You're really using color to control the mood of each page, which is interesting and cool. And then there are spots where you break the monochromatic pattern, and that gives them extra significance. It's so much like what a theatrical lighting designer might do: the color and intensity of the light affect the mood and control what the audience's focus is drawn to.

A couple of other folks have mentioned it, but I must agree: the Arctic panels are my favorite. Those blazing white expanses, and the sense of the characters being dwarfed; the spot-on body language that tells so much of the story for you; and the glitter of Hana in the snow, taking in all of that information--all are marvelous. Beautiful work. Oh, and punching Bennet in the face and breaking the glasses? Brilliant!
(Speaking of that panel with all of the "data," I'm seeing a mask-like face in the mountain behind HRG. Am I crazy?)

The nightclub page (p. 8). Here is an exact transcript of my reactions:
1. Here's the nightclub scene! Oh look, a Petrelli campaign ad. That must be the winning dress.
2. Wow! I hope it doesn't fall off of her! Hey, look at all of the other dresses. I remember seeing that one.
3. HEY THAT'S YOU!!!! I bet those other guys are friends of yours.
4. OH! You are a sly one--you drew YOURSELF KISSING HANA!!
I would like to note that the reactions to panels 1 and 2 were in my head. But when I saw panel 3, I began shouting at my computer. Yes, I was shouting at my computer and talking to it in second person--I addressed you, Jason, as "you," as though you were right there listening to me.
I'm so glad I live alone.

At first, I didn't catch that you had used my costume design on page 9. I was too busy following the story to note that detail. After I read the comic once through, I came over here to read what you'd posted, and saw that you had my name listed--so I immediately went back and looked, of course! It made my day, honestly. I can't begin to tell you how excited I am that my costume design was used in a comic book! Between the "Call to Arms" page and this, I feel like the HEROES graphic novels are providing my 15 minutes of fame. :)

I think that all of the blood, sweat, and tears--all of the passion you brought to this work--are evident right on the page. We can see your hard work, but more importantly, we can see how much you care. You have proven that you were the right choice for this assignment.

Now, I've gotten all of the big reactions out. Next time I get online, I can focus on the individual pages that you're posting. As I've said before, I LOVE the behind-the-scenes insight.

Thanks, Jason, and congratulations!


jasonb said...

willow: what's sprague gonna keep in his beard? A bigger nuke? Woo! Ted Raimi! Love his work.

ryan: LOL!! Well, in version A, there's more "hip tilt", shall we say.

rinibini: i do like that profile. It's my facourite panel on the page still. I partied hard that weekend. Drinks on friday night then NIN sunday. It was a big one!

KJC: Yeah. Ted. Sigh. How would I know to ask something like that, too?

BALDBOB: Oh yeah, that pic of Bennet on the next page is my fav! The one in part 2 beats it though. Do you know how hard it is to draw "night"? So many choices to make! And what you see as night outside, just doesn't work in comics.

ACID: Re: line, I thought so too. Seemed a bit of a non sequituer. Glad you like the colours.

HERO: I get the script and send pages off. Within 2-3 days I get feedback from NBC through my editor. I've noticed tiny little changes to the script after I submit the art. They did a great job on re-writes in War Buddies. I think I mentioned what they did. Hints? Look near the bottom of the panels.

CURLY: OMG! EPIC! WOW! I love one dominant pallette for a scene. It's a little visually clumsy, but that's my style. There's no face in the mountain... that I know of! I will chat about all the stuff you've mentioned when I get there. LMAO! As I said, there's a story to mine and my friend's cameos. It was such a beautiful unique top that you designed, and I couldn't find anywhere to do it justice. I had to put her in the leathers on the next panel to bring us back to her standard look. Thank you so much for all your thoughts.