Thursday, October 23, 2008

SUM QUOD SUM part 1 page 2

Page 2 is teamwork at its best. The key to what makes Ollie Grigsby such a great comic book writer is he figures out the essential points in a story and hits those beats effectively and powerfully. I remember at one stage he apologised for having so many panels on a page, and I replied saying you only have to apologise if you didn't try at all. And Ollie does more than try he nails it every time.

He covers so much ground on this page. Most writers would take at least two pages to do. But he finds the key moments and takes you through them perfectly.

I must say, I thought I'd get in trouble for panel 1. But I tried to skirt the line between what would happen, what's decent and what's a little bit sexy. It's kind of creepy to draw naked pictures of actual people, so I did my best to just tell the story and be honest to the situation. Annette heightened that with the amazing electrical effects all over Elle. I also think that this is one of my best likenesses of Kristen Bell here as well as such a great performance of the character. I hope you're thinking, "Damn that looks like it hurts!" rather than, "Kristen Bell naked!!!"

Ok, now you're probably thinking, "Kristen Bell naked!!!"

I know Ryan Gibson Stewart was happy that his shout out on the towel was in the same panel as a naked Kristen Bell. Coincidence? Consideration or conspiracy?

It was Nathan Koeher who commented on my Facebook page that the extras all looked like main characters, and that was exactly my goal. I drew everybody imagining that they were the main character in the panel. I then used composition and my greyshading technique to draw the eye to where Elle was. This was especially apparent in panel 2. That's a lotta people! The tall skinny guy with the glasses, spikey black hair and facial hair on the left side of the page is Chris Moreno, my art director on Zero G. What's funny is that I drew the Superman tshirt on the right as an afterthought. Annette then coloured the hoodie in the exact colour of one that I own. I thought that was a nice bit of psychic synchronicity.

Some people noted that they weren't particularly happy with my likeness of Daphne on these pages. When I had to draw this, there had only the first two episodes of season 3 aired. Her makeup has changed and her look has evolved. I've also built a better representation of what she looks like in my head. If I had to draw her now she would look a lot better. It's like when I had to draw episode 20, ROAD KILL. There had only been one episode with Zachary Quinto and I hadn't quite figured out what he looked like. My likeness of him these days is much better than it was back then.

That train carriage took forever though. I remember it devouring most of the Richard K Morgan book "Woken Furies" that I was listening to at the time (well worth the read by the way). Annette then did the most perfect job of colouring it. But that is nothing compared to the incredible job she did on the speed effect on the last panel. Is that perfect or is that perfect? You can see the evolution of the effect from the layout to my drawing to the final coloured version. I drew some action lines to indicate the movement. On a separate layer I blocked in which colours should be where. I then sent Annette a bunch of screen caps from the first episode and she worked her magic. I'm sure we will see how other colourists tackle Daphne's power, and I doubt anyone will come close to what Annette did. It is a perfect stylisation of the effect we saw on the show.

When I was down at the set last I was raving to Timm Keppler and Jim Martin about how I hate speedsters. Hate. Them. I don't mind them in a fight, but running across the globe?! WTF?!!

Here's why. Time is relative.

Hiro illustrates that best. The effect of him slowing and stopping time is the same effect as Daphne moving at super speed. Time is still working normally for them,. Let's imagine Hiro can't teleport. Even if he stopped time would he still run to Paris from America? Seriously, could you imagine him doing that? Left leg, right leg... repeat. Lots. It just wouldn't happen! He'd get to the end of the block and go, "Screw this!"

But that's what Daphne is doing. Just cos she can do it in the blink of our eye doesn't mean it doesn't take her weeks or months (in her relative time) to get there. It's the only use of a power on HEROES that bugs me.

But I just smile, shake my head and just enjoy the best damn show on television.

Feel free to look me up on Facebook. Just please let me know you heard of me through the blog. I think a friend started a fan club for me there too, and I'd be extremely flattered if you joined. I know it doesn't seem like much to anyone, but these sorts of numbers (like the number of hits on this blog) get people in the industry to take me seriously and give me much better opportunities.

Don't forget the BOOK OF LIES competition. It ends on on the 27th of October. Scroll down or just click the COMPETITION tab for details.


Stephanie said...

Hahaha, I love your blog posts Jason. They really help us connect with Heroes and the GN's.

And I agree with you about Daphne. Superspeed has always confused me but its a comic book like show so lets all just smile and nod.

(And you should see how happy Nathan was when he heard you mentioned him haha)

Love the work as always! Keep it up!

ryangibsonstewart said...

Daphne may not have been the best likeness, but you have given me 1000 good dreams with the first panel of the page.


Kelly J. Compeau said...

I hope you're thinking, "Damn that looks like it hurts!" rather than, "Kristen Bell naked!!!"

I thought both of those things. Not necessarily in that order. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I got drawn in with the emotion of the art and didn't really notice the 'naked Elle' ...Annette brings even more feeling/emotion/beauty to your art ... so, Elle was naked? =)
oh, this GN was 'the' bollocks lol

jasonb said...

Steph: You should listen to Nathan. The man knows. He knows, I tells ya.

Ryan: I could draw a pretty good Daphne now. Dare me? C'mon! Dare me!

KJC: My work here is done!

Sheindie: HAhhhahaha! Nice one! Just don't go saying, "You're the chav."

bu11dog said...

Love the Superman shout out in panel 2. Did you draw yourself into the panel?

Anonymous said...

Great - so many new blogs, I didn't realise!
See, it's so worth reading these because there are SO many tiny details. Even when you think you've noticed everything when you read the blog for that page there's always a little gem you've missed or didn't know the whys and wherefores of - so happy we get the insider details.

I had noticed the Superman shirt actually. I didn't think the man himself had paid a visit ;)

Love the electricity effect on Elle - I think Annette's light and movement effects are second to none, seriously.