Future installments of this strip will appear HERE.
For a wee while now, I’ve been trying to write an album worth of scary children’s songs. I have about 5 so far which I think I’m happy with. The idea is to write them, record them and then illustrate some sort of accompanying book for them all by myself and WHO KNOWS whether I will manage this but I it’s enjoyable and not very easy.
Whenever I get hit with writer’s block, I get ideas for drawings and whenever I get hit with whatever the illustration version of writer’s block is (Illustration Block?), the words pour out of me. It’s almost as if my brain can’t process those two things at the same time and that doesn’t surprise me.
One of my go-to books for inspiration during these blocks is Tim Burton’s “The Melancholy Death Of Oyster Boy And Other Stories”, a book of clever wee macabre poems written and illustrated by Burton himself. That’s where I stole the idea from you see. But he stole it from Edward Gorey first so it’s all allowed.
Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaanyway, one of my favourite characters from “The Melancholy Death Of Oyster Boy And Other Stories” is a poor wee unfortunate fellow called Stainboy and I’ve just discovered that Tim Burton wrote and produced a Flash Animation series called “The World Of Stainboy”!
I’m always late to the party. Burton did this in 2010 and even wrote the episodes based on ideas submitted to him on Twitter! I don’t know how I managed to miss that but I did and if you did too, here are all six episodes…
Episode 1. “The Girl Who Stares”:
Episode 2. “The Toxic Boy”:
Episode 3. “The Bowling Ball”:
Episode 4. “The Robot Boy”:
Episode 5. “The Match Girl”:
Episode 6. “Stainboy’s Day Off”:
If you happen to put up with me on Twitter, you’ll maybe be aware that I’ve been not so secretly developing a new comic-strip about 80’s and 90’s Hair-Rock ‘Ledge’, Jon Bon Jovi!
Is ‘Hair-Rock’ a term? If it isn’t, I coined it!
The comic-strip is called “SHOT THROUGH THE HEART …The Completely Made Up Life & Times Of Jon Bon Jovi” and the first part was supposed to be finished and available to view on this very blog today! And it WAS…
…Until last night when I noticed that I’d centered the first story around a song which I always thought was by Bon Jovi. Turns out that the song I had chosen was by Robert Palmer and that I’d mistaken it for Bon Jovi because they’d covered it once or twice! That’s what I get for jumping headfirst into something without doing any sort of research.
* Note To Self:
Doing a comic-strip about Bon Jovi? – Listen to Bon Jovi, idiot!
So that meant that my week worth of writing and drawing was all for nothing and that I had to come up with a completely different story altogether for the first strip.
The good news is that I have. The bad news is that it probably won’t be ready for another week.
I started to redraw everything last night and if I do say so myself, HOOOOOOO I’M HALFWAY THERE!
Here’s how things currently look so far:
I decided to do a strip about Bon Jovi in the first place because I need an outlet for the scenarios I imagine whenever I catch one of their songs on the radio. I don’t imagine it’ll run for more than 15 or so installments but if it attracts even 15 people, I’ll be happy.
I’ll upload the strips onto this here blog when the time comes. The best way to currently keep up to date is to follow me on Twitter but if you do that, you’ll also have to put up with lots of other stuff that will have nothing whatsoever to do with Jon Bon Jovi or comics!
*EDIT! The finished strip can be viewed HERE.
You May Also Be Interested In…
* Al Cook’s “Necropolis”
This feels like a wee secret art class!
But it’s not.
Today I’m going to show you the ‘Behind The Scenes’ drawings of “The Crucifixion“, the latest installment of Al Cook’s “Necropolis”, my comic strip. Actually, ‘Behind The Scenes’ isn’t exactly what this is. It’s more like a collection of daft and drunken squiggles and the illustration panels they turned into.
First thing’s first. I doodle ALL the time! Doesn’t matter where I am or what I’m doing. Whatever I’m doing, I’m usually doodling whilst doing it. I’ve been doodling images of Christ on the Cross since I was a wee boy and so it seemed like a good idea to use those as the basis for my next strip.
I usually don’t like to plan things out as much as I did with “The Crucifixion” and I almost never do any ‘preparation’ drawings but here’s how it all happened…
* 2 scribbly drunken sketches done at a bar:
* Planning for the layout of the first couple of panels:
* The completed first and second panel illustrations:
* Quick sketches to give me an idea of what should be in shadow etc…
* The completed illustration panels:
* Idea sketches for the look of the Roman headgear…
* Halfway through applying the biro ink to the pencil lines of the final illustration:
* The completed illustration:
* A layout sketch done very quickly by the looks of it:
* The completed illustration:
* I found it quite difficult to illustrate someone removing a Roman helmet. The angle of it bugged me for a week. I must have drawn it 20 different ways before sketching out this idea:
* The completed illustration (Which I’m still not happy with):
* I wrote the comic strip as I went along and one of the main problems with that is that I don’t work in order. Like my brain, I’m sort of out of order. For instance, the first panel was first one drawn and then I worked from the middle panel backwards and then from the end panel backwards. It’s just the way that works best for me but sometimes, …sometimes I get stuck for a line of dialogue and have to improvise on the spot…
* Note to self:
* The final illustration before I drew over it with black biro pen:
* The completed panel:
* I fished this out of the bin 3 days after I’d put it there. Sometimes the best ideas are the first ones!…
* The finished illustration:
You can view the fully finished strip HERE.
If any of this was of any help to you with anything drawing or illustration-related then please drop me a line.
Awrite n’ that, big man?
Here’s the latest unfunny from my comic-strip, Al Cook’s “Necropolis”.
Share it with your pals if you have any.