Thursday, March 31, 2011

Some Dollhouse Fan Art

I recently watched the entire series Dollhouse for the first time which motivated me to draw this little piece of fan art. I'm a huge Whedon nerd, (dude turns everything he touches into entertainment gold.) So why I hadn't seen the show in it's entirety before is beyond me. It's a really neat take on the human brain and human trafficking. (Sure they're pretty much very fancy hookers but so much more than that too.) If you haven't seen the show before I highly recommend it. It's a shame it got canceled after only two seasons, it's seems to have been happening a lot with Whedon's post Buffy work. (such was the fate of Angel and Firefly) but even so I loved his Astonishing X-Men (fact: in issue 13 of the series the first letter in the letter to the editor page was mine I was like 15 when I wrote it and I nearly died when I saw it in the comic.), can't wait for more Dr. Horrible, and I am so excited for the Avengers movie, which they maybe filming in Cleveland. (Maybe I can get a glimpse of the genius himself. I am such a fanboy sometimes it kinda makes me ashamed of myself.)

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

While I Was Out Part 12: Fish Hatchery/ 20th B-day/ IMOM

So A little more than halfway through our time in Waverly we ran out of work, 'cause we were just that efficient. (That and not all the houses we were assigned to work on were cleared yet so we had to wait for that all to happen.) So we were assigned a mini project at the Rathbun Fish Hatchery of Moravia Iowa! (We didn't know where Moravia was either.) The Mission: Remove sand bags and other flood barriers from the grounds that were set up by a previous NCCC team during the flood season. My team was there for about a week but Victoria and I were only there for two days for we got pulled aside for a special Composite team to work on the Iowa Mission of Mercy. (IMOM for short.) The day Victoria and I left for IMOM was also my 20th birthday so in the couple days we were at the hatchery the team took me out for a birthday dinner. (which I didn't even know was a birthday dinner until there was an army of teenagers singing happy birthday to me and handing me cake.) I also got the whole team to watch Spirited Away on one of the nights, which they all liked! So then when Victoria, Andrea and Myself left the Hatchery for Vinton, (Andrea was going back to Vinton for some reason that I can't remember.) we got picked up by our unit leader Jimmy Kelly. The girls fell asleep in the back and left me to talk with Jimmy all by myself for the 2 hour car ride which was actually kinda cool. We talked about music, specifically the Beatles (he said his favorite album was Revolver, mine was Srgt. Pepper's, and that Harrison was my least favorite Beatle.), the state of Ohio (he was a student at Ohio state.) and other things that escapes me at the moment. That night Victoria and I also met up with the other members of the composite team Maple Miscellaneous (I totally came up with that name.) which was led by the coolest Support TL Joy Whitt (also my advisor in the NCCC Yearbook)
and included Mike Kamen and other awesome Maples that I haven't mentioned in this blog yet. We all went out with Gordo and Maple 5 who were also in town the night of my birthday, and they also sang happy birthday to me. (not as well as the teenagers but it was late.) It was the first time I did anything special for my birthday since I had turned 18 so it was pretty nice. So About IMOM. What IMOM is is an organization that helps provide free dental care to people who can not ordinarily afford it in the state of Iowa. Every year they host an event in a different part of Iowa (This year was Cedar Rapids) in which they provide this free care to anybody who walks into the stadium/convention center for the whole weekend they run the event. Our Job as NCCC members were to assist the doctors in running and operating the different stations in the registration and treatment process and helping manage the other volunteers in their responsibilities. My duty along with my volunteer henchmen and women was to keep the patients waiting for their treatments organized and dismissing them to their treatment areas when the doctors on the floor was ready to see them. It was a pretty big task, (Victoria said I had the hardest job out of all of us.) which required to me to deal with angry people yelling at me about how they waited for hours, and it was a job that required me to be a leader of volunteers, something I'm not usually comfortable with but a challenge I took on and succeeded at.
One of these angry patients had a striking resemblance to Grizzly Adams and scared the crap out of me but I kept my cool as he was yelling at me. (Then he kept yelling at me and I called for help over the radio and he sat back down.) By the end of the weekend one of my teammates, Gun, (The nick name given to Megan Beretta.) even referred to me as Red Leader over the walkie talkies (something that I had jokingly requested of my teammates at the beginning of the weekend that everyone just kinda thought was silly, and it was.) The hours for the event were long, we started at 5 in the morning and ended at 7 or 8 in the evening (at no point during the day did I see the sun or go outside), but we got to stay in a nice hotel courtesy of IMOM, had our meals provided for us, and I even got a free teeth cleaning done in the process. (I can proudly say I no longer have any remaining dental glue from my days with braces.) Over all it was a great experience.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Process at Work

This is a page from Immaculate that I've been having some trouble with recently. The first image was from a several months ago at the first attempt at the page. I liked the page at first and even colored it in which... didn't go so well. Sharpees are not always reliable as a means of coloring. As time went on I started liking it less and less some of the characters look a little funny, the hallway has no people in it other than the characters speaking and in a very Liefeldesque moment there are no feet on the girl who is spread across the entire page. Admittedly I often have trouble fitting a characters entire body on a page, this is something I've been trying to work on recently. Ultimately decided to redraw the page all together.

This second attempt was from just earlier this week. I didn't like where it was going fairly early in the process, although I did manage to include the feet this time around however her body is oddly twisted and her portions make her look older than the high school, I gave up on finishing this page and decided to re due it yet again.

...and the third time (which started last night in the wee hours of the night and ended this evening) was the charm. I'm really pleased with how this version turned out. I got the full body shot feet and all without it looking all weird and twisted, the hallways look like the busy high school hallways they're suppose to be, and well, I just think it looks swell. I also decided to axe the J on the school uniform because I thought it looked awkward.

Friday, March 25, 2011

And Now For Something Actually Comic Related!

You remember that comic idea I had mentioned in an earlier post about the Catholic cheerleader who gets pregnant by means of immaculate conception? Right now if this was a comic book older that the year 2000 there would be a little dialog box that would say "See post so-and-so -Avery" I miss that in comics. Anywho so I started working on this comic that I'm talking about a while ago and here's the cover. I'm just about done with the first issue, I've got like a page or two as far as first drafts go to finish the story and then there are a couple of pages that I want to redraw. I'm sure I'll post the whole thing once it is finished. In the mean time I need to get a bigger scanner or something because my paper is too big for the one currently in my possession.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Meet Paul, the Happiest Little Lumberjack You'll Ever Meet.

It's almost 2 in the morning and I just finished coloring this picture I drew a forever ago. As you can tell by the title of this post, this is Paul, he is in fact a lumberjack and he is indeed quite happy. I can't remember why I drew this, I think it was during a team meeting that I thought was really boring and a I believe there was a conversation about how manly lumberjacks were prior to said meeting, something like that. Anyway what I've learned from this coloring experience is that I need a better computer program than Microsoft Paint to do my digital art, just because it takes forever and it often makes the finish project look rough. One of the things on my to-do list once I've secured a job, (one that hopefully does not involve lumberjacking) is to save enough money to get myself a Macbook. (I need a nice computer of my own and I know from first hand experience how smoothly those bad boys run photoshop.)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

While I Was Out Part 11: Preservation Iowa, Waverly Iowa

Yep, almost two months after the fact and I'm still talking about AmeriCorps. Like I was saying before our round 3 was split into several short projects, the second of which was in the town of Waverly Iowa, quite possibly the friendliest town in America. Our job was working with the organization Preservation Iowa salvaging building materials from flood damaged homes caught in the 2008 floods. These houses were bought from their original owners by FEMA in hopes of demolishing the houses and using the property as community green spaces so that no future homes in those plots will get caught in any future floods. The building materials we salvaged from these homes were then sold in a community resale store and the profits were then used for Preservation Iowa's main mission in helping maintain historical homes withing the community of Waverly. The town was more than welcoming to us. (For the first week or so it felt like we were celebrities or something.)We stayed in the basement of Trinity United Methodist church. (Which was a lot better than it sounds.) The Church's Pastor, Pastor Deb, was also very nice to us and made sure we had dinner pretty much every night we were there, naturally we got invited to a lot of church pot lucks. We worked closely With the Mayor of Waverly Bob Brunkhorst and his wife Kris (the first lady? I'm not sure on the proper title is for a person in that position so I always called her Mrs. Mayor.) As for the picture when we were in Waverly it was right around Halloween so we tried to put on a Zombie walk to help collect winter clothes for Goodwill. The walk itself was more or less successful, My team ended up being the only ones walking as zombies or even showing up to the event due to an error in our advertising. We didn't include a date in our main flier. But the church managed to collect a great deal of winter items during their Sunday service for us so in the end our mission was accomplished.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Pokemon Black and White: Freakin' Sweet.

So about 2 and a half weeks ago the new Pokemon games Black and White came out and being the colossal nerd that I am have been power playing my copy of White version since it's release. (One of the many reasons for my absence recently on the blogging scene.) I've completed the main story and am now working to complete the Pokedex and becoming the champion of the Unova region. (Unlike in previous games you do not become the champion of the region when you beat the Elite 4 the first time around do to events in the story.) Over all I'd say these games are a huge step forward for Pokemon as a franchise. They introduce new and interesting ideas while bringing back classic concepts in new ways. I also like the idea of having two rivals a boy and a girl and a lady professor, Professor Juniper. These are also the first Pokemon games to feature Black characters internationally (Pokemon Battle Revolution for the Wii was the first game to feature Black characters but only in English speaking region copies of the game.) in the trainers, Gym leaders, and a member of the Elite 4. (A little fishy that they'd decide to do that starting with Black and White Versions maybe they should have called it affirmative action version.) I also love the huge graphic over-haul, between the detailed cities and the fully animated battle scenes, these games have never looked better. Can't say I'm a huge fan of the new Pokedex or the Item bag in these games though, I thought Heart Gold and Soul Silver perfected both of these things especially with the current huge ass number of Pokemon (566 and more to see ;) ) I thought the HGSS Pokedex would have been much better for this gen. Over all though these games are truly unlike any previous titles in the series and I highly recommend them for a soul-consuming good time.