Monday, September 8, 2014

Saved by the Bell #4 ANNOTATED

I was originally slated to draw every third issue; but not long after I completed the art for "Fashion Don't," I was informed it would be used as issue 2, and I was asked if I could draw issue 4 post haste. Ask any fellow I've dated—I never say "no" so away we went consuming the better part of February.

Enjoy the cover and stock art from Chynna, and settle back for "Screech-a-Date."

As often as I could in this story, I tried to create visual symmetry with the panel layout. I thook the challenge to myself very seriously. You won't get a sense of it in digital, but hopefully it will be very apparent when the stories are in print. 

PAGE 1, panel 3 we have a poster for the Brontë sisters—all three! You know me, I love their depressing novels...Jane Eyre, Tennant of Wildfell Hall, Wuthering Heights, all among my favs.

PAGE 2, Slater is wearing the t-shirt I designed and available on my website "Haifischbaby" though it's colored here as light blue.

PAGE 2, panel 1 features the indie gay boy, Jeff, that I drew into the backgrounds of issue 2 at the left of the panel. At the right of the panel, we see Cannonball, Danielle Moonstar, Magma, and some other girl I intended to represent as The New Mutants.

PAGE 3, panel 1 we have a poster for a big fight, Northstar vs. Kyle, Marvel's out gay couple I drew in Nation X.

PAGE 4, I added Lisa's unscripted stretches to add interest for me.

PAGE 4, panel 6, the PSA "check yourself" was inspired by the girls in my high school graduating class. What they said was a lot nastier, so I cleaned it up for Bayside.

PAGE 5, panel 4 I got to use my favorite explosion effect that has been in use since 1998.

PAGE 5, panel 6 was quite a controversy—you see draft 3 published. I was really happy with the first version, but it didn't capture the spirit of the joke. Ultimately I downloaded this app developed by a university in Vienna that maps combined expressions. I drew it just as the app shows but the result has a Kelly that looked old and hag-like. No one was happy with that, so on to draft 3, a wildly exaggerated goofy expression. Good enough.

PAGE 6, etc. Originally, the Max was not going to be styled after the TV show's set. After I submitted inks, there was a change of plans. So, I had to draw new backgrounds, digitally wipe out the existing backgrounds and layer in the new. 

I love the way PAGE 7 turned out! I did a nice job on the trees and particularly like panel 5.

Nice perspective work on PAGE 8.

PAGE 9, though in the background, Jeff's reading and stretching is far more interesting than the conversation in the foreground. Also, we see a flyer for Jimmy James' trivia at the Precinct Bar, Tuesday nights. Just after I submitted inks, Precinct shut down for renovations. When it re-opened 6 months later as the upscale hipster dive bar Brass, they eliminated the trivia night.

PAGE 10, panel 6. I had suggested placement for the word balloons which never came to be. So the pacing feels off to me, and there is a lot of white space.

PAGE 11, ha, Van Gogh and You.  Panels 5 and 6 I drew as scripted, but then everyone realized that the joke needed either Lisa worked into panel 5 or to be edited. As it was already colored and I was leaving on a business trip, I wasn't game to re-draw it. So it's an edited joke.

PAGE 12, panel 3, Jeff is wearing a beaver bullet T-shirt also available on my site. Panel 4, random dude wearing another of my Ts, Johnny's Magnet, sadly colored in green.

Overall, a better output from me than #2...fewer smudges to correct, fewer edits to make, felt like I was back in the groove! Onward!