Friday, March 02, 2012

crazy workload

Very little blogging or Art art of late, those who follow the flurry of manic chaos on facebook will have a fair idea why, I haven't even had time to list blurt the madness on twitter, but the last couple of months have been flat out. I am literally sat at computer working on multiple projects for 16+ hours a day. For a while there I was regularily doing until 3am.

I had to get artwork in on time for Bayou Arcana, It is frustrating having to work so intensely, when i am in the digital artjob  zone everything else has to get dropped, rest, walks, eating, other projects, housework, family, it becomes tunnel vision, and i can feel it draining me , but there is no way out, to stop and rest is to loose that momentum, to lose the working flow, its like a rapid river that simply has to be navigated. With lots of leisurely time to to it in small chunks the process simply would not be the same. I was hoping that this project would push through some new direction in style or technique, i had left off comic drawing for a while in favor of colouring work because i felt i needed time for technical things to be digested. I didn't know until i sat down and started on Bayou Arcana what style i would do, the story had flash back scenes and jumps, so i did these in different styles and had a good play. I also tried to echo the emotional change/ mood changes throughout with layout styles and colour themes. I wonder if these have worked?  I'm sure there are bits i'd like to change & generally I am unhappy with my work afterwards ( this is normal ) , but there are a couple of pages i'm quite pleased with. I'm looking forward to seeing how this intense few weeks work will influence other comic projects in the months to come.
Bayou Arcana is an anthology set in the Bayou, with a range of characters woven in across different stories. The world has been conceived by editor James Pearson, and the writers and artists have been given lots of creative freedom to take this concept and run with it, some fantastic looking results. The book is unusual in that it has all male writers and all female artists. This has become a bit of a feature in light of the current debate about sexism in comics. The Guardian picked up on this & we got some great coverage. I'm looking forward to the reaction when the book is published and launched at Bristol Comic Expo in May. We'll be doing a panel talk there, some of the creators will also be at the Kapow con in London to talk about it.

I won't post any more pictures due to spoilers except prehaps...
This is me pretending to be the cowboy dude above, look I know i'm not a 30's something tall rangey half Hopi man, but this is the kind of thing comic artists do to get the angles and poses right. This broken air rifle is one of the many bizarre props that turns up in my comics. This is definitely not a job for grown ups or sensible people.

  •  I am also desperately organising Hi-Ex  !!
  • helping organise classes and courses at the Smithy on behalf of the Kirkton Woodlands and Heritage Group, of which i have now been co-opted on as a director. This is going to be MASSIVE in coming months.
  • working with others to get the Lochcarron Treehouse past the ever more detailed building warrant demands in time for easter opening.
  • running a range of Pictish Art workshops across Easter Ross with Arts play Highland
  • Organising a mini-Country day for Easter at the Smithy.
  • co-designing & organising this years 'Arts and eats trail ' 
  • Very busy with Fire Brigades Union Activity as anyone following the local press would have seen, we had a crisis recently with over 40+ fire stations in area threatened with closure, a vote of no confidence in the Fire Chief and some stormy meetings. We seem to be over the worst with everyone now on board to move forwards and address critical issues of fire fighter and community safety with the threat of closures temporarily lifted.
  • Very busy with the actual Fire Station Job, as crew changes have left me with lots more responsibility and work to do, co-running the station, especially in light of the above.
Crazy days!

However it all feels like a positive move forwards even if my art and myself have got somewhat lost in recent weeks, changes are a happening and new things will come out of all this work!

Today however is my birthday, so blogging is just a little window of ME time. ONWARDS!

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