Posts Tagged ‘drawing’



Posted: April 29th, 2013
Categories: making
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The History of Reading, Vol. 2

I am still alive, and still mak­ing comics!

I actu­al­ly drew most of this one a year ago, but for some rea­son I did­n’t fin­ish it in time for the hol­i­days. I’ve been hang­ing onto it until now so I can send it to Mrs. Andrews with her Christ­mas card. Do any of you have any spe­cial teach­ers you still com­mu­ni­cate with as a grownup?


Posted: December 18th, 2012
Categories: comics
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mini-comic: we’re tired

Yes­ter­day John, Jen­na, and I went on a field trip to Ft. Collins to have brunch at the Rain­bow Cafe and vis­it the Alley Cat. At the Alley Cat we all got so, so sleepy and I was wor­ried I would pass out in a food coma in the booth. I decid­ed to make a lit­tle mini-com­ic about it in my mole­sk­ine (co-writ­ten with J & J).

Lat­er we went to see Prometheus in Love­land (I give it a B-) and when the movie let out it was rain­ing intense­ly. It turned out the high­way was flood­ed and we end­ed up hav­ing to dri­ve back to Erie on Coun­ty Road 1.

All in all I real­ize this is not a super excit­ing sto­ry, but hey! We were tired! It was fun!

Posted: July 8th, 2012
Categories: comics, Daily
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A Personal History of Fire

here i came to the very edge where noth­ing at all needs say­ing… and every day on the bal­cony of the sea open fire is born and every­thing is blue again like morn­ing”

— Pablo Neru­da

Have you ever lost a piece of clothing you wish you could get back?

Big Wheel

J and my dad are schem­ing on how to build a big wheel for Burn­ing Man.


Posted: April 8th, 2012
Categories: burning man, comics, making
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Staedtler-Itoya-Micron-Rotovision (Comic Process)

I am work­ing on a new com­ic, but it’s tak­ing a while since I’ve been busy at work (for­tu­nate­ly I’m play­ing with mark­ers there as well but in a much larg­er size).


My process is start­ing to get a lit­tle more delib­er­ate so I thought I might try to describe it here.

My kit of equip­ment is real­ly real­ly spe­cif­ic. I use let­ter-sized paper specif­i­cal­ly for draw­ing comics that I get at Meininger, because I have found that nor­mal print­er paper (which is what I start­ed with! so easy! so acces­si­ble!) has too much tooth and the ink is more bleedy. The kind I have is Can­son Fan­boy Man­ga & Com­ic sketch paper.

I have a deep love of mark­ers and my favoritest most awe­some won­der­ful kind are made by Staedtler: the Lumo­col­or per­ma­nent pens in black in B, M, F, and S sizes. I think they might actu­al­ly be for writ­ing on over­head pro­jec­tors so I am a lit­tle wor­ried they won’t make them for­ev­er. Dear Staedtler, if you are lis­ten­ing please make sure to keep man­u­fac­tur­ing your pens!

I have also found myself in need of small­er tips as I get bet­ter at draw­ing, so I have a set of the Itoya Fine­point Sys­tem pens in .5, .3. and .1 and I like them pret­ty well. I have nev­er been a huge fan of Micron pens but I did need an even small­er size so I got one in 005 and I got a brush pen as well.

For my draw­ing sur­face I use a hard­cov­er book about brand­ing from when I was in school for design at RMCAD. :D It’s not even a good book but it’s the per­fect size to hold on my lap (I draw sit­ting on the floor with my back against the couch). I always put 5 or 6 sheets of copy paper under the sheet I’m draw­ing on, which gives the per­fect “squishi­ness” to the sur­face and helps man­age bleed-thru.

Oth­er impor­tant parts of my kit are a big chis­el sharpie (ter­ri­ble not-true blacks but some­times you need a real­ly wide mark­er), a Sumo mechan­i­cal pen­cil, and a 16 inch met­al ruler. Oh and my lap­top and or phone for image ref­er­ence. Fin­ished or in process stuff lives in a fold­er (upon exam­i­na­tion it appears to be a Mead Five Star fold­er labeled Psych from when J was under­grad).


I think one of the things I like best about draw­ing comics is that they aren’t hard to write since they are usu­al­ly based on some­thing real: a dream, a mem­o­ry, or an event.  Though I orig­i­nal­ly just drew them in real time, mak­ing them up as I went, I have start­ed actu­al­ly sto­ry­board­ing them out in pen­cil first on a sheet of copy paper. This way I can fig­ure out what the words are, how many cells I need to say what I am try­ing to say, and what images would go along to tell the sto­ry.

When I actu­al­ly start mak­ing the final com­ic I start by draw­ing the black­ened edges and mast­head area with my ruler and the B mark­er or the chis­el Sharpie. I start­ed doing this because my scan­ner can’t scan all the way to the edge, but I like the look of the heavy bor­der. I then let­ter the mast­head (is it called a mast­head in comics? I think that word might be a holdover from my news­pa­per class days).

Final­ly, I draw each row of cells (with the B Staedtler mark­er denot­ing the bor­ders), mov­ing from the top of the page to the bot­tom, let­ter­ing in the sto­ry as I go in the Itoya .5. For more com­plex visu­als I sketch light­ly in pen­cil first and then erase the lines once I ink. Oh yeah! Part of my kit is a big white eras­er. I would say about half of the pic­tures are drawn in pen­cil first, but I would pre­fer not to have to do this because it’s slow­er and I hate pen­cils. :)

I always have my com­put­er near­by to look up pho­to­graph­ic ref­er­ences for what­ev­er I am draw­ing. Okay and now the secret part. For images with per­spec­tive I will some­times put my paper over the bright com­put­er screen and trace some guid­ing out­lines in pen­cil! I cheat! It’s true! But I am get­ting bet­ter at per­spec­tive in gen­er­al and who cares any­way, it’s how the whole thing comes togeth­er than real­ly mat­ters.

Well, that’s about it, tried and true at this point. I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into my process and look for a new com­ic soon.

Posted: March 29th, 2012
Categories: comics, making
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Human-Centered Design Comics

I real­ly can’t believe I:

  • did these in 2006
  • for­got
  • ever let myself get so dis­con­nect­ed from the basic tools of being a design­er (my brain, a pen, and paper. even tho these were actu­al­ly my brain, my wacom tablet, and illus­tra­tor.)


Posted: December 1st, 2011
Categories: comics, making
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The Many-Coated Man

Posted: November 25th, 2011
Categories: comics, Daily, making
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The History of Reading, Volume One


(the words are reeeal­ly tiny in this one, oops. click it to see a big­ger ver­sion.)

super. ∞

I haven’t been dream­ing a lot, so instead I made a pic­ture of a cam­era:

Posted: November 15th, 2011
Categories: comics, dreams, making
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3 things I spilled this week

Well, real­ly it was last week that I had 3 spills…

This is my most per­son­al com­ic yet. It was this time last year when we lost Mr. Kit­ty to lym­phoma & kid­ney dis­ease. Octo­ber 17, I think. I don’t even care if half of this is drawn one way and half the oth­er — we real­ly miss him and it was super hard to draw about it but also very mean­ing­ful to try.


Posted: October 25th, 2011
Categories: comics, making, words to rest in
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Muriel, Keeper of the Feather Toy

Muriel has a pink toy with a bell that she car­ries around the house. Once it was long like a feath­er boa but now it is a fluffy stub.

Posted: October 17th, 2011
Categories: comics, Daily
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Comments: 1 Comment.

Monchichi, Defender of the Shower

Monchichi likes to sit out­side the show­er on the bath mat. She is the Defend­er of the Show­er.

Posted: October 16th, 2011
Categories: comics, Daily
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john’s grandparents’ house drawings, by john

A draw­ing of J’s grand­par­ents’ house in Wil­low­brook (4 hous­es up from where I lived as a kid and on the ridge):

The pool room:

The neigh­bors’ house (they had a mon­key):

Posted: October 14th, 2011
Categories: comics, making, My Life 1979-2001
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