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Eyes opened...

Journal Entry: Sat May 16, 2009, 8:02 PM
So I went to ECBACC, the East Cost Black Age of Comics Convention, here in Philly, and it really opened my eyes.

I was amazed to see people there, with art of all types and styles on display...highly detailed, cartoonish and all points in between, work not too different from my own in style and quality, except these people had the guts to put themselves out there.

Plus an unexpected surprise. I saw several folks selling books in the same fashion that I used to babble about my Nia Black novel...novels that break the pre-conceived parameters of what genres should be in a book. I saw comic-book style stories in prose form, some with art inside the book, many without. It made me envision myself with a table of my own at a con, a giant Nia Black or Jet Dancer sign drawing attention to my area of the convention, a stack of my novels (graphics optional) for sale.

I saw what is possible.

I met :iconpyroglyphics1: there--cool guy. Very friendly and talented man. And it was amazing seeing some of his hot artwork like this Deadpool vs Afro by pyroglyphics1 face to face. We talked a bit and I'm going to see about getting involved with his Xion Group www.myspace.com/xiongroup and spending some time with people who are out there hustling and putting their work out there, without hiding behind an internet screen.

Of course, I still have the same problem I always have; I can't figure out what I'm supposed to do with all the things I can do. Yeah, I can draw, ink, color and write, I got ideas coming to me on a constant, regular basis and it's an epic struggle for anything to hold my attention for more than a few hours. Right now, at this second I'm thinking of re-evaluating my Nia Black concept and pondering if I should be focused on drawing Jet Dancer comics. Can't do both, of course, at least not at the same time. Not if I want to get anything done.

Oh, I didn't forget that I'm supposed to be spending more time offline than on. But I wanted to get this down while it was still fresh in my mind. Seeing what's possible, what's out there, it made me think about how much time I've wasted, and how I don't want to waste another second. I think I'm a few steps closer to finding that direction I'm looking for. I'm not quite there yet, but I'm stronger for the experience.

JP

  • Reading: Comics and Sequential Art - Eisner
  • Watching: MirrorMask
  • Playing: Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII
  • Eating: Bagel
  • Drinking: Iced Coffee
Add a Comment:
 
:iconchizel-man:
Chizel-Man Featured By Owner May 18, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Sounds like you had a great experience man. I hope some good blessings come to you and your fam thruough this man.
Reply
:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 19, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Me too...thanks!
Reply
:iconchizel-man:
Chizel-Man Featured By Owner May 19, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Don't mention it man.
Reply
:iconpyroglyphics1:
pyroglyphics1 Featured By Owner May 18, 2009
Hey bruh, thanks for the shoutout and for stopping by my little humble corner. I'm glad you decided to come through after all. Like I told you, I started off feeling the same way you feel so I felt I could pass on some advice. The only way to succeed in any way of life is to immerse yourself in that environment. Meaning I better see yo ass at the next Xion meeting. =)
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:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 19, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
It's on my calendar! But by all means keep posting those reminders in your journal too. :D
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:iconmjbivouac:
MJBivouac Featured By Owner May 17, 2009
There you go, Man! Nothing stopping you now. Get you butt to the next convention you can!
MJB
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:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 19, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Yes, you're right. Gotta learn all I can! :salute:
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:iconmjbivouac:
MJBivouac Featured By Owner May 19, 2009
Go man! GO!
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:iconwbd:
wbd Featured By Owner May 16, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
That's good news- I'm glad that you saw how workable those ideas of yours are. Sometimes that's the key- being able to really see it in order to pursue it. I know that happens to me.
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:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 19, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Yup, for the first time I'm able to say that maybe I don't need to draw comics to put my work out there. Good thing too...I don't think my comic work is good enough for print.

Webcomics, on the other hand... :plotting:
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:iconrobaato:
Robaato Featured By Owner May 16, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Having a booth at conventions is ALWAYS a blast.

I know you'll like it, I loved it when I first did it a few years back. :)
Reply
:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 17, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
I won't like it if I'm just sitting there not selling anything...like some guys were at ECBACC. :o But I guess that's the risk you take.
Reply
:iconzerry:
zerry Featured By Owner May 16, 2009
Congratulations! You've taken your first step into a larger world :jedi:
Reply
:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 19, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Yup, and I'm not looking back. :nod:
Reply
:iconk0b13:
k0b13 Featured By Owner May 16, 2009
Dude, I feel you are much better at colouring than pencilling. Just my opinion. :-)
Reply
:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 16, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
I don't deny it...the reason I do so much in Photoshop is because I know the penciling side of my work is weak. A year ago I was getting more full color commissions than I had time for, turned down plenty of them, but I got exactly two sketch commissions, and both were from friends.

I'm really not entirely sure why people keep trying to encourage me to draw comics...
Reply
:iconk0b13:
k0b13 Featured By Owner May 16, 2009
Well, what do you like to do more? I mean you like doing sketches more or colouring? I don't aspire to be some comic book artist, but as I read a lil bit about comics, people are either penciler, inker or colourists. However I see that most of them started as fill-in guy. That way your natural talent gets noticed and people give you kind of work you are most good at.
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:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 16, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Well, what I don't want is to work for someone else. I'm not interested in being an inker or colorist on someone else's art...that wouldn't be fulfilling for me on the long term. Maybe sporadically here and there, but not as my career. I mean, I make a pretty good salary at my day job now...if I'm going to be unfulfilled anyway, I might as well stick with it. I tell myself all the time, I didn't teach myself to draw just to ink and color someone else's stuff. It's not like my art looks like complete crap...once I ink and color a drawing of mine, it stands out.

What I love to do is tell stories in all types of ways. I like the idea of drawing comics, but they never turn out too well. I love to write. I like to draw pinups, as long as there's something more to them than "hey, look at me".

I would also love to get better so I can be more confident in my own sequential drawing abilities. I don't see myself as a Marvel-caliber penciler as far as detail goes but I've seen plenty of comics (at the convention and other places) where the art is done in a simpler style, a style that I'm good at.

My dream is to make something of mine a household name. A series of books like Harry Potter, an ongoing, serious comic series where I do most of the heavy lifting like Empowered or Sin City. Something that I can say was the product of my own dreams. Not just a name on the corner of a cover of some mainstream comic that I don't even care about. Success as the creator of the IP.
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:iconk0b13:
k0b13 Featured By Owner May 16, 2009
You know exactly what you want, and that's a very good thing.
Now here are some things I think:

-When you want to do something like your own book etc, it's a huge task.
-Doing all the heavy work, is again a huge task.
-When you have a day job, you are left with less time.

What I feel is (my opinion), you should try to get some touch up artist. The best bet would be to get a penciler kind, just to get the basic layouts, perspectives and rough figures. You tell that guy about the story and panels etc.
Now you do the inking and colouring. Again here you could get someone to do the special effects, shading etc. I mean definitely there would be people who wouldn't mind that the finished work does not look like their style, and you can make it clear beforehand that you want the finished art to look like your style.
I hope you get the idea. And I read that you plan to join some group of guys, so I guess you are in right direction.
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:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 17, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
I'll take those ideas with me to the meeting(s)...you might be on to something with someone doing the basic layouts. :nod: I can go over roughs with digital inks pretty easily.
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:iconk0b13:
k0b13 Featured By Owner May 17, 2009
:-)
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:iconricardoredway:
ricardoredway Featured By Owner May 16, 2009
because fifty percent of a comic is digital enhancement skills.which you have.plus you have not perfect but good penciling skills.good balance but frankly i've noticed you are better at pin ups and covers so if you don't have time for comics keep the novels going till you can expand by hiring some artists.
Reply
:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 17, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
I swear, if I could see my way clear to accepting one truth without debate, I'd be in a happier place. Though I love to actually draw comics (coming up with layouts is something I find myself doing randomly throughout the day), I don't do them well. And until yesterday, I was convinced that there was no other way to tell my stories other than just keep trying to draw comics, but now that I know I've seen people put work out there in text form with some art, I know otherwise.

And now I must start thinking about ideas again.
Reply
:iconricardoredway:
ricardoredway Featured By Owner May 17, 2009
don't get me wrong your comics are great looking but the patience and time and dedication to finish them is what seems lacking for you.I would love to see your stories and ideas as comics.but you just seem geared towards other stuff.
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:iconjuggertha:
Juggertha Featured By Owner May 16, 2009
you know, I've never been to a comic con.

Thi is cool to read about.
Reply
:icondualmask:
Dualmask Featured By Owner May 19, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
It was nothing compared to the gargantuan spectacle of events like the San Diego Comic Con I often hear about, but it was still a cool environment. :nod:
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