Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Drak Pack Re-Imagined

For a side project, I re-imagined the Drak Pack, a Hanna-Barbera cartoon from 1980-1982 I'd watched when I was a very little kid. I used the core characters of Drak, Frankie, and Howler for the piece, thinking of them in terms of more modern, action based, and themed teenagers (Drak as a "prep", Frankie as a "jock", and Howler as a "skater kid").

The original promo image.

Pencil layout for the piece.

Inks added, Digital Cleanup, Logo, and text.
Some quick color, shadows, and effects.
 It was fun to do, and I think with the current popularity of supernatural characters this concept could work again.

Friday, November 23, 2012

The Snorks

A 9"x12" drawing of a few of the Snorks. I'll try and clean up some of the lines and color it in a few weeks.

My Cat Belle

This is a 5"x7" ink drawing I did of my cat Belle.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Commission and Rate Page Updated

I updated my Rates and Commissions page.

24 Hour Comic Day 2012

On October 20th, 2012, I attempted to do a 24 Hour Comic Day comic. I started at 1pm and I failed miserably in my attempt to make a 24 page comic book from scratch in 24 hours. I didn't even complete a single page of finished art, but I learned a lot on what to do and what not to do for next year and I had a fun time doing it.

24 Hour Comic Day 2012: The Rundown

Plot, Character Idea, Prop design, and Page templates.

I started out with no concept, as per the rules, so I grabbed a dictionary and flipped to random pages with my eyes closed and pointed to words. I did this 6 times. I jotted down the randomly chosen words and with them started to mentally build my plot. I think I got really lucky as I the words I picked worked well in a crazy way and I got a basic concept down fast. 

The words chosen were "Cleopatra", "Beatnik", "Invocation", "Fragment", "Seed", and "Fateful". 

While I thought up my plot ideas I made a six panel template on a 8.5"x11" sheet of card stock, cut out the panels, and layed out light pencil panels on 30 sheets of 8.5"x11" bristol for my pages. I decided to go with 8.5"x11" because I figured the smaller size would be easier and faster to work on.

I then spent the next hour or so writing up the plot, making it work for page count, and creating my characters. 

My page layouts for my 24 page story.
After a short break I went to work on my page layouts, to make sure my story fit the pages right, and with the idea that by laying it all out it would speed things up. 

This took me forever. I lost hours. I lost Sooooo many hours.

By the time I finished the page layouts it was after midnight. I had trouble in a few spots getting things to work the way I'd envisioned them, and I stubbornly had refused to push on past them until I'd gotten them right. By the time I'd finished them I was so mentally exhausted that I knew I was done before I'd even really started.

Page 1. The First and only page I began.
I decided to give it ago anyways to see how long a page would take. After some very loose pencil work I went straight to inks. I realized I wasn't going to be able to squeeze in my word balloons and narrative boxes so I mentally told myself I'd do them on the computer after. To save time. 

My inks went down fast. I was happy with the time I was making. Then on the fourth panel I realized that I had about 10 hours to do 23 more pages. I knew I wouldn't get done. I might hit page 10 by then, and that was all just build up to the actual story. At about 2:30am I threw in the towel and called it a loss. 

I learned quite a bit for next year. I gained an interesting new story with a brand new character,  "The Amazing" Gavin Solomon Quinn © 2012,  who I'd like to flesh out and work on more sometime. 

It was a fun experiment and I look forward to doing it again. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Design Work August 2012

A banner logo for an upcoming blog.

Final Blog Header
Full Image with test title Font
The figures in the lineup were drawn and inked by hand. Coloring and all other effects were done in Photoshop.

Design Work September 2012

I did some logo designs for a new reptile business.

The store Full Type Banner
The store Logo

The Banner snake was drawn and inked by hand and scanned into Photoshop for coloring. The font used is a modified version of Bleeding Cowboy. The snake head in the logo was added digitally in Photoshop.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Creature

The Creature
"The Creature" 
9" x 12" Pen and Ink on Bristol

For sale $20 plus $3 shipping (Free Local Delivery) in anyone is interested in giving the piece a new home.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


This is a troll I drew. I like him so he will be appearing in Strange Encounters one of these days.

My Annoying Cat

A little poem I wrote a few weeks ago about my cat at 2AM...

You look at me

With your big green eyes
And quickly 
Turn your head
When I glance your way.

Stupid cat,
Stop staring at me.

Your food is 
In a bowl
On the floor.

Eat it.

~My Annoying Cat
By J. Splendor 06/13/12 2:20am

Friday, June 8, 2012

A good guide to lettering

I made several "rookie" mistakes when I started letting my webcomic. I found this useful guide on what and what not to do.

Blambot: Comic Book Grammar and Tradition

Friday, May 18, 2012

Monday, May 7, 2012

Creator Owned Day

March 1st was Creator Owned Day and this was my creation to celebrate the day...

Hekate, Flip the frog and Broom ©Hands Up! Studio 2012
This is Hekate, a teenage witch, who will be making an appearance in Strange Encounters later this year. She is accompanied by her familiar Flip, a tree frog, and Broom, a magic broom.

Hekate is based on a character I created back in 1995 in my last months of high school.

MVCC Gallery Show

On February 27th I gave a lecture and had a gallery show at Mohawk Valley Community College in Utica, NY. The lecture for students was about my experiences as a freelance illustrator and cartoonist in a difficult industry. I feel it went well, though I did have a few rough spots, and some of the students seemed very interested in my presentation. The meet and greet after was fun, where I talked one on one with several of the students. I think I gave them some realistic hope for pursuing a career in comics and illustration.

The gallery show ran from the 27th of February to April 5th. The pieces I displayed were all black and white illustration pieces, in various styles, of projects I am working on this year. I got very positive feedback from everyone who attended the show over the month.

All in all it was a very fun experience and I look forward to doing more lectures in the future if given the chance.

Color test

I've been busy working on a few new projects and I keep forgetting to update this site. Here is a color test I did up for my Dwarf.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Grinding away on art.

I've been away for a few weeks working on pieces for my gallery show and working on some ideas for new sequential stories. Here are a couple of pieces I've done that will be used in the show.

Dwarf Warrior 5x7 ink pen

Elf Prince 5x7 ink pen

Zombies 5x7 ink pen
If things go well, the Dwarf and Elf may appear in a black and white comic book later this year.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Being Human (UK)

The British Being Human is a great series I just started watching on Netflix. It is a story about a Vampire, a Werewolf, and a Ghost who are flatmates. I highly recommend it.

Being Human BBC

Thursday, January 12, 2012

King Dog Art

Today I felt like doing something a bit darker than my normal work so I did up a fast King Dog piece. It went with a very loose and fast ink style that works I think.

Danny Kelly's King Dog

Banana Tail

Back in late October I did a little fan piece for Mark McKenna for his self published children's books, Banana Tail.

My original pencils
 Mark decided to do inks and touch ups over it and here is the awesome piece that came out.

Inks and touch ups by Mark McKenna
You can find and download the the piece here to color,

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Buried in drawings this week.

It has been a busy week and I have a lot of work all sketched out with little idea notes attached. I'm about to start working on final versions of some of the pieces which include some paintings (my first in years). I will post up the sketches with the finished pieces as I get them done.

I'm also finishing up my Winter Wonderland story line in my Strange Encounters comic this upcoming week. After that I will be slowing down on the art by switching to a more standard comic strip style for a few months while I get things set for my gallery show.