So suddenly the coding manga I’ve been writing has amassed 156 pages and I’m about 70% done with the story. It feels really amazing but also kind of…weird because, while the story looks actually quite similar in quality to my high school writings, this one really feels like the very compelling rough draft of something I’m going to go back through before long and write in the quality of Dumping a Dragon.
Andrew and Micah THRILL AND DELIGHT ME, I love them as a couple so much. It honestly makes SO much sense and their personalities perfectly complement each other.
The story stays SO MUCH SMALLER than the other manga I’ve attempted to do and feels much more intimate, manageable, and fleshed out because of that. Really the only thing I need to refine during the final version will be the presentation of the Codeys and Scripts but that’ll be easier when I’m not writing the whole thing in a notetaking app haha.
I also made doodle sketches for all the chapters since they’re sorted by chapter in my app so here are those!
I’ve also been absentmindedly doodling them in between chapters whenever I briefly lose my flow, like I used to.
So I can’t believe it somehow got overlooked in my blog – I think initially I was probably a little embarrassed – but I’ve been kicking around a new idea for a novel/graphic novel for months that finally just kinda, I don’t know, took off on its own. I was really into the idea of writing boyxboy love for the first time after I realized I have trouble writing a functional, blossoming hetero relationship because I’m no longer trying to fill my own void for romance. Plus it felt very appropriate to hook Micah and Andrew up. And Danny made a brief appearance where he then died like usual haha.
Anyway the idea has always felt super solid (started from reading A Sorcery of Thorns btw) and I was just hung up on the visuals, so I was just like who cares and I did something to keep moving and now that I’m entering drama/sexy territory I’m just kind of flying into it. I’m also excited about the idea of writing out the rough draft and figuring out an iPad program or something to refine it once it’s all written down.
As it’s progressing it’s definitely turned out a bit spookier than I expected but like, in a cool way I guess!
I have way more doodles and whatnot on my ipad but I just can’t bring myself to blog on my ipad especially since I’ll never ever get an ipad keyboard. I have so many physical keyboards! I cannot abandon my actual PCs even though Ryan bought me airpods yesterday and I haven’t stopped using them since. >.>
New Years is my favorite. I would say this one looks the most different but I haven’t ever prioritized staying up until “the ball drops” as much as I have always prioritized reflection, which I have spent lots of time doing the last few days.
And today when I was bored at work I put this together!
Enjoy the visual walk down memory lane.
I think it’s definitely a bit easier to put this together since my blog has been up for almost an entire decade haha.
So these days my husband follows a lot of trendy anime artists on Instagram and he kept mentioning how people were doing the 10 year challenge to finish out the decade.
I do comparison photos a lot but I decided I had so much new art technology I would try my hand at using one of my new devices.
My husband got me an enormous 22in XP-Pen 22E Pro tablet for Christmas and I tried for a while to use that but at the moment the sheer size of it is too overwhelming for me to try a specific drawing on it before I get used to navigating one end of the other, and its 16 hot keys I haven’t really set or gotten familiar with.
So I ended up going to my senior year manga, Farewell Fairytale, and realized immediately I wanted to do this garish drawing of Elodie and Micah. They were my weird mid-20s engaged couple who were weirdly chaste and half their humor was accidentally being intimate even though they were ~*~*~*~*saving themselves for marriage~*~*~*~*~
So after a few attempts to do a half-kiss like usual I realized I wanted to express them as a couple as they WOULD be a “decade” later (of course not really aging them intentionally, and definitely avoiding Micah’s creepy goatee), as I know love and commitment to be now…hanging out in your pajamas, sipping wine in the dark after a long day and making each other laugh in your home, where you’re the most at ease.
I ended up using the iPad because I kept thinking of its glowy brushes and the “street lights” effect that I wanted. The original drawing was used in a website layout with some oldschool Search the City lyrics
Streetlights carry me home tonight
So that kind of inspired the new urban vibe. I got to do a few nods to the original characters. Elodie has a wolf tattoo because of Fyodor. The original drawing is on their phone screen like a Facebook “10 years ago…” and the neon light on their wall is an umbrella since I couldn’t work that ugly thing into the redo, haha.
Okay so on Black Friday this year I convinced my mom to buy me a discounted iPad on Amazon like a true American consumer. But it hasn’t been hugely surprising that I finally seized the opportunity to get one after I hard debated Apple products before deciding on this two-in-one. Also, the allure of adapting to the changing face of digital art was very very strong.
So, without further ado I now present to you my various Apple Pencil ProCreate doodles. Gag, so many mainstream products in that sentence.
Ok so this week we’ve had a new nanny working with Ronan and it’s been REALLY emotional not only because I’m PMSing and it’s making me hella anxious, but because the prospect of choosing someone to be in my life and my husband’s life and most importantly my son’s life when I can’t be is INSANELY daunting.
So I set about on the task of depicting the strong protectiveness I felt (when I saw her tumble down the stairs accidentally while holding my child…oof) and then when I left her in my house to take care of my child. It’s not the same soft affection of kissing Ronan’s forehead when he sleeps, it’s fierce, overwhelming, and sometimes accompanied by frustrating helplessness.
Another big piece, this came up a bit out of nowhere. One of the ladies I follow on Instagram makes merchandise revolving around tough, alternative mamas. And after my first round of holiday gettogethers with Ronan around, I realized how just, primitively protective I am of my little prince. Between that and the wolf theme of the Instagram mama I follow, I hatched a Wolf Mama drawing of me and Ronan. My husband said the furries of the internet would love me for this. That makes me sad.
Regardless here we are, me with my scars and stretch marks and Ronan with his fingers in his mouth and a handful of my hair as he tends to be these days.
I also got an iPad as an early Christmas present from my parents and have been slowly getting familiar with the all-famous ProCreate. But my caseless, fragile, slippery iPad isn’t quite the baby-friendly mobile drawing station I expected yet, so it’s gotta wait till my case comes this weekend before I can really integrate it into my baby time. Here’s the picture I did first on it. My mom said Ronan’s eyes creep her out but I think that’s a personal problem.
The Pencil definitely has enviable brush stabilizing that I would never want my Wacom to have, so that’s a game changer for incorporating text into my work. ProCreate also very obviously works for graphic and illustration work in a way that Clip Paint Pro doesn’t and I also wouldn’t want it to. So so far my conclusion is that the iPad will work for the style of graphic, marketable work I want it to, but it’s not necessarily the same sketching, brainstorming, feeling, serious illustration platform that I didn’t want it to be. That is, my Wacom and my desktop art station will not become obsolete because of the iPad.
I have been mostly focused on video games and cuddling my son in the last few weeks and days of my maternity leave. I go back to work the day after tomorrow. I can’t believe it. I can’t believe I’ve been home for 2 and a half months with my lil guy. I also can’t believe how painful the thought of leaving him is.
When my husband and I were talking about the announcement of Diablo IV, we were saying how we’d have to train Ronan into being a class that neither of us want to be. Ryan then described a drawing I could do of the three of us in our classes with Ronan as a little head on one of our backs.
Over this last week I ended up putting WAY more work into this than I could have expected, especially since Ronan was super clingy a few days this week and I could only work like 10 minutes at a time before he’d be like “no you’re too distracted cuddle me harder”
I made a point in the drawing especially since I play as a barbarian-type “fuck em up” class to include my scars. One of my laparoscopy scars ended up being the spot for some of my only new stretch marks and they made a cool little lightning bolt. And my huge-ass c-section scar is pretty symbolic to me ultimately.
Also I figured since I didn’t need to showcase my post-breastfeeding small boobs I’d showcase Dat Booty.
Anyway, who knows what’s gonna happen to my art productivity once I go back to work and also have a child to take all my attention when I’m not there!