Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Some more Cute...

This time, Mer-Kitty Cherubs.

This one came together a lot faster.  I found the mermaid's pose in the second thumbnail, and got a pretty good idea of her face.  And her little friends found their poses as well...

Monday, August 30, 2010

Get ready for 'Cute.'

I let that last post hang there for awhile - make sure everyone had time to read it, despite whatever headline they clicked on, from whatever site had a story that led them to believe otherwise about the actual content of my post.

Yikes that sucked.  My wife told me that's what I get for drawing robots all the time.  I told her I don't get paid to draw kitties.  She said, 'You didn't get paid to do those robots, either - and look what happened!'

Wife Wisdom, man, listen to it.

I said 'Fine, I'll draw some kitties.'  Squeals of joy.  I actually did have some vague ideas floating around my noggin, about a series of a girl and some cherub cats.  I wanted to do air, land, and sea themes, so here goes:

Here's some rough ideas for the first image, an upshot of a girl with feathered wings, with three Kitty Cherubs flying around her, swirling up into the clouds.  I was cracking up as I drew that one on his back, mimicking the pose of the girl - that one's in for sure...

Tomorrow, Mer-kitties.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Me and Transformers : Prime

The internet can be a pain in the ass, let me clear up a few things.

These rough, thumbnail sketches, are purely an exercise for me, they are based ONLY on published images of Transformers : Prime, found on the Hubworld.com website, combined with G1 and Animated model sheets.  They are not based on any of my past work for Transformers : Prime, unfinished or new ideas or otherwise, which leads me to my second point;

I guess I needed to be more specific in my contributions to Transformers : Prime.  I was hired on contract, by Hasbro, Inc. to contribute concepts for visual inspiration on the new show, which were then passed along to the Hasbro Studio team, of whom I'm not a part of in any capacity, who are responsible for the actual production of the show.  I didn't realize that there was so great a distinction between the two at the early , blue sky stages of concept art...but it needs to be said.

And now, I've seen this non-story about these, again, NOT OFFICIAL IN ANY WAY, images spread like wildfire - like a game of Telephone, where there are some headlines, about how I work on the show, and am the character designer.  And that IS where a distinction must be made.  I contributed some ideas through Hasbro proper, I am NOT a part of the production of the show, I have no title related to the show - there is a staff in place working their asses off to get this show out, and I want to make sure everyone knows I have no involvement in the Production of Transformers : Prime.  There is an official Character Designer for the show, and his name is Jose Lopez, and he's awesome.

I know it can be a little confusing, I'll try to explain the process.  I, along with other artists, got asked by Hasbro to draw some ideas.  Those ideas all got thrown into a pot.  My involvement is now over.

Hasbro takes that pot across the hall to Hasbro Studios, and gives it to the studio guys, and says "take the best of this, and mix it with whatever you guys have on the stove."  They take what they want, and over the long development process, ideas are re-purposed, expanded on, or simply ignored.  That is the nature of the creation process.

Like everyone else, I had to wait until SDCC to see the clip of the show, the only final characters I've seen are on the Hub - I did my work and was done many months ago, and now I'm seeing the new and final character designs as you all are, when you are, with fresh eyes, and as a fan excited and inspired by the next evolution of Transformers.

I know I promised some mushy thumbnail drawings of some Decepticons, but I'm afraid I'll have to stop this right now; after seeing some posts to an initial, and somewhat misleading headline on TFW2005, about folks thinking that these sketches of Inferno, Bumblebee, or Jazz are/need to be in the show, or toyline...let me tell you right now, that won't happen.  Again, these are just exercises for me, doing them absolutely on my own, without an art director, written concepts, and team goals for each character, and most importantly WITHOUT Hasbro - all those factors are involved in creating official characters.

ENTIRELY UNOFFICIAL, on the level of Fan Art - based only on images that are publicly available - I can't seem to say that enough!

I appreciate all the comments, but despite my initial statement that these were merely studies for me based on available images on the the final, official styling of the TF:Prime characters, too much has been made of what amounts to fan art.  I know that news of me doing some ideas for Transformers : Prime in official capacity has been out for some time, (and again let me stress, the work was through Hasbro, NOT Hasbro Studios - there is a difference) so I made the preface that the images created on 8/22/10, and posted on 8/23/10 were in no way connected, just to avoid this the very event that has occurred.  But what happened is the exact opposite, folks saw TF:Prime Concept Artist, and Click Here For Image - everything else got ignored.

So even if I get lucky enough to create or update more Transformers, I can guarantee, you won't see an image on this blog in thumbnail form, final form, an idea if it has a shot in official capacity in any way, and absolutely not before a product launches.  So when I mention waiting for October, as far as I know, officially 10/10/10 is still listed as the premiere - if it changes, I wouldn't know until there's a press release, and find out when everyone else does.  And whatever I do show, has to got through a vetting process, to get cleared by Hasbro, as with anything I've published on my blog or site previously, the games, comic covers, etc...and always, post-product launch.

I apologize for any confusion, I certainly didn't think that my involvement in anything TF:Prime related was for the most part unknown, or my statement was some sort of a reveal, nor did I think some ENTIRELY UNOFFICIAL rough sketches would get more than a comment or two.

So let me end with this, in case it got missed.  Those images posted yesterday of Bumblebee, Jazz, and Inferno are in no way official, associated, future designs, past designs, partial designs from or for Hasbro, or Hasbro Studios, in regards to anything Transformers.  They were purely exercises for me to independently study the  forms of the new characters, based only on previously published material, found on the Hub website, G1 model sheets from the Ark, and model sheets from the Allspark Almanac.

At best, they can be described as Fan Art Only.  Nothing more...



Monday, August 23, 2010

Some Autobots. *Updated

Let me preface this post - Yes I did work on Transformers : Prime.  No, these images are NOT from that work.  You have to wait until October to see those...

But, now that some of those images are starting to come out, I wanted to try to do some studies to match the official style.  Just really rough at this point, trying to find some of the basics.

Obviously, TF:P Bumblebee is based on the movie Camaro, so I wanted to try a pass with him as the Beetle, and how that old vehicle form could break up in new ways.  Then I took a crack at Jazz (I don't know if there's any TF/Prime images of him out, and I honestly don't know if he's in the lineup for the show - I didn't work on him, in any case) and based him on more of the TF:Animated styling.  And then for fun, I just picked a random Autobot, and did Inferno.  He was the last one I did, and I think I started to capture some of the TF:P looks...

Tomorrow, some Decepts...

*Seems there's been some confusion - let me reiterate - these images have nothing at all to do with anything official, this is really on the level of fan art only. I've only seen the images from the Hub website...that and my trusty copy of the Ark is what I'm using for inspiration.  I said I would post the TF:Prime stuff I did for Hasbro in October - I didn't know there was a debate about the premiere, I just know the Hub says Oct. 10th...so let me clarify, when the show actually airs, is when it's even possible for me to show some of the concept art.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Wondah-Wondah, and some other guys...

Some sketches from last night...I had watched the Wonder Woman toon movie during work yesterday, it was pretty good!  It inspired me to do some WW drawings...I can't even remember the last time I drew her.  Probably because of the show I watched, the sketches came out in more of the animated style, but I might take it to a rendered level in a more realistic style.  I still haven't found a good face yet, but I think I like a pose, second one down from the top right.  It looks she's running into action, and fending off a bullet with one of her bracelets.  I might try to develop that one a bit more.

Some leftovers from the DCU-inspired night...

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Wizard of Oz - Render 01

And I'm trucking along on this, about 1/3 of the way done with the first color pencil pass...

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Wizard of Oz - Paint

Here's a couple efforts at a decent picture of the progress...neither so great.  But yeah, I AM still working on this, just takes a long time to get it right.  Despite the paint getting a touch fuzzier than I would have liked, overall the application went pretty smoothly, and the pencils underneath are showing through well enough for me to follow as guides.

So there's your Oz Update, I'll post some finished pencil details as I go along...

Monday, August 16, 2010

Boba Fett Blaster

So, I'm going to do a little dabbling in prop painting.  I probably haven't painted any kind of object in any way, since I was a kid, and had painted some models...badly.  I'm putting together a set of Boba Fett armor, but the pieces are in the raw, resin cast form, so they need a paint job.  That stuff is expensive (and the set is not yet completed) so I wanted to practice on something cheap, to get started with.

So I turned this:

Hasbro's new toy Boba Fett Blaster,* into this:

I took something Safe, and made it Unsafe, yay!!!

Before I started, I took an exact-o and knocked out some chips here and there, to give it some 'battle damage' areas, to go back over with the silver, to insinuate raw metal.

If you want to turn your fun toy into something that looks dangerous, and would give the police reasons to shoot at you, here's the recipe I came up with, it seemed to work out pretty well.

1.  The toy comes with the hilt unattached; I took it a step further, and unscrewed the fastener hilt piece from the part that makes up the 'wood' stock.
2.  Now you should have four pieces, the main part of the gun (does not halve apart, there's some glued bits, so unscrewing it won't separate it) the fastener hilt, and the two halves of the stock.
3.  On the work surface (for me, I have a giant roll of butcher paper that I use for my drafting table) I sprayed Rust-oleum Primer, mid-dark gray.  Spray in long strokes, as not to get wells of paint that collect on the surface.  Make multiple passes to get the coverage.  In this gun, there's a red light that lights up in the barrel and tip when you pull the trigger - I tilted the gun part and sprayed at an angle to try and preserve the light, and it worked pretty well.
4.  I took the stock pieces, and mixed up a batch of Liquitex Raw Umber, with a bit of black to darken it even more, and brushed on the paint in long strokes, with a 1" brush, to try to insinuate wood grain.
5.  Then, I sprayed the hilt and gun with Rust-oleum Hammered Finish...there's not specific color listed, but it's a warm, very dark gray, almost black color on the cap.  Both sprays came from Home Depot.  Again, long angled strokes, repeated until the coverage is complete.
6.  I also gave the stock a quick couple LIGHT passes with the Hammered Finish, to help meld the dark brown with the metallic color.
7.  Then I sprayed some of the Hammer Finish onto the work surface paper, to well it up to use as a palette, and I brushed on that color to the metal elements of the stock.
8.  After the pieces all dried, I put it all back together.
9.  I mixed up a light wash of Black Liquitex, and brushed that all over the piece, to make it look like grime and gunk, years of use built up over time.  I let it pool in the edges of things, and let it dry - that gives it a look that it's used, but not cleaned.
10.  Then, I took a little jar of Testors Enamel Aluminum, and went over the edges, and painted in with a very small brush, all the little nicks and scratches.  I have one side that looks good, and one side that looks awesome.  I kind of overdid it on the first side, made the nicks too larger in some case, some scratches too broad.  I reeled it back in for the second side, and it came out much nicer.  I suggest start very small, then build up on a second pass, if needed.

And that's about it.  Good times...it's a fun toy, really loud and obnoxious, with lights!

*I forgot to get the camera out for 'making of' shots, so I used the product photo from the interwebs.

Something else I didn't think of at the time, you could probably sand off the legalese that's in the mold, and fill all the screw holes as well...hmmm...maybe I'll make another one.  It's only a $20 toy, and there's tons of paint left over...?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Chewbacca Week!!! 'Flats'

OK, now here's the flat colors for Chewie, freezing his furry tush off in the icy plains of Hoth.  Next steps to do to get this to final; shading, color punch-up, highlights, and some snow swirls...and maybe some sort of background framing, to get a better overall compositional balance, than what I have going on right now.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Chewbacca Week!!! 'Inks'

Here's the final line art for ol' Chewbacca, time to throw some color on him...

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Chewbacca Week!!! Drawing for final...

All right, I picked the head I liked, and stuck on the pose I thought would work the best.  I printed out the rough composite, and made a tighter overlay drawing, cleaning up the details and tying the to different sketches together better.

Next, he gets scanned back into the cyberworld for digital inking...

Monday, August 9, 2010

Chewbacca Week!!! Star Wars 'toon sketches.

It's that time of year again...getting close to the three year anniversary of the Bad Flip Blog on August 13th, and you longtime followers know what that means - Chewbacca!  I started this blog with a horrible rendition of Chewbacca, and now it is tradition to do a new Chewie every year.  Usually, it's a painting, but this whole year so far has been doing paintings in the off hours, so I thought I'd change it up this year, and do a toon version of our Furry Friend.  I haven't used this style much this year at all, so I needed to do a bit of a warm up...

It took me awhile to find the right face for ol' Chewie, along with some Imperial Trooper doodles thrown in for good measure...although eventually I found a good face, and a good pose, with his crossbow, to take to the next stage.  But, I was having fun, so I just spent the night sketching while we watched Cheers reruns...!

I thought that I should make this an Empire themed Chewbacca, due to the 30th Anniversary going on, so I continued with doing some more characters from that chapter.  A horrible attempt at a Taun Taun and Wampa...but I found pretty cool Luke and Lando designs, to maybe develop at a later date.

Then of course, Chewie's BFF, Han Solo.  Kind of a cool body shape in that standing pose, but none of the heads are quite right.

Nothing especially valuable in here, maybe the Hoth Leia costume, the Tatooine Luke costume, and also kind of a funny head idea for 3PO, too.

I did it all from memory, so there's things in most of these that bug me, because I know they aren't right...but it gets the gears working to maybe do more Star Wars in my Toon Style.

Anyways...it's Chewbacca Week, so I better get back to him!  The pencil drawing for final, tomorrow...

Friday, August 6, 2010

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Rumble & Frenzy 04a

Final, version A...I'll post the alt colored version tomorrow.  Threw in a bit of an homage to the G1 cartoon opening for the background.

Overall, the 3D test/practice was pretty successful, I had never used it to that extent before.  I think that last time I even got close to this was maybe the Sector 7 Drone from the first movie game, that was very rudimentary block shapes, but these guys had a lot more detail built into them.  Time to start pushing my 3D boundaries though...

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Rumble & Frenzy 03

After I turned and twisted the composition, I played around with the camera lens to get some subtle warping, and create a bit more sense of movement, I finally settled on the final render, and brought that into photoshop for additional work.  It's been nice to have some of those trouble areas already handled, like shoulder and arm perspective points are already in place, I don't have to redraw a bunch to find the right angles for corners and curves.

So far this has taken a bit longer than if I had just spent more time with the drawing, and went straight to photoshop rendering...but like I said, I needed to re-familiarize myself with 3D, and it's been a pretty good learning experience.

Anyways, on to color...

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Rumble & Frenzy 02

So after doing a block-in of all the shapes, I paused the 3D stuff, and brought him into photoshop for a quick color test.  Before any of you get fired up about the colors*, I'll just tell you that from my personal Transformers Canon, the G1 cartoon has precedence.  I lived in bliss until the Robot Heroes version came out, and had him colored red and black with his arms transformed into the jackhammers, so there was no escaping the ret-con, after all.  I guess I'll do two versions of the image, with the colors swapped.

After the color test, I went back to 3D, to do some punch up with the shapes, and do the Frenzy version of the arms as well.  I put them in the pose from the sketch - and here's the awesome thing about 3D - so I could rotate the characters around, and reveal more of Frenzy than I had in the sketch, making a better overall composition than what I would have had, had I just began rendering from the drawing.

I might play with lighting and camera a little more before I find my final shot, but this is pretty much locked to go back into photoshop for additional rendering and color.

*OK, non Transformers Nerds...in the cartoon Rumble was blue, and Frenzy was red...the toys had the names reversed, and basically everything else outside of the cartoon had them listed this way.  This is kind of a new revelation to me, so those facts may be a little on the hazy side...but in my world, the cartoon rules.

Rumble is Blue, and Frenzy is Red.  So there.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Rumble & Frenzy 01

...aaaaaaaaannnd I'm back!  That was a loooong time away for this blog, that's for sure!  Was out of town for two weeks, and last week I was putting my house back together, mowing the lawn, finding new homes for all the SDCC widgets I got, and trying to learn a 3D program.

I've had an image of Rumble and Frenzy bouncing around my head for a long, ever since I did that Soundwave awhile back.  I did versions of Laserbeak and Ravage, but I felt I still needed to get all those deployable minions out of my system.  So, while on one of my flights, I doodled up this:

A couple of troublemakers.  So when I got home, knowing the plan was to tech demo with the little bit of time I still had off, I decided to do another detail pass at these guys, via an overlay drawing:

But not too detailed, as I decided I was going to build these guys up in 3D.  Something nice and blocky, to ease into it.  I got some details figured out, but left some things unfinished, or didn't even bother with going to the trouble of breaking out the circle templates, etc.

So armed with this image, my Rumble and Frenzy G1 figures, and the ever-trusty and invaluable Ark opened to their model sheet, I started to get to work...