Tuesday, January 27, 2009

New Digital Painting

This is a quick digital painting I did with my new Wacom tablet. Right now I'm still trying to get a feel for it, but I'm getting more comfortable all the time.

I always get stuck on names. Anyone have a suggestion for it?

Coraline the Movie

I thought everyone knew about the Coraline Movie coming out February 6th, but then I mentioned it to my mom and she was like "What's Coraline?".

It's a movie based on Neil Gaiman's book of the same name. It's a "children's" book, but think of it more along the lines of children's/adult book, since adults will definitely get a kick out of it. A girl, Coraline, and her parents, move to a large house, and Coraline is left alone since her parents are very busy. She starts to wish that things were different, and gets more than she wants.

So for all of those who don't know here's a trailer for it.

Drawing of Ezee Part 2

I rephotographed the drawing of Ezee, the main character from my new book. It looks better than the previous post, but it's still not as good as the original.

One of these days I will master the art of photographing art.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Drawing of Main Character For My New Book

I took a break from the rewrite of my last book and decided to do NaNoWriMo in February, where you try to write a novel in one month. That didn't turn out so well since the new book I started demanded that I do research and is more complicated than I first thought.

So, since then I've been trying to figure out the new book, which has a working title of Mule, and I got the urge to draw Ezee, the main character. So here's a photo of the drawing.

P.S. The drawing looks Way better in real life. I need a new camera and the manner in which pencil is rendered digitally is not the best.

New Orleans Trip

I'm Posting this a few days late, but over the last weekend I went to New Orleans to visit my brother and his family. We visited some cemeteries looking for Marie Laveau's resting place, and toured Bourbon street, and then went to Gulf Port Mississippi, to see the Gulf of Mexico.

We saw some Voodoo graves where people had made offerings and performed a ritual that included drawing three X's on the crypt.

We also visited a cigar shop where they rolled their own.

On Bourbon street we saw all sorts of street performers, and clubs, and shops, and I even got a picture of a vampire. The bald guy dresses as a vampire and gives tours, but this was his down time. And yes I know that one photo is blurry. I like it anyway.

And I also like to get regular street shots, since all anyone ever sees are the tourist areas, and I like to show people what the real city looks like.

These are just some of the photos I took. I might post more later.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Chasm City

Chasm City by Alastair Reynolds is a book set in a future where humanity has already moved to the stars. Tanner Mirabel, is an ex-soldier and now security specialist for a notorious crime boss on a planet called Sky's edge.

But as the book starts off, the boss is dead and Tanner is following the person who did it to get revenge. But the person he is following is leaving Sky's Edge to another system called Yellowstone, and Tanner intends to follow. Along the way Tanner gets infected with a cultist virus that makes him have visions of the long dead infamous founder of Sky's Edge and now pseudo religious figure.

The virus is something that he thinks he can deal with, and can be ignored, but soon it's interfering with his plans, both short term and long.

This was a cool book. I've read the other ones set in this universe and I wasn't planning on reading this, since it is a stand alone story, and not part of the larger Revelation Space trilogy. But I'm glad I gave it a try.

It has some twists in it that sneak up on you, and make you question your loyalty to the main character.

I would definitely recommend it.

And if you haven't read the Revelation Space Trilogy, stop what you're doing and go by all three, it's awesome. (Cautionary note, the first 80 pages of Revelation Space drag, but once you get past them, you will fall in love with the book. And the last book in the series has some weirdness that you really don't want to miss!)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Bamboo Fun + Drawing

For Christmas I got a Bamboo Fun pen tablet by Wacom. I've been holding off on using it because I'm trying to finish a traditional pencil drawing of the main character from my new book. (Which I will start writing as soon as I finish the rewrite on my last book. Let's cross our fingers for the end of February.)

But also, because I'm not sure about it. I'm so used to traditional techniques, and the ability to draw on paper, that drawing in one place and have the image form on screen in another is is a little bit of a mental hurdle to overcome.

So, I was about to shut down for the night and I thought that I would do a quick sketch, just to get a feel for it. I thought that I would just try to draw a simple eye. And that's how it started. But then I kept going and ended up drawing a whole face.

I learned a couple things. Pen tablets are not magic. They won't make you draw better than you already do, and in many respects, make you draw worse.

It's almost like learning to draw again. You have to train your hand and brain to work spatially separate, but mentally together.

Keep at it. Since I've played with it a little I'm getting more comfortable, and things are looking more like I want them.

So here's the first drawing I did with the Bamboo Fun. I know what I think, so tell me what you think!

Friday, January 09, 2009

The Drawing of the Three

After being urged for years by my brother to read the Dark Tower series by Stephen King, I finally read the gunslinger about 6 months ago. And now I just read the second book in the series, The Drawing of the Three.

I can't say I'm a big fan of Stephen King, but I have read a few of his books and stories, and of course, seen the movies. Certain things about the way he writes bug me, and certain things he puts in his stories bother me, but I have to admit he's a good story teller, and The Drawing of the Three is no exception.

It is the continuation of the Gunslinger's quest to find the Dark Tower and somehow save his land and people. And the path takes him into our world to gather the people and things he needs. Along with the loss of body parts, sea creatures, and plenty of shooting, just to keep things interesting.

I would recommend the series so far, with the warning that it is Stephen King writing, and the books include all that that implies.