Sunday, 22 January 2012

Experimentation and Growth

Quick update today, got lots of stuff to work on today.

Experimentation with Greta's facial features, tried for subtlety, to capture her character. Not working so well, but that's what practice is all about.

For Hans, tried a different approach to experimenting, tried giving him radically different head structures, most of which I found too much fault with, but all part of the learning process I guess.
Initial trace-overs of Hans and Greta after receiving the Brian Lemay treatment, of which I am very grateful. I will continue trying variations of character details over the structure, but this is generally what their heads will look like.
The Witch Singer still needs a lot more work on her, so far I've only sketched one more version of her with an older and hopefully more evil look; however, as Brian pointed out with the other characters, I need to work on structure first, THEN experiment, so she's staying on the drawing board for a while longer. This caped version will remain as an inspiration for now; Brian wasn't very impressed with the almost naked teenager image, so the witch is going to be fully clothed from now on. Musta got cold out or something :P
And that's all for now ladies and gents. Stay tuned for more updates this week, and as always, Feedback is always greatly appreciated. :)

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Characters and Style

Simple answer to why I haven't posted yet: fighting crippling low self-esteem concerning 2D drawing skills.

Having finally found a style to grab onto, Ben 10 by Man of Action, the plans are progressing once again, and in more or less a more concrete manner. I used the character art for Ben Tenneyson from 'Ben 10: Ultimate Alien' as a reference for Hans, young Gwen Tenneyson from 'Ben 10' as a reference for Greta, and older (16) Gwen from 'Ben 10: Ultimate' as a reference for the Witch. OBVIOUSLY more drawings must be done, it hurts me inside to be this derivative already, but it's a start.

I'm liking how Hans turned out with the new style, though as shown by the notes, I both need and want to keep working on him to make him look better.

Greta is another matter, I still need to make her more distinctive than a Gwen Tennyson dress-up doll; while Gwen is an awesome character, Greta needs to stand apart and with her own distinctive personality. Thus, need to work on the face some more.
The costume is also fairly unfinished/undecided, I'm more a fan of the far left outfit, but it doesn't quite do it for me just yet, so I need to keep trying. She's also beginning to lose her femininity in that left shot, have to keep an eye on that...

The Witch is my least favorite so far, she just looks like a teenager who found her mother's dominatrix gear. Which is NOT what I'm going for here, so therefore needs to be fixed. I need to work on making her more imposing, more threatening, as well as mature; right now she looks like she'd mock your choice of clothing, but not really try and kill you. I'd like to expand the costume a bit more to exagerate the character some more; I'm thinking some big shoulderpads with long curved spikes off the sides, holding on a transparent black silk cape... Thoughts? Suggestions? Obviously I need to fix the base character's body FIRST, make her older and dangerous, but good to keep these details in mind.

I need to put together some sketches of the House of Rock next, I haven't been able to draw anything I didn't shred within 10 minutes. -_-;

As always, Feedback is GREATLY appreciated, it is the main thing that fuels my progress. That and deadlines :P To add impetus, anyone who sends me feedback here on this blog will receive a cookie! all ya gotta do is ask :3

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Hans and the Plot

Hello once again.

Buying the parts and constructing the new PC, moving back to Toronto, and sickness have all attempted to distract me from working on the project, but now I return!

I have been working on the story/plot line for Hans and Greta, which I'll write up in a bit, but first lets see how Hans is coming along. It's pretty rough (and missing his legs, boots, and guitar >_< ) but I'm fairly happy with it. I'm beginning to feel better about working on the project, so that's got to be a good sign :P

Now, for story outline:

Hans and Greta, two teens kicked out of their house by their overly conservative parents, roam the city as musicians for hire, playing one-night bar gigs in exchange for a warm bed and a hot meal. But their style of music is considered too hardcore for the average drinking hole, and they find themselves running out of places willing to hire them again. Unhappy, but unwilling to change, the siblings strike out from the city, towards the wilds that encroach on civilization, in hopes of finding a more receptive audience.

On the evening of the third day, their rations running low and a nasty storm blowing down from the mountains, the two come upon a strange valley. Ancient and massive stone sculptures are strewn about the valley, like the scattered and forgotten toys of a giant's child. In the centre of the valley, the rocks cluster around a sizable building, an imposing construct of ageing metal and worn concrete, and decorated extensively with neon lights of every colour. Dozens of blazing pyres light a wide road leading to the main entrance of the building, with two parking lots full of motorcycles and hot rods spread on both sides of the road. From within comes the thrumming beat of drums, and the harmonising screeches of guitars, echoing off the valley walls. As they make their way towards the building, they make out the sign under a 10 foot neon pentagram:

Welcome to the House of Rock

Hans and Greta make it inside and immediately feel like they've entered paradise.

[since this is quickly getting bogged down in detail, I'll switch to point form to wrap things up.]

-Heavy metal band on stage, attractive female singer front and centre, outperforming the rest of her group. (hint: the witch)
-song wraps up, Singer comes down to the bar, meets Hans and Greta
-offers to let them show their stuff while she takes a break
-get on stage
-the crowd loves it
-Singer turns out to own the bar, asks if they want to stay on a while
-sign contract
-agree, go to sleep happy

-wake up in cages made of instruments and stage equipment
-told to practise, get better at their music
-given new songs, sheet music, new instruments, "All for your future"
-Singer secretly intends to steal their youth and musical talents by ritually consuming them once they've improved
-Hans thinks Singer's weird, but gets practising
-Greta freaked out, starts trying to escape
-Singer gets blinded by a flying microphone (from Greta)

-Singer checks up on them daily to hear progress
-Hans and Greta play recordings of off-tune scales instead of showing how good they've gotten
-weeks pass, Singer begins to get annoyed at lack of progress

-Singer can't take it, decides to do the ritual anyways
-Starts with Greta, taking her out of the cage, leading to the altar/fire pit
-Greta realises this is it, starts fighting the Singer
-Hans wakes up, starts trying to escape
-The Singer breaks Greta's left wrist while trying to tie her to the altar, Greta begins screaming in agony, her struggles growing weaker
-Hans manages to break out of the cage by reaching his old guitar, plugging it into an amp, and striking a massive power-chord to blast the door off
-The Singer turns just as Hans charges towards her, knocking her head off with a swing of his guitar
-The Singer's body falls back into the fire-pit, big gout of flame shoots up afterwards

-Hans helps his sister off the altar, fix her arm with some drumsticks + leather straps
-Take over the House of Rock, make it a safe haven for rock+rollers
-The End

And there we have it! Geez, even in point form, it's still a wall of text.. Still a lot of changes to be made, not entirely sold on the idea of escaping the cage by using a power chord, but I am trying to go for an over-the-top "music = power" theme. If it starts feeling too cheesey, I'll just have Hans smash down the door with his guitar instead.

For now, it's back to the drawing board for me. I'll try to have something new up tomorrow as well, more of Hans or one of the girls, see if we can't create a steady flow of updates eventually.

As always, feedback in any shape or form is greatly appreciated, though the more constructive it is, the more I appreciate it ;)

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Death in the family

Quick update for today, got some good news and bad news.

Firstly, the bad news: my computer, my baby, Radical Edward is dead today. Her main hard drive crashed, a hard-drive that has been replaced multiple times already. She was 4 years old, almost exactly, and her absence will be felt for a while to come.

Second, the good news: I had already begun construction on a new computer, Raleigh Vincent, calculated to work 3x better at minimum; however, the schedule of her completion has been drastically sped up due to Radical Edward's demise. Currently, I need to purchase a Motherboard, Processor, and Video Card to get her up and running. Hopefully a trip to Kitchener tomorrow will solve that issue, and I should be up and running by the end of the week. (fingers crossed)

In the meantime, since I am currently denied access to my PC video games, I'll be refocusing my time on drawing Hans, Greta, the Witch, and the House of Rock (interior and exterior design ideas) and posting once a day as a reminder to keep on track.

Thursday, 22 December 2011


Ok, so I've more or less decided I want to continue pursuing a Heavy Metal style for this project, in particular drawing from Frank Frazetta's work (example:, with a major change being the inclusion of more clothing. An example of a similar compromise would be Brutal Legend by Double Fine, a game I endeavour to get a hold of for reasearch purposes.

The difficulties I will be facing however, will be overcoming my own severely deficient drawing capabilities. My hope is that enough practice between now and the project's completion will result in passable work.

For now, here's some images I've collected from the internet to get started on the conceptual designs.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011


Within moments of researching music for my Hansel and Gretel + Heavy Metal idea, I discover that there already exists a heavy metal band Hanzel and Gretyl. Not sure if this is awesome and useful or if this is a bad sign of possible copyright infringement... worst comes to worst, I'm not really making money off this idea, so.. lets hope for the best at this point.

Here's the band's page:

Here's the Band's youtube page:

With any luck, this'll give me some inspiration while working on the project :P

Monday, 19 December 2011

Hello World!

Cliche start, I know. :P

Alright, this is to be the brainstorming area for my next project, a scene from Hansel and Grethel, given a unique twist of my own design. Working within a a fairly loose template, and already starting with the idea that I want this project to be as dark as I can make it. Making things family friendly comes instinctively to me, so this is an effort to push myself artistically.

The idea that I'm trying to develop is Hans and Greta, two punkish teenagers about 18 and 15 respectively, who get lured to this heavy-metal inspired House of Rock and then entrapped by ... someone. I still need to figure out who/what the witch is, whether they're an evil band (called the Screaming Witches or something) or they're the evil owner of the bar... also have no idea as to what the motive for cannibalism might be...

possibly I could make Hans and Greta really good musicians? and the witch wants to eat them to steal their musical power? It's a start...

Anyways, this blog will consist of me rambling on about story ideas and background, alongside the development artwork. This is all to help me grow, so ANY AND ALL FEEDBACK IS GREATLY APPRECIATED AT ANY AND ALL TIMES (with the exception of the last week before deadlines, which is too late :P)

Here's hoping that I can entertain, and more importantly, make something I can be proud of. ;)