Just a quick update on comics progress: I finished the fourth chapter of Tin Man. I had every intention of getting the story sent off to publishers after finishing this fourth chapter, but that has not happened just yet. “Why?” you ask? Well, mainly because I just jumped back into working on Carbon #3, which I felt like I had been neglecting a bit while working on that fourth chapter of Tin Man. I still plan on getting my shit together and getting Tin Man sent out to some publishers. I would just so much rather spend my time actually making comics than getting publisher proposals together. But I guess sometime you gotta do the “un-fun” stuff, too. So, anyway, work has resumed on Carbon #3. I think I have another 20 pages or so left to go in the third installment of Carbon. I feel like I have been working on it for over a year. Oh, that’s right, it has been over a year. So, yeah, I’m working on shit.
I’ve been working on some paintings lately. It gives me a nice break from the time-consuming comics-making…a nice change of pace, if you will. I’ve been kinda inspired by these virtual reality “goggles” that you plug your phone into. They’re kinda big and clunky, which I really like. So, yeah, I made some paintings inspired by those things. That’s actually how the whole idea for Breathers came about, by doing some paintings with people wearing gas masks. Who knows where these VR goggles will take me.
What I really like about doing paintings is that I can spend a few hours on one and then it’s done. Just like that. I don’t have to put in months and months of work to see a completed project, like with comics. Damn those comics. So, hey, the paintings are hanging out for sale in my Etsy shop. Good prices, too, as far as I’m concerned.
A little explanation of what I’m currently working on: I am continuing to work on the next part of Carbon. I think I have somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 pages done. There’s still a good amount I need to finish before Book 3 sees completion. I’d like to finish it by the end of the year, but that may be shooting for the moon, as the saying goes. I am also working on another graphic novel called Tin Man. It’s a young adult story about a Tin Man (y’know, like from The Wizard of Oz) and what happens to him after he gets a heart. It’s sort of a coming-of-age story about friendship, family and coping with loss. It’s been nice switching gears between the two projects, both in the writing and drawing of them. I get to write all the swears I can muster and draw boobs in Carbon, but have to keep all that “adult” stuff in check for Tin Man. But I get to draw cool stuff like airships and tin woodsmen. Hey, I’m a versatile guy. I think, ideally, working on a one-man anthology book would suit me best. I could work on a bunch of different continuing stories at the same time, in small chunks at a time. Hmmm…
I get rather grumpy when I don’t get to sit down at my drawing table and draw for a couple days. I get pissy and bitter and just generally not that pleasant. I know this. My wife knows this. My kids probably don’t know this because they are kind of oblivious (or they just think I’m grumpy all the time). And yet, sometimes, it’s unavoidable. Life gets in the way. Long weekends visiting the parents, for instance(4th of July weekend). I can usually keep my non-drawing grumpies at bay for a day, maybe even two, but beyond that, it’s just impossible. Drawing and making comics are my drug of choice and, man, when I need that fix, I need that fix. Oh, sure, I could bring all my shit with me and draw wherever I am, right? What, you think I haven’t tried that? I need to be in my space, to have the right set-up in place. I’m rigid and particular and a perfectionist. That’s enough things to be without adding grumpy asshole to the mix. So, I shall just lock myself in my studio and draw and be happy (well, at least, not grumpy).
I have decided to go back to running Carbon as a weekly web comic. I’ll add a new page every Monday, until I change my mind on the whole thing once again. Anyway, that’s the current plan. I’ve been cranking away at the third installment of Carbon. I like to think I’m past the half-way point but, really, I have no fucking idea how long it’s gonna be. Stories sometimes blossom out of control on me. And by sometimes, I mean all the times. In an attempt to be more productive in my comics making, I have started getting my ass out of bed early in the morning, so I can get a solid 1-2 hours of work time in before the kids get up and my coveted alone time comes to an abrupt end. So far it’s been making a difference. I’ve been completed a page about every other day, which I’m pretty happy with. I’m a helluva lot more tired than I was before as well, but, hey, we all gotta make sacrifices, right? I’m trading sleep for drawing time. I can live with that.