A miscellany of weekly ramblings on comics, art and film by Ted Mathot, storyboard artist and writer/artist/self-publisher of graphic novels and comics

Monday, January 19, 2009

Back on the Horse

After a year of technical difficulties and resultant issues described in the last post, I'm settling in to my new studio space and getting ready to start hammering out book two of Cora. Photoshop CS4 is great so far, especially since it's working with the multi core Intel Mac.

On the first Cora book, I used a brush that varied opacity based on pen pressure. I went to look for that in CS4 and found it missing, because it's been BUILT IN TO THE BRUSH! This is great news. The brush has an even better feel than it did before. The building up of lines feels much more natural too.

More updates are coming as I get going. Thanks to everyone out there for all your support of the books and on the blog.


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

...On A Lapse of Creativity...

Well, I've done something I haven't done before on the 3 comics I've produced. And it's bad.

I've allowed so much time to lapse where I haven't worked on the new book that I've become disconnected with it. This is a dangerous place to be because it gives self-doubt a chance to take up roots and threaten to ruin the project. The mind starts to over think and become irrational. Some of the negative and self-conscious ideas running through my head during this time have been:

"Is this the story I want to do?"
"I don't think this is me anymore"
"I'm tired with this storyline"
"It's boring"

Now obviously, none of these are true. But it was inevitable they would appear at some point during a project of this length.

What I've done with the previous 3 books is to never allow this to happen; to continue moving forward, no matter what. Live with the story and never let it get out of your head. The positive thing about what's happening now is that it's identifiable and can be turned into a call to action. It's time to mix things up, look in new directions, and think outside the box. The deadline I've set for myself is a terrifying one, but nothing is a better motivator than imagining myself with nothing new to show at festival time. Especially when the ideas are there, hibernating under a blanket of inaction.

As a creative person it's good to feel this way because it lets me know I care about the project, the characters, the story, and very importantly, the people who are going to be reading it. I'm going to figure it out and come July 09, the second part of Cora's story will be released.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Wal-Mart plans superstore adjacent to Civil War battlefield

From SFGate:

"Wal-Mart wants to build a Supercenter within a cannon shot of where Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant first fought, a proposal that has preservationists rallying to protect the key Civil War site.

A who's who of historians including filmmaker Ken Burns and Pulitzer Prize winner David McCullough sent a letter last month to H. Lee Scott, president and chief executive of Wal-Mart Stores Inc., urging the company to build farther from the Wilderness Battlefield."

Historians fight Wal-Mart over Civil War site

I did extensive research of the events leading up to and including the Battle of the Wilderness for Rose and Isabel. Combined with the Battle at Cold Harbor, they are the battles around which much of the story revolves. I never got a chance to see the physical location where the battle of the Wilderness took place, but I hope Wal-Mart is stymied in its attempt to build so the historical site may be preserved.

"Preservationists regularly square off against developers in Virginia, where much of the Civil War was fought. This dispute, however, has stirred an outcry similar to the one in 1994 over the Walt Disney Co.'s plans to build a $650 million theme park within miles of the Manassas Battlefield. Disney bowed to public pressure and abandoned the project."