The only thing consistent about my artwork is the inconsistency. Something Awful once said “The only constant is unrelenting ugliness,” of the original comic books. Hopefully that is not actually the case. I like to think the ugliness relents sometimes.
Why is the artwork so schizophrenic? Because I work in flashes of brilliance surrounded by oceans of mediocrity. To speak very plainly, I’m just not good enough to produce great art all the time. Add to that the fact that I’m still/always learning and trying new things, and you’ve got a variety of styles. I don’t consider myself to have ADD, OCD sure, but my attention is pretty solid, but when it comes to drawing you might say I show some attention deficit. I get pretty bored if I’m not trying something new.
So I’ve laid my artistic soul bare for all to see and will be the first to admit my flaws. On the flip-side knowing that my style needs work, trying new things and studying leads me to constantly improve. As I improve my best art gets a little better, as does my worst.
I’m certainly not drawing as poorly as anything I did in issue 1 these days, or dare I say even issue 6. In fact I think that my improvement is starting to allow me to hone into the style I’ve always been searching for, and as that happens I think we may start to see some more consistency. I think we’ve been seeing more since the cop scene earlier when I first really went for a more realistic style.
It was the shot in the arm my style needed to push Black Snow to another level. When I finally get back to doing I’m Famous! I think I’ll probably make it even more cartoony to compensate for my realistic time in the slums of Detroit, and to explore more of what I can do in that style. But the more realistic style seems to enhance the grit we need to make Black Snow the story it was always meant to be.
This page was drawn quickly, as I’ve really found my groove in this scene. I like drawing bad guys, as they are just so weird. Even more “realistic” they have cartoonish qualities to them with their odd exaggerations. This group is no exception. This is one of the first pages in a while where I love every single panel, as there is usually one that irks me. Not here.
I love it all! The shadowy man is up there with some of my best lighting work, Calhoun looks very creepy and I like what he does with his fiery hands, F-5 is just a massive monster with some body language attitude and Redemption is a straight up freak. And look at that close up of the eye! That’s a nasty man.
I also think I did a better job than usual of capturing the location, and keeping everything consistent from the last page. A gross old abandoned Detroit building, full of darkness with only exterior lighting, just a great meeting spot for the seedy underworld.
I like the intensity of the conversation, the slow back story reveal, the plot movement, the undertones; basically just some of our best writing, in my humble opinion.
Ultimately this is just one more cog in the massive crazy machine that is our pay off scene. I can’t wait until it is done so we can view it as a total!