From the Vaults: Zelda

Monday, April 14th, 2014

I'm not a Legend of Zelda fan. Which, oddly enough, is the very thing that attracted me to this call for submissions.

Early last year, cartoonist Raven Perez hopped onto the semi-secret Webcomic Creators Facebook group and encouraged people to contribute to a digital anthology of short Zelda stories that he would distribute for free.

Here's the tiny Zelda tale that I submitted in April 2013:

Storywise, it's nothing special. Just a few brief pages that sum up my general distaste for the concept behind Zelda (and other "save the helpless princess!" stories).

But visually I was seeking to experiment. Inspired by the vector art my collaborator E.D. used in our Super Haters story arc, I wanted to push the color-heavy art style I'd utilized in The Edge of the Earth one step further.

I drew some raw lineart for my Zelda story that I eventually cleaned up and turned into this still raw (but decidedly less crappy) lineart:

With the lineart in place, I crafted my digital colors. A typical vector art process, I guess. But it was all new to me at the time! (Not to mention really tedious.)

Then I submitted my short story to Raven and patiently waited. Finally, a couple of weeks ago he decided to nix the project for good due to the low number of submissions he received.

No biggie. These kinds of things fall apart all the time. I'm just glad that the Zelda Jamthology is officially dead so I can unearth this comic... FROM THE VAULTS!!!

Saturday, April 12th, 2014

Monday, March 24th, 2014

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

From the Vaults: Maximum Cactus

Sunday, March 16th, 2014

I attempted my first 24-Hour Comics Day in 2010, surrounded by friends and local cartoonists at Pittsburgh's Toonseum.

Being the rookie that I was, I approached the marathon challenge all wrong. Chief among those mistakes? Working digitally. (photos by Dan Greenwald)

I don't have any beef with drawing digitally. I think it's great! But in 2010, I had no experience drawing comics on the computer.

Other mistakes were made too. A year later, I wrote this list of the things I did wrong that day (featuring peeks at my script and completed art).

I completed nine pages that day and for years I sat on them. They're kinda ugly and confusing. I didn't feel like trying to make anything coherent out of them.

But early in 2013, I decided to answer an anthology's open call for submissions with a reworked version of my Maximum Cactus tale. Here's what I submitted:

My art here is rife with subconscious sexual imagery. I wish I could claim that I was consciously trying to make an awkward comic book full of phallic and vaginal symbolism, but I had no clue what I was doing.

Which is the exact reason why Maximum Cactus was unfinished for years before I finally unearthed it... FROM THE VAULTS!!!