One of my favorite poems growing up was “Princess Mee” by Tolkien. It’s about a dancer who is positively puzzled by her reflection, Princess Shee, when she dances on a pond at night. The poem was also put to music by the Russian band Caprice in a CD devoted to Tolkien’s works.
Poem behind the cut! Continue reading
Perspective! This little guy was supposed to be confused that from here it looks like he could gnaw on all those antennae, but apparently he had his own idea about what kind of expression to wear. His Godzilla complex amused me, so I didn’t fight it. While looking up reference images for meerkats, I saw that they are native to Angola, where my mother grew up, so I used a Luanda cityscape for reference.
Grayscale this time around, for the heck of it. I was listening to a podcast (unfortunately I can’t recall which one) where a comic artist mentioned that when he’s drawing a group of people in a panel with no ground or objects for distance reference, he’ll render characters who are zoomed in on darker. That way the reader will understand that those characters are closer than the people in the background, and not just suddenly mutantly large. I remember learning that when painting distant backgrounds and landscapes, far off objects like mountain ranges should be colored lighter to simulate atmosphere and how we see it in real life. For some reason it had never occurred to me to reverse that. Hopefully by making the foreground so dark, there’s a strong sense of depth in this image.
Pen & ink and funky texture courtesy of super cheap watercolors.
I’ve taken belly dance classes on and off for several years now, and recently started taking ATS classes (Wikipedia article on American Tribal Style Belly Dance). Last year it occurred to me, and was pointed out to me, in a workshop that what I really thrived on was dancing with a partner, moving in sync and tying into each other’s energy. A group dance with diverse folkloric roots and so many of the moves I’d grown to love seemed perfect for me to try, and I’ve been having so much fun. One of the beautiful things about ATS is that it has its own language, so dancers who have never met can dance together, communicating with subtle cues and switching leads. I’m a long way from being able to jump into a public group (lots of “vocabulary” to learn, transitions to smooth out, and trust me, you don’t want to hear my zills yet), but I’m looking forward to the day.
Mr. Freeze having a hard time trying to enjoy his hot cocoa.
I never really got into superhero comics, but I definitely enjoyed Batman: The Animated Series when it was first airing. I suspect many kids in my age group were enthralled and heavily influenced by this show, which not only had amazing art, but sometimes some pretty mature stories for a “kids” show.
I remember being touched by Mr. Freeze’s sad tale, and in looking for reference images for this drawing, found out that that particular episode was kind of a big deal in the Batman canon.
Batman: The Animated Series retold Mr. Freeze’s origin in a landmark episode by writer Paul Dini, introducing his terminally ill, cryogenically frozenwife, Nora, which greater explained his obsession with ice and need to build a criminal empire to raise research funds. As a result, this more complex and tragicvigilanteantihero character was enthusiastically accepted by fans, and has become the standard portrayal for the character in most forms of media, including the comic book series itself, which previously had the character casually killed off by the Joker.  Freeze was resurrected in the comic after the episode aired. 
The episode was seen as groundbreaking for a Saturday morning cartoon and helped set the tone for the complex moral motivations seen constantly in the rest of the series. This backstory was also made canon in the comics and has been Fries’ official origin in almost every incarnation of Batman since.
Elements of this back story were incorporated into the 1997 film Batman & Robin, in which he was portrayed by Arnold Schwarzenegger.
… Continue reading
This week’s prompt made me think of our younger cat, Pi, who has a funny tendency to hop in tall arcs rather than properly jump. So I gave her some mechanical enhancements, and got carried away with the rest of her anatomy. Pisaurus Rex is her nick-name, on account of her habit of making vocalizations like a baby dinosaur when she wants attention.
I also thought it might be worthwhile to share what size these original inks are (partly as my lame excuse for why the lettering is a bit wobbly and inconsistent in places, since my blood sugar was running low). Behold, an American quarter for scale!
During a dream last week, I was glancing through a crowd of people and saw a girl standing just around the corner of a building, carrying a large eel and staring at me. I wondered if she realized what she was holding, how sharp its teeth were, until I saw her expression.
Pen & ink with digital color.
I took this week’s prompt literally, and pulled some inspiration from a photo by circle23 of suspension. Full image (and possibly those links) is NSFW, and behind the cut.
I’m a tea person. Energy drinks make me feel so sick because my body just can’t cope with that much caffeine and sugar. Even coffee is rarely consumed (with an exception of a 1-2 a day bica habit when visiting Portugal, and who could blame me?). But a nice spicy black tea with milk and honey? Perfect.