Welcome to another Sketchbook Confessional, where I get all of the art out of my system.
The Sketchbook Confessional is a place where I post and describe all of the art that I did in one month’s time, an effort to reel in the chaos of art and objectively know what I did and did not do.
I drew on my iPad on the Washington D.C. Metro as the train carried me away back and forth across the Potomac each weekday. For some reason this month, I had a lot of seatmates who were fans of art and who asked me questions about art.
This doesn’t always happen! Usually people are a bit more shy and watch me draw with a couple flicks of the eye and they go back to playing Bejeweled as the car goes screaming past the Pentagon. Either way, it was nice to meet some people on the train. One fellow rider told me I should be a tattoo artist, and I thought yeah! I could design tattoos, just not jab them into people.
The stabilizer tool in Clip Studio Paint does a good job of letting me draw even, smooth lines even as the metro car jolts and jives.
So, I stuck to simplicity when drawing and drew pretty repetitive things, like these crystals:
As I was having pretty much the busiest professional month of the year, I realized that I’d kept kicking the re-release date of Tilted Sun into the future, and that there would never be a perfectly good time to relaunch it. Like every point on a sphere being equidistant from the center, every time would be a bad time, so I might as well relaunch at will.
If every day is total chaos, why not do it today?
And so on September 10, Tilted Sun went live again! 75 pages of Tilted Sun are now out in the world.
If you haven’t read, start at page 1: https://www.tiltedsun.com/comic-1/2018/5/5/page-1
New pages update every Tuesday and Thursday and you can check the newest page on TiltedSun.com any day. <3
In September I also worked on more drawings with themes of love and romance.
And, I kept up some practice on hands and other challenging things to draw, like glasses. Ever try to draw glasses? Holy smokes.
Earlier in September I went to Harper’s Ferry to paint en plein air.
I’d never seen so many tourists in such a small place. Online guides all mentioned that it would be crowded and that parking offsite was the best thing to do, and I didn’t quite believe it until I was riding into the city on a bus packed with 40 other people from various countries, India, China, Europe, all to see Harper’s Ferry.
I also went to Small Press Expo, or SPX! I spent wayyy too much money, or, the way I see it, the exact right amount of money on amazing creations from indie artists and authors.
It was so great to meet new and old internet friends and also a few comic artists I’d been following for years. Super to meet Henry Barajas, Tom Siddell (Gunnerkrigg Court, bottom right) and Chloe Giroux (bookmark to the right is from her!).
The panel at SPX with Jessica Abel about working efficiently and organizing your time was amazing. The full title was “Butt in the Chair: How to ensure your comics projects get the love they deserve.”
Of all the comic book topics you could talk about at a convention, a seminar about being diligently organized probably doesn’t seem like the most exciting thing on the planet, but it was the most energizing panel I’ve ever attended. It was even better than learning how to draw Ninja Turtles.
Abel's approach to documenting time and responsibilities was the most realistic take I'd ever seen on art life - way more realistic than hoping for a savior project, or cranking out grueling, unattainable hours under a #neversleep mentality. One of her slides is below: "You act your way into thinking differently. You can't think your way into acting differently.”
The headliner event for Saturday evening was a panel between Chris Ware and Eddie Campbell. It was a pretty funny conversation, I remember a moment where Eddie Campbell said he was in the process of coloring From Hell and had to keep himself from fixing 'mistakes' or what he perceived to be mistakes. Chris Ware was great. He described some idiosyncracies of artist life where at one point his wife found him on the couch as he was sewing mockup dolls for Jimmy Corrigan and was busy stitching together doll clothes. I think most artists relate with these kinds of moments, where what you are doing makes perfect, logical sense in your art world, but to the rest of the world, it just looks like you are agonizing over tiny brown pants.
Who wrote this?
I’m a painter, I make comics, and sometimes I do computer stuff!
- Becky Jewell