Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Craziness of Being an Artist

Hey there sports fans, Al here with the latest:
Corrax the Seeker #2 is under way and should be completely colored by the time Halloween rolls around.  This is an Awesome step for me as the creator to be able to have such a quick turnaround time on books.  I guess my talent has nearly caught up with my conceptual ideas. 
CTS #3 Cover prototype

I hope to have at least half of CTS #3 transferred to bristol by the time of this posting.   This also includes a cover for CTS #3 as a prototype.  Which is good because I need to have an add for the third issue in the second book. And nothing better than a finished color cover.
With the CTS story line of "Cosmic Confrontation -parts 1-4" concluded.  This clears my plate of pretty much all my obligations. 
This is good news as the year starts its last leg.  Its also cool because it also frees me up for two (possibly three) projects.
The scratchboard "Dreams of Elysium" graphic novel.  And the end of the year gallery show the BIG 300 and the possibly the Corpse Cop "Arctic Wolf" storyline that I have been talking about recently.  But that is a stretch for for me. 
I guess that's the curse of being unique.  But after the response for this last weeks show at Jet City, I am inclined to think that the scratchboard work is the way to go and if I can marry the two ideas together then I have something worthwhile for not only fans but art collectors as well.
It 's been proven to me that the scratchboard work sells far better than my traditional comic book illustrations.  But I guess I couldn't have one without the other.
At the Jet City Comic Show I had been talking to my friend Adam from Darkslinger Comics.  He felt and said the same thing to me that a large scratchboard project - like Dreams of Elysium- would be the best way to go.
I agreed.
So this falls right into what I have planned for next year.
Good times!

"Witch of the Wood- Zo"  16"x20" Scratchboard with digital coloring
2012 copyrighted by Alan Bennett and BBVA

Now with next years Emerald City ComiCon starting in about half a year the submission I have planned for "Monsters and Dames" hard bound book is truly under way.  One of the more interesting issues as an artist is learning what works and what doesn't.   With the digital coloring work that I have been applying to the comics doesn't quite lend itself to scratchboard.  That's okay, this was a learning curve anyway.
But it can be done.
The biggest hurdle to overcome was that very nature of scratchboard really precludes the use of color in the work.  The hell you say!
Well it is because that scratchboard is defined by white and black for light and shading.  Color would almost get in the way.
But I think by keeping just a base color and a extra highlighted color layer would work just fine.

And with all the things that I am trying to achieve this year commissions have stepped up as well recently.  Of this i couldn't be happier.   With that it begins to spin a great feeling that your work just might begin to support itself.  And me in the process than having to work two different jobs all the time 6 times a week leaving only Sunday to ever sleep in (which is almost never in my case) or work on out standing projects.
The first is designing a logo for a friend of mine named Toby.  If you remember Toby was the one that commissioned the scratchboard piece of Godzilla early this year.  Well Toby has a hobby of making his own ammo and wants a logo to go with it.  A basic black and white design 8"x8" size for the original.
The second is a rendition of a person's character.
This was a curious one because I had received a email via facebook that this company called Lazy Bones Studios wanted me to do a version of one of their characters in scratchboard.  I am still working out the details but I believe that this could be the beginning of "something wonderful" to quote Dave Bowman from 2010.

And that is it for the kid.

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