summer_jackel: (Default)
When I got home today, Mr. Greybird was happy to see me, hopped right onto my hand and wanted pettings. I'm so touched. I introduced him to his play area and cage in my bedroom (essential to maintain household harmony; most of the sounds he's produced so far aren't any more obnoxious than my little birds', but Nicki isn't quiet, and he can project). He wasn't nervous or hesitant at all; he's hanging out on the tree, watching me ride now. What a sweetie.

Kyn called me this evening, and we both happened to be in the room with birds. Nicki and Ninja started whistling at each other over our conversation; it was hilarious. It is probably for the best that I'm seeing someone who also keeps parrots...

Gavin is regrowing breast feathers, which makes me happy. He still Wants Kaya More Than Anything. Kaya is seeming a little jealous and a bit needier than usual, so I'm giving her extra attention and taking care to handle her before I take Nicki out. None of the other pets seem to care, although of course the dogs immediately added Nicki's cage to their list of areas to check regularly. The area that skirts my birdcages is spotless. This is not because my parrots eat neatly.

Coba and I did a practice obedience trial, and he did very well! We have a real one next month, and I hope we pass it.

I finished a couple more pages of Bone Shard, which you can see here and here. I'm rather pleased at the coincidence that had me finsihing the pages which introduce Travis's Scottish Deerhound, Ghost, on the same weekend that a gorgeous Deerhound bitch took Best in Show at Westminster, for the first time ever. One of my favorite breeds taking BIS is not something that happens much!

Art Update

Jun. 17th, 2010 10:38 pm
summer_jackel: (Default)
OK, I haven't posted any art here for awhile. First, have two new pages of Bone Shard, finally completing this scene:

As always, navigation through the comic is in the caption. This was a fun and very important scene, and I think it did what I wanted it to. I reallyreallyreally need to get off my butt and send all of the older material to Radio Comics like I told them I would.

I'm pleased to say that I have the rest of Book One, up to page 52, finished to the point of rough pencils. This is why there have been no finished pages for awhile; I've been working on it a lot, just not anything I can show you yet. It's exciting and satisfying to have a more or less coherent and written unit of story, finished at least in terms of the writing if not the art. Bone Shard is a huge project, and I am permitting it to take its time, but the four books and roughly 200-page outline are still feeling like something that I am on top of and will finish. I feel more confident about it than I did when I began, which is good.

I've also found myself wanting to paint more recently. The last few years have been hard on me in a lot of ways, and my artistic drive has been pretty funky in everything but Bone Shard. I suppose most artistic types angst about their work now and then, but I've been feeling inadequate and unmotivated in most everything but the comic for awhile. I'm working a little in these acrylic inks now, and they're so fun; maybe this is a sign of the general healing that's going on, but I'm trying to get back feeling solid with the art thing.

Here's something else furry, a pair of West Coast swingin' ocelots. The scanner really doesn't portray these inks nearly as accurately or pleasantly as it gets watercolors, unfortunately.

And here are a bunch of little okkies. I like the teal one best.

summer_jackel: (Default)
I received by post this morning my very own copy of "The Illustated Guide To Sheltie Grooming," 134 pages of awesoomely arcane, meticulous and detailed insanity. My perfectly resonable mistake seems to have been assuming that I kept a tiny sheepdog who bears striking resemblance to a frothy dessert, when in fact he's actually something of a living topiary. So that's what I need to be doing to his ears. This is going to be so fun. Coba, stop slinking off under the bed...

Much of this information should be applicable to collies as well. I have such plans.

Four new pages of 'The Bone Shard' are now uploaded for your perusal, starting here at Page 20. Things are beginning to heat up between Danielle and Russet now that Hazyl and Travis are otherwise occupied. These pages contain nudity and may not be worksafe.

I am becoming more comfortable with my comic, now that the preliminaries have been taken care of and the plot is starting to happen. I am now lettering with a fountain pen and grey ink, and so far I'm pretty happy. Lettering was my most pressing issue for this project, and really one of my least favorite things. I am lettering directly onto the art and drawing the baloons into the pages at the sketch level, though traditionally many comics aren't done that way. I don't have a letterer and don't want to do it on the computer for a number of reasons, and my desire to actually finish this project some day and not dread a major portion of it has led to this technique. Getting to use my pens makes it more fun, which can only be a good thing.

My problem was that black ink looks dark and intrusive against the greyscale watercolors, watercolor was messy and imprecise, and the dark pencil letters didn't look finished. Abraxas gray matches the watercolor pretty well in terms of value, and, as it's a very translucent ink, looks not unlike watercolor itself---just controlled. I will eventually go back and reletter the whole comic so far, though I won't rescan until it has its own website. I don't know that I'm quite ready for that yet, but I will freely own that many of my scans are crappy and should be redone anyway. In 24 pages, I've gotten a little better at scanning greyscale watercolors, but it really should all be redone at some point. Consider everything posted to date a gigantic WIP, since that's what it is. I'm happy to have fixed a big problem with it, though.

Do you guys think the letters look better? Shame I can't get better penmanship out of a bottle, or channel my great-grandmother's ghost to letter my comic for me.

art angst

Nov. 16th, 2009 05:21 pm
summer_jackel: (Default)
Drawing hands is a pain in the ass...finding just the right reference for them because I'm making myself not go the lazy way and check a reference when there's any question, having them look wrong even though the anatomy is spot on and good when the anatomy sucks, all those complicated little joints that are in fingers...yeah, I know, I should have drawn a comic about NON-anthro animals, right?

So what on Earth made me design a character with very distinct black markings on the ends of his ^%$#! fingers????? Masochism, maybe, or I'm forcing myself not to be lazy on that reference piece. I think I wanted Russet to be easily distinguishable from other red foxes, and, well, something about drawing Russet became more lively and interesting when I knew that detail.

Similarly, I just figured something out about how to detail character designs on the leopards in 'Bone Shard' (which haven't been introduced, but they're coming) which makes me more excited about drawing them. Since they're coming up (damn, comics take forever) that helps.

More Bone Shard, soon.
summer_jackel: (Default)
The Bone Shard progresses. Looks like Danielle has done something unwise. Isn't it always the Vixen's fault...?

Have a Page 18 and Page 19.


Jun. 10th, 2009 08:09 pm
summer_jackel: (Jackel eyes)

Some Shard and Danielle cuteness. Poor Shard looks a little bit uncertain. Courting a lady you really fancy isn't an easy feat, even when you're dead. Possibly, especially when you're dead. Also on FA.

Drawing 'Bone Shard' is a long, slow, time-consuming process, which of course I knew perfectly well when I started it, but we are so very close to Shard's entry into the story proper and I want to be there. (Technically, she's already been introduced). I'm totally impatient to get to the interactions between these two even though, as I may or may not have mentioned here, Hazyl appears to have hijacked the story.

Also, check out way cool new icon from Mulefoot. Bleeding ears and dangerous eyes, whee!
summer_jackel: (Default)
Well, I have been annoyingly art blocked recently, due to spring fever and spending so much time outside, as well as some pretty trying times in my emotional life. But, have a page 16 and a page 17. I realize that I did a really crappy job of cleaning up my borders on 17 and will need to redo the whole thing when I'm not tired and in pain. Stupid cramps.

But yeah. Hazyl and Travis. Old...friends?

Oh yes, and you know you like Opabinia. They were so cute.

Bonus swing dancing and topless bunny 'neath the cut )
summer_jackel: (Default)
Work on the comic proceeds apace.

Here, have a page 14 and a page 15.

I feel a little compelled to apologize about how slow the pacing on this is; I don't feel that it works as well as a serial as it will as a complete story, which is how ultimately I intend it to be read. I still really appreciate everyone who is reading it as I go along, anyway, and am having fun taking my time developing the thing. Now that a lot of the preliminary introductory first-bit-of-story is winding up, things are about to heat up a bit, and that's enjoyable to work on.

For those who are lately arrived, 'The Bone Shard' is a graphic novel that I'm working on. Furry, Victorian-AU, lesbian romance ghost story. Link to the beginning is on all the pages, it will eventually be rated NC-17 though we haven't gotten there yet (see above about slow pacing) and y'all are welcome to read or ignore it at your leisure.
summer_jackel: (Default)
I said I'd have an update. Three fresh pages, beginning here.

This is so very awesome. Check out the carrot flute!

It has become evident that someone has worked with Oz in the past. He steps up readily onto a dowel from the tree, and briefly stepped onto my forearm this afternoon. He's still not entirely comfortable on the dowel, but compared even with two days ago, it's really striking. He also made the lowered-head motion that I associate with parrots asking to be skritched, although he moved away when I carefully approached. So, who knows---maybe he will tame swiftly. He certainly seems a different bird than he did when he was with my mom, although of course he's still adjusting to life here. He still only wants to eat seed.

IRNs were one of the first species I considered when I was initially deciding to add a parrot to my life; specifically, I think the Lutinos (bright yellow! Silver eyes!) are the Loveliest Parrots Ever. I decided against them because they have a reputation for not being cuddly, and I wanted a cuddly bird, or at least one that liked to be pet---which is definitely Gavin and Kaya. IRNs are also on the outer end of the loudness spectrum I can live with. We'll see how it plays out. I'm not his permanent home, but he is making himself more and more welcome here. At least until the person who wants him for always shows up.
summer_jackel: (Shard)
OK, after no small time spent editing these things, I've fixed the code on all of the Danielle/Shard stories so that they can be easily read, after the fashion of most webcomics. Because, y'know, if I'm going to do this, I feel a certain level of obligation to make it as reader-friendly as I can.

Unfortunately, a lot of this is adult material, and you will need an FA account to see it. Sorry, I know it sucks; at least FA accounts are free and easy to get. Or you can ignore that dirty stuff.

So, in chronological order rather than that in which I drew them, we have the first pages (from which you can now easily scroll through the rest of the story) of:

The Bone Shard. WIP. It is the earliest in my chronology with these characters.

First Bite, 2 pages. This event takes place some time in 'Bone Shard' and was more a style test/just needed to get it out of my system thing than exactly how I may or may not portray this moment in the bigger story.

Visitations, 11 pages, NSFW. The first comic I did with these two. It's just lesbian vampire smut. You see what I get for going there.

The Seance, 48 pages. My longest story until 'Bone Shard.' (which isn't that long yet, but will be). It directly follows 'Visitations.' In retrospect, I really wish I hadn't followed up blatant porn with a story that is about as tame as anything I write. Mistake/learning curve.

Every Day, 1 page, NSFW.

Gentle Things, 11 pages, NSFW. Penny-dreadful gratuitous Victorian lesbian vampire foxes in bondage.

Murderer's Blood, 7 pages. Danielle is ill, and Shard has a night on the town with dinner.

And then there's this silly little one-shot.

Just as an FYI for the curious, I have another full story scripted and another outlined, with at least one other planned after that. (Bone Shard needs to come first, though). Augh, plot bunnies.

You know, there was a point in my life that I swore I'd never do a vampire story, because I had nothing to add to an overdone genre. Pass the crow, kthx.
summer_jackel: (feeding jackal)
Happy Thanksgiving, all! Have a page 5.

Bird people out there: yeah, I know, Flitter has an awful cage. They didn't know what we know now regarding parrot husbandry in the 1800s. If it helps, Danielle has tamed Flitter, so he gets a lot of out of cage time.

Just, you know, don't get too attached to him, OK?

I am going to spend the morning in the woods, and then attempt Thanksgiving with my mom. Sigh.
summer_jackel: (Shard)
Here you update. Have a frontispiece for Book I and Page 4.

I guess I should warn people now (not that I think anyone here really minds reading such things, but you never know) that 'Bone Shard' will eventually have a few relatively explicit sex scenes, with multiple orientations, even. (Just figured out the second "male slash" plot point, and I am so pleased...) Relatively soon, even. Be patient already.
summer_jackel: (Shard)
So, I've gotten 'The Bone Shard' to the point where I am ready to begin posting it. The caveat is that unlike most of the comics I share, this one isn't finished yet. I'm going to post pages as I write 'em, because this story is shaping up to be long, I don't want to have to scan and post it in big chunks (groan) and I think I probably need the feedback to motivate and egg me on. I will try to keep going at a reasonable clip, but since Life Happens, I cannot guarantee these coming out at sedate intervals. I do believe that I'm a sufficiently mature artist at this point to promise that I can and will finish this, though. I'll try to refrain from being run over by a bus until it's all done.

I've also figured out the handy bit of code that will allow you to page through the comic within FA, making the thing a LOT more reader-friendly. Still working on fixing 'The Seance' up with the same handy feature. Hope it helps.

Also, feedback, criticism, questions, positive, negative and everything in between? Is loved.

Frontispiece, Page One, Page Two and Page Three.

Also, a meme about relationship styles. (Hey, there is somewhat of a connection here; Bone Shard will be a relationship story. Sort of.) Kind of interesting stuff; I've not read this book, but I've talked about the theory in a number of contexts and it seems to be a useful tool in understanding interpersonal relationships. I definitely seem to come out strong in the physical touch and words of affirmation areas.

I feel loved when...

The Five Love Languages

I have multiple love languages!

<th colspan="2">My Detailed Results:</th>
Quality Time: 9
Words of Affirmation: 9
Physical Touch: 9
Receiving Gifts: 2
Acts of Service: 1

About this quiz

Unhappiness in relationships is often due to the fact that we speak different love languages. It can be helpful to know what language you speak and what language those around you speak.

Tag 3 people so they can find out what their love language is.

Take the Quiz!
Check out the Book


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