It's come to my attention that I haven't made a formal statement about the "comic" starring the man made of gold that I have planned on making for what has apparently been over 3 years now. Well, here's a belated explanation.
The last time I mentioned the "comic" was apparently in this journal:
Where I stated:
Please do not assume that I am working on my "comic" though, because the closest I am to working on that is thinking up ideas and drawing occasional sketches.
I do suggest going back and reading that journal. It's outdated in some senses, as my attitude and outlook on art have both changed (I may, perhaps, offer a new long journal as a direct rebuttal to that one), but it goes into full detail on my past qualms over how I should approach some Man Made of Gold magnum opus.
Nonetheless, Where the Heck is the Comic? It's Been Years!
I decided, albeit via a slow process riddled with denial, that I'm better off honing my skills and waiting until I'm actually good at art before trying to make "the comic". Simple as that. Little 15-year-old me was never capable of the visual skills needed to convey the ideas in the comic sufficiently.
Okay, Maybe Not as Simple as That
The comic is, was, and will be, in many subtle ways, an allegory for some of the major internal struggles I've had in my life, and especially that I had during the first few years of trying to develop the comic, in real life. At the time, the issue with moving forward with the comic was that these major events in my life were only half-baked. The calm after the storm, possibly the strange uneasiness a crowd feels before a disaster. I didn't know. I just wasn't sure that I was wise or experienced enough yet to manifest the tale of the Man Made of Gold, so I decided to wait to see how those major events unfold. Alas, a lot is going to culminate over the next year, and by then I'll have a sense of feeling for real struggle, and, hopefully, for real closure to past issues and arduous struggles.
What am I Doing Now?
Now I'm doing everything else I need to do. Mostly, I'm improving my skills as an artist. I'm nearing the top of the hill I need to climb to reach a quality of art that I'd be interested in applying to a comic. Once I know I'm really
there, I can buckle down and plan the comic out more.
What's the Status on my Planning?
Planning a comic is like writing a book: hard if you want it to be good. That phrase can be applied to other life experiences, but I won't go there. I previously had a character, uncreatively borrowed and named "Mario Jackson". A hybrid of Mario and Michael Jackson. He served as the stand-in villain for the Man Made of Gold's story, but my current clear preference and desire for original material compels me to use a different character. That should be a no-brainer.
My glaringly short lineup of characters for the comic is something to be improved upon as duty calls. I've found a creative wall between keeping the Man Made of Gold and Melon Prince of Gold and immersing them in more "human" characters without them seeming out of place, so I need to set in stone a style that allows for this mingling of flat-faces and those-with-noses.
Beyond that issue, it's busywork. I consider it no huge challenge to flesh out a story arc of which I already have many details planned. In essence, I have a script with most of the character names missing, and I'll just have to make new characters who are just as important.
In terms of the "villain" of the comic, there's a unique set of difficulties accompanied by my lack of unified style for my characters, especially revolving around keeping him (or her?
) an antagonist. Such a character shall not be put beneath the protagonist. There will be a distinct equalization of the importance and characterization of the two "main" characters. Both are just as important. With this in mind, "villain" cliches must be avoided. No thin face, towering figure, evil moustache, strange hat, long nose; I'll use nothing like that. A character who is superficially evil isn't one who is adopted as a real "member of the family" in the heads of the audience members. They're essentially labeled by their tropes as irredeemably bad. However, I need to convey the traits of this particular antagonist while keeping their characterization on par with that of the man made of gold, as someone who could be the loveable hero of their own story. Given the time it's taken to solidify the man made of gold's design, cooking up an equal counterpart won't be easy. It will, however, be necessary.
A lesser issue is a mild concern of mine over how effectively I can suspend disbelief and introduce the Melon Prince of Gold as a legitimate and serious character despite his clearly stupid name and appearance. I'm confident it's doable, but it sounds like a delicate thing to attempt.
Like I said, though: in terms of story, the main points are there. Character, setting, conflict, climax, resolution, and so on and so forth.
Medium and Distribution
Nothing is definite for how I will approach the comic in these senses. A physical comic book format is hypothetically too much of an investment that will certainly see too little of a return and audience. A digital comic book, which seems a wise choice, would need a unique method of distribution and I'm not sure how I might choose to host such a thing. I'm unlikely to monetize such a comic, but it's certainly an option. A lot of the final availability of the comic depends on how popular it becomes. Regardless, I will likely stick to digital illustration for creating the comic.
Since you're reading this already, I might as well reveal a bit to the public about the setting of the story.
The story takes place in an original universe, with parallels to our world, but no shared history beyond a vaguely shared timeline of technological development. However, this universe takes place in what would be considered a near future. Technology is at a similar level to ours presently, but is applied more widely in scale and is more freely available, with newer technologies coming along at an increasing pace after a period of few new developments (due to lack of necessity). The landscape is dotted sparsely with distant, disconnected, sprawling cities, with little between them. The landscape and oceans are largely untouched.
More can be inferred about this universe by those details, but I'm not going to state any more.
Will the Morals of This Story Affect my Delicate Sensibilities?
The story sits in a cozy nook between religiously and scientifically plausible. It shouldn't go against any major religious denominations, unless for some reason you disagree with the concept of conservation of energy.
Additionally, it takes place in a different universe, voiding reason for complaint about any theological inconsistencies with your own particular worldview. Stay calm!
When Can we Expect this Comic to Begin?
Tough to estimate. I'm shooting to begin some way through my college career, but if I feel that I can gain skills during college that will vastly improve my ability to produce the comic, I will refrain from starting until after I at least complete my undergraduate degree.
This means late 2016/2017 to 2018/2019 is a fair ballpark for beginning, but, again, I tend to revise my plans in the face of any prospect of dramatic artistic improvement prior to beginning the comic, so if something big comes up that could make it worth waiting, I'll wait!
Quality over quantity.
Well, That's About it for This Journal
fun fact: I actually started this journal almost a week ago, then I forgot I had saved a draft of it and I didn't pick up until now.
What am I working on right now?
I have remakes of several of my past major pieces lined up! I'm almost done with two of them. In addition, I have a new piece that I have mixed feelings about, in which I have drawn three big characters of mine, one of whom hasn't been seen in many many years. On top of that, I'm working on a new piece entirely in vectors! That's four pieces in progress, with two more remakes sketched out, and I have a couple of miscellaneous sketches just begging to be completed. This is an unprecedented time for me, I've never had so many sketches to complete before. Usually I'm way behind and can't think of what to draw! Well, this makes my life easier.