Tuesday, December 25, 2018


It's my first computer generated animated short! My first computer animated anything, actually. I took a class this past semester at college where all we did was work on different aspects of this one video we each created. The only premise was that it had to be about a robot interacting with something that doesn't work as expected. I got to try my hand at character modeling, rigging, texturing, lighting, sound, (among other things) and especially actual animating. It was incredible. I definitely most enjoyed story-boarding and animating. It just was exactly like what it looked like on screen, no extra bells and whistles. I was super excited to go back to my room after the first class and figure out what story I wanted to tell. I left the class having no idea what I wanted to do and had a complete story by the time I walked back. From watching previous films students had done, there was a lot of slapstick comedy and robots losing body parts very easily. So I thought I'd do an action sequence that didn't make light of itself. I also mostly saw just one robot, so I thought "What about two robots?" (oh so brilliant)

I did alright in the class overall, but there's a lot of stuff that isn't correct about this final product. The biggest animating thing I should have thought about was that the chests don't move hardly at all when they're walking. And though I tried pretty hard to correct it, there's still a lot of shapes crossing each other when they shouldn't. Those were the big things, but there's a bunch of other little errors. Beyond that, turns out the story is a bit unclear. I've had more than one person ask me why Red was acting how he does at the end. Some people got it and some people didn't. To say that disappointed me the first time is a bit of an understatement.

So... it's been a few years since I started calling myself an "aspiring" animator, and I'd still say I'm not really an animator yet. I mean after this class I am in a technical sense, but I still don't think like an animator. I don't think about how people move and what that says about them. What emotion that conveys. I haven't yet put in the hours needed for such a thing, but I will. I've learned so many things in such a short amount of time this year. I've become better at telling stories for one thing, even if I haven't improved as much at drawing them. I know everyone progresses at a different pace. I guess the important thing is to try to progress at all. I'm going to be good at whatever God wants me to be good at.

I thought I'd also include these.

I saw a lot of overly-complicated robots, so I thought I'd make it easier on myself by making the characters' designs largely geometric so I could focus on the other parts. Turns out I need the extra time, because I didn't think about how complicated it was going to be to animate two characters instead of just one- and in an action sequence.

This is the first storyboard I did. Part of the grade was to duplicate the storyboard as closely as possible (in the end he told me to change the shot of the hands because it communicated the idea even less well than the current ending). We also had to move on from camera work pretty fast, so we couldn't really go back and move it around. Which was unfortunate because while animating I found a bunch of cooler shots like this one:

Anyway, thanks God.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

A Break

My Fall Break was this week, and I just felt like doing something different. Well, different for me. So this is Lauren. I imagined her the night before the night before last. And drew these images the following night (which was the night before last). I experimented until I got a picture of her I was happy with. Then I decided she needed another character in the style of her world, so I drew this second character. I call him Michael. I'm not particular about names. That's just what they seem like to me.

I feel like I should explain my absence. I've just felt called to "be still." I'm learning a lot about God, and I'm growing a lot, just not in my drawing. Actually right now it doesn't feel like I'm doing much of anything, which feels strange. Anyway, I like these characters here a lot. Thanks God.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018


Okay, so I had this plan to stop messing around with ideas about the older versions of Dipper and Mabel and actually create something with it. I had this whole plan called "Return to Gravity Falls," taking place when they return to Gravity Falls to attend college there (I hoped I could kind of develop it as I had my own experience so it'd be authentic).
Then I read the wonderful, delightful Gravity Falls: Lost Legends comic, and in a single beautiful, wonderful story it pulled the rug out from under basically all my plans. I'm not upset though. I'm happy they did it so much better than I would've! Part of what this project showed me is how far I still have to go before I can write something as weird and great as Gravity Falls. I was originally going to ignore that and just put out something just to prove that I could, buuuut Lost Legends.
I wasn't going to post these drawings, but since my plans are kind of up in the air I figured I'd go ahead and share them. The above image is finalizing some notes I had about the older Mabel and Dipper design. Originally I was going to have Mabel's braces removed now, but then one of my younger cousins threatened my life if I did that. Plus Dana Terrance, an actual Gravity Falls artist, drew Mabel with braces when she recently drew a non-canon adult Dipper and Mabel.

The adult version of Dipper was going to be a little more confident and even more self-aware than the original series. Mostly I just drew this to practice his jacket.
Okay, so in the pilot episode, I was doing a theme of Mabel and Dipper feeling separated by college due to their widely different class schedules and such. Mabel, who would feel worried about being distanced from her family, was going to learn to not let it get in the way of making other life-long friendships (Which was also going to be the theme of the whole series, the same way the moral in the pilot of Gravity Falls, trust your family, was basically the theme of the whole show. I was planning to expand on that theme to include everyone, family or not). And Dipper, who was excited to meet people just like him, was going to learn to not let that keep him from letting his family still support him.
To illustrate the theme of everything falling apart, I wanted some kind of unexplained disaster to keep happening to the college buildings and parody a disaster movie. I wanted it to feel natural to Gravity Falls, and I wanted it to be a callback to a throwback joke from the original show. Hence, big woodpeckers. Dipper and Mabel would have seen birds flying away from the disasters the way birds do in cartoons. Then at the climax Dipper would suddenly realize, "Wait a minute! The birds aren't flying away from the disaster. They are the disaster!"

In the real show, Dipper had a rival named Robbie, and I wanted Dipper to have a new rival in this show. So I drew from the original design for the real character Wendy and created Cath. Something I sometimes think to myself is "natural friends like different things for the same reasons, and natural enemies like the same things for different reasons." Dipper does indeed meet someone like him, but she's a nightmare. Cath's a budding paranormal investigator, like Dipper, in the "Videography Club" that Dipper joins, but she does it to disprove or ridicule the odd things instead of to prove that they exist. She'd also maybe fill the cynic role left by Grunkle Stan (since his being in Antarctica with Ford would be one of the major plot points), though maybe this would end up being filled by Wendy (who after watching the deleted scenes I'm realizing got the short end of the stick; she's secretly hilarious). She was also tied to Mabel's plot arc in the series. Oh well.
This image would have been during the theme song. I wanted to give the feeling of Gravity Falls being a real place in the world, and of the feeling of returning to it (obviously). The reason Gravity Falls: Lost Legends effectively destroyed my plans (happily) is that (spoiler alert), there's a story in there about Mabel truly learning to accept and apologize for her selfishness. It's beautiful. It's hilarious. And it's exactly what I was going to address in this unofficial continuation. Return to Gravity Falls was going to focus on Mabel and her journey years after she caused the apocalypse, but in Lost Legends, Mabel specifically says to Dipper "It's time for us to start some new adventures! And this time I won't always hog the spotlight." It's a beautiful moment. Who am I to ruin it? Maybe I'll come up with something else someday, but I've got some growing to do before then. And who knows what God plans? Maybe someday I'll get to work with other people with their own ideas who love Gravity Falls as much as me? Anyway, I'm happy just sharing this. Thanks God.

Can You Hear Me?

This picture is some old art I did to illustrate the hard science fiction short story "Hello, Hello" by Seanan McGuire from the short story series Future Visions. I came across my drawing again recently, and I still like it. So I wanted to put it up here before I go back to college in a few days. The short story is about a woman in computational linguistics who designs a language converter that uses avatars to bridge the gap, especially so that her deaf sister can talk normally to people without them knowing. So she uses sign language, and the computer avatar talks out loud on the other end. However, the woman's daughter begins to use the program to talk to someone different who is using the aunt's computer. And because of the system, the mom has no idea who it is. It's incredibly well written, and I won't spoil the twist here. But I really liked it. So I drew one idea of what it would be like here. 

It's my old style of drawing with no pupils, and it's clear I still need to practice drawing hair. It's just so weird to practice, though. The woman has the short, choppy, shoulder length hair I usually default to. Though for the daughter's hair I did try to capture the kind of stringy, all-over the place look of a girl her age. I added a few futuristic touches to the clothes and computer table. For example, the pattern on the mom's shirt is based on the patterns of "spray-on clothes" I've only seen videos of. But the biggest future touch was artistic license. Reading the short story, it seems like the avatar is definitely not a hologram, but I wanted to show it from the back to give the audience that uncertain feeling. For the avatar's head, I tried to kind of duplicate the too-perfect odd-looking shape of a CGI person like in Tron Legacy. Not sure how well I succeeded, which probably means I didn't. I still like it. Mostly, I just like the difference in expression between the mom and daughter. God is good.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018


I'm posting this image here not because of any kind of originality, but because this is the first time I've duplicated this art style and these faces with anything that approaches quality. I guess this would be a good time to say that I'm a huge fan of the French tv series Miraculous Ladybug created by Thomas Astruc. Yep. It's a wonderfully crazy show that works so well. One of the only good superhero shows currently out there. That's all I'm gonna say about it for now, except that in the actual show the protagonist, Ladybug, is a girl and her partner, Cat Noir, is a boy. So my artwork here falls under the category of alternate universe fan art where each character's gender is reversed. I don't approve of just blindly doing that for any and all tv shows or books. In fact usually it messes up the characterization in some pretty significant ways, and I would never want the original characters in the show to be different from how they are now. But for this specific show, where the undertones of subverting gender superhero stereotypes are such a big part of the many things that make it so unique, I think gender reversal is an interesting idea to explore. Frankly, it's the kind of thing that could only be explored and done well in fan works.

Most people call this version of Ladybug some variation of "Beetlebug." I like that the best. Also, most of the art I've seen of these characters has had wildly different outfits than the originals, and I always thought that was a shame. So I drew them to be basically as close to the original as possible (give or take a belt). I drew their heads too big in proportion to their bodies, but I made sure to at least make the heads the same size relative to each other. Also I'm just now realizing I may have fallen into the one-eyebrow-raised trap. It's on the edge. Other than those small notes, I really like how it turned out! I've been meaning to post something about this show for a while, and this seemed like the right thing to do. God's will be done, as always, for everything big and small.

Friday, June 29, 2018

That Hero

My doodles of the greatest fictional superhero of all time and his first Larry-Mobile. Usually I don't like to post my drawings of stuff that other people have done because it feels like copying, but today I have a point.

This post is less about art and more about the purpose of art. I put a lot in this blog about how I want God's will to be done, but I don't always demonstrate it on here that well. I wanted to give a better example. I've placed a lot of pride in how I don't complain as much as other people do, but the problem with that is that I still complain, I just do it when I'm alone. I've been doing it more and more recently whenever I could get the chance, but today when I was complaining I stopped and remembered again that venting scientifically does not work. Then even more, I remembered a quote from Larryboy: The Cartoon Adventures episode 2, "Leggo My Ego!" The quote is "The way to feel super again is to build others up, not to make them feel small." I know that quote. I should know that! I saw that episode before I was even in school (but only last year learned what that title is a parody of), and today it feels more applicable than ever. It's been that way for most of the Larry-Boy stuff I've come back to in my adulthood, and it's surprised some other college-aged kids I've shared it with. If only I'd remembered. So now, for the practical application, I've decided on the discipline of trying to remember and say something nice about the people I'm mad at. This is especially if I've just complained about them and even if it makes me feel ashamed at first. It's so obvious I can't believe I didn't think of it sooner.
Update 8/24/17: Actually the more effective discipline has been practicing silence when I'm alone and trying to engage people and ask them questions about themselves. It's helping me to not blurt or see things only from my perspective. This is a process. 

And that's where the purpose of art comes in. Larryboy: The Cartoon Adventures does not have the best animation of all time (as hard as it is for me to admit). But the point of art is not the art itself. Art has, and always will be pointing to something else. It should be judged based on how well it conveys that thing, not whether or not it's "artistic." Art is not good for it's own sake; only if it helps people. Larry-Boy has done more practically for my life than any other fictional superhero. That's what I want to do for someone else. This is the way art, guided by God directly or indirectly, makes a real, practical difference in a person's life. I hope that makes sense to someone out there.

Friday, June 22, 2018

A Sketch of Forgotten Stars

I just now realized the title of this post sounds like click bait, but no. It's a pun on the name of the book series these three characters come from, A Song of Forgotten Stars, by Mr. Kelly Sedinger. I just finished the second book in the trilogy, and it did not disappoint. In brief, it's a sci-fi fantasy story set in the distant future about two star empire princesses who crash land on a remote planet with an unusual connection to a heritage of theirs they never knew about. It's kind of like Star Wars but with much less samurai influence and much tighter storytelling. The three main characters, pictured above from left to right, are Princess Tariana, Princess Margeth, and their protector Lieutenant Rasharri, who remains my favorite character in the series so far.

When I read the first book there was no way I could draw the characters well. Now that I've improved a little I wanted to draw them as best I can. I still can't draw them as well as in my head, but it's fine. I based the portraits on the cover art for each book and filled in the gaps with how I've been picturing them. I didn't add as many details as I wanted though because A: I'm not good with details on cartoon drawings and B: there's no way I would get them all how Mr. Kelly intended them to be. I wanted to try to draw an illitar though. That's the weapon Tariana's holding in her hand. I actually picture the blades as being a bit bigger, but you get the idea. It's a throwing weapon common on Xonareth (the alien planet), and it is pretty cool. Also I drew Tari in how I picture her flight jacket, and I also included Lieutenant Rasharri's blazegun (again, my mental image of it) for fun. I also wanted to include Margeth's musical pipes but ended up not doing so. Side note: I've been including pupils more and more in my characters. I'm still not very comfortable with it, but I've enjoyed it! I'm personally very honored to have tried to draw something from this book at all. Part of me wants to make an animated movie series of this trilogy someday.

Song of Forgotten Stars official site: http://forgottenstars.net/category/song-of-forgotten-stars/
The first book on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PURIF1O/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1

I hope one day God makes my projects at least as good and well done as Mr. Kelly's work. God's will be done.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Relaxed Pace

I've been meaning to write this post in some form or other, but I didn't have any art for it until I was going through my old drawings last night and found this. I thought I had lost it forever. Originally it was drawn to go along with dialogue I had already come up with, but by the time I drew it I had forgotten the words. So I guess they weren't really that important. Anyway, the drawing is of two versions of me talking to each other. Often I've felt like I was either talking to myself or there were two parts of me disagreeing with each other. I've basically gotten over that by this point since I've been able to identify where those voices come from better.

But the relaxed tone of the drawings fit what I wanted for today. I haven't posted a lot of art since I got back from college. Not only because I've been working on a lot of other stuff that I've wanted to do for a while, but also because I don't feel as worried about getting my art done. I used to feel so worried that I was going to lose these years or that I wouldn't get better at art if I didn't push myself a little all the time. But now I know that it's going to happen. It's going to happen naturally, and there's no reason to pressure myself to do it. I'm sure that sounds worrying to some people I know who are worried I'm going to "go too far the other way." I haven't. I'm finally going at my own pace after 8+ months of near-constant stress. And my faith that my work will get done doesn't come from me. I don't think I'm going to naturally get better. Far from it. I think God is going to help me naturally without my forcing it. He's the answer to both procrastination and workaholism. And there's nothing I can do or not do about it. Thank you, God.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Like Riding a Bike

I kept telling myself I would post these, and then two months went by. Anyway, these are some drawings I did of Titan-Boy just trying to refine my idea. In the first two pictures I wanted to draw my concept of his "rollers," the wheel-like circular objects that he can program to appear on his feet. They spin electrically and also act like roller blades to help him keep up with faster opponents or allies. He'd have all kinds of tricks like this programmed into his suit, but as the second image shows, just because you have the right tools doesn't mean you know how to use them. They adjust for terrain somewhat, but balance is still dependent on him. These first two were also fun to practice action poses. I didn't exaggerate it enough in the first picture, and I didn't get the legs quite right in the second.

In the final image, I wanted to draw a little clearer what he looked like from the back. I used some of the details I decided not to use for the front. I also decided on a reverse color scheme for the legs. I think it looks cooler.

I'm doing great frankly. I'm home for the summer. I'm with my family. I'm getting lots of good stuff done. God is really good to me. Part of me doesn't want to supersede the last post with this one, because I got a lot of good feedback on it, but life goes on. It was past time to post this. God's will be done.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

O Love How Deep

"H-how can you s-say that...? W-what I said was..."
"Hah! Oh dear child. My love for you is deeper than the sharpest words could ever pierce.”

This is Molly and her "Bibbie" Marraine (pronounced MAH-rreign). It's French. It's part of a scene of a book series I have in my head that I want to do someday. This scene meant so much to me that I wanted to draw it. I used Disney-style eyes for both of them because that was how they were drawn in my head. It goes along with the themes of the story, and I like how it turned out. I was worried it wouldn't mesh with my regular drawing style, but it works. Marraine's design is also based on The Spider-wick Chronicles Dyrad. In retrospect, if I could change one thing about the drawing, I would have drawn them closer. I also like how different they ended up looking. That was always my intention, but I'm still pleased with it. It's basically my first time drawing toes... I guess I have the same problem with them that I do with hands.

I won't spoil Molly's story just in case this idea goes somewhere, but she's not exactly the most well-treated person in the whole world. It's given her some trust issues so that she ends up pushing away all the people trying to help her, even her beloved Bibbie. When it all goes south, as the audience would know it will, Marraine still comes back for her. This scene ended up very much based on my own personal experience with God. I've yelled at Him and pushed Him away more times than I can count or remember, but He loves me much much more than I could ever hurt Him (not that I can). We all want a someone who will love us with a storybook love. He's real. I've met him. And He's so much better than I ever imagined.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Outside In


As I've mentioned in passing, one of my personal favorite movies is PIXAR's Inside Out. This is particularly because the main character Joy is so relatable for me, and the journey they put her on was one I needed as well. Late last night I was considering what it would be like if Sadness had been the primary emotion instead of Joy. It would've created an entirely different story and moral (that, in my opinion, wouldn't have been as applicable for an American audience). I wrote the script for some of what it would be like right there, but I knew I had to draw out at least a rough version if I wanted to retain it. Then I realized I had to record audio for it to remember the voices, and then I overslept this morning. 
This is the product of that. I was just trying to quickly get down the big and little sister relationship I imagined (with little but taller Joy hanging around older but shorter Sadness, something I felt familiar with as a younger sibling myself). I also included the audio I voiced here as a link. Neither the rough sketches nor the audio comes close to capturing the wonderfulness of the original characters, but I did manage to communicate what I was going for.

I briefly struggled with over-pessimism and finding it difficult to be optimistic about anything at one point in my life. I recently had the chance to look back over the notebook that documented that period. It was a bit shocking, especially since optimism comes so easily to me today. But I knew what it was like to feel that being optimistic is a luxury and a distraction that can't be afforded if you're going to get things done. And I also knew that Joy's creators had originally (rightly) worried that a character who was happy all of the time could come across as annoying. So I drew from that to imagine this variation on these two characters.
As you can see, this Joy's hair is a bit more all over the place to express her distractibility. In contrast, I gave Sadness a headband to subtly show this human's Sadness' more focused nature. Here Sadness tries to order the world the best she can, but Joy has always inadvertently gotten in the way. If you've already listened to the audio, you may have caught that Sadness calls their human "Chrissy." Yes, I decided it should be a different human than Riley. The creators of Inside Out chose the name Riley based on someone close to them. I did the same for this other character.

God taught me optimism through his faithfulness, and he taught me to cry again through this beautiful movie. I owe him my emotions and my very soul. I'm constantly reminded of that here in the emotional stress and soul-weariness of college, and I'm thankful for it. Thank you, God.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

"Suit, Construct Blade"

In my earlier post featuring Titan-Boy, I said I wanted to make it more obvious that his suit was morphing and changing to create his weapons. I tried to create that effect here with abstract polygon art. It's still not what I have in mind, but it's closer. God teaches me to try and fail as many times as is necessary in all important things.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Transformers: Dynamism

Transformers: Dynamism 

Today I'm doing something different. The link is to a Google Document of a Transformers comic I wrote when I was fifteen. It's nothing revolutionary, but I've been advised to share it on this blog a few times, so I thought I would since I mentioned Transformers in the last post. This comic was sort of my vision for what the Transformers movies could be more like. There's a minimum amount of humans, but I kept some of the more violent aspects of what I consider to be pretty cool fight scenes. On that note, even though they're super-powerful robots, it still might be too graphic for a lot of people (my younger cousins included).
To my mind, the Transformers TV and movie franchise has always been about a war between good and evil, and war is scary. In portraying realistic alien robots fighting, that scariness has to be present. But I completely understand that things shouldn't be graphic for the sake of being graphic, so feel free to not agree with me. 

This story idea actually came from a game I was playing in a car ride. I was counting how many cars that passed us could be Transformers I recognized, and a trailer truck with dismantled F-15's passed by. My mom suggested that would be a good plot for a Transformers comic, and I agreed.
I basically just picked the characters I liked for the story. Soundwave is my favorite Transformer (no surprise), so I knew I had to start and end with him. I know the twins Skids and Mudflap (or Mudflap and Skids if you prefer) are controversial, but I liked the idea of twin soldiers fighting alongside each other even if they aren't the brightest bulbs. There's more than a place for people who are brave and good without being particularly clever. That's what attracted me about them before I learned about the extreme problems with their movie portrayal. I included my version of them anyway.

The comic itself isn't perfect. It would need to be edited for length depending on how many pages I actually received, and the writing isn't the most nuanced of all time. I wanted to show that I can do stuff like this, and that I want to get better. God is good, and He will do what He will. That's what I most like about the Transformers: they're a race of ancient powerful pure good or evil aliens here to save us from ourselves or utterly destroy us. It's angelic in a sense, and the (admittedly few) moments when I see that accurately captured in the movies is where they shine.

Saturday, March 10, 2018


Behold Titan-Boy. He's a superhero I made up with, like Jamy, a certain message in mind that I wont spoil here. His name is based on the titan Prometheus, one of the original inspirations for the Science Fiction genre. His name is also based on my personal favorite superhero, Larry-Boy (followed closely by Franklin Richards followed closely by Spider-Man). And of course it just sounds cool to me. In my opinion, there aren't enough superhero characters with the title "-Boy" at the end of them. His powers tie into the message I want to tell which is connected to the corruption of fantasy and imagination, a very science fiction concept. His suit is basically low-grade programmable matter which can form any solid object so long as he pre-programs it before it's needed (have I mentioned I'm a computer science major?), it remains attached to his suit, and it's small enough for the limited suit modules to form. That why there's all those weird square things around his weapons. I'd want to make it more obvious in the actual animation or comic (or possibly motion comic).

Because of this, his design (as you can probably guess) is partially based on Optimus Prime from the Transformers stories. This is complicated but important. I love parts of the Transformers films, but the movies themselves are, as a whole, terrible. However, there are parts of them worth using, and I can even use the awful parts the same way PIXAR's The Incredibles uses aspects of the James Bond movies to strengthen its message and story. There's actually a similar major problem to The Transformers movies' in Titan-Boy's other style inspiration, Tron Legacy, but it's much more subtle.

The last image is actually the first drawing of Titan-Boy that I did. I originally wanted the face plate to look like athletic gear, but it just ending up looking like a horror-movie character's and detracted from the Optimus Prime look I was going for. So I got rid of them. Then I simplified the design more and more so that he would be more distinctive and recognizable. I'd still be interested in doing more of that. God you are my only God. Your will be done especially for this plan.

Jamy Welkins

So this is Jamy. At least that's her working name. There's something about how I made her character that's based off more of a feeling than any one person I know (although she is named after a very wonderful person I do know). She was originally created just as a vehicle for a specific story with a message I wanted to tell. That evolved into (I may as well say it even though it's crazy) the idea of writing about a magic high school closer to what actual modern high schools are like than the magic schools I've read about. Jamy is our entry point into this world, even though she doesn't particularly evoke it. One of the things I like about her is that she's not really the hero of the story. She's basically the heroine's sidekick or Watson. But she also has her own story and struggle that I wanted to focus on. She's an everyman. I like sidekick stories. So that was what I was trying to capture in these images: casual. That casual relateability that I knew she had when I first thought of her.

I was tempted to not put these drawings on here for a few reasons. One of them is that the project she's a part of is so much bigger than this, and another is that even though these drawings of her are by far the best I've done, I'm still not capable of the art style I want to be able to draw her in. God you know the plans I have for her, but God your plans be done, not mine.


"From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked." -Luke 12:48

I told myself I would post something different before posting another Superman drawing, but I'm not putting up this picture for any particular artistic merit, just personal value. Today I participated in my second Walk for Water that I have ever done. It's an event that raises awareness and money for people, particularly people in African countries like Liberia, that don't have access to the same clean water that we do every day. It does this by letting donators participate in a 2-mile walk holding a bucket where you fill up your bucket with dirty water and then go back to have it sanitized. I didn't donate much, but it was good to help even in such a small way. I hope I'll be able to do more someday.

Anyway, it made me think up this drawing with Superman on it. If I had gotten my way, they would've been on a road, and I would have come up with some way to frame them more as clear equals, but I guess I ran out of space or I'm not quite good enough for that yet. I still wanted to draw it. It turned out very different from the image in my head.

What I'd love to see from superhero stories more than anything except more good portrayals of religion is to see superheroes tackle social problems, not just physical and occasionally emotional ones. There's a temptation with stories of all kinds to focus on just one aspect of a conflict: either physical, emotional, or social. It's the same way people want to just focus on physical, emotional, or social solutions. But that's too simplistic. We can do better. People have done it before.

I'm so thankful we know an actual superman who can do more for people than any of us can put together. There is One who really will do everything that can be done to save us all. Thank you God. Amen.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

In Front of Every Great Man...

One of the best picture ideas I've had in a while. Still nothing super-creative, but very effective I think. I just found this image in my head as I was thinking about all four of the characters, and I decided I had to draw them together. I absolutely love comparison and contrast when it comes to character design. Contrasting personalities is only half the fun. Making the characters look strikingly or subtly different is wonderful to see. And I just loved the idea of Supergirl and Batgirl having a moment right under the noses of their more set-in-their-ways counterparts. I also managed to draw Supergirl much better this time.

There are a lot of subtle differences between the characters that not only add to the asymmetry of the picture, but also say a little bit about the characters and their differences. Like I mentioned, that was one of the funnest parts to do. For example, you can see that Superman is actually much taller than Batman, but if you include his ears then Batman is taller. Batman and Batgirl are both standing with their legs apart, like they're in a stance to fight. But Superman and Supergirl are just standing with their legs together because they don't need to be in a stance. It's little things like that.

Practice makes improvement when it comes to drawing the same character over and over (or anything really, but especially this). Though this is the first time I've drawn two of these characters from the side, I think it looks awesome. The hands are probably the weakest part of the picture. I still haven't mastered drawing hands (obviously). I wasn't sure about having the mouths on the sides of the faces instead of connected to the front, but I think it was the right choice for me at least.

God blessed this drawing so much I can hardly process it. It could have been such a mess without His help. Thank you God.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Yeah By the Way: Luke 10 : 18

This is the first in what I've called my "Jesus Yeah, By the Way" series. I started just last night and finished this morning. Recently a video came up in my YouTube recommendations that said "The Bible Does Not Say Jesus is God." That took me all of a hot minute to refute from memory, but in doing so I came up with the idea for this cartoon and others like it. This is an interpretation of the scene from Luke 10:18 where Jesus casually mentions He saw the fall of Satan.

I started by figuring out how I wanted to draw Jesus. I drew from a lot of different sources. I don't even remember them all this morning. But eventually I ended up with wanting to just give Him a very down-to-earth look (literally) while still being recognizable. Like the kind of guy who you can't help but believe, even if what he says sounds kind of out there. Along the way I learned that the expression I had in mind was very difficult. I wanted it to be intense without looking angry. In contrast, the disciples were very fun to draw since I could exaggerate them and make them look basically however I wanted. I chose a more cartoony art style specifically to show that this is an exaggeration and interpretation of the real events, not how I think they actually happened. That's also the reason the returning disciple's speech is taken directly from the Bible, and Jesus' is slightly altered. It's for the shock value of humor.

I'm really happy with how this turned out. It makes me hopeful for future cartoons. Praise the Lord!

Friday, February 9, 2018

Super 8th-Grader

Sometimes I think that maybe I'm drawing too much of superheroes. Then I quickly disregard those thoughts because they are ridiculous. But seriously I can't help it. They're just so inspiring at this time in my life; like this girl for example. The drawing on the left is a quickly sketched version of Supergirl from the awesome comic Supergirl: Cosmic Adventures in the 8th Grade. As the title implies, this isn't the adult Supergirl most people are used to. Superman sends her off to public school so she can learn more about how to fit in with Earth. It's even more difficult for her than adjusting to college is for me, and it's amazing.

The drawing on the right is the same character drawn in the same style I've been drawing other superheroes recently. I've wanted to draw this almost since I recently discovered this version of the character. I'm still amazed it didn't end up looking super weird. She doesn't look quite as "gawky" (the original comic's words, not mine) as the original, but this is only my first attempt. I also didn't get the proportions of her head and hands right, as I am oft to do. Using the live action tv series as reference was incredibly helpful for adding realism to her design (especially for making her hair obey gravity). Part of why I think I'm drawing so many superheroes is because I need practice drawing people, and this is the one of the most interesting way to do it.

One of my favorite quotes from this version of the character is "Thank you, Invulnerability. You are my very bestest friend." I feel that way about God. He's my Invulnerability. God's will be done.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Wonder Woman Ideas

I mentioned feeling a little guilty that I hadn't had as many ideas about Wonder Woman as I did about Batman and Superman. However, this last week before math class I learned that it wasn't that I didn't have many ideas about her, I just hadn't considered them yet. There's still a major difference though. I can't tell on my own if all of them are good ideas or not. For example, it's difficult to tell from the image, but I think it might be cool and different if Wonder Woman's modern-day super-suit had sleeves. The big problem with that is that there's a kind of power in the perceived vulnerability her movie outfit shows in perspective with the strength of her actions say, on the battlefield. In a similar way, I tried a few different designs for a new Wonder Woman logo because the old one is so hard to draw. This new one (the W star) is fun, but doesn't get the same idea across.
It may be that I should just save all these ideas about superheroes and do something completely different with them. God's will be done.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Gravity Falls Drawings

And last but certainly not least, there's the Gravity Falls drawings. The first is just random doodles, most of which are done in the "Gravity Rises" fan alternate universe where the twin's personalities are switched. I especially like this idea because the twins would resemble me and my sister more, or at least in a different way. They're not amazing, but I liked them enough to share.
The second image is just the Pines Twins in a different art style. Their's was the first art style I really did correctly, so I like to draw them in other styles whenever I try out another style.

CompSci Magic Drawing

My first drawing waiting for this new semester of Computer Science. It's me shooting magic out of my hand. I've had this particular style of magic image in my head for a while, but this is the first time I've really done it right. Someday I'd like to write a magic system based on computer-like language. But for that I'll have to keep paying attention in class.

Because Superman Wants You To

I saved this Superman drawing for later because it's my favorite. Part of the reason I like Superman so much is that we can project all our warped cultural ideals of perfection and God onto him, but he would not necessarily always react with patience. I think it would be tiring to be just a normal guy who was idolized in such a way. Plus this drawing gave me the opportunity to caricature many stereotypical ways of drawing a superhero against a more classic cartoon depiction of the classic superhero.

DuckTales Arms

It turns out the arms in the new 2017 Ducktales Reboot is perfect as a bridge between my cartoony stick arms and real looking arms. It's simple, but even just that one one extra line between the wrist and thumb was eye-opening for me. Donald was especially helpful because of how expressive he is with his arms.

Batman Villain

I decided to write this at the top primarily because there are so many of basically this same picture. At some point I thought of an idea for an original Batman villain who could challenge his existentialism philosophy and not just his history or something like Hush (who my dad does not like) or the Court of Owls or Owlman or Wrath or however many "anti-Batman's" there have been. But for the longest time I didn't know what their gimmick or design should be like. So I drew inspiration from one of Batman's greatest villains, the Phantasm, and a lot of other important figures in the animated Batman's life.
However, I wanted this villain to be visually distinct from Batman and Joker, and I had the idea to use different shapes for the face, as you can see in the last image. Where Batman and Joker have square and triangle heads respectively, this figure would have a circle head. Where Batman and Joker have threatening triangle eyes and bulging circle eyes this figure would have dead rectangle eyes. So all these images are just experimenting with what this angel-statue inspired existential villain would be like. I'd probably call them Eidolon. The next-to last image is especially nice I think.