I got an extra special treat earlier this year... a tour of the famous animation studio, Blue Sky! My old pal Michael from back when I made video games was nice enough to take me on a tour while I was in New York for this years comic con. Michael is a super awesome animator and was working as a temp on Ice Age 3. Here's Michael inside the lobby. There was a lot of artwork and character maquettes hung on the walls. Very exciting! Michael's girlfriend Kwan came along too and we all had a good time.Most of the studio was dark and crammed full of animators working quietly to meet their daily footage quota. Everyone was in super crunch mode and had to work CRAZY hours. I was really jealous of the creative atmosphere but not the workload :/Scrat's maquette. There was a whole room full of these things that I wasn't allowed to photograph. Maquettes are used to help create the 3-D models and also as inspiration for all the people involved in the project.Horton's maquette. I just recently saw 'Horton Hears a Who' and it was pretty good. Loved the vulture character! Everyone at Blue Sky kept asking me if I had seen the movie and what I thought of it. They really gave me a hard time when I told them it was "in my netflix queue..."!The next day Michael, Kwan, and I went into the city and spent most of the day at the NYC con. Next years con is in December 2010, which means that it is almost 2 years after this years! What are they thinking??? This years con seemed to be set up a bit better than last years and had more anime stuff so I was pretty happy. I didn't buy much but it was cool to see all the sights.Speaking of sights... I was greeted by a life sized sleestak statue. Look out kid... I think it's hungry!!! AWESOME!Oh the cosplayers! Baroness, Porkins, Chewy, Baroness. The Chewbacca guy was on stilts so he was about 7' tall and it was pretty intimidating. I'm 6'3" and I'm not used to people being taller than me, especially big hairy people in masks.There were organized activities for kids in the upstairs area. Here you see younglings preparing for their struggle in the upcoming apocalypse. Honestly, is it really a good idea to teach your kid how to use a sword? I think not....aaaand finally, here's Michael and Kwan's cat, Toby. What a sweetheart. Aghhh... he is burning me with his laser eyezzzzzz.
Here it is, episode 2 of the Clone Wars comic! This issue has a 3rd page for more Jedi action :)
Images removed by me. Sorry.
The third installment of this comic is already finished and ready for printing, pending approval by Lucas, of course!
Lots going on nowadays and I've been keeping super busy. Starting to feel pretty tired but there's so much to do over the next two weeks that my only option seems to be loading up on a LOT of caffeine and working as fast as possible!!! That's the life of a freelancer :)
Images removed by me. Sorry.
This comic wraps up the events of the first installment with the promise of more adventure ahead. I don't know if there will be any more comics but it would be fun to draw the Power Miners again.
I just finished the comics for the next issue of LEGO Club Mag an now I'm moving onto a Bionicle book for Scholastic. I'll be out at LEGO tomorrow taking reference photos of the new products and then it's back to the drawing board.
Here's a shot of my desk last week when I was inking the next installment of LEGO's Star Wars: Clone Wars comic. You can see practically every tool I use to create the line art for a comic including a small rolling ruler, bendable curve, and lots of minifigs for reference.
Last week was pretty busy and I think this week will be more of the same. I'm working on the tight pencil for a new Hot Wheels book cover and then I have to get working on the interior pencils for the same book. I'll probably have to ink a 2 page LEGO Brickmaster comic along the way. I just finished coloring a book cover that has been on my back burner for a few months and it feels good to finish it!
Great news! I was accepted into the Western Massachusetts illustrators Guild! I've been waiting to join for along time so I am honored that it has become a reality. The group has a lot of EXTREMELY talented artist, writers, and designers. I've been to 2 meeting so far and thoroughly enjoyed both of them!
I've also been somewhat active in helping raise funds for a local event, The Easthampton Bear Fest. Sort of like cows on parade but with bears :) You can see some pictures and get more info here. You can even donate if you want to help out my community!