Monday, February 26, 2007
NXM: X-TRAS 02
Well, I'm proud of myself for sticking to this 2 weeks in a row. Usually I can loose track of time pretty easy.
And thanks to everyone for commenting. I think we've set a record for most comments on one post. Let's see if we can break it this time. So, this is the second instalment of New X-men X-tras and I'm showing 2 new character sketches. Plus, I thru some very quick spot colors on all the characters so far. I really just needed a color guide, and color always make a sketch feel a little more real.
Each week, I'll add the new characters to this sheet. Well, let's get started.
HELLION: I really like this character. I dig his attitude and think that it will make for some great character moments in the drawings. Like last week, Age is my main concern. While I wanted him to feel a little more built, I still wanted to stay away from making him too big. He's 16, and I know there are some pretty muscular 16 years olds, but metabolism still plays a role in some that age. We're like machines at that age. You're body just burns everything and I wanted to apply that to Hellion. I kept him fairly skinny, or slim, but really carved him up. So, he's more wirey than bulky. And because his powers are not strength based, I don't see any reason to make him too huge.
Chris Yost explained that his attitude would be close to Sawyer from lost. Kind of a dick, but something going on underneath it all. So, I made some minor tweaks keeping those thought in mind. First, his hair. Again, I don't want it to sound like I'm dissing Paco at all, because I think he is an amazing artist, and I know that alot of these characters were drawn by other people first. But I felt that his hair has been too "pretty". Very nicely groomed, and always really cool. So, I wanted to give it some length and really keep it devoid of all styles. Make it seem that Julian could give a shit about what his hair looks like and there is something about slightly long hair that gives off the idea of someone being a bad ass. Also, the pants. Would Sawyer from Lost be caught dead in tights or would he pull a gun on you for suggesting the notion. I think Hellion would rather die than were tights. And thinking about it, would any of us, you or I ever agree to where tights for any reason what so ever? I think the answer is no. So, with out ditching the design everyone is used too, I just slightly adjusted the pants making them more like..well, pants. Leather in design to make for a tougher, protective surface. Very simlar to what we've seen the the X-men movies. The gloves have also changed a bit. I want things to be practicle to a degree. So, the things that we fight with the most are our hands. I wanted to bring the gloves up higher to create a form of protection for the forearms. I figure if someone is wearing gloves, it should be for a purpose. I don't like items of clothing for no reason. You will never see me have a character with pockets all over a belt unless that character needs to keep things in pockets on his belt. Same goes for things like gloves.
PIXIE: There's not alot to say about this one. I feel like a broken record, but I think she is alot of fun as well. I truley like most of these characters. It seems that when it comes to the JV squad, I like putting them in their civies, as it seems like we seem the most in those clothes...at least for now. I wanted to make here wings look more like a butter fly than just ovals on her back. I pulled out the master of Pixies and Fairies, Brian Froud and went to town. I tried to make her hair a little more unique as well, giving you the sense that she is a pixie. something uncovential to a normal girls hair. Keeping it cute, but also making it a little fun in the process. When I think of faries, or pixies, I think of nature. Trees, flowers, gras..etc. Since they live in a school, surrounded by giant robots and rooms full of tech things, I added the nature into her clothes. By adding some stiched on patches of flowers and vines her her jeans, i think I can keep the feeling of nature in her character with out having her sitting on tree stumps and the like. And while have her color be bright, I went with a semi hippy design to her clothing. belled out jeans, denim, etc. I think that also lends itself to idea of nature.
I did get an email from a fan asking me for a favor and I'm glad he did. He said that Michael Ryan designed her with the black, marble style eyes and asked me if I could bring that back. Honestly, I did not know that was the way she was designed, and am happy to bring that back. I love the idea, and if I was creating this character from scratch, I would have done that myself. So, here you go, I hope you like the eyes.
Now that we have the characters explained, I throw you some general ideas that I've incorperated into these designs. Some people have pointed out that the feet are very flat. This is intentional. I know I'm not a "realistic" artist, but some people forget to really look at reality and see how odd it really is. Feet for example, are very odd looking things. They are truley..flat. I mentioned before that I want my designs to have a sense of practicality in them. With characters that spend a lot of time running, jumping, fighting, and over all staying in motion, foot wear becomes very important. I myself would want to have foot were that is protective, but very agile at the same time. So, if I take the concept of a boot, and put it into a track shoe, than I think the character has the best of both worlds. If you've ever looked a real track shoe, you would think that it's fake. There are very, very flat, and look almost silly in design. But they serve their purpose by allowing the runner to move thier feel fully with any restraint, resulting a much quicker runner.
Ok, so yeay, I 'm a huge nerd. Maybe I think too much about these fictional characters, but to me that's the fun about this job. How can I believe in each drawing and character. I called Chris Yost and grilled him for awhile on each character and they're background and he probably thought, "hey, they're fake...just draw the damn things!" haha. I just thought you guys might be interested in hearing how nerdy I can truely get.
Until next time...enjoy.