Subscribers, friends and people wandering here aimlessly from other webpages hear this! (Who even calls them webpages anymore?) ANYWAY, I decided I am tired of drawing just meh and want to draw like WOW! I found a super helpful and talented artist on YouTube named markcrilley he is amazingly awesome and I need to create illustrations for my November novel so…
I will study up, practice and edit said novel this month and next month will begin crafting my dream book! I will probably make a few copies by hand but am looking into other self and web publishing offers. Before I start this project I think you should know a bit more about my lifelong love affair with writing novels and attempting to illustrate them.
The first time I declared I wanted to write a novel the year was somewhere between 1998 and 2000. I had forever loved to draw and I already knew that I wanted to be a writer when I grew up (I was just about thirteen but the kind of thirteen you refer to when you are in your mid-twenties and the formidable years start to bleed and blend together making every story you mutter occur when you were thirteen…fifteen…eighteen)
You get the idea, the exact day, month or year is irrelevant, the important thing to consider is that I was in middle school, watched truckloads of anime* and idolized my best friend, the seemingly better artist and writer. Suki wanted to write a novel, nay, we wanted to write a novel. We split up the chapters by characters who were representative of elements and came from different regions. I know I had water and she probably had magic because at the time I was a bit of a “Jesus freak” and took my Sunday school teacher seriously when she said anyone who “dabbles in the occult” would go to hell.
Needless to say we had vastly different and underdeveloped noveling and illustrating skills but we had a blast and came up with some interesting ideas. Her chapters were filled with dialogue and blood while mine were reflective and image driven. My first character began the book (I think) by racing toward a cliff thinking she would be diving into cool ocean water only to find an empty, dry pit. It would have been nice to finish but we only got a few chapters in before we shifted our attention to other projects but it remains high on my list of accomplishments. I had the kind of best friend that would tease and taunt and that seemed just a little bit better or smarter or cooler or better looking than me my entire life but now I miss that feeling. I wanted to impress her but she might laugh but I learned how to muster the courage all the same. I could never draw hands. I always hid them behind the character’s back to avoid embarrassment but she noticed that trick before long.
Now, I wish I still saw her the same. I want to make her proud but I know she will probably laugh. She was supportive upon hearing my plan to write another novel. Most of my family and friends think I was foolish or naive to go into English and especially creative writing but after years of hard work at college and various odd jobs, essays, clubs, movements and even scoring that B- in math (I am horrid in math!) I found myself in more or less the same position I was in at that timeless age of thirteen. I wanted to write a novel. I wanted to draw my characters. I wanted to be proud of my work but I feared friend and enemy alike would laugh. This time I didn’t give up. This time I wrote for the whole world to see. I put my first draft on my project blog and even shared a few character sketches right here on blastedgoat.
I’m just ready to kick this novel to the next level. I want a brilliant plot, believable action and character interactions, the ageless quality of a bedtime story mixed with an awe-inspiring vision of future events and technology. I want to incorporate my fondness for Japanese animation and my love of animation in general by studying the schools of illustration and cartooning.
I have a comic style drawing book, Mr. Crilly’s YouTube channel and decades of my favorite characters to examine and borrow from. I want anyone who looks at my novel (printed or e-format) and see hauntingly beautiful full color illustrations. So far my goal is to create my three main characters (Lucky, Roman and Roxy) and maybe a few secondary (the main character’s parents, young Dr. Howe, old Dr. Howe and the elders) as for background I will place these characters in the structured, metallic, futuristic districts, in the wild, colorful woods or in desolate wastelands of uninhabited modern cities and small towns.
I am going to need discipline, patience and cases upon cases of Dr. Pepper but I want my readers to see what I see when I run my novel through my mind. I want a little kid to point to something I imagined and brought to life and exclaim, “I wanna draw like that!” Another dirty secret of mine is that I miss people asking me how to draw this or that. As I said I never considered myself to be a great artist but I’ve loved making things since I was old enough to hold a crayon.
My male cousins would ask me to draw characters from Dragon Ball Z and people in school wanted to know how to make 3D shapes and bubble letters. God, I drew so many freaking bubble letters! I never wanted to be better than anyone I just wanted to draw like those people I looked up to, I wanted to write a story that sons and daughters would beg their parents to read to them over and over.
Maybe that kind of thinking is silly but I never thought I would finish a 50,000 word novel or have over 100 YouTube videos or over 30,000 hits on my personal blog but it is happening, however slowly. Thinking it will never happen certainly won’t make it any more true than if I wish for it everyday and it never happens. At least I will hold this novel in my hands and read Partially Before We Died to my children and grandchildren. Just wait and see, these things have a way of catching on!
Wouldn’t it be great if we could all be what we wanted and that we all received our fame and thanks during our lives? It would be great but it won’t happen for most of us. Wouldn’t it be better if we cherished the things we truly loved and did them no matter the outcome we got in the end?
That’s what I’m doing. I’m learning to draw (better) in one month, hopefully! Join me in drawing or making art each day next month and tag your posts DRAWADAYJAN2012 to start a new trend with me or just do what you do and wish my left hand much needed luck!
*If you noticed this and came looking I can only assume you have some interest in anime. I am curious which series sparked your interest or if you have one with an awesome drawing style I should check out. I love Sailor Moon (laugh if you want, it was my first love!) but I’ve seen Digimon, Pokemon, DBZ, Tenchi Muyo, Monster Rancher, Lupin the 3rd and FLCL among other classics and loved films like Grave of the Fireflies, Spirited Away and Kiki’s Delivery Service.
Recently, I’ve noticed a fair amount of new series and films popping up on NetFlix and have finally seen Trigun, Popotan and Mushishi. I love the varied nature of each universe and want to mix these traditions with a more western/European fairytale style. This is just the plan and I might be influenced by more styles once I begin my intense study of animation!
Other works I must credit with my obsession include but are not limited to: Rock and Rule, Disney’s Sleeping Beauty, All Dogs go to Heaven, The Nightmare Before Christmas (most early Tim Burton films) and good old fashioned Looney Tunes. Oh, and my fondness for robots might have derived from repeated viewings of Short Circuit 2!