Story Development: Sticky Notes Idea Wall

Writing a good story can be a daunting task ‚Äď it certainly has been for me! Where to start? How to proceed? What to do with all of the ideas that come to mind, or a surprising dearth of ideas despite feeling so excited about the project at first?

Over many months of ongoing development for a story of my own, I’ve had the opportunity to navigate the muck of these early questions. I’m now in the happy position to offer advice to those who might be feeling stuck themselves, or are just beginning to think about tackling a new story. Below, I’ll offer a simple yet effective tool for beginning the long journey of bringing your narrative project to life.

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2017 Projects Recap

Navigating the dark and cold of Maine winters can be a challenge. Most of the time I try to “power through” my seasonal impulse to wind down, usually with mixed results at best, and almost always resulting in a case of “the sads” along the way. But this winter I decided to work with my restful impulse, and I found that the months of shadow offered special opportunities for not just reading and enjoying other media, but reflection, and even celebration about accomplishments from the previous year.

With this in mind, I thought I’d share an overview of what I was up to creatively in 2017, in roughly chronological order. And, keep an eye out for 2018 updates; I’ve been working away on a larger project, and I look forward to sharing early products of that work in the coming months. Continue reading

New poetry comics release

New comics update! Haiku What I Can is out and available to buy at my online shop and will soon be in select stores in central / southern Maine (more info on that in the coming days) is now available in these select stores in central / southern Maine:

Influences: comics part 4

Below is the final of four installments on my favorite print-based visual storytelling work, where I provide choice images and cleaned-up notes on why I love these works so much. Read the first installment along with the story of how I did this, the second installment, or the third one. I encourage you to consider where you come from creatively by revisiting and reflecting on your favorite and most foundational influences.

Note: The rights of these works belong to the creators and their publishers; blemishes in the image quality of the shots below are meant to acknowledge and respect that. If you want a better look at any of these works, go out and buy them! ;-)


Bone

Jeff Smith

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Influences: comics, part 3

Below is the third of four installments on my favorite print-based visual storytelling work, where I provide choice images and cleaned-up notes on why I love these works so much. Read the first installment along with the story of how I did this, or read the second installment. I encourage you to consider where you come from creatively by revisiting and reflecting on your favorite and most foundational influences.

Note: The rights of these works belong to the creators and their publishers; blemishes in the image quality of the shots below are meant to acknowledge and respect that. If you want a better look at any of these works, go out and buy them! ;-)


1980’s-Era Legend of Zelda

Various (Uncredited?) Artists

I tried searching for the names of the artists responsible for this work, but it appears to have been for-hire and simply became property of Nintendo. :-( Continue reading

Influences: comics, part 2

Below is the second of four installments on my favorite print-based visual storytelling work, where I provide choice images and cleaned-up notes on why I love these works so much. Read the first installment along with the story of how I did this. I encourage you to consider where you come from creatively by revisiting and reflecting on your favorite and most foundational influences.

Note: The rights of these works belong to the creators and their publishers; blemishes in the image quality of the shots below are meant to acknowledge and respect that. If you want a better look at any of these works, go out and buy them! ;-)


Moonshadow

Jon J. Muth (Art) | Marc DeMatteis (Story)

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Influences: comics, top 3… +1

In a strange moment of creative darkness and confusion this past¬†December, I became convinced that I couldn’t continue¬†making comics or¬†illustrations without first developing¬†My Visual Style‚ÄĒthat is, the¬†distinctive and unique means¬†of¬†visual communication that I would employ for the rest of my life, thereby ensuring the world could¬†identify and cherish my unparallelled work.

In a curious lapse into childhood problem-solving, I decided that, like a videogame, I would simply grind my way toward a solution. I simply had to figure out the work to be done and then bang it out. A couple of solid workdays seemed like enough time. Continue reading

Fall friends and holiday deals

New fall friend prints available at my online store! Get a discount if you buy them together.

The fall is too dark a time to be all alone, so I made a companion piece to the fiddlin’ mouse I drew earlier this fall. This guitar-stummin’ squirrel comes in full color or, newly added, as a black and white coloring page. In fact, Fiddelmouse how has a coloring page, too!

In the spirit of friendship, these partner prints are available with a discount if purchased together as large prints, small prints, or coloring pages. Take a look on my online store.