Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Fan Art Friday (Tuesday Edition!)

So, I often have a lot of ideas, for stories and such.

Very vivid ideas.

If you could hook some sort of screen that can see into the mind, then you'd be able to see everything I think up, even down to the most subtle cinematography.

Unfortunately, such an item does not exist. As such, I am forced to describe all my plotlines (and, as the focus of this will soon show, characters) either in words, or in picture. And since a good number of my stories have been commented on for being well-suited for graphic novels or anime, drawing does seem like it would be a good way to go.

Unfortunately, I often have a tricky time drawing my own people. I'm in no way a bad artist - I would say I'm about average - but I often fall into some bad habits. Possibly my most common habit, aside from giving every character a full-on six pack, is having them posed with both arms raised for some reason. I don't know, I guess it's just easier, but whatever.

Well, one of my high school friends & off-and-on commenter Alex is a bit more trained in the ways of the pencil than I am. He's also an easy person to share my ideas with. As such, I often get, via internet or via snail-mail, samples of artwork from him related to characters I've created.

Since this may be the closest I'll have to fan art, I thought I'd showcase some for you (with some explanations, of course).

So this first one is actually from a series of pictures I was sent, but this is the one I'll focus on. The two characters shown are The Future and Carlitos del Fuego del Sol (Little Carlos of the Sun's Fire). Now, The Future isn't so much an actual honest-to-goodness character, as he was originally envisioned as a Halloween costume. Click here to see the costume. However, I can see him fitting nicely into any number of my stories as the "silent hunter" type.

Carlitos del Fuego del Sol actually is a character. He was envisioned as the primary antagonist for a series of short stories entitled "The University of Satherton" which is basically a very twisted version of Berkeley. Calitos, who was named after (but in no way similar to) my old RA friend Carlos, used to be an RA, until he was fired after shooting a resident unprovoked (the resident was sleeping). He is now an assassin, and is hired by Satherton's rival school to kill the football coaches son before the big rival match (it's to psych out the coach). He ends up fighting the main protagonist, known only as the RA (a character based on what I wish we could do). Carlitos carries four revolvers, as well as a knife, "in case there are twenty-five people to kill."
Carlitos is spot on. This version of The Future looks a little dumpy, but that could simply be because I was essentially the model for it. However, Alex recently (like, last week) sent me a new, stylized version of The Future (which has a very Sin City-like feel to it), which I thought was pretty awesome). So awesome, in fact, that I did a little tinkering, and this is now my desktop wallpaper.
Now, if I were to make an educated guess, I would say that the character that Alex likes best is Cornelius Webster. And I wouldn't blame him. Cornelius Webster is one of my favorite characters. He comes from a series (that is, a comic or anime series) I call Menagerie. If you want an overview, you can read it here. However, Webster would work fine on his own. Here's his backstory:

Webster was "born" in 801 AD. I put that in quotation marks because he wasn't technically born. He was created. You see, Webster was a golem created by a Jewish mystic to serve Charlemagne the Great, ruler of the Holy Roman Empire. (At the time, he had no name, and was known as simply "Golem".) He called himself the Hand of God, and was able to back it up. He could see into a person's soul to see all their sins. He also has the ability to burn a person from the inside out with what he calls a "holy fire" (he basically grabs their heart and they burst into flame). Also, because he's not human, he's not easily killed. He doesn't even bleed. However, he has a serious complex. He basically despises every human, because he sees them all to be sinners. He carries a gladius with him, and his philosophy is "one cut for every sin." In essence, you could call him the epitome of a religious fanatic.

Anyway, he served Charlemagne for some time in battling the heathens of Europe. Although he didn't respect the Holy Roman Emperor, he thought that the crusade may have had some positive effect. He was invincible on the field, but didn't get along with his fellow soldiers (on account of despising them) save for one, named Remy. Remy was a young soldier, and the only person to reach out to Webster. Webster saw Remy as the sole good person on Earth, though Remy would try to convince him that most people are good, but just made mistakes.

One night, after a fierce victory, there was a large, drunken orgy in the barracks. During this period, some overly drunk soldiers beat Remy, raped him, and threw him from a high loft, killing him. When Webster saw this, he took out his gladius, and slaughtered the whole battalion of soldiers, as well as anyone else who got in his way.

When Charlemagne found out, he exiled Webster. This, of course, angered the golem. He left, but not before passing by the man carrying Charlemagne's goblet. A week later, Charlemagne was found dead.

Anyhoo, for the next millennium or so, the golem went around, fighting demons and the like, until he was contacted by the Vatican (who he had a turbulent relationship with). In the end, he agreed to stay hidden in Rome unless he was needed (there's more to it than that, but I'm trying to sum this up as quickly as possible).

I'm not sure, but I may have actually specifically asked Alex to draw Webster for me. Basically, the main color here is white. Webster wears a white coat, a white hat, and he's an albino to boot. I gave some more details, and these are some of the preliminary sketches that came about.
In the end, though, this was the final picture. He looks a little bit older than I envision him in my mind, but this is still the best representation of the character I have on paper (or computer) at the moment.
While the actual drawing may not be my forte, I can do a thing or two on Photoshop, and so I turned this drawing into...I dunno, a poster. Anyway, this is what it would be like if you saw Cornelius Webster on a dark night, complete with an original Cornelius Webster line!
And, in his most recent submission, Alex created this amalgamation of many different characters. Starting from the left, there's Thenosthenes, a near-immortal Spartan who lives through the centuries as a mercenary; Carlitos del Fuego del Sol, Cornelius Webster, the Neo Deus (who I'll speak of in more depth at another time), The Future, and The Lobotomist's Dream peripheral character Victor Von Killsport.Sensational!


Anonymous said...

Now I would like to see how Alex would draw the lead character from your Monarch Series, or what the government Eddie, you and me formed back in ol' high school.

Great job Alex, it's amazing what people who can draw can do. I am in awe to those who have artistic talents, something that I have never been able to master. Oh well, we all have our niches.

-Comrade Chavez

Anonymous said...

I veto christopher's suggestion. I also nominate 10 judges to be added to the court.

Great pictures, I can only do stick figures. I wonder, were the images compressed or anything? some seem like they're a bit shorter than they should be.