Folks I cannot stress how exciting this new year is going to be.
I'm in the process of applying for an Internship at Archie Publications Inc. for the Summer of 2014. Fingers crossed that everything will go smoothly - all the paperwork from Immigration US/Homeland Security can be a real pain in the butt.
Anyways now that I'm done with the first semester at the Academy of Art (averaging B/B+ grades!); spent quality time with me best mates via
for Christmas and New Years; and wished my family and friends a Happy New Years it's time to make full use of my three weeks before school starts this Spring 2014.
So here's the plan.
Before I make my way to the offices of Archie Publications I'm preparing another portfolio piece to showcase.
The project is entitled PIRATE PLUNDER PANIC. The purpose is twofold - the first one has already been explained above but the second is to say a personal thanks to one of the way past coolest comic artists who have been contributing towards the Sonic Archie comic series for over 8 years - Tracy Yardley!
This book is a customized replica of the SONIC UNIVERSE graphic novel containing all four stories to the Pirate Plunder Panic arc - 112 pages, 6.25 x 10.75 square bound paperback and in full color.
Unfortunately this will not be for sale. But who knows, if it impresses the editors at Archie Publications it may get featured for real in future!
So, how can YOU contribute?
There are THREE ways to do this. Pick one, two or all of them if you're ambitious. Please take note of the submission DEADLINES - the Interview Questions are due EARLIER than the other two.
So what are you waiting for? Get your high horse into gear and get your work featured in the book! Do spread the word to other like-minded Sonic Archie fans who are looking for an opportunity to pass on their support to Tracy Yardley!
In fact you can visit his page here
He does commission exclusives from time to time so be sure to keep an eye on that too if you want to support his work!
FYI, here are my interview questions to Tracy:
Interview questions to Tracey Yardley:
i) You've already made clear about your art education at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Retrospectively what are TWO of the most important things you can take away from your experience in college and share it with others who look up to your work?
ii) Congratulations on completing your second four-part story arc to the Sonic Universe. You already did an amazing job with your previous project - Babylon Rising (since October 2011) so run us through what it was like to be given another opportunity to write and illustrate your own story, what was your approach this time round? And should you be given an opportunity once again what would be your next focus?
iii) In the Archie Comic's Sonic the Hedgehog universe name the following and why:
a) Favorite HERO to draw, what compels you to come back for more? (anti-HERO inclusive)
b) Favorite VILLAIN to draw, why does the character resonate with you when you draw him/her?
c) Most INTERESTING character to work on. Where and how would you like to see this character develop as the series grow?
d) Is there any character that closely resembles your personality and morals?
iv) You have a strong interesting in manga, anime and cartoons with good story telling. What are some series that have captivated your imagination over the years? Also what is something that you're following as we speak and feel the need to shout it out to other like-minded comic artists?
v) Let's talk about your family. You have a beautiful wife and five children (which by the way, I share with you my congratulations also) - how do you handle such a big family when you're a full-time illustrator?
vii) On top of that, what is the silliest thing you've ever done with your kids, or what is something that you've done that made your kids laugh so much that it's become a treasured memory?
viii) Which one of your kids can draw and do you have an inkling that one of them will perhaps one day follow your footsteps as a professional illustrator?
ix) If you have just won a free round the world ticket, all expenses paid month long holiday with your family where would be some places you'd like to visit and why?
x) If you were shipwrecked on an island and had only three items you can't leave without what would they be?
xi) Last by not least, if you can have any one power or ability in the Sonic universe what would it be? How would you use it?
Interview questions to Tracey Yardley:
[FROM FANS - TBA!]
Here's your opportunity to ask your questions and get them printed on an exclusive graphic novel gift to Tracey Yardley.
I'll pick and choose selectively any questions that are interesting for Tracey to answer and to be included in the book.
No matter how short or long they are try to keep them clean. Most important of all, keep them fun and perhaps informative as a bonus. There are already alot of 'how to break into the art business' questions asked already so we need not to repeat them - do check out his deviantART journal and online interviews via The Sonic Stadium, Youtube, Flikeringmyth.com for an insight.
[UPDATE 02 - All Pages Formated!]
Here's some progress! All the pages laid out and ready to be edited and customized with a combination of my own input and yours!
[UPDATE 03 - Thumbnails!]
Spent the evening going through some roughs on the custom covers I'll be creating exclusive for the book. Value scale studies were applied to most of the thumbnails. Any favourite in particular?
Concept sketch for SU#55
Rationale: If you haven't notice Sonic MUST be in almost every cover to the Sonic Archie comics. It's a no brainier, regardless of the story arc and context he has to make an appearance, it's his comic after all!
I SEGAfied this as much as possible - showcasing all in-game characters and also Sonic Rush Adventure references - the jet ski and boat!
Concept sketch for SU#56
Rationale: Part two featured some very cool and unique designs for the antagonist and his croonies. Tracy's innovation to bring in his own creative interpretations and marrying with the SEGA in-game designs from Sonic Rush Adventure made it a must for me to feature them on the second cover to the Pirate Plunder Panic arc!
Here I wanted to make them empower our heroine Blaze who eventually falls in defeat and is at the mercy of some very cunning pirate villains. The lighting strikes and darkened core shadows on the towering villains emphasizes the danger that Blaze is in from that shot and angle.
Here is an alternative to Concept sketch SU#56 featuring only the main boss and his victorious defeat of our heroine Blaze.
Concept sketch for SU#57
Rationale: What more can I say about this issue? KRANKEN!!!!! Oh and CAPTAINS!!! If I want to keep it to Archie/SEGA standards I would have substitute Marine's face for Blaze and replace Marine in the background where Blaze was originally positioned. The reason? Face it, the world community knows Blaze better than Marine - it's a fact. But because this is a special book I have the powers to break the rules and smack the lovable Marine right in the front cover and contending with Captain Whiskers - I mean come on, ain't that epic? Strewth I say!!
Concept sketch for SU#58
Rationale: THE GRAND FINALE!! Featuring the best of the SEGA Sonic gals, the prime villain and the sick-as Egg O' War in the background! What more could you ask for? I love how Tracy transformed Captain Metal from a sinister villain into a TERRIFYING bad guy! It kinda reminds me of the villains in the Resident Evil games - where right towards the end the intelligent and bad-ass bad guy suddenly transform into a monster as a last resort to defeat the heroes! Anyways smart move Tracy, love the designs!