Aw man. These were early days for me and Photoshop colouring. Huge issues with these. While there’s no way they’d pass muster nowadays they are at least a little insight into where it all started from. Based on the Tourettes Ninja concept developed by Matt Hart at Wolfguts.com. One day the Ninja will rise….
THE RISE OF BLUE HAMMER
Enemy to the Secret Samurai, Blue Hammer is so-called because he is Blue and has a hammer. In all truth he doesn’t have name. He is the first of a large number of mystic mutations to occur throughout Japan. A smithy and weapons maker who drowns is transformed in death into the watery coloured… um… Blue Hammer.
Hrrf. Sometimes you just struggle to get to grips with a project and thats one thing. I’m suffering 10 years of overthinking and often struggle to not get too involved. Here’s one I overthunk. No more. A Ninja project that began with a simple project involving 2 pages, 1 central character and 1 side character. I developed an enormous storyline with entire nations consumed in ancient mysticism and a host of other characters. I then added an extra page at the beginning and failed to do the third page with the punchline on it. This, perhaps more than anything else has defined my career up until this point. Lesson decidedly learned.
The Budgie. Fairly self explanatory. The Budgie was sort of a sideways parody of the Godfather. The basic principle being that he would be an evil little bastard, sadistic and vicious and working his way up the food chain of Chicago and slugging it out with the numerous animal gangs that populate it. Only he looks like a Budgie. There.
Might appear here one day because I still like the sound of the idea but frankly this baby slipped right under the pile of other things to do, perhaps unsurprisingly. Made me laugh though.
Caelum Priory was a sprawling battlefield drama set in the provincial future city state of Caelum Priory. Written by Thomas Boosz it sadly never managed to live up to its potential as the exhaustive nature and scale of it required an enormous amount of development work. Pages and pages of architecture, technology, character designs and weaponry and vehicles were generated. More so than for any project I’ve worked on before or since. Almost all of it (including pages of the book) were lost when a low standard hard drive took a slight knock and broke the pin that reads the information. According to the retailer it’ll cost £700 to retrieve any information from it. An enormous amount of work is still on it and it sits on the back of my desk in the blind hope that one day, before the technology becomes entirely redundant I’ll have the money to retrieve the data. Frankly folks, it’d be a treasure trove of old artwork – only a fraction of which I have available to post here without it. Still, its about the new and interesting, right?
Caelum Priory was devised by Thomas Boosz and was started in 2005. It absorbed a lot of reference material and character design as it involved a very large set of troops – though focussing on maybe 6 or 7 central characters of varying ranks. The environment, weaponry, equipment, architecture and vehicles all had to be designed from scratch which is something I favoured as its nice to get broad scope on a project to design from the bottom up. It would be nice to revisit Caelum at some point though I’m not sure it’ll ever come back. It felt, after the development work, more like a sprawling free roaming battle sim (Medal of Honour style) than an ongoing comic book as much of the action was strategic. Thinking about it – I’d fully buy that game. It’d be amazing!
To finish up with Caelum Priory (for now – unless I recover the old files) the two pieces I’m most proud of from the set that remain. Effectively a splash page I asked for in order to set the scene more clearly – revealing the city all the action takes place in and a page revealing the initial launch of the troops into the battlezone from the centre of the city in Drop ships (nicknamed hogs because of their porkine snout and heavy nature). The page was too detailed though to have really worked at a smaller size.