Moon 2 colour tests

This week a look at the background work going on on Moon 2. There is a considerable amount of back and forth between the art department (read: Myself and Ivanna Matilla) about how to approach each scene with possible outcomes having to be balanced between what the story asks for, what we’re trying to achieve and bottom line; what looks cool. Continuing the palette from Moon 1 of course but the situation has worsened considerably for our adventurers. How do you colour that.

Iv is an incredibly reactive and quick colourist and rather than stooping to conquer, she stoops to colour and we’re eternally grateful for her input on this project. She certainly keeps me on my toes to the point where to question anything she does feels highly presumptive and frankly stepping above my station. Not because of her of course. She’s an upbeat delight. However, her sheer talent is enough to keep us on our toes.

The marking hasn’t gone on this one though. Any doubt is swiftly queried with the sure hand of a teacher (as you’d expect from Iv as an English teacher just outside Buenos Aires). On my Iphone, I keep the digital clocks for Buenos Aires and Cape Town (to keep track of things when I’m working with Fallen Heroes / Tales of the Fallen colourist Gat Melvyn) and although Buenos Aires is two hours behind, Ivanna Matilla is years ahead of the rest of us.

A genuine pleasure to work with.

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Introducing Gat Melvyn: Colourist on Fallen Heroes

Following on from our introduction of Moon colourist Ivanna Matilla this week we thought we’d like to introduce the longest standing colourist associated with Beyond the Bunker. The SA based Mr Gat Melvyn. In the early days of Fallen Heroes I had run up some pencil and ink pages and drafts but was wondering whether to handle the colours myself. It was a line in the sand because I had never considered completing digital painting – and still remain a little slow at it. I was in contact via Deviantart an artist from South Africa named Gat Melvyn. I had found his work on a Marvel Heroes Forum where he had completed the colouring of Phoenix and Emma Frost, both reclining in front of a starfeild. The depth and clarity of colour and the use of natural phenomena and bold lighting and tones led me directly to it. Having asked him to work with us on Fallen Heroes he jumped on board with both feet and put out two of the most impressive pages I’d ever seen for pages 1 and 2. He then improved page by page. FH put up enormous challenges for Gat and myself as we found our way but I couldn’t have asked for a better partner in crime.

NAME: GAT MELVYN
HOME COUNTRY: SOUTH AFRICA
PREVIOUS PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: Www.Toshigawa.com (www.toshigawa.com)
INFLUENCES: ALEX SINCLARE, NEI RUFFINO, BEN10, SPAWN, GREEN LANTERN, GEN-13, BATMAN, DC Tv SERIES, DISNEY
INTERESTS: Painting, Playstation, Magic: The gathering, clubbing, photography, drums, cinema

An editor at Boston City Campus, Gat is many things to many people in his home country of SA, simultaneously an old-fashioned gentleman, old-school metal-boy and hardcore Christian. Currently residing in Evendale, East of Johannesburg in South Africa where he’s lived all his life. As a kid, Gat says, he was quiet and whiled away the hours enjoying a blank page or a colouring book and box of markers and crayons. He’s tried as many different creative outlets before landing at the colourist stage as art took a back seat when entering High School. Turning his hand to Drama with a love of the stage became his main focus, learning to play the drums in mid 2002 and being a founding member of the band, Broken Lyrics, with their hit single ‘ Who the hell melted the Chocolate Chips?’ (yet to be released in the UK) but in his own and sort of Bono’s own words he ‘still hadn’t found what he was looking for.’
Studying film editing, scriptwriting, animation and directing, DGat graduated with a BA in Motion Picture Medium in 2006. It was only in late 2008 that Gat had a crack at digital painting (the acceptable adult version of sitting flat on the living room floor with your legs in the air and a pad and crayons). He describes his first works as “like a 5-year old on a sugar high, left with crayons and Mom’s wall,” but the possibilities that Photoshop offered him has grabbed him and refuses to let go.
A year later, he coloured his first story for http://www.toshigawa.com and a few months later, a young Brit by name of Steve Penfold offered him the chance to work on a new project, FALLEN HEROES!

A great character, Gat’s colours are bold, gripping and exciting. Its mainstream colouring but with sweeping and beautiful attention to detail. The thing that sets Gat apart from almost every other colourist is the magic effects he pulls with smoke, dust, fire, air and light. Notoriously the most difficult elements in colouring because of their incredibly delicate and detailed nature, Gat handles them like they’re just flat mat wall paints. Enhancing battle and even dialogue pieces his light play and detail effects put him in the top percentile of technicians. I would classify Gat as an Engineer of light as his application of colours and tones is incredibly enhanced by his finishes and effects. Not to say that his initial colouring isn’t masterful. For someone who has spent so little time mastering his art, Gat’s work reflects a awesome palette for high arcane and superhero artwork in particular. Embattled throughout Fallen Heroes, he took constant alterations and reedits really well. While I knew he was swearing like a trooper somewhere in Evendale, SA, none of it reflected back – he was the epitomy of professionalism and determination. As such and because he held true I think Fallen Heroes his strongest work to date and I can’t wait to see his new work on FH 2 and another project – to be announced soon….

There was one crack though and frankly a brilliant one at the finish of Fallen Heroes Gat expressed a fat ‘with all due respect, Fuck You’ which was well placed given the amount of pressure he’d been placed under. Obviously, there’s no hard feelings at all between me and Gat (if I had the money I’d like to fly to SA and meet him in Evendale) because we got the job done (now available at Fallenheroescomic.com in digital format) and I can’t wait to work with him again. He’s one of the rawest talents in the world and I consider him a partner on any project we work on. Even if he did call me Steven Pemrose in a recent E-mail. Pemrose? What?

There’ll be Gat spat all over this site every Thursday as we present a gallery of his work over the coming months!! Keep it here Bunkerites!!

FALLEN HEROES 1 IS AVAILABLE AT KAPOW COMIC CON 9-10th APRIL AND ON DIGITAL DOWNLOAD AT WWW.FALLENHEROESCOMIC.COM.

Fallen Heroes panel at Cardiff featuring Barry Nugent and Steve Penfold

Geek Syndicate owner and original Fallen Heroes scribe and all round nice guy Barry Nugent had arranged a panel for us to get on to at the Cardiff International Comic Expo hosted by (top lads) Gavin and Dan from The Sidekick with Barry Nugent and myself …. My first panel I wasn’t sure what to expect but it all flowed pretty painless. Heroically filmed handheld by Stu Tipple of Fatboy Comics at Barry’s request (cheers dude). Sorry for the wobble and the sound but some insight into the thinking and process behind Fallen Heroes is available here if you want to have a look….

The book itself, surviving Insomnia and the team itself (Barry, Martin Conaghan, myself and Gat) the challenges in bringing it to the page and the decisions behind picking me as artist.

Visualising the book, the introductions of the crew and a possible trip to South Africa, Barry’s response to the comic strip, alterations and the only minor disagreement on Issue 1, distribution, Oxicomics vs Comixology, definition of success and a difficult question for me….

Spin-offs, Cy Dethan, TV, the extra 10 copies, the original offer, faithfulness of the TV adaptation, Self publishing, the Grand Plan, why small press doesn’t have to be small press. Round up and questions. Weirdly, occasionally it sounds like a hamster is drinking out of a water bottle somewhere close by.

Ah thankyou.