Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Look out! Here comes...

Here's an original character, for a change, The Flying Fox (or Free-falling Fox/Freedom Fox).
Chester Charles Mallory starred in several action films in the years preceding the second world war.
A successful stunt-man, Chester Charles was handsome, charming, arrogant, obnoxious and vain. Often blending his on-screen persona with his real life affairs, Chester Charles thought himself as invincible as the fire-proof motorbike riders and super-strong action heroes he portrayed on screen. Half-way through the shooting of the swashbuckling adaptation of a popular comic book character, America entered the war. British-born with Spanish and Welsh lineage, Charles was eager to join in, not out of patriotism, but motivated solely by the pure desire to show off. His sparkling smile and clever winks could only get him so far, and the army (although desperate for manpower) refused his application.
His pride wounded, Chester Charles did something amazingly stupid. Donning his movie costume, he smuggled himself into an army base and onto a plane bound for Europe. If he couldn't show the world how brave and smashing was as Chester Charles Mallory, he would do so in the guise of The Flying Fox, the comic books' crimson gliding hero! All too soon, Chester Charles learned his limits... much to his chagrin. He's the sorry parody of Captain America, a thoroughly idiotic and cowardly blowhard, thrust into the chaos of war and surviving by the skin of his teeth.

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Some Famous Faces...

As I'm going to be looking into doing caricatures for money more regularly (tomorrow I go to my home town's council to ask for a permit, so the fuzz don't nick me for illegal sketching), I thought I'd try my hand at some celebrity portraits. Here are some of my musical heroes... can you guess who they are?*

*this is a rhetorical question, and I am not, contrary to popular belief, insulting your intelligence.

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Yet more redesigns: an octopus, a bat and a clown...

Here's another spidey villain redesign, Otto Octavius. Got rid of the mechanical arms and replaced them with jacks and usb cables, turning Otto into The Octopus, notorious genius hacker, capable of sending entire cities into disarray at the click of a button. Decided to go mainly on Otto's 'master planner' persona for this redesign: I see Otto also working from afar to destablize politics, organize crime hits, robberies, even murders... when a certain spider doesn't tangle his webs.

Here's The Batman. Went for a simple, realistic approach: lots of body-armour and compartments. The cape and the mask covering his face completely hopefully make him seem even more inhuman.

And here's his arch-nemesis, the Joker. totally inspired by the Burton/Nicholson Joker with this one, I see his origin being a kind of mix between The Killing Joke and the Jack Napier one. Stand-up comedian gets embroiled with the mob and ends up disfigured after falling in a vat of chemicals. I figured his skin may be bleached and his lips blood red, but any hair would be as good as gone. With the green gone, I removed all other colour and went with a pagliaccio/pulcinella black and white costume.

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Another redesign: The Goblin & Green Goblin's Last Stand

Here's my Goblin redesign. After numerous failed attempts at designing a realistic/plausible-looking glider or flight/propulsion system I decided to ditch that aspect of Gobby's character, and focus more on his Norman alter-ego. Norman Osborn is a genius, but science is science and a goblin glider like the one in the comics would be kind of impractical. I had a look at his origin story and the one thing I got from Norman's character or raison d'etre is POWER.
My version of Goblin isn't mad, super-strong or kooky. The halloween goblin mask and gloves are a kind of calling card. By day, Norman is a rich and highly connected technology and weapons magnate. By night, he practically runs all organized crime in New York city, and possibly beyond. This was an idea I got from the Spectacular Spider-man series (before it was cancelled :( ) where Goblin took over from Tombstone as main crime king of New York, whilst still flying around and throwing bombs at spidey. This Goblin is not afraid to get his hands dirty, but neither is he above hiring goons in goblin masks to take out his trash. He runs things from afar, perhaps creating the various other masked villains that make up spidey's rogue gallery.

Here are the redesigned characters in the cover for Amazing Spider-Man: Green Goblin's Last Stand!

Monday, 8 August 2011

Project: Rooftop Webhead 2.0 Spider-man redesign

As the deadline has been extended, thought I'd try again. Wasn't all that happy with the first redesign... hopefully the guys over at P:R won't think I'm trying to cheat or anything. Anyway, here it is, redesign mach 2 :)

For this design I felt like sticking to as realistic an approach as I could, building a costume out of garments and accessories that I think an inventive high-school student like Peter could afford to buy/make. It basically consists of a hooded track-suit, elbow/knee-pads, adapted goggles, belt and climbing shoes. The spider emblem on the chest is made up of the tightening cords of the hoodie, extended and knotted to make up the legs.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

A bit of inspiration

Hello Everyone!

Well, I've spent the whole day drawing pictures over a lightbox, animating some small motions little by little, and a very satisfying and cathartic experience it has been! It's been far too long since I last animated anything (ok, only a couple of months, but it felt muuuuch longer!).

So, with a large heap of drawings lying on my bed, along with several character designs and worn out pencils, I thought I'd share a short video that I first saw earlier today on cartoon brew.

The funny/great thing is that I've loved and admired Terry Gilliam and his work before I even understood what he was doing or saying. Certainly WAY before I ever became interested in animating myself. Perhaps I have already mentioned my childhood and lasting love for his 1981 film, Time Bandits, which I first saw when I was about three years old. Basically, the man and his humour (along with that of Palin, Idle, Jones, Graham and Cleese) have been a fundamental part of my life, and a great source of inspiration.

I did some drawings this morning, but my energy petered out around lunchtime.
After watching this short video, I animated non-stop for about three/four hours.

Thanks, Terry.