the world is a mess
we don’t have much to look forward to
with the november elections here in the u.s.
every day brings fresh
so i am standing at my desk, staring at the cornfields, listening to tina turner sing about thunderdome over and over and over and over. seriously. it’s like the only thing that keeps me from crying. and gives me hope. and makes me want to put a big frickin’ plow on the front of the big diesel truck in the garage. and makes me want to wear war paint. and makes me want to scream “we don’t need another hero!” at the top of my lungs.
i already have the wild children.
i do not have a chain-link dress. but it is on my to-do list.
i am ready to fight.
and i paint.
and i draw.
and maybe i need to play this song on a loop every day when i want to do art.
maybe tina turner is my muse.
when did i last post a page of moses jones? last spring? late winter? and now it is the first day of fall. holy moly.
i’m not sure how i feel about the page. as always, my style keeps evolving. i look back on the prototypes for mojo that i did in my art class…what was that? in the spring of 2013? wow, three years ago. i like the style there. i want to move back in that direction. i don’t like the close-ups and larger images i have done. and i forgot that in episode 2 i indicated something amiss about lucy’s pregnancy…but have not addressed it. and she is still pregnant here and looking fairly comfortable.
this dialogue was written while i was waiting for an “extinction of species” class to start in fall of 2014? i adapted it to include dusty’s return, but i have been waiting that long to get to it. graphic novelling takes some time, y’all. it is a slow process. throw in a dysfunctional relationship, four kids, several changes of address, and a full-blown homestead experience…and wow…it takes forever.
but here it is. page 42. a bit sloppy. susan looks possessed. mj looks like she has had work done. and i tried to use perspective & candle light–both of which i am terrible at. also, i had some blank space, so i put in title, author, & page number on a whim. how do i feel about that? i dunno. and as i write this, i have a sobbing toddler in my lap who is running a fever. but i did finish the page. even if i’m not sure how i feel about it.
also. as i keep drawing this. i wonder about all the shaved & half-shaved heads. do they have electricity? a generator? electric shears? or are they using razors? straight blades? i need to get to the bottom of this.
as a side note, i am reading how to sell your art online by cory huff. i just started it, but i have also checked out his website and started wondering if there is hope for me yet.
thanks for reading my comics!
so you can’t tell how much work i’ve gotten done because it is all done in photo blue pencil. ha! but i have drawn some. soon to be inked! hint: it is a new page of moses jones! yes.
that’s exciting, right?
a homesteading, unschooling mother of four makes a pretty unproductive graphic novelist, as it turns out, but the urge to create (in all forms!) is strong in me. i miss art when i am not doing it. it feels like part of me is missing when i am not doing art.
i need a partner who likes doing hard labor, housework, enjoys chaos and anarchy, and who can be utterly supportive to his (or her) artist/homesteading wife-ish person. so, if you know anyone. must like kids & sheep & dogs. and rural life.
like the photo blue pencil, you have to be able to see what might not be readily visible…to be with me. that is required.
i have a week with no kids!!
i have not had a week with no kids since the invention of my kids in 2005. that’s going on eleven years, people.
so i have all this nervous energy that i usually use to herd children that i now am using to see how much i can get done in a week without kids.
i started this experiment of ink on canvas about–what–2 months ago? now i am actually working on it. i like it.
i have an idea for a comic starring me & my lizard brain.
i am going to start on a series of steampunk chinese brush paintings using my stark raving whimsy storyline.
i am working on script for new pages of mojo.
i am doing this with the buttons i have been obsessively collecting from thrift stores:
do let me know if you have any button jewelry needs. i am your quixotic mama.
i am trying out new themes. i have been trying them on all afternoon. even as my children whine at my feet. ( i fed them. i did. but they won’t stop thinking i am a 24/7 diner….)
i have also been playing around with the dimensions of the world in which mojo lives. figuring out the rules. wondering how much the audience needs to know. and doing it in a notebook. with lines and everything. also, i wrote some dusty/mojo dialogue. i need to sit around with this notebook some more. maybe take it to bed with me (nothing weird–just osmosis.)
and doodling my newest character…dusty’s stalker chick. what should i name her? does she need a name? i could just leave her nameless….
i also started trying to take my art more seriously…and my job as a mom less seriously. wait, can i do that? i posted an update on linkedin even. a site i have been largely ignoring.
so that’s my day. how are you? what do you think of the new look? really? honestly–but not too much so!
page 41 with our waffling warrior.
(anxious to get the page out, i didn’t flatten it enough to easily photograph it–so it’s a little wonky…plus, minions kept pushing past me when i had my camera ready, as usual. whenever i need it to be perfectly still–minions start shoving. we are so zombie fodder.)
dusty emerges from the woods. smoldering looks & smoldering cigarette. what is a mother of four to do? she can’t just lop off his head in front of his children…though arguably it could be a good life lesson. “don’t fuck with a person’s heart if you want to keep your head, little ones.”
but with so much history, it is difficult for moses jones to forget the good times. especially when dusty is being all come-hither. especially when spring is in the air. especially when moses jones has been without a man for all these long months.
i like how this one turned out. i like the text mixed with pictures. some panels…some free space. i like mixing it up.
but i’m not sure what happens next? might be a jump shot to a different scene. either back to the house with the squatters…or to the past and some back story? hmmm. hmmm. i need to figure it out. i haven’t hung up pages in my new house in my new work space. i think i need to hang up some pages and stare at the wall a bit and figure out what happens next.
so the feedback i did get was in favor of the white tones on page 39. and everyone seems okay with the text-heavy pages.
i like the looks of page 40. and, for good or for bad, my real life is going through enough crap right now to ignite some plot. will he or won’t he? will she or won’t she? what are y’all’s feelings on mojo taking a katana to an “innocent” person?
valentine’s day, a day i gave up on after about 25 years of having crappy valentine’s days….okay, so maybe birth through five years weren’t exactly crappy, but once my heart was able to be neglected and abandoned and broken…that pretty much guaranteed crappy v-days for me. but, forever an optimist and fatally romantic…i still loved the idea of romantic love (and a day celebrating it) until about my mid-twenties when i had endured enough fucked up shit to give up.
suffice to say that this valentine’s day went above and beyond the fucked up shit i am used to on valentine’s day.
fortunately, i have mojo to channel it all into.
page 39 begins episode three.
it is a very light page, compared to other pages, and text heavy. i have used text heavy pages in the past…but i think there will be a few more in a row. maybe. this whole episode might be text heavy.
i usually cover the page with ink. grey tones. but i left this one white. i am trying to decide if i like it or not.
i feel like lately mojo always has katana, ready & cocked.
usually aimed at zombies…but now dusty has her wary.
which brings me to real life where dusty is romancing me again…and i am wary. life is weird. which is why i make comics….
so yesterday, with a bad head cold and a four year old personal assistant, i decided to ink in my page.
(i always ask my minions, is that a good idea? or a bad idea?)
it was a bad idea. moses jones ended up looking like the love child of fonzie & gary shandling. and somehow….was it me or the four year old? somehow ink got smeared in mj’s hair & onto fidgit & misha. too much ink for me to turn it into an artsy shadow effect.
don’t sneeze & ink, people.
when one is sick. one should rest. not try to catch up on all the things one is behind on.
so today i re-drew my page. i think the second one is better. so far so good. i might wait until i am feeling even better…tomorrow?…to do the ink & brush. that seems to be where things went all higgly-piggly on my first attempt at what will be…page 39?
it has taken a couple of years.
but i have 39 pages.
just think what i could do if i didn’t have the constant “help” of a two year old & a four year old!
i think about it all the time.
i will rule the world!
until then…page 39 should be ready soon…soon….
so i am still working on the “epic” mojo. i think it will be a bit before it is done. a combination of finding the space & time and just the sheer size of it for inking, etc.
meanwhile! my critique was on wednesday. my professor kept citing me as an example (in a good way) to other students in their critiques. i felt a bit awkward about this…but it was flattering. for my critique he said, “this is great.” i thought he said, “this is gray,” and i was thinking, “but i added so much color!” he also told me i had a “good hand.” he seemed confused by the range of my subject matter–going from whimsical to grotesque. i think he suggested that i should sink into one style and steadfastly stay there–making it my own. so that when people were looking for that, they would come to me. he reinforced my belief that i should stick to my guns as a “luddite” graphic novelist. that my technique would eventually stand out among the digitized web-comics that dominate the scene. so it was all good. his one suggestion (other than not trending over into children’s art) was that i somehow combine it all. hey diddle diddle meets mama zombie slayer, so to speak. so i have been brainstorming that. then today, listening to the minions chatter, i heard the word “pirates” and had an “aha!” moment.
pirates! bluejean is a pirate. airships & monsters & pirates & zombie skeletons & color & chaos. i just have to think of a title…. but it is all there. mojo will stay mojo, & i will start a second graphic novel where it all comes together. wooly bear mammoths, squid, sea monsters, and lincoln trees….
i’m pretty excited about it.
and for mojo, i put the pages together, and all i need for my second zine is a cover.
i will work on that in class this week if not before. then to the printers! for zine fest i will have episode one & two zines. plus! i will have prints of hey! diddle diddle, lincoln tree, bluejean, wooly bear mammoth, and moses jones banishes dusty. and i will find out how the public feels about my art. or not. either way, i am putting myself out there & taking a chance. and that is good.