Did some Blockhead. Made a lil' Mastermind. Co-created Madness: Project Nexus. I love you so much!

Michael Swain @The-Swain

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Animation > Graphic Novel?

Posted by The-Swain - October 13th, 2007

I read Jazza's userpost yesterday about creating a Deviant Art page, and it occured to me I've been so caught up with my animations and site that I haven't stopped just to draw in a while. I offer you now my latest rendering of The Cop, from my Time Squad series.

Full size image here.

Drawing this got me thinking, though. It took me four hours, start to finish, to plan and then complete this image, but once I was finished I didn't have to immediately draw the next frame of some animation. What would happen if I forewent the careful detail of the drawing for something easily reproduced? I don't think I could ever animate Time Squad again, but maybe as one of those Flash graphic novels...

And don't forget to prepare yourself for Ghostmas. THERE IS MUCH TO BE DONE, and Blockhead will have yet another cartoon to call his own.

Animation > Graphic Novel?


dude. he looks amazing. and i never fully understood how you could animate something comlex over and over, it seems that it would take to long.

happy ghostmas

Well yeah, I wouldn't be able to animate artwork like this...I'll leave that to the maniacs who did Ninja Scroll. But the graphic novel setting allows for still artwork like this over a background with very subtle things moving, giving the impression of life. It's not "lazy" compared to true animation, it's just a method where more attention goes to the artwork than the motion.

Merry Ghostmas to you too.

nice pic. I can't wait for more Blockhead!

I should have spent the 4 hours animating rather than drawing :)

Damn that looks nice and I would definently read Time Squad Graphic novel if you made one. And I am really looking forward to Ghostmas!

That pic is the coolest thing ever.

If you do the graphic novel slideshow thingy you might as well tween the pics, like Lilium or something

It would take me a decade to make something that awesome.
Time Squad was an awesome series, but you should do whatever you think is humanly possible.

This next Blockhead episode is going to be awesome, I CAN FEEL IT IN MY BONES. (There's a pun in there, I'm sure.)

Sweet pic! I'm guessing the cop is your favorite character from Time Squad.

great artwork please tell me how you do it and what do I need.

Ninja scroll is ok

Naruto is way better though... plus its more famous..

Ninja Scroll is oldschool <3

nice pic swain! btw i saw u write in jazza's news post. very good pic from him.. now frum you :P.. btw, love the blockhead series.

i tought once on something like that, but it was something like an animated comic, where detailed characters tween from side to side then the text appears, frame by frame (as in a comic book)... well, its almost the same.

and nice pic, did you noticed my entries for the HD sprite contest (look in my posts), pulseman and kamaitachi, those took me 2 days each LOL :(, how can you do that in 4 hours???!!!

Well, I know my own character very well so it wasn't tough to churn through it. I'll go check out your HD sprites after I write this, but as for right now I haven't seen them, so I'm only guessing when I say that you probably compared your work to other examples as you went, which qualifies as research and can take a lot of time away from the actual drawing.

I did the same thing in Time Squad, which is why my characters never looked the same in a new shot as they did in the previous one. What I've taught myself over the past year has been standardization. I have to be able to draw the same character from multiple angles and in unpredictable positions on a whim, and they have to look like the same person every time. It's an important skill for any artist, but it's EXTREMELY important to animators, who must reproduce characters constantly and seamlessly.

SO, the reason that my guy took me only 4 hours to draw is because I've actually spent more like 10 months drawing him: 4 hours for the actual layout, outline, coloring, shading, and lighting, and the rest of the time before that researching my own style that I can reproduce quickly :)

I can't help but notice the lack of a package.. great pic love the shading on the muscles except the quadracep or whatever it feels a little to big =P

Can't wait for more blockhead excellent series and the quality has been upping so much in the past few episodes.

WOW nice...awesome picture....

shoe feels a little small for the amount of foreshortening of the angle, the shading and pose is splendid.. this would be a cool ng wallpaper..

I think your eyes just get narrow toward the bottom, so that it seems that way.

Actually the leg I have a problem with is the rear - my faulty shading there makes the knee look like a little mound or cancerous lump. It's entirely too lit for something facing away from the light. I may have to fix that :(

(Edit: Also, I do agree about the leg - I actually had to use a Distort Scale to reduce the size of the bottom of the leg from the knee down, because it just extended ridiculously far into the foreground. What you see now is a desperate attempt not to cut the leg out of the shot, and not to double the length of the image by keeping it. Hurray!)

Well, damn. After watching Blockhead and Time Squad one never (at least I never) stops to realize that you are actuall yo pretty damn good artist.

I could spend two straight days and not make a cool pic like you just made.

As for a graphics novel, that would definitely be a cool thing to try out.

Didn't used to be, otherwise Time Squad might have been well done, haha. Also, I'm not that good yet! I just focus on what I know, and don't show you the total flops that embarrass me to think about.

Oh god. It must be torture to draw that and then have to animate it!

Especially FBF!

Amazing pic! The detail is amazing.
And I used to think that the Conscience in episode 1-8 was traced ._.

Merry Ghostmas!

i live in florida and orlando isnt to far from where i live! i want to meet the great god of block head!

I always accept beers from anyone who offers

The first Halloween episode compared to the second, has an amazing difference. Do you think this year's will blow people away even more?

The quality will be far superior, but I am just hoping it's funnier :D

That picture is nice. You are getting better and better. I personally don't like flash graphics novels. I'm not a fan of reading; too many words and letters.

You're 143% correct, which is why I was thinking more along the lines of a Max Payne comic with spoken dialogue. It's much easier to express the distinct personalities of the characters when you've got someone to translate that emotion from script to speech for you.

That should be a wallpaper.

Merry Ghostmas!

Maybe some day! It's my desktop background right now.

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