USA! USA!

Well well well, December already and I’m back in the States! I hope you all had a fabulous month.

England and France were absolutely spectacular. I had a sell-out show at Thought Bubble, met a load of great UK creators, explored some of London’s best museums, decompressed in the French countryside, and ate waaaaaaay too much cheese.

(Just kidding. You can never eat too much cheese.)

This is just a quick post to let you all know that my shipping deadline for holiday orders is THIS THURSDAY (December 4th), since I’ll be out of town visiting my family in California for most of December and won’t have access to my stock. If you’ve got a maritime enthusiast in the family, why not get them some quality nautical comics? You can check out all the stuff I’ve got right here. Be sure to request if you’d like me to sign ’em to someone special.

Also, because I feel bad that I don’t have enough time to do a full, in-depth write-up of the trip: have some pages from my sketchbook! (If you’d like to see absolutely everything I’ve done each month, there’s a Patreon tier especially for you! Supporting me making more comics gets you access to exclusive high-res PDFs of all my sketchbook stuff month-by-month.)

That’s all from me for now!

Sketchdump 8.23.14

Proud to say I’ve been back on the sketchbook horse this month after a lengthy fallow period, so I figured it was high time to show my work. Behold! Some nudes from a figure drawing session last week (five- and one-minute poses, respectively):

There’s also a bundle of progress shots from my work on the Charles W. Morgan travelogue, random sketchbook pages, and the odd outfit sketch or two.

Gosh you guys: drawing for fun is FUN. Did you know? I forget sometimes. I’ll try to do another of these before too long!

Figure Drawing Dump

In keeping with various artistic resolutions, I’ve been making an effort to drag myself back to figure drawing on a weekly basis this year. So far so (semi-)good! Here’s a selection of pieces from the last couple sessions:

I’ll try to upload batches of these periodically as I keep dragging myself in. It’s hard practice, but I’m really glad I’m going. Onward!

Monday Sketchdump

GrumBumWEBIn honor of completing my story for Cartozia #3 last week, I decided to do a little warm-up sketch of my two protagonists on Sunday. Meet Grumley and Bumley, cantankerous fishermen at large.

I’ve also been trying to get back into the habit of doing warm-up sketches on a more regular basis, so here are some heads, hands, and hounds.

And then just a few assorted figures I’ve been noodling around with. You might recognize John Elliott (one of my favorite folk musicians at the moment) and Dan Weber (only one B, ignore that note), who played a great gig at Al’s Den a few months ago in Portland. There’s also a dress from the fantastic OMG That Dress tumblr. And me as a pretentious art critic, for reasons unknown.

ALL ART ALL THE TIME. WOO.

Nope

Some days, man.

WakeUp

This was largely a practice piece to try drawing a comic start to finish in Photoshop. I definitely prefer Manga Studio for inking, but until I upgrade to the new release I’m still more comfortable doing color stuff in PS — though lordy do I still have a lot to learn. This is all because I’ve started a rad secret project with two amazing digital artists (Bridget and Carolyn!) and need to get myself up to speed with their lightning-fast abilities. Anyway, baby steps.

Leave a holler in the comments if you have any favorite digital coloring resources or inspirations!

Assorted Doings

Hello everyone!

Still recovering from Emerald City over here, but I’m excited to say that I’m well into inking my story for Symbolia Magazine, which will basically be my full-time job for the next few weeks. Things will be quiet while I’m working on that, but afterwards it’ll be on to Baggywrinkles #4 and beyond! I’ll post previews as I can.

In other news, blogger Greg Burgas picked up a copy of True Believer at the convention, and was kind enough to give it a very thorough review on Comic Book Resources this week. Here’s a teaser:

“[Death can] become hackneyed, the way a writer approaches it, but Bellwood manages to let the emotions come out without going too far and getting into mawkishness […] As we move through the book, it becomes more intense and more personal, in a way that grabs the reader and doesn’t let go […] ‘True Believer’ is an intense work that has a lot going on in it, and Bellwood transitions easily between many different moods.”

What a guy! You can read the whole thing here.

For those of you who stopped by, thanks for saying hello! To those who couldn’t make it, never fear. I’ll be at tabling at the Stumptown Comics Fest next month with all these goodies and more.

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When we met, Greg was also quite taken with the table’s  squeaky walrus, so here’s the ridiculous photo he took of my cheesiest convention face.

Aaaaand finally, Grace Allison did a wonderful marker coloring demo at Periscope yesterday, so here’s the portrait I whipped up to practice on (we only had super skinny scraps of Bristol. Can you tell?).

Skinny

Until next time, friends!

Spottin’ Blacks

More weekly challenge stuff. Focused on high-contrast faces this week to get more decisive about laying down blacks:

Contrast

And thanks again to everyone who came out to the workshops this week! It was great to see so many of you there.

Workshop1

I’ve posted my lecture notes from the Freelance Badassery talk on Tumblr if you wanna go get a creative kick in the pants. I’ll hopefully be putting them up directly on this blog sometime in the near future. For now: work beckons!

Horses

New challenge. Did this one early because horses make me SUPER NERVOUS. I’ve seriously never drawn one before IN MY ENTIRE LIFE. Referenced a couple great artists for this like Joe Weatherly and Claire Wendling, then did a few from photographs. Just like the 50 Shoes exercise, this felt really awkward and clumsy to begin with, but the more I figured my way around the shapes the more it all started to make sense. Practice is MAGIC.

HorsesFinal

As always, you can follow along and submit your own sketches to the weekly challenge pool on the Artistic Veggies tumblr.

Suits, Heads, & Other Sundries

A couple challenges from the last few weeks. Remember you can always join in on these suckers by heading over to the Artistic Veggies tumblr! A new challenge goes live every Monday.

Suits heads

I’ve also been blasting through the last of my Kickstarter custom comics! Thank goodness for that. The most recent strip was a requested Firefly / Doctor Who mash-up for Jason. I never really find the inspiration to draw fan art unless someone specifically requests it, so this was a fun one.

Doctor Who/Firefly Mash-Up, For Jason

Okay, back to work!

New Year, New Hats, New News!

Hello everyone! It’s 2013! Isn’t that crazy? I think so.

This year was my first as a Real Live Cartoonist, and it’s been a hell of a ride. I was about to start writing a list of all the stuff that happened, but I got exhausted just thinking about it. Let’s just say A Lot of Stuff went down. Comics, dance, work, travel, freelance, moving, breakups, unbreakups, practice, growth, change — and 2013 just keeps looking better. I have another two months at Periscope (which, for the record, is the most inspiring and wonderful work environment ever), two of my comics will be published by people who are not me before July, there’s a new issue of Baggywrinkles in the works, and it’s looking like I’ll be traveling to at least FIVE conventions this year. I’m excited, inspired, and ready to make more art. What more could a girl ask for?

I also got a very kind mention in Tony Cliff’s 12 from 2012 list for Paste Magazine. Tony is the mastermind behind the adventures of Delilah Dirk — one the most beautifully-executed and delightful webcomics out there today. I’m immensely chuffed to see Baggywrinkles alongside such an impressive gaggle of names, and I highly recommend that you go check out the rest of the group. There’s just too much awesome stuff happening in comics right now.

Speaking of awesome stuff, here’s some exciting news! The story I’m illustrating for Symbolia Magazine is now officially underway. Here are all my thumbnails laid out and ready to go:

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The issue with our story won’t be out until June, but expect several sneak peeks as I work through pencils and inks over the next couple months. Sarah Mirk has put together some really powerful stories, and I can’t wait to start working on them in earnest.

Weekly drawing challenges continue unabated. Here are the 50 Hats I promised last week:

HatsDone

And I’m making noises about doing an alphabet series involving figures from Classical Greece — gods, goddesses, heroes, legends, etc — as a tactic for improving my inking technique. Here’s a photo of the Athena sketch that got me started on the idea.

athena

If you have any favorite Greek figures, perhaps you’d care to leave their names in the comments? I’ll probably be taking suggestions as I go…

Apart from that, work continues unabated. I’m in California until next week, and then it’s back to the grey northwest for more drawing, more food carts, and more…nope, those are basically the only two things I’ll be paying attention to for a while. OH! I’m also going to be teaching some workshops later this month: Freelance Badassery and Kickstarter Bootcamp. Keep an eye out for dates and times as soon as I have them.

OKAY. PHEW.

We’re really done now.