Wednesday 25 May 2011

Style Question

As I wander aimlessly in the woods of a webcomic sketchy experiment thing in an attempt to both develop new skills and get the Trilobite Boy story down, I come to the question of style. Here are all the panels so far, in order, of the Trilobite Boy webcomic. Click to enlarge.

What's your favourite image so far?

Spoilers after the jump: 

Here's the basic gist of the story, which pertains to the style in which I tell it. As revealed on my Facebook Fan Page in discussion there.
Trilobite Boy goes to sleep, enrolls like an armadillo (or er, like a trilobite) and when he does that, he wakes up in other times and places. Just as the Toronto in the story is not identical to the real one (we don't have a Crinoid Tower), neither are the places he will visit. For example, he may visit an alternate WWI as in my painting Billy Barker and his Pterosaur Squadron (full image here).

The same character will always appear to tell him to wake up. And he will. Eventually he will understand something awful is happening after he leaves the other times and places, something pursuing him in his sleep.

The rest of the time, he's just a regular teenage skater living in Toronto, playing in a band hanging with hipster friends and going for appointments at the museum.

Ideally, I'd love to do an art style like #5 above where he arrives at the Museum for the "real world" stuff. And something closer to my oil paintings when he's dreaming. The style for the first three panels above was mostly an exercise to try speed painting and make sure I'm painting every day. But it's hard for a dyed-in-the-canvas oil painter like me to accept the quality. The downside is taking forever to finish it.

Thanks to the Facebook fans who've already weighed in - would love some more thoughts on this. 

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Original artwork on The Flying Trilobite Copyright to Glendon Mellow


Katy Chalmers said...

I really like the style resulting from the "speed painting" in the first few comics. At the same time, I would have to say that comic #5 is my most favorite of all of them. I like the more defined, "comic style" outlines and panels and would love to see a combination of the more loose coloring with bold outlines and panels.

Trilobite Boy forever!

traumador said...

When you say he hangs with "hipster" friends just how hipster are we talking? I don't know if I can actively follow the exploits of a hipster, even if he is a Trilobite :P

I do like the style of 5, and think you could muck around for a more dream like style for the dreams, at moment I can't really see a huge difference.

The Nerd said...

I enjoy the style of #3 the best.

Brian George said...

Panel #1 is the strongest in terms of composition and execution. I also like where #5 is headed; the shift to sequential. Can't wait to see where this takes you!
I'm also working on my first comic style thingy. It's very challenging, but a lot of fun :)

Glendon Mellow said...

Thanks Katy! You like the speed painting eh? Hmm. Perhaps I will keep experimenting. I like the idea of loose colours and defined lines too.

Traumador - well that's the thing. Some of Trilobite Boy's friends may be hipsters, the girl he falls for is goth. I picture him as more of a skater-punk.

You're right, there's not a big difference with the style in the dreams, but so far we haven't seen one in the comic yet. That will have to wait until after the butter tart sequence.

Thanks The Nerd! How are ya!?

Brian - Panel #1 really? It's funny, I always took courses in uni about narrative art, but they seldom actually dealt with sequential comic art. That's Fine Art for you, I guess.

Do you have a link to your comic thingy? How have I missed this?

Very challenging and yes, a lot of fun. It's been a rough time here at Casa Mellow the past few months and this has been a bright spot creatively.

Thanks everyone for comments so far!

Glendon Mellow said...

Oh, one of the interesting suggestions that was on my Facebook Page, came from artist Darren Daz Cox. He suggested I keep playing with styles panel to panel, even incorporating sculpture.

Intriguing idea: Maybe one of the dreams will be in sculpture.

Brian George said...

You haven't missed it. No link to the comic yet, though I should say it'll be more of an illustrated short story, I think. But you'll see it eventually :)

John Hawks said...

I love the second panel. Conveys the action perfectly.

Glendon Mellow said...

Thanks John! I consulted our 9 year old skater nephew to see if he thought it was a good pose. He did. Gotta ask the experts.

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Posts over 14 days old have their comments held in moderation - I've been getting an unusual amount of spam for a guy who paints trilobites. I'll release it lickety-split though.

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