Finishings

When making a graphic novel, there are many milestones that can be celebrated with a heart-felt: “Finished!”. There’s the moment all the pages are drawn; then when they are all digitalized, lettered and put in the right order; when they’re all colored; when the file is sent to the publisher; when the file is sent to the printer’s; and then, finally, when the actual book arrives and can be held in my greedy hands. Finished!

booklet

Yiri and I especially celebrate the first finishing: when all the pages are drawn. It has become tradition to make a little doodle in a tiny booklet, marking time and date.

Here’s the first Finishing, in 2009, when we made Philosophy: a Discovery in Comics:

philosophy

This one was drawn a year later, in 2010, when finishing Religion: a Discovery in Comics:

religion

Science: a Discovery in Comics was a heavy one – it was finished in the summer of 2012:

science

The fourth book, about World Domination, is not out in the States yet, but I have just made an info page on my site if you want to take a look. This is how I felt when finishing it, in 2015:

worlddomination

And just a few weeks ago, the last pages of the book about Love were drawn!

love

We’re now in the process of finishing up the other finishings: the colors, the text corrections, the index etc. But those are minor finishings – the big one is out of the way!

Here’s another drawing from the little book, by the way, the only one in English:

doumph

Words to live by!

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A Week in the Life…

Last week, Yiri and I attended The Oxford Experience again – a Summer course in Christ Church, Oxford. For five days, we were immersed in an analysis of The Beatles, their music, lyrics and cultural significance. This course was taught by dr. Rikky Rooksby, a true Renaissance Man, who is both schooled as a lecturer on English Literature and an accomplished musician and composer.

Of course I could not help myself doodling – and here are some of the results of my experiments with a blue biro pen:

And here are a few sketches I did of our teacher, Rikky Rooksby:

(It was very hot all week)

(…so hot in fact, that our teacher took off his shoes, which inspired this Abbey Road reference:)

 

It was an awesome experience! A Splendid Time was guearanteed for all.

If you’d like to go on a bit of a special holiday next year, why not consider The Oxford Experience? It’s not cheap, but well worth the money, since you’ll come away with unique memories of staying at a centuries old college, enjoying three meals a day in the beautiful Hall, and being taught by knowledgeable and enthusiastic teachers. As well as meeting many fellow students from all over the world. You might even meet me there, since I’ll definitely be back!

The WiiU and me

For the holidays I got a Nintendo WiiU – that awesome game device you can use to play all kinds of entertainment directly on your TV screen, or, in this new version, on a beautiful touchscreen pad, which lets you enjoy features such as Art Academy, which is basically a digital drawing set of pencils and crayons.

Drawing on this device is remarkably easy. And the fun thing is I could immediately upload my pictures to the so-called MiiVerse, which is sort of like Facebook for Nintendo players. Only they give “Yeahs” instead of “Likes”, which really made me feel like the whole world was cheering me on. It’s a very friendly place, the MiiVerse. Here are some of the doodles I started out with:

Then I realized I could also access the MiiVerse from my Nintendo 3DS XL, which is this device:

I could not run the drawing program on this handheld, but I could use the sketchpad to draw messages and then post them to the Art Academy Community on the MiiVerse. It looks rather crude, just black and white pixels, but I found this sketchpad to be pretty workable, giving nice “loose” results. Here are some of the sketches I started out with:

This became addictive pretty quick. Soon I was sketching a “status update” every minute and posting them to the MiiVerse:

Yiri is trying it out as well. He has more experience than me since he often draws on a Wacom Cintiq, a touchscreen computer which he also uses for coloring my comics. Besides, he has a really nice drawing style that lends itself perfectly for these kinds of experiments:

Yes, then the holidays hit. As well as a new wave of drawings:

And this is the last one I drew yesterday. It already has 23 Yeahs! Yay!

The New Year is starting out well. New toys, new perspectives, new experiments.

Doodles for Two

Is there anything better than doodling? Yes: doodling for two! This is a fun drawing “game” I love doing with other artists – each one draws a first panel in a six-panel grid, then passes the paper to the next person, who continues the story in his/her own style. Usually, this results in fascinating wacky comics.

Lately, my husband Yiri and I had a lot of fun creating these:

(Translation by me, colors by Yiri)

 

The Oxford Experience

My ideal vacation? GOING TO SCHOOL. Well, not just ANY school. My husband and I are enjoying a week’s stay in Christ Church College, the biggest college of Oxford University, where we are taking classes every morning on the subject of English Country Houses.

Me, student at Christ Church College

But we’re mainly here for the food, which is extremely good, and served in the astonishingly beautiful Hall that served as a model for the Great Hall in Hogwarts.

Christ Church College Dining Hall

Many places in the college have been used to shoot the Harry Potter movies. It’s easy to see why: there’s a mixture of imagination and magic here. In all of Oxford actually: it’s the city that boasts the most published writers per square mile; it’s here that Middle Earth took shape, and Narnia – and now it’s home to us, and this is where we’re staying:

The Top Floor Room is ours!

(I figured out this balcony is the ACTUAL balcony from Brideshead Revisited – where a drunken Anthony Blanche recites poetry from)

Couldn’t be happier.

The classes are wonderful, all about old english houses, why people built them, how they lived in them, how they treated their staff. It’s illuminated by many slides and films. We sit in the back and are secretly doodling, like we did in high school. Except now we don’t get punished for it, but admired by our kind classmates. Which is nice.

Here’s what I doodled so far:

Fantasy house

 

Country house dress

 

Country house bath

 

A myth laid to rest: inhabitants of the early castles in Britain actually never used boiling oil to repel their opponents.

 

More fantasy houses. Although there is a Victorian dog house in here that actually exists.

 

Word of the day: CRENELLATE. “To supply with battlements”.
In the sixteenth century you were not to crenellate without permission from the king, on pain of execution.
*Now You Know!*

 

The Delaval Family of Seaton Delaval were also called “the Gay Delavals”.
They loved playing practical jokes on their guests, like putting chickens in their bed.
One of the Delavals died when falling down the front stairs, dead drunk.
*Now You Know!*

 

This programme is called The Oxford Experience and I should really let the whole world know it’s an excellent way to spend your holidays: it’s a 5-star hotel combined with the best teachers you’ve ever known, amongst an international crowd that is enthusiastic and interesting.

But I think I won’t.

This will be our secret holiday (re)treat for years to come, wouldn’t want it spoiled by hordes of other people. So: DON’T COME! It’s Horrible! And who in his right mind would want to go to SCHOOL in their vacations anyway…?!