Today’ I’m showing y’all some artwork from my deep archives. Today I’m showing you all the very FIRST drawing of Kalwa ever done and an early sketch of Juro, who would go on to become Reko in the current story. These drawings were original drawn in Middle/ High school (hence their more amateurish proportions).
As a little backstory, the original concept for Kalwa was first created in middle school at a time I was making a lot of my own stories, more than I could probably fine tune and perfect. Kalwa was actually the fourth story I came up with, the original concept was instead of a phone, she had a time traveling watch that was damaged and flung her back in time, resulting in her having to find all the pieces in different eras in order to return home. While today, Kalwa is an eccentric adventurer with a positive outlook on life, the original version was an isolated loner whose unique interest caused others to distance from her.
Juro wasn’t initially Kalwa’s friend, but rather a loner himself who wished to befriend her but couldn’t work up the nerve. Juro would work with Kalwa’s brother Risto (later changed to Zack), in order to find out about A-Tech and what was really going on. This concept was completely dropped in the story today, as Kalwa would just discover these secrets herself and therefore the whole concept would just be repeating what Kalwa and the Audience already knew. Also Juro was supposed to be of Japanese decent which would tie in to another arch where a character in Japan would propose to Kalwa. Again this storyline was dropped and thus Juro was a given a proper Finnish name of Reko.
Coming straight from the sketchbook a few more pieces on the new outfit designs. It’s been kinda hard to work on these due to the big Halloween draw off over on the Green Raptor Site, and the day job with social media. These are a little more refined versions of the previous drawings posted. After watching the Owl House on Disney+, I grew kinda interested in the idea of leggings after seeing them on series protagonist Luz Noceta. Thought I’d try them on Kalwa, plus it would help avoid any underwear shots and better hide her legs scars. Zack I’m looking to make the official supply guy, kinda dress him up have a faithful sidekick carrying supplies for the adventure. The idea for gloves is kinda meant to reflect his fragile nature, showing he’s taking small steps to better himself.
Sharing a bit of behind the scenes work today. So while attending Tuscan Comic Con, I got a little note that my characters all wore similar clothing, and it was a bit hard to tell them apart at times. The specific moment was more about the opening training battle between Kalwa and Suzume from chapter 26, however while drawing the last page of that chapter I realized that Zack and Kalwa do wear the same outfit. While they are different colors, this is mostly irrelevant on black and white manga.
So I’m looking at an outfit mixup to make them more distinguishable from a certain distance. I still want to keep the hoodies since those are kinda a signature for my characters, but give them a little more skin so they can engage in combat and do some “better” adventuring. I don’t have it pictured here yet, but I’m planning on giving Zack some kind of utility belt/fanny pack or something. These two will soon be embarking on some more serious adventures and will need supplies, you’ll see why in about three more chapters.
Working the day job this Sunday and I don’t have too much to post right this moment since the Halloween picture is being saved for Halloween. So here’s a small collection of random sketches from the sketchbook from different story archs.
Back now for some more production sketches. Today we got sketches of the tribe from chapter 22, which was quite a task to draw. As this was a group design, the main issue faced here was designing A LOT of looks. I didn’t really have a particular idea of how the Tribe should look as all the characters come from different backgrounds and have different lifestyles. For certain characters like Carol and Mikela I did have a bit of an idea in mind for how they should look, but for other characters it was mainly a free for all with no specific design in mind.
So as such, many of the designs were simply character designs I wanted to draw, and in a situation like this I’m usually drawing in the sketchbook while looking at various anime characters on my iPhone. Characters such as Liz were actually inspired by characters like Samus Aran, a few others were just drawn freely such as the short hair man with the glasses. Also in a situation like this when you have no real concept of design, you can always go playing with the characters and get some really weird looks, a primary example of this being the eyeliner guy you see below.
Most of the characters essentially got off with the first design and only a few minor tweaks before getting into the final pages. The one exception being Carol, who can be seen in both sketches below. When I was initially drawing her, I was basing her design off of Sora from Digimon Adventure, as somehow she came to mind when I needed a headstrong female second in command. My first design for her came out looking too young (as seen in the sketch group on the left), probably because I was looking at Sora’s design from the first season of Digimon as I drew her. The second attempt seen in the second group of sketches came out more along the lines of what I initially wanted. Though I might flex up her hair in the future, it’s a little tricky to work with as of now.
So I’ve been posting concept art to the Japanese arch a little sporadically and I do have more coming up. My general problem with concept art is making the time to do it as I’m usually working and drawing other material so much that at the end of the day I’m a bit tired, and don’t usually have the energy to draw up at the end of the day. Usually I have the character and designs in my head but have to draw them up in order to have something to consistently refer to when doing the final drawing in the comics. So the only way to really do concept art is to usually work on the them on a day off when I got nothing else going on. Anyway, here’s actually a gallery of what you can look forward to seeing the upcoming japanese story arch.
So today I’m posting the sketch work to two characters who played only a bit role in the Whitechapel arch. Adrian is off course the bum who kinda attacked Kalwa when she refused to give him money and wound up getting beat up by the police. Really Adrian played his part there was really nothing else for him to do really.
Johnathan on the other hand was a character that I actually didn’t get to develop as much as I wanted. Johnathan was really meant to be an obvious player that readers were supposed to instantly affiliate with the being the killer. It’s pretty common in mystery murders for the least obvious person to be the actual killer, it’s almost entirely obvious. So not wanting people to catch onto who our real suspect I actually put Johnathan in there as a way for the reader to lock on and instantly suspect him. I even set up a fake clue in the way he clumsy bumps his elbow on the lamp post which is the same way the killer bumps his elbow in the very next chapter.
However as I said earlier there is an entire character to Johnathan I was unable to portray on screen due to page limits and a need to tell the rest of the story. Initially there would’ve been more clues pointing to him as the Ripper such as him being very sexist and have a strong dislike towards women. Though in reality it would’ve been revealed that he was actually gay. This possibly the first character I had a backstory to that I was never actually able to tell. However that’s kinda the point of these behind the scenes post, to be able to tell what we unable to convey in the actual comic.
These are some early sketches of Rachel from when we were working on the western arch. Rachel actually went through a few designs initially mainly because I didn’t known exactly how a cowgirl dressed. My initial believe was they all just dressed like cowboys, however at the same time I wanted to make their designs unique and easy to recognize. One particular note I wanted for Rachel was that she would wear earrings and other jewelry (even though they were a bit after her time) as a sign that she was the leader and the jewels showed that she was a winner with trophies. Even if they were before her time, she could have maybe come up with the idea herself and did it just for her. Her final design didn’t take form until I looked up some cowgirl photos and noticed they were wearing skirts, which helped shape her design most notably, as her skirt got a little longer with each design. I did try to keep her skirt maybe mid leg length as she was an athletic fighter who needed room to maneuver. So that’s a little fun fact you can take home about Rachel.
This was sketch practice I did of Zack shortly before the second Greece story arch. This was actually the finalization of his hair style. As I was working through on edits of chapter 1 for the publication, I was really thinking back on the initial design of Zack’s hairstyle. The first design was more straight up spiky, with his points actually going straight up. This initial design was actually based off another character named Bervo who I had made for another comic I had initially made in high school