Young HIdeyoshi and Karou

Hello again everyone, back with a bit of an update. So I’ve been a bit busy recently working on Halloween related stuff both for this site and the Green Raptor site. In fact I actually get kinda stressed this time of the year because I feel a great deal of pressure trying to get Halloween related stuff out before the big holiday, which is especially stressful when I got a chapter to work on in addition to all that.

Fortunately it’s all done, and I’ll get to writing the script to the next chapter next week, as well as get cover designs going. To give you all a little preview and show you some work, here’s a work straight from the sketchbook. So we’ve spent two chapters thus far in Japan at the fortress of Hideyoshi and his wife Karou. Well next chapter you’ll get to see them as children and the origins of their home will be revealed. These are the first sketches of them as kids, though I think there will be some slight changes before the final product. So enjoy this sneak preview of what you’ll see, straight from the sketchbook.

Old sketches

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.

Gerald Butler
Zack facials
Raptor Practice
Kalwa with weapon
Jack the Ripper Sketches

Production Art: Hideyoshi and Karou Sato

So yes, chapter 23 has concluded and currently I’m a bit occupied over on the Green Raptor website finishing up the Amber one shot. So it will be just a little longer till I start working on the official script for chapter 24. But in the meantime I’m here to show you all some behind the scenes sketches and some production stories that go on behind the Kalwa scenes.

We’ll start off with Hideyoshi and Karou Sato (yes I’m saying their names in the western tongue right now). Hideyoshi’s design was kinda decided from the beginning as I wanted a simple stoic and strong looking samurai. I wanted him to have a mustache as it would suggest wisdom and nobility in addition to his strength. In fact his selected name Hideyoshi actually translates to “strong one” in Japan. Mostly when drawing him I was actually thinking of Sango’s father from Inuyasha, except with cleaner hair.

The x shaped scare on Hideyoshi’s face was actually an accident. In reality he was meant to have only a single slash scar, however when it came time to draw him in the comic, I mistook the cheek bone as a second mark and didn’t realize my mistake until about five pages of drawing him (as you can see by the sketch below). So hopefully Ruroni Kenshin fans don’t accuse me of stealing.

Karou’s design was a bit more tricky, as I didn’t really have a specific design in mind for her. I wanted her to look like a well mannered woman who would politely greet guests, but also wanted her to appear fun and witty as she has her own methods of survival which will be seen later in this story arch. My first drawings of her I felt looked too plain, and at the same time I felt she looked a little too old for Hideyoshi. I think I had been looking at Hinata from Naruto when designing her bangs in the final design. The real tricky thing about drawing Karou is that her long hair has to wave in and out in a certain way as it can result in her looking notably different and off model (see second sketch).

One little fact I’d like to bring up is that there is an unused kimono design for Karou. Initially she was supposed have flowers on her kimono, sorta like an older version of her daughter’s kimono. However I missed the sketch at the time I drew her and completely forgot about the design. I’ll probably bring this design in chapter 24 as a clothing change, so be sure to look for than in chapter 24. Anyway, that’s what we got for this entry, more to come.

All Japanese arch concept art thus far!!!

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.

Early Rachel Designs

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.

Rachel Face Chart

This was a character chart of made of Rachel quite some time ago. Even though I like her design, she’s possibly the most difficult to draw of the Desert Vixens. It’s mainly due to her hair, I find it really difficult to draw her hair consistently over the course of several panels. Usually when I draw characters in the sketchbook I tend to draw them once or twice just to have a note of their hair and I can form other angles while working on the comic. However every so often I wind up doing a character that I do need reference for, hence the heavy footnotes in the chart.