I’ve been working really hard over the last month, and I finally have a full day to update all the pages I have on the site. But just updating wouldn’t make it clear just how far I’ve come this month, so here’s a list of all the little changes I’ve made (with the help of my sister, Dannika, when she’s had time.)
- Made a to-do list with estimated times. You can view that here, if you’re amused by that sort of thing.
- Scene 1, Page 2: Made the front bush less transparent in frame three. It looked like the ghost of a bush with no structure.
- Scene 1, Page 4: More shading, still not complete.
- Scene 1, Page 5: Fixed coloration, now fully shaded. Complete. Click here for image of before and after.
- Scene 1, Page 6: Fully shaded. Complete.
- Scene 1, Page 7: Inked, colored, lettered. Complete. Finally got to draw the full version on an expression that’s been in my head for more than a year.
- Scene 1, Page 8: Inked, color is blocked in. I shaded a few panels myself, just to make sure it was going to work. Probably pass this one off to Dannika. Click here for image of before and after.
- Scene 1, Page 9: Fully lettered, first three panels are not only not blank anymore, but fully inked and colored. I had a couple drinks one night, and went out of sequence. It happens.
- Scene 2, Page 2: Okay, this is kinda a big one. After watching many test readers over the last couple years, I decided I’d had enough of this page’s problems. I thought, if I put enough text on the page, most people would be like, “meh, wall of text” and not read it. That was not the case at all. Most people would squint and try to read all of it. None of the old text had any immediate pay off as far as information about Borodin, and the papers didn’t help readers understand what was going on in the scene at hand either.
Since I added the extra page of his trial at the beginning of the scene, there wasn’t any need to double down on the fact that he was convicted. Redundant as shit. That’s the easiest thing to establish. So I put together a better mugshot (that’s actually on model). That says roughly the same thing but faster.
I added a manilla folder behind the papers, so this is very literally Jesse Borodin’s file that she’s reading. Not just some random papers. And it doesn’t make sense that someone’s file would have secondary sources like newspapers, so I dumped that. Initially I figured the g-man was just giving her stuff that would convince her that Borodin was guilty. But just handing her all the evidence is about as damning as you can get, and Kaya’s not the sort of person to be swayed by public opinion anyway. The rest of the scene is getting a makeover to lay out the evidence better. Specifically the evidence I know I can give good payoff for down the line in act three and four.
Man… it is such a relief to have on-model mugshots for Jesse. That was driving me nuts. A couple people actually didn’t put together that we were talking about the person we meet in the next scene. Which is a very bad sign.
- Scene 2, Page 3: Did a quick pass on some old, shitty shading. Added some evidence to the photo.
- Scene 2, Page 4: Did a quick pass to try to get some of these older drawings on-model. Kaya’s face, like Jesse’s has shifted slightly and become more specific over the last couple years.
- Scene 2, Page 5: Again, made some changes to Kaya. Re-drew one panel entirely, because everything about it was wrong for the person she is now. Like… she should not be making this much eye-contact. That was an early, and incorrect choice.
- Scene 2, Page 6: Switched up the text to give more information about Kaya. Added evidence to photos. Quick pass on the shading.
- Scene 2, Page 7: Added more precise, more pertinent plot information. Still not happy with the closing line. But at least we’ve now said Jesse’s roommate’s name out loud, suggested what kind of relationship they had, and re-enforced people’s general impression of what kind of person Jesse is. It’s already a far better page.
- Scene 2, Page 8 through 12: I extended the scene by three pages so I could 1. Set up exactly what the case against Jesse is, 2. Clarify exactly what Kaya needs to do, and what happens if she fails.
- Scene 2, Page 13: I’ve added a page of close-ups of Jesse’s file, including the three mugshots he’s had taken as he’s been transferred between facilities. It’s basically here to remind people what he looks like, so there’s no confusion who it is that’s getting introduced in the next scene. It has the added benefit of showing how long he’s been in, and what his experience has been like. I’ve got a few more pieces of documentation to write up and add that should make that even clearer.
- Scene 4, Page 8: Finished shading. Complete.
- Scene 4, Page 9: Finished shading. Complete.
- Scene 4, Page 10: Inked, colored, shaded. Complete. You can see a lot of Dannika’s help on the sergeant on this page. Click here for image of before and after.
- Scene 4, Page 11: Inked, colored, shaded, lettered. This will be the final page in this first chapter. Click here for image of before and after.
Finally, I’ve decided to set up a Patreon to help fund this thing. Honestly, I don’t love Patreon as a platform, but the limiting factor on completing this project in a timely way is definitely money at this point. I would love to be putting out a chapter a quarter, and be able to actually market this (which I don’t feel I can do without the first book released), but for that to happen, I need to not be worried about whether or not I can pay rent every month. So… I’m working on that.
Sigh… I just want to live in a gift economy and make art all the time. I know that sounds really self-absorbed, but I’m good at drawing, and I like giving things away a lot more than I like asking for money.