Sunday, September 28, 2003

I woke up at 6am yesterday and by 10am I was in Megamall to meet the guys. Lan Medina had emailed telling me he won't be able to make it because of deadlines. I know how THAT feels. I had to buy a black jacket first because Ruey De Vera, the guy from the Inquirer doing the interview said we needed to wear something black and honestly, I didn't really own anything I wore that was black, except perhaps for my socks. At Comic Quest Wilson Tortosa was already there. Wilson is probably one of the friendliest people you will ever meet, nuff said. We hung around waiting for Leinil Yu to arrive. Raquel, the store clerk told me that Wasted had run out again and asked me to bring in more copies. I'll bring another box next time I'm in Megamall. After Leinil arrives we head off to Powerbooks Pasay Road to meet up with Philip Tan, who by this time already met Ruey there. Together we all went up the Inquirer offices somewhere in Pasong Tamo. I can't remember how we got there for all the twists and turns we took.

The Inquirer had a building all on its own and I gotta say it was very interesting. The building has a HUGE staircase right in the middle going right up to the top floor with the offices surrounding it. We did the interview all of us at once and I was surprised at some of the things I heard. I dunno if it will make the interview but I came away from it knowing more about these 3 people than I knew before.

Next we did the photo shoot. Turns out I didn't need to buy a black jacket because Ruey had found black jackets for all of us to wear. To be honest, I was dreading this part of the interview because I really don't feel comfortable with set up pictures. You know, like I'm pretty sure the photographer was going to ask us to act like SUPERHEROES or something. Once I was asked to pose like Wolverine and I really didn't like it. It felt WEIRD. I'd much rather have my picture taken normal-like, you know? Before I realize what was happening, there we were, being asked to pose like SUPERHEROES!! It turns out the other guys didn't feel like it too, specially Leinil who was quite vocal about it. Specially because HE was asked to pose like Wolverine! Ha! Ha! Ha! I had it easy. I just had to stand there and look mean. Which really wasn't difficult because I know people out there who think I'm really mean anyway.

After the shoot wraps Ruey told us that the interview will come out this coming Sunday, October 5. Before we went, he took us on a tour of the building, which was VERY interesting because you get to see just how they go about creating a newspaper everyday. I had actually visited the Inquirer offices some 15 years ago, back when they were still at Intramuros. I was trying to break in as a comic strip writer and artist and I had been showing around my samples. There was one big difference between the offices then and the offices now. Today, it's much MUCH more silent. Because no one longer typed. On a TYPEWRITER. I asked if I could still apply for the comic strips and I was told that I could. Great! After that we all went for lunch because by then we were all very hungry, specially me since I haven't even had breakfast yet. After that all I wanted was to just go back home and sleep.

Back home I didn't sleep. I finished off my Inking Challenge for the INKWELL Yahoo Group where I inked a piece of fellow inker Aaron Sowd's pencilling. You can find Aaron's pencils here. And you can see how I inked it here. Here are a couple of pages where you can see all the pencils in the challenge and the inks done so far:

Inking Challenge Pencils
Inking Challenge Inks

Saturday, September 27, 2003

It's 2:15 in the morning and I've just finished one of the most punishing deadlines I've experienced. I've been sick with the cough and colds on top of that and with every passing hour my body doesn't want to do anything but lie down and sleep. To make things even worse, Ilyn is much more sicker than me as she has fever on top of her colds and cough. Our pantry has run out, there's nothing more to eat in the house and we're both too sick (and too busy) to go out. I could have just called for take out, but my phone has been down all day, and my DSL has been down for the past couple of days. And if there WERE something to cook, I wouldn't be able to anyway because our gas ran out just this morning. I can't even use the phone to call for a replacement tank. The only person having a worse day than me is Jack Bauer of "24". I told none of this to any of my employers (although they just as may well find out if they read this) because I don't want to be seen as making "excuses". This is one thing any aspiring comic book artist must face at one point or another. That you have to finish that job no matter what and don't make excuses. If you're sick, if there is no power, no phone, whatever, you have to find a way to get your job done and do it without complaint. Finding solutions to your problems as an artist is part of the job.

The good thing is, my dear old mom caught wind that Ilyn and I were both sick and she brought us lunch and did some marketing for us. My phone and DSL finally came online tonight just as I needed to send pages. If it didn't, I'll just go back to the old house and use my brother's computer to send the files. I finally get to rest....but only for a few hours. I need to wake up at 6am so I can leave for Manila by 7:30. I need to be at Megamall at 10am for the Inquirer interview. I want to go home as soon as that is finished so I can spend the rest of the day just sleeping as Sunday is another big day.

Thursday, September 25, 2003

Maybe you'll be out there on that road somewhere
In some bus or train traveling along
In some motel room there'll be a radio playing
And you'll hear me sing this song
Well if you do you'll know I'm thinking of you and all the miles in between
And I'm just calling one last time not to change your mind
But just to say I miss you baby, good luck goodbye, Bobby Jean

-Bobby Jean
Bruce Springsteen

I've always liked this song...ever since I first heard it in 1984. It's one of the few songs that gets me all choked up no matter how many times I hear it. For some reason, I feel like listening to it now.

Happy Birthday to a good friend of mine. :)

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Sunday, September 21, 2003

I just realized it's going to be a pretty BUSY week this coming week. I'll be staying over at Leinil's place for a couple of days starting tomorrow to finish up an issue of Superman. Ilyn will be coming with me to fill in the blacks.

On Saturday, I'll be joining Leinil (again), Wilson Tortosa, Philip Tan, and Lan Medina for an interview and picture taking for The Philippine Daily Inquirer. That should be fun. :)

Sunday I'll be having the Laguna Artist's group all day on the spot drawing thing at Sampalok Lake again. But I would have to leave by 5pm since I have to attend the UAP SAN PABLO Chapter's Induction at Max's. Which reminds me, I would need to have my barong tagalog dry cleaned sometime this week for that. Haaay.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

What I sometimes feel. Today I feel like SHIT.
-From Crest Hut Butt Shop #3

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Ha! ha! This is just SOOOOO cool! Cooler than having my name somewhere in Amazon!

I think I'll go have a pig slaughtered...and a couple of chickens too!


Tuesday, September 16, 2003

I feel so tired. I sent off a Fedex box of Superman pages earlier today (in the rain), thought up and wrote a 10 page story for a comics anthology for December, and drew a Wolverine for Inkwell, the Inker's Mailing List. I can't talk about the anthology yet, but I did this Wolverine sketch for the Inkers group because we are currently having a kind of "challenge". Each inker would come up with a sketch of a favorite character, and through random selection, we would receive another member's sketch so we can ink it.

I got so busy today that it wasn't until 7pm did I realize I was sorta falling sick. I have cough and colds and I feel really bad. I'm so pissed everytime I get coughs because it almost always deteriorates into annoying and painful whopping coughs and in a time when people are SARS-paranoid, having a cough at this time would be the worse thing one can have. After a dinner of Bugong Chicken I decided to turn in early.

For some reason I woke up at 9:30 and I couldn't fall asleep again. I went to our studio (which is just another room in the house) to catch Ilyn creating a model for the San Pablo Seminary in the middle of Smallville. Strange. Here I am inking Superman and he's literally my favorite comics character ever, but I don't feel eager to watch Smallville every week. It's not the show is bad, in fact every episode I've seen so far has been nothing short of excellent. I can't explain it. That's probably why I think it's strange.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

A lot of my work has come out or will be coming out this month. Already available is Superman: Birthright #3. I don't have a scan of the cover yet, as I will only get my copies tomorrow. Head on over to the main page to see the cover art without titles and letters.

Out September 13 is V Necks and Neckties CD by San Pablo City indie band Mellow Del Prado for which I drew the cover to. It's actually a wrap around cover only half of which you will see when looking at the CD. You will see all of it when you take out the cover paper and open it out. I sorta got the idea from Bruce Springsteen's BORN TO RUN album. I don't remember now how these guys got in touch with me, but I think it was via email. It's such a trip to know a band like this right here in San Pablo and for me to do a cover for them is really quite a rush.

Out around September 15 is Graphic Classics: Bram Stoker for which I adapted, pencilled, inked and lettered a 16-page adaptation of Bram Stoker's short story "The Judge's House". This would represent my 2nd complete pencilling and inking job to come out in the US. (The first being Ochlocrat) I have several more stories lined up to come out in Prophecy Magazine, but publication of that magazine, although sure, is still on hold for the time being. Slowly but surely, I'm getting to do much more drawing, which was what I wanted all along when I first started doing comics. The look of Ochlocrat and Judge's House is wildly different. Feedback of too much detail on Ochlocrat is something I took to heart and I tried to incorporate it into the Judge's House. The latter story has less lines going all over the place and has more blacks. I'm still not sure if I really nailed the style I want, but I know I'm getting there.

All this may seem a lot, but I can get very lazy sometimes. There would be a day here and there where I would just lie down and watch DVDs all day, or be online and play games on the computer all day. Sometimes I just read comics. Speaking of which, I got a whole bunch of them the other day:

JLA Vs. AVENGERS #1 (of 4) written by Kurt Busiek, pencilled and inked by George Perez Oh man! Having grown up with Crisis, this series reminds me why I fell in love with comics in the first place. For anyone who didn't grow up with Crisis or Teen Titans, the look and feel of this series may seem old school, but me, I'm a kid all over again! It's not deep or thought provoking or angst ridden, but it was never meant to be that in the first place. It's done for the sheer enjoyment of seeing super powered heroes in colorful costumes from different companies duking it out with George Perez at the helm. To me, superhero comics are never more fun!

The SANDMAN: Endless Nights Special. Neil Gaiman and Miguelanxo Prado. Gaiman really has a way with words and concepts. Brilliant little story about the beginning of everything. I don't know who this artist is, well I know him now, but he's really good. X-Men artist Frank Quitely has a pinup here which is a lot better than most of his X-men work. If he colored his illustration too, I'm sold! That coloring is really really good.

ACROSS THE UNIVERSE: The DC Universe Stories of ALAN MOORE At last! I've been nearly killing myself looking for these stories but it had been darned near impossible. Great of DC to compile all of Alan's stories for DC (outside of Swamp Thing and Watchmen) in one book. I've been aching to read a lot of these stories for such a long time. Needless to say, after having read most of the book by now, I gotta say with much more conviction: Alan Moore is fucking brilliant. There. Nothing more can be said.