Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Down the Rabbit Hole

When the idea came up to start a multimedia company that combined aspects of writing, art, video and idea generating my response, put simply, was why not? I met Mark, Joe and Nick in a seemingly haphazard way, in the same way that all coincidences seem more like fate (or is it the other way around?) After all, we are talented individuals who possess certain skill-sets; who's to say we couldn't make a real go at this thing? And by "this thing," I guess I mean entertainment (to put it vaguely), whether it's movies, comics, shorts or some combination of them all. We already participate in these various entertainment mediums, so why not start creating them? The Hollywood prototype is a shambling and dusty monstrosity, and the comic world is facing the same technological shift that has already claimed the lives of Blockbuster and Borders Books. We are not looking to reinvent the wheel, only to make sure it rolls more smoothly. This is entertainment created by the fans, for the fans.

So why not? The talent is there, and so is the desire. Anybody who's ever made a living doing what they love will tell you that above all you must want it so much it hurts.Of course it takes more than talent and desire to be successful. All your desires will amount to nothing if you don't put in the work, and that to me is the crux. Work, work and then work some more. Do it insatiably and never give up. Like Guru says, "put in work, and watch your status escalate." You will be disappointed, rejected and put down. You will look at your own work and be dissatisfied. All of this is good. It means you're on the right track. Think about it this way: the worst case scenario is that you fail. Once you get over that thought you are completely fearless. Go and do it.


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Inside the Laboratory: Behind the Scenes at Imaginos Workshop

Part I - The Idea

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that anything worth a damn begins with an idea.  Now that doesn’t necessarily make it a good thing because the idea could be a terrible piece of shit…but we try to avoid that here at Imaginos Workshop.  Let us begin…

September 21st 2011

                Mark met me at the Bloomfield Township Public Library and we were going over updates for our presentation at Detroit FanFare later that weekend.  During that meeting he mentioned the possible stories for our second sampler which was to be released during summer 2012.  There were a couple of stories that were already slotted for the sampler but then he turned to me and said “I want you, Joe and Jon to come up with an entirely new comic idea.” 

                When he said that I stared at him for a couple of seconds and then realized he was dead serious.  I wasn’t scared just pleasantly surprised that he wanted something new.  Mark was asking Jon, Joe and I to act upon the basic principle of Imaginos Workshop which is to create and develop a new idea.  When I told the news to Joe and Jon their reactions were in step with their personas – Joe had a mildly surprised look and Jon had the same neutral mask on. 

                We immediately started brainstorming ideas – Joe and I talked about one idea that would encapsulate the action/fantasy/horror genres during a car ride from Ann Arbor.  Mark placed no restrictions on us – basically telling us everything was on the table as far as genres.  At the time of this blog entry all three of us are currently brainstorming.  Since we know that the other two stories in the second sampler are of the religious and sci-fi futuristic types we wanted to offer something different – this would give the sampler a nice balance.

                There are times when Joe, Jon and I will each come up with a different take on a specific genre in which case we sometimes mix & match certain details that work while editing out the ones that do not necessarily fit – we never completely discard any details because you just never know when they’ll come in handy.  We all have different processes as well – I usually enjoy opening up a Word Document and just typing while listening to my Pandora music. 

I’d like to say I know how Joe and Jon go about their madness but I prefer the mystery.  Sometimes I resort to the ‘Brick Method’ which is named after the delightfully moronic character Brick from the movie ‘Anchor Man’.  This involves me looking around my surroundings and cobbling together words – I kid…sometimes.  In the end though we’re usually able to construct a premise for the story from our ideas and then we move on to fleshing out the characters which consequently helps fill out further details to the overall story.
Stay tuned for next week’s installment where we’ll go into details of fleshing out the ideas going from character development to plot points.  Thanks everyone, I’m out.

Detroit Fanfare

I have to say as our first outing together as IMAGINOS WORKSHOP, we met our goal of getting the word out and then some. The day started out rough but we pulled it together quite nicely. Our table was constantly getting attention and people were asking plenty of questions about the characters. This week we will start populating the blog or maybe a small webpage with the character profiles.

Then we will start to show parts of the page work as we lead up to our launch next year.
I just wanted to thank everyone of our friends for showing up and giving us the support that they did. I made all of the difference. Alexa and Anna really did a great job on a very hard day. They knew their stuff ( better than I did) about the products and people saw that and were impressed. GOOD JOB EVERYBODY!! Next up C2E2.


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Fanfare Business

As you all know, Imaginos Workshop will make it's official debut as as company this weekend at Detroit Fanfare. I pulled an all nighter and got the Poster that we will be giving out done, I also got our banner done.

I still have to get back to the entries but as we are doing them on the net now We just need to get 6 color ones done, 5 inked and 5 penciled to show are process. Good Job everyone, we are learning and getting better. Keep up the good work.


Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Burning the Candle at Both Ends

Hey Everyone,

         We're four days out from Detroit Fan Fare 2011 and getting close to unveiling our first project.  While Joe, Jon and I have been working hard towards our launch, nobody has put in as much work as Mark Dudley.  To give you an example as to how hard he's busting his ass, the man's been putting in 32 hours of work in a 24 hour day.  He's also balancing a 9 to 5, family life and Imaginos Workshop projects while budgeting a few minutes of sleep and food somewhere in there. 

         Mark sets the tone for us and when he's working through the day & night it motivates us to work harder.  Of course the general forfeiture of sleep we all endure contributes to our creativity at Imaginos Workshop.  Naturally this adds a tinge of madness to most of our ideas but its a welcome consequence.  Despite all the hard work, speaking for myself, this is a lot of fun and Mark has been a big part of that by leading by example. 


Monday, September 19, 2011

It's been a rough couple of weeks for us guys here at Imaginos Workshop. Understaffed and Overworked, we are bringing our A GAME to make sure that you guys get as much information concerrning our products as can during the 2011 Detroit Fanfare.

So far we have the poster inked and being flatted right now. We still need to get a number of entiries done for the source book, colored and inked.

We will most likely be setting to portfolio up in sections anyway, some colored, some inked and some pencilled so as to show the production process and an appreciation for what goes into the work.

I will be putting up a piece that Joe Cain flatted later today. Good Job Joe Cain.

Under pressure but not sweating it

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Inks Inks and more Inks!!!!

I have been inking boatloads of stuff this week. I have currently finished 9 pages of a 10 page run on Detroit Tradecraft's THE DOOR. I also just finished inking her SIEGE PENCILS. Nik should be flatting those as we speak. Today is going to be the wrappup for page 10, I will ink the WARWITCH ZEE pencils and probably in another piece.

Here is a shot of the finished inks on the SIEGE, YOBI pieces which I also pencilled(drew). as well as a few pages from THE DOOR that I recently inked, drawn by my colleague Marco Evans.


Monday, September 12, 2011

Here is a mockup of a Candy Coated show opener I did for my video editing class. I am gonna refine the heck out of this thing using anime studio as well as Power Director and maybe even Aftereffects.
Let me know what you think.


Friday, September 9, 2011

Coming Soon

Hey Everyone,

              Mark's been kind in his praise but to be fair he showed me how to 'flat'.  The toughest part was actually picking the colors but otherwise the overall process is not as time consuming as I originally thought.  As long as you follow a couple of simple rules it is not too complicated but then again I was only instructed to do base coloring.  Its a lot of fun and it makes you feel involved in the art process of the project.  I also feel like its a good skill to learn especially if it will help Mark out since he's essentially our only principal artist right now. 

             'Flatting' also helps me in the writing process because as I'm adding colors sometimes I'll get an idea about that particular character stemming from a strange symbol on their armor or just seeing them for the first time (which was the case regarding the Villains file you see below).  I was lucky enough to practice what I learned on some of Mark's work from his deviant art page so that gave me confidence.  Once you get the hang of the basic functions the whole process really flows smoothly.  If a luddite like myself can do it then trust me all of you can do it and probably with better results.  I was making up colors as I went along praying that I got some of them right.  But really there was no pressure because Mark was there to help make sure I didn't pick something too crazy and not to mention Joe and Jon would also catch any mistakes.  That's the fun part of having a crew to work with - it creates a nice safety net which eases the stress.

             Stay tuned because very soon we'll be launching a weekly installment on just how we work on projects here at Imaginos Workshop - starting with the concept of a story and then going through the process of fleshing it out, creating the world and finally making it ready to present to the world.  It'll be a nice little window into our creative mad-house.

              So  until next time take care and.....ok look....I'm not good with ending blog posts...I got no fancy catch phrase or cool parting words....just a whole lot of its weird too...damn it I need to come up with a sign off.


This is how it's done!!!

I praised Nik for his fast learning in the realm of digital color flatting in the last post. I also promised to show examples."Flatting" is the process of apply flat colors to artwork so that it can later be "rendered". Rendering is the addition of shadows and highlights to create the illusion of shape, form and mood in color pieces.

 Good flatting and having someone else flat help the person rendering the color are by saving them time in having to mask of sections of the art. 

Nik just flatted this piece for a video we are doing for Detroit Fanfare to showcase our superhero comedy comicbook Candy Coated. This first piece is a shot of the villains.

Nik did a great job keeping things within the inked boundaries here. He also did a great job with color selection, in my opinion. Next is a shot of our heroes CANDY COATED!! I included this shot to show you the beginning of what I do with Nik's flats.

Notice the big guy. He was originally a flat color brown. I added the details to created an "animated cell style look. As you can see below we can also so other things with Nik's flatted work. Like comic book style colors; 

notice the characters top. I have rendered it using the gradation tool in photoshop on a screen setting.

I just wanted to show you guys what good flats mean and how Nik seems to be mastering the concept in such a short time. Good Job Nik!!


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Getcha Grind On!!

Busy! Busy! Busy!

Time management is the operative term for the next week and a half, as we enter the home stretch as it relates to getting IMAGINOS DECLASSIFIED done and ready to go to the printers. So far I am swamped with school and finishing inks and graytones on the Detroit Tradecraft book THE DOOR issue 2.

Thus I am going to have to really hall ass on Imaginos stuff just to make sure it gets done, on time and properly.
I have to say that asking Nik and Joe to do color flats for the characters in the book is probably the smartest thing I have done in a while. Nik showed me flats for two things he did yesterday and I gotta say that for a beginner, I WAS HIGHLY IMPRESSED!!!. Nik's flat work is very tight, tight enough to post one of the pieces later tonight.

Joe and Jon have coordinate now and get some of the odds and ends done, like new business cards and ads and the like but overall,, I am really confident about this book. I cant't wait until it is in you guys hands as it is one hell of an introduction to the IMAGINOS MULTIVERSE!!

Here is a Sneek Peak at one of the pages for the DOOR issue 2 that I just inked!!!!!


Thursday, September 1, 2011

A Delayed Greeting

Hey everyone,

This is my first entry to the iMaginos workshop blog, because I enjoy being fashionably late to everything I’m involved in. (It has very little to do with my crippling procrastination). My other excuse is a remarkable trip to South Korea, which has me just now emerging from the crushing retardation of jet-lag. In a way it is nice to be back in the States, where all my family and friends reside, and where everything doesn’t smell like fish and hot garbage. (That’s not entirely fair to South Korea, but Seoul is a large city with many smells). Enough with the rambling: I’ll tell you something about myself. I am a recent college grad with a degree in English and a Concentration in Film from Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan. I’ve grown up in the metro Detroit area my entire life and somewhere along the line my sense of self has become inextricably linked with this area, for better or worse. My interests include photography, film, comics, reading, writing and music, and not in that order. I’ve always been hesitant to describe those things as “hobbies,” because to me that term means something to do when you’re bored. I would say this belittles the only things in life that I am interested in doing. For me, those things are Life. And that’s why I think what we’re doing with iMaginos Workshop is so cool. We’re making something that is creative and awesome, and hopefully engaging on a level that transcends simple entertainment. In essence, we are telling stories. I’d say a pretty good motto for this endeavor, and for that matter life in general is: tell a good story. Do that, and you won’t have wasted your time here. Here’s to telling a good story.