Sunday, January 30, 2011

Back in Your Head

Here's who is probably my best friend for millenia to come, Stephanie Herrera, who, by the way, just started a blog! Hooray for Steph!

You can't lie and say you don't have trouble drawing women. Pretty ones, at that. I was considering using her as a model for one of the characters who gets intimate with Caution, but then I thought it was really, really weird, considering Caution is based from my younger brother, Manuel Espiritu. The hunt continues for that character opposite Caution.

Anyway, this image is a breakdown of how I continue to struggle with Stephanie's drawn version. At least, MY drawn version. I'm not necessarily asking for help, but it is welcome.

I just wanted to post this because, I think Steph's a great artist.
And I like Stephanie Herrera.

A lot.


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Is it me, or do I like a lot of comic artists from Brazil?

I was flipping through the newest issue of Wired I got in the mail a couple of days ago. (Yeah, I still subscribe to magazines. You should, too!) February's Wired is dedicated to the underworld. Essentially, all things secret, illegal, unknown or infamous--all things associated with what most people would call the "Dark Side".

One article that caught my attention was titled, "Criminal Code." It was about cyber criminal tools (keyloggers, phishing, denial-of-service, etc.) and how they're now all available for purchase. Interesting enough, right?

What really arrested me was the spot for this article by Rafael Grampa.

I looked him up, and I think I became a fan within minutes of scrolling through his Google-translated blog.

It's not just the work.

Ok, it is the work.

It's energetic. The same reason I like Paul Pope, Nathan Fox, Becky Cloonan, Paolo Rivera, Marcos Martin, Fabio Moon, Gabriel Ba--there's electricity in their ink.

(Ironic, since lightning is bright and ink is dark.)

I think I wanna do this with a group of friends one day. And everyone should be restricted to ink!

Alright! Back to the gig.

All images (c) Rafael Grampa -

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Weekend Update

Well, yesterday was a particular wake-up call of sorts. I realized how much had I time left in school, and it isn't much. Then I realized how much time I have left until I have to have my senior exhibition done, which is even less. Let's just say, I was lazy for the last couple of months and I have no one to blame but myself.

I'm finishing all these other side projects while I'm trying to pull the parts of my senior show together and make it good.

Here's one of those side projects.

This is a tattoo for a friend named Brenna Kerwin. I usually don't like drawing tattoo designs for people because, too often, a person will give me too little information about what he wants, or no information at all (Estiene)! Initially, I wanted to draw the floral/tribal tiger in a really awesome perspective, but I just ended up not doing it because I don't know how to draw a tiger. Sure, I could visit a local zoo. However, time just wasn't on my side.

Here are some color sketches:

I know Brenna likes navy blue. (I usually see her wearing that, I guess.)

So, for my senior exhibition, I settled on doing a black and white comic. Some of the professors who reviewed what I had planned were questioning why there wasn't color, but then why isn't there color in black and white photography? Graphite drawings? Franz Kline's work? Sometimes, (fine) art instructors piss me off.

Well, a few years ago, I became a fan of Adrian Tomine's work. It's real stuff. I know some will argue that, in comics, there are no limits and there's no point in portraying reality. I know that there's a way to portray issues metaphorically, through fantasy and super-heroes and cartoon animals, but there's something about the control Tomine uses with the art and the dialogue in his comics. Plus, he's an independent creator. Like Mignola, Brian Wood, Robert Kirkman--there's something to respect about that.

A couple of weeks ago I completed some studies of the protagonist in the comic I'm developing.
Here it is!

I think the sketches came out pretty well.

So did the inks.

I'm going to try to be consistent with updates on th' blog.

Here's what to expect:
  • A Tale of Caution (Senior Exhibition)
  • Instigatorzine
  • Gothic Card designs
  • spontaneous drawings and paintings
  • on-going commissions
  • indulgent material (comics, film, music, art, etc.)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Baby, I'm howlin' for you

Halfway there.

This painting is turning out to be a lot of fun once I embraced the idea that I could make a mistake. Which happens more often than not in watercolors.

The Black Keys have been on heavy repeat on my music player, and I don't think I'll ever get tired of them. Same goes for The White Stripes, The Hives, LCD Soundsystem, The Beatles, and several others. It's good when you can find music you can't seem to tire of.


I think this is one of my favorite spots I did for Instigatorzine.

Published way back in April 2010, this neat sepia ink painting was illustrated for a poem called "Divorce" by Sean L. Fitts.

Every time I
stand from my chair, I
reach for the old couch,
but the old couch
isn't there.
The old couch
was higher than
the new one
in its place.
So, every time I
reach for it, I

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Some things.

So, with this being a new year, I decided to change how I'm blogging. I'm gonna try to put more effort into these posts, as opposed to simply uploading an image and publishing.

These first two images are just some of the ink washes I used as experiments to try and find out how to do a certain effect. They looked pretty plain before I scanned them, but after putting the washes through Photoshop, the effect was more obvious.

The actual source of my inspiration for playing around with these is on Sean Phillips' blog, where he once posted an illustration of The Shadow in Incognito #1.

As you can observe, I didn't quite achieve the same visual that Phillips did, but I'm getting there, I think. Maybe I have to change my surface.

The next couple of sketches were done on the subway while dropping off some things in Brooklyn.

They're really sloppy (as they were done on a couple of bouncy trains). Pretty sure the first one is of a woman's interesting purse, sitting on her lap. A lot of textures there. The second sketch is of two different people. One strap-hanger, one woman digging through her bag. Try to find her face among the ink.

Last but not first, more instruments I drew for my little brother's music project.
Percussion. (Harp? I didn't know that.)

Until next time!

(The new year isn't quite so happy, by the way.)