Saturday, 6 March 2010

Random Roundup Reprise

God, it's been a month since my last post! I've not been particularly busy with other things but my sense of apathy is pretty much creeping into most aspects of things, but here's a general update on some stuff...
Art: I've not drawn for myself or for simple pleasure since god knows when but I've managed to still have a trickle of work requests coming in. Above is a portrait of a work colleague's parents (and I have to draw another colleague as a Kick-Ass character!) as well as some preliminary logo designs for a new organisation. Lurking around the corner are a website ident and a pic of somebody's pets...
Film and TV: Although it's just been confirmed for a tenth season (and who'd have thought it would run that long when first announced?), we're still waiting for the 9th season of Smallville to arrive, leaving me with only Heroes to watch each week. Tone has been supplying me with West Wing boxsets to fill the void but now Lost has returned for it's final season, there's some joy to be found there at least...y'know, Matthew Fox has said that he knows what the series' final image will be, if it's Jack waking up as his plane lands and he says "Oh, I just had the weirdest dream", I won't be pleased..
I can't remember the last film I saw that really wowed me so I've also been buying some cheap anime and comic-related animated DVDs (Planet Hulk and Justice League: Crisis On Two) to fill Worlds) help fill the void in my watching habits. The best thing I've seen recently is an anime called The Girl Who Leapt Through Time...the title says it all but it's a nice character-based story that the Japanese handle so effortlessly.
Reading: I've barely made headway into Kevin Smith's latest book and haven't even started Sam & Max, the Fables novel, but have been making headway through Fahrenheit 451. I find Bradbury's use of poetic descriptions both interesting and annoying: sometimes he will sacrifice clarity for a turn of phrase so quite often I'm jarred by some of the passages. Nevertheless, I'm enjoying the book but not as much as I expected to.
Having just completed the Rocketeer Complete Collection deluxe edition, I'm now turning to the small stack of manga I have. Traditionally I've been put off by manga but have found that I prefer the character-based (presumably) girl's manga than the action packed boys manga. My three problems with manga are:
1. Sometimes a story goes on for volume after volume and I just don't have the time to invest in such prolonged serials.
2. Sometimes you can be frustrated if a series is not completely translated: for instance, I picked up a Dark Horse edition of a manga called Shadow Star from a bargain bin and surprisingly enjoyed it but when I Wikipedia'ed it, I found that Dark Horse only translated the first few volumes so that sours me against buying the rest as it'll never be completed.
3. There's so much manga, just sifting through the shelves to find a first volume with an art style I like and a premise I like can be damned near impossible.
As a result, I've been using Amazon alot and would recommend searching out Runaways and Buffy the Vampire Slayer cover artist Jo Chen's two-volume manga, The Other Side of the Mirror. I own but haven't read the second volume yet but Chen's elegant linework (as seen at the top of the post) is among the most attractive I've seen in manga and would love to find more.
Work: well, it pays the bills, dunnit?