Some drawings/studies of one of my personal characters. He's just radically different from how I normally draw, so he's always a bit of a challenge for me. Coincidentally, he's also my "art block" character, I draw him whenever I'm stuck in an art rut and usually drawing this guy helps me get out of it.
It's actually just some cheap white gel pen I bought a few years back. I use masking fluid occasionally too, but that's more for larger areas, rather than lines, since I haven't really found a way to apply it precisely enough.
Does writing count as art, or is this only for unrelated graphics work, not writing arts? I guess there's only one way to find out - here's a thing I wrote today because I was bored.
An old philosopher once asked "what's a war good for?"
A cynical man might answer that war is good for business, or good for getting re-elected. The cynical man would be right, but he'd be missing one important thing.
War is good for progress. It's good for science. Jet aircraft, nuclear energy, space rockets, all were first put to the grisly use of ending human lives because they lived on a different section of land than we did. And when the war was over, they made life better for everyone.
The old world has spent the past two centuries embroiled in war. War after war, too many to keep track of and many of little consequence other than killing millions of people. And us? Well, we took the progress they made trying to find an advantage in those wars, and used it to get the hell out of there.
A more recent philosopher once said that "War is an Old World thing - the New Worlds are beyond such barbarity." I don't think it's a matter of nobility - it's a matter of survival. Out here on the dunes of Mars or the seas of Titan or the skies of Venus, it's dangerous enough with everyone working together. War on the New Worlds would just kill all of us.
We tried not to get involved. Sure, we're all colonies of one great old nation or another, but whenever orders came in saying to attack the colony nearby because of some war that just broke out on Earth, we politely ignored them, or did only the minimum needed. The old world was content with out nominal allegiance, and we were content not to destroy the tenuous hold we had on the planet.
The last war, though... that was one for the history books. The United States (it hasn't been "of America" for several decades now) and China were fighting, and this time they were out for blood. I don't exactly understand why, probably some corporate dispute or resource grab, but point is, they were trying to wipe each other out. Both sides called for absolute genocide of the other. We were told that if we didn't go wipe out the Chinese colony out on the plains, that once the war was over there'd be a fleet coming to wipe us out for disobedience. The Chinese colony got the same message. Our leaders got together, in secret, and hatched a plan - one of us would "surrender" to the other, after enough fighting to make it look like we tried. That way neither of us would get in trouble with the motherland back on Earth, and when the war was over, some diplomats can negotiate everything back to how it was, and Mars will just go on regardless.
Well, we had a secret vote, and we decided to surrender to the Chinese colony rather than vice versa. They came in, threw some commanders like me into prison to make it look like they'd taken over, then slowly started "appointing" those same people back into jobs that had the same duties as before, just a new title - I went from "chief commissioner" to "special supervisor second class". Other than that and changing the three flags we had in the entire colony, nothing changed.
That is, at least, until the war ended. And it ended with the mother of all bangs - the United States redirected a small asteroid to slam into China. Whoever survived the impact died of starvation, or the extermination squads they sent in once the dust settled out of the stratosphere. Killed about five billion people, only half of them actually Chinese.
So now we're stuck. The fleet is on its way. We can't just switch sides again - they'll be killing the Chinese anyways, and we're now "patriotically contaminated". In other words, they're going to kill all of us just because we picked the wrong team.
We can't evacuate - we never had enough ships to carry our current population out, and half of them haven't flown since emigration. Surrender is a guaranteed death sentence. Diplomacy has failed - they'll keep trying, but it's hopeless.
So we're going to fight. We're probably going to lose. They outnumber us a hundred to one, they're veterans of multiple world wars, they have superior equipment and training. Our one advantage is that this is OUR land. This is OUR planet. This is our HOME. We've known this planet from the day we were born. We know the dangers of this planet, and we know how to survive them. They do not.
An old philosopher once said "war is hell". Well, Mars is a frozen, wind-blasted hell, worse than anything Dante or Sherman could have imagined, and we've fought it and won every time we woke to a new sol. So when that fleet gets here, let's show those bastards what a real hell looks like.
-- Commander John Prince, First United Mars Defense Force, MSD 93935
-- transcription of a speech given to new MDF recruits, 73 days before the start of the War for Martian Independence
I did 12 comic pages for a mini-comic I am putting together for an upcoming convention in Maine. The idea for the comic is loosely based on Ryan North's DINOSAUR COMICS in that each page has the same layout and characters, but the facial expressions change a bit. Here's one of the pages, in honor of tomorrow night's WWE WRESTLEMANIA XXX