Week 117 – new apartment, newsletter?

This is a weekly recap of what has been going on in my professional life. It’s to keep track of what I’m up to and to give you a peek at what it’s like being an independent creator. For illustrated depictions of these events, visit my daily comics page.

Last week was quite eventful. We went to look at a new apartment on monday, claimed it, signed the lease on thursday, and rented out our old apartment to someone new on sunday! Finding a new place is kind of a pain, but sometimes you get lucky and things move really quickly. Now I get to focus on the slew of things to take care of for the move, like internet, parking permits, etc. Fun! It would be nice if moving became more like restoring an iCloud backup.

Other things happened last week too. I did some tweaks to the food icons I made for the Radboud game last week, and I worked another two days at Yoast, getting around to doing some actual artwork. On thursday the staff went for drinks and I got to know them a bit more. They’re very diverse in terms of backgrounds and expertise, but somehow it all works well together.

On a personal level I thought about the future of these weekly work updates. When I start working at Yoast four days a week there won’t be that much to report on probably, so I considered starting a newsletter to keep you guys in the loop on personal projects, once a month or so, whenever there is something to say. Would that be interesting, or should I keep doing round-ups like that on the blog here? Let me know.

I also did some groundwork on the Off-Stage website. I plan to (finally) continue updating that strip once I’ve settled into my new work routine.

Next week: Last week at my old side job, finishing up my freelance projects, and moving my ass to a new city.

Week 78

This is a weekly recap of what has been going on in my professional life. It’s to keep track of what I’m up to and to give you a peek at what it’s like being an independent creator.

Last week started off with the inevitable drawing off an off-stage comic. I tried something new by drawing two short comic instead of one long one. I’m planning to publish the shorter ones inbetween the big ones every week, but this time they replaced it completely.

I also worked on one of my newyears resolutions: daily comics.

dailies_20150114

I had to think about where I was gonna put ’em – I don’t need ANOTHER site for you to check out – but then I learned about WordPress’ Portfolio feature, which basically lets me run two feeds on the same blog. So you may notice DAILIES has been added to the menu up there, (or click straight through here), where you can find a nice page with all the comics.
There will be one for mostly every day, though they may not go up on the same day. So if you want to grab the rss feed to stay up-to date from your favorite feed reader app, use this one.

One problem I had with doing the dailies again is that I had to update my caricature. The last time I did dailies was in 2009, when I wasn’t rocking a beard yet. Most attempts to add a beard to my avatar since then have not felt quite right yet. So I’ll keep at it! Let me know when you think I’ve hit the mark.

If you’re looking for more daily comics from illustrators, check out Kevin Days A Week, Inkdick or Johhny Wander.

Other than that I’ve just been enjoying my part-time job and staying away from twitter and gamesindustry newssites for the most part. It feels good to not have to care about all the drama that comes in through those channels every day. I found myself having more free time, which I used to finish Watch_Dogs (hella good) and work through my movie backlog; if you’re into time-travel mindfucks, I recommend Predestination.

Next week: business projects.

Updating Suze’s wardrobe

Suzanne from my webcomic Off-Stage has been wearing the same outfit as when the comic started, as have her co-stars for the most part. Having a single well-designed and recognizeable outfit is great and works for many comic characters – but Suze’s could have used a few more iterations. So I wrote a subplot where she changes her appearance a little, and went in search of a better outfit.

The two big issues I had were with her hair (that fringe was always hard to draw from different angles) and her shirt was tough to get right; sometimes it accentuated her form in a way a loose-fitting garment like that could not, but to draw it realistically would turn her into a square blob. So besides the hair I also updated her wardrobe. I tried a few things but eventually stayed closed to the original, which felt like the best match visually and with her personality (far left is the original, the NEW YORK shirt is the chosen design).

Week 76

This is a weekly recap of what has been going on in my professional life. It’s to keep track of what I’m up to and to give you a peek at what it’s like being an independent creator.

Hey there, welcome to 2015. A new year, and a new coat of paint for the blog.

In the last week of 2014 I translated my site into dutch as part of my 2015 resolution of focusing more on the dutch market (more on that later). I’m still doing the same for the presskit content – thanks to the just-released presskit() 2.5 update!

To start off 2015 I wrote down some of my goals, business/art-wise. I wasn’t going to do it at first, but when I thought of one thing I was already doing – learning Illustrator – the rest came naturally.

So here they are in no particular order:

learn illustrator
I never really ‘got’ what it was for, but with more and more art moving into vector I felt like I had to sit down and learn it front to back.

translate my portfolio into dutch
The past few months I’ve realised that I never really put much thought into the dutch market. I do work for dutch clients (and with this VATMOSS business I’m happy sticking to that), but my portfolio never reflected that, nor did my own projects. I always focused on the international, but I can see now there is merit in romancing the dutch side of things as well.

start doing daily comics again
Back in my third year of art school I drew daily comics every now and then, just as a sort of diary. Nowadays a lot of people do a vlog – it’s basically the same idea. It helps me remember the small moments and find a punchline in ordinary situations. I want to start doing those again, and combining them with these weeknotes maybe.

get my art/cartoons into a (dutch) (comic) magazine
Magazines are a largely unexplored area for me, and I think I can expand the sort of semi-weekly cartoons I do for The Post Online into that realm.

off-stage
I have a couple of ambitions for Off-Stage – increase the readership through targeted advertising, finish chapter 2, and start doing smaller updates more than once a week. I like the full-page format I’m drawing in now, but I’d like to start doing two-or-three-panel gags inbetween those.

And ofcourse I’ll be working on Black Feather Forest again in the future, plus a few other goals I’m keeping up my sleeve for now. It’s plenty to keep busy with, I’d say.

Next week: keeping busy with it.