Saturday, January 29, 2011

Of Multi-Cultural Steampunk, Showcasing Art in Faraway Lands and Agent Jiang

Hello all!  How are ya?  It's been a week and I've missed talking to you but I'm back with a couple of things to share while Nessa is getting some sleep before our busy weekend.

I had a great opportunity this week to send some of my art to Boston to be displayed in an upscale coffee shop.  Nessa's sister, Sarah got it all set up for me, the owner liked my work and it seemed like a slam dunk.  Once I did the research, I realized that displaying my art will involve a lot more preparation on my part.  After calculating printing one copy of each piece, framing them using the cheapest frames I could get away with using and then shipping, I found that it was going to cost a little over $300.  Then other questions arose:  What if the owner wants more than one copy of each piece?  How much is insurance?  What if they don't sell?  Having never done anything like this, I had no idea of the up-front costs.  The conclusion:  A little too cost-prohibitive right now but I will do this at a later time and I'll give myself time to save up.  Thank you, Sarah!  We'll definitely revisit this in a few months...

So by now you know that I have more than a passing interest in Steampunk.  It's new, (so to speak) it's groovy and it's rife with possibilities.  Most steampunk is geared (ha, ha, ha. OK, not so funny really...) towards a Victorian English setting.  So I started thinking, "How would you portray a steampunk character from a different culture?"  Now while I freely admit that this is not an original idea, it still opens a door to some interesting possibilities.  What would a clockwork samurai look like?  Would an Irish character look any different than an English one?  How would an African steampunk warrior dress?  It's all very intriguing!

To continue this thought, I pulled an older piece out of mothballs and revamped it with my eye towards doing a multi-cultural steampunk character.  May I present all the way from China, Agent Jiang - the newest member of Sargas Prime.  She has danced upon the Affinity Bridge of Fengdu and battled Tick-Tock Tigers in Wuhan. She stole the Omega Engine from Fu Manchu himself, which earned her the nickname, "Ghost." I caution you to treat her well because you will not see her coming if you don't.

This will be on sale in my Etsy shop very soon, but in the meantime, please comment and let me know what you think!  I'd love to hear from you.   :)  'Til next time...
- Chaz -
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  1. Beautiful coloring! Very Mucha-esque.

    With your question about the wacom tablet: At first the brushes were frustrating me, because the textures looked too regular and not natural, but I realized that I didn't have the brush dynamics/pressure sensitivity turned on and that helped a LOT! After that, I actually liked the look of many of the strokes I made and was willing to leave it looser than I normally work. In general, much smoother than using a mouse to color, but not faster yet. With more practice, I think it will be.

    It's frustrating (lots of ctrl-z) and I feel like I'll have to work on MANY more sketches like this before I start too feel comfortable. I also forgot to put the background on a separate layer, which would have helped too.

  2. Thank you very much for the compliment!

    I think that using the tablet would add something unique to my drawings so I may bite the bullet and go for it soon! (I really like your shading) Thanks for the details on using one - very helpful. So which tablet would you recommend?

  3. A great re-working, Chaz. She should be a superstar for you!