Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Does whatever a Spider can!

Have i mentioned i'm a big fan of Spiderman? The cartoon, the comics, bedspreads etc. My comic book income was very intermittent, but i did manage to get a whole lot of comics before the infamous Clone Saga. And of course, a lot of comics during said Saga. Also, i was looking at my drawing of Batman and i realised i hadn't drawn ol' web head in a while.

Todays illustration is brought to you with the combined power of Flash and Photoshop. It's like a Black Mage and a Knight teaming up to deliver awesome fighting scenes! Except not.

Monday, March 30, 2009

He dresses up like a bat

I been draw this in Flash, which i never used to like...draw seriously. It was interesting :D

Services that benefit Humankind


Sunday, March 29, 2009

What my job is like

this is totally how a normal day at the office is.

Friday, March 27, 2009

The Ducks are alright to Touch

I had the trippiest dream this afternoon. Started out with me going to this hotel up in the mountains somewhere with my dad. The place looked temperate, not tropical you know? kind of like a snow lodge sort of thing. We unpacked, and my dad said he was having a sleep, so i should go explore the hotel. 

I walked around the grounds for a while, and then the main building. There were a lot of like...really attractive women there but i didn't feel like talking to them.  For some reason it was more important for me to explore this place. I decided to make my way back to our room, when i bumped a middle aged woman and she dropped her glass. She was having lunch with a companion who was a large fat man. He kinda looked like santa without the suit. 

I apologised profusely and went to go get her a new glass from the bar. The barman was Hugh Grant. He gave me the glass and said "weird dream isn't it?" That kinda confused me, since i didn't think i was in a dream at the time. "it gets worse." he said ominously. I handed the lady her new glass and she thanked me. They offered me their room number for some reason, and i declined. 

Then here's the weird part, i went to sleep in the room. Not the woman and her fat friends room though, i've just read that bit and that would have been weird. I meant, it was weird that i went to sleep in my dream :P . A short while later i wake up and in my underwear, open the balcony to look at the mountains. A low mist washes over the mountains and forms this huge factory across the river. It was some pretty cool special effects i must say. So i put on some clothes and make my way to the factory, which i discover comes up to my waist. 

Like Alice at the talking door i bend down to look inside and find it full of animals. Little tiny farmyard creatures, but mostly pigs and sheep. For some reason, i wanted to play with them, so i crawled into the factory. Then it gets weirder, because everytime i touch an animal, it goes flying and bursts open, blood and meat and guts flying everywhere. I start crying, because everything i touches dies. 

As i cry, the factory gets bigger, until i seem to be about normal sized. I enter a room full of ducks sitting on a counter. I am scared to touch the ducks. Eventually i get up enough courage to lightly touch one. It quacks. Ecstatic, i grab the duck and hug it. One whole wall of the room slowly lifts, revealing a gigantic computer screen full of charts and graphs. I try to read the words, but of course, you can't read in dreams, but i get the impression that this is some of training facility. 

Then of course i wonder why i can't read the words properly, and i wake up. 

That might have been the weirdest dream ever.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

More things on the Computer Screen!

Sometimes, when theres a lull in the work at the office i will draw things. And then cut them out. And then stick them on the moniter.


Things on the computer screen!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

That is why the Fat Man must die

I neither condone smoking nor grammar policing, i just had some free time and was thinking about both these things :P

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

What I'm Wasting my money on Currently

Fallout 3. Why it is good. Discuss.

The sheer idea of it sells itself as wonderful. It's a post-apocalyptic wasteland, full of raiders, mutants and giant ants that breath fucking fire. Seriously, those fire breathing ones scared the hell out of me the first time i met them. I was wandering around on the outskirts of the capitol when i saw an ant in the distance. Meh, i thought, an ant. Time to get some batting practice. So i sauntered up and bopped it on the head with my baseball bat. It then proceeded to turn around and set me on fire.

I also like the different morality choices, and how you can play completely different games from other people. Personally, I'm a pretty friendly guy. I will help people out, i'm polite and i try my hardest to reach a solution with a minimum amount of bloodshed. Doesn't mean i'm bad at fighting, but i will try the diplomatic route first.

Wilson and i play pretty similarly, he put a lot of his skill points into the speech option, which i found interesting. His character is a talker, and although we're both the sort of guys who play good characters, i think that i usually let my guns do the talking in the end.

John on the other hand, is a different kettle of fish. He will kill everyone. He killed the damn dog that's supposed to be your companion for crying out loud. Someone looks at him funny, they die. Someone wanders by him in the wasteland, they die. He was so fucking evil, that when he went to the town of slavers, they got out of his way.

Theres also a sort of randomness to the experience that i like too. I, for example, have yet to see a Deathclaw. They're supposed to be these huge, fast moving demon things that will mess you up three ways to sunday. I have yet to meet one.

But i'm looking forward to it, me and ol' Betsy will be ready too.

The thing fell out

I would write a long post here about Fallout, and how much i've been playing it, but my sister is having a fit about me getting off the computer. So instead, here are some sketches i been make. 

I am particularly proud of Bobby here, my rendition of the Lone Wanderer :D

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Dragonball Evolution Review

Review that appeared today in the Fiji Times, written by meeeee :D Also, look at Goku...look at HIM! They didn't even try to get someone who looks like the guy from the anime. Which would have been hard i admit, most peoples eyes aren't huge and anime-like. O_O

The Dragonball series of manga and anime (Japanese comics and cartoons respectively) are extremely popular in the east and west, mainly because of its simple themes and endearing characters. Drawing on the classical story Journey to the West, it follows the life of Son Goku and his quest of self-improvement through fighting a myriad of enemies. The film is loosely based on the source material, with many changes to make it more modern.

      The story goes that two thousand years ago an alien named Piccolo and his demon servant Oozaru almost destroyed the earth and seven mystics managed to seal him away deep within the earth. In present times, he has escaped and seeks the seven Dragonballs to revive his servant and destroy the world.  Goku with the help of his friends Bulma, Yamcha and Master Roshi, must stop him in order to save the world. A pretty straightforward story, and personally I’ve seen more plot development in an episode of Power Rangers.

      The acting is suitably cheesy, with characters cracking jokes at themselves and no one taking themselves too seriously. Even the villain Piccolo (played by James Marsters under four hours of prosthetics) is so over the top that you can’t take him seriously. The only exception would be the main character of Goku, played by Justin Chatwin. In the comics and anime, the character of Goku is someone who is cheerful and revels in meeting new people and then fighting them. In the film, he’s very serious. As a teenager he appears to have no friends except his grandfather and is kind of a loner. He eventually comes out of his shell, but it’s very contrary not only to the character of Goku, but that of the rest of the cast.

      The casting of Goku was also a point of contention for many fans of the series. James Marsters doesn’t look at all Asian, which one would assume Goku to look like, since it’s based on a Japanese comic book. However, the film developers have explained that since he’s adopted that they could take some liberties with his look. It’s not a huge deal, but does make the main character seem somewhat out of place.

      Ultimately Dragonball Evolution is an action film, and the action is pretty good. It has a healthy dose of humor (which is expected as it was produced by Stephen Chow, who wrote, directed and starred in the excellent Shaolin Soccer and Kung Fu Hustle) although when it tries to be serious it fails. The special effects are amazing though, with fancy fireballs, explosions and crumbling cities that get a deserved oooh and a few aaah’s too.

      In closing, Dragonball Evolution would be the perfect film to take your kids to on a Saturday afternoon. They’ll love the funny characters, boo and hiss at the villain and spend the rest of the day acting out the fighting scenes. Older people though, may find it a bit tiresome, but if you’re looking to escape the heat and eat some popcorn, I can’t not recommend this film.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Was asked to make some t-shirt designs

thought i'd give it a practice run this morning.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Monday, March 9, 2009

Twisted Psyche

So this weekend i had to find something to do to kill some time. My family were all going out and i was the one who drew the short straw to stay  home and "guard the house from threats". So i went to the vidjagame shop and bought me some Psychonauts. I wasn't in the mood for another RPG, Disgaea 2 kinda sucked that outta me for a while, and i wanted a hop and bopper, you know? A platformer that required little brainwork and more manual dexterity. 

I kinda lucked out on Psychonauts. It's the story of Razputin (Raz for short, voiced by Steve Horwitz, the guy who voiced Zim from Invader Zim) a boy who runs away from the circus to become a psychonaut, a kind of psychic secret agent. He ends up at Whispering Rock Summer camp, which is a training camp for psychonauts, where young psi-cadets are trained to harness their powers. Raz has to complete his training as fast as possible, before his dad shows up to take him home to the circus. Of course, something goes terribly wrong, and the other kids have their brains stolen to fuel psychic death tanks (yes, you read that right) and Raz is the only one who can get them back and stop the madman behind it all.
The way i see it, a good platformer has to have good locomotion. The way you control a character, and how they get around the game world has to feel good and responsive to make it truly memorable. Since Raz was raised in the circus, he's very mobile, flipping around and walking tightropes with no problem. Also, he's psychic, and can double jump by bouncing off an orb of psychic energy. Combat is kind of secondary to the puzzles, but they give you a nice array of psychic powers to deal with enemies (including censors, which are little lawyer guys with a big rubber stamp that are mental constructs designed to stamp out foreign thoughts) like Telekinesis, Pyrokinesis (as Raz says, fire is pretty), Psy-blasts and Invisibility. Raz also is too cool to punch things, instead, he uses his mind to project giant psychic hands to beat things up. 

The writing is also wonderful, full of twisted jokes and characters. Thankyou Tim Schafer, you made me laugh this weekend. One of my personal favorites was the one where Raz discovers the reason why there are so many arrowheads (the games currency) around the camp. It's because the camp was built on an ancient Indian Burial ground. They didn't bury their dead there, just arrowheads. The terms for ingame items are cool too, health is Mental Health, Instead of lives you have Astral Projections and you can collect emotional baggage and mental cobwebs from peoples minds. It's the little touches that endear you.
The art style is wonderful, a twisted sort of un-symmetricalness that really makes for different and interesting visuals. If you have some time, check out Scott Campbells blog, he was the art director on the game. Also, the game was released in 2005, which makes me wonder if i'm ever going to be able to play new releases :P

All in all, it gets five slices of cake outta five. Also, i wouldn't mind some psychic powers. 

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Watchmen Review

Review that appeared in Fiji Times yesterday, written by me :D 

Comic book adaptations are the new black. Relying partly on nostalgia for already popular characters to sell tickets is kind of cheap, but it does make for entertaining cinema. Watchmen, written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Ben Gibbons is a Hugo Award winning graphic novel. It has been praised for its depiction of superheroes not as gods and goddesses, but as superbly flawed people who have to make difficult decisions. While wearing spandex.

      The film is extremely faithful to the novel. Much like in 300, Director Zack Snyder seems to have used the book for his storyboards. Visually stunning with a gorgeous washed out palette, the film is high on the eye candy meter. The scenes set in Vietnam (which America wins thanks to its superheroes in this alternate timeline) is particularly well done, with vibrant colors and a wonderfully framed camera.

      Without revealing too much of the plot, the murder of a superhero called the Comedian leads vigilante Rorschach to a conspiracy that could threaten the world. All the other heroes are retired due a government act that requires them to hand in their masks or face prison time. Rorschach is one of the last heroes still active, and he begins to warn other heroes who may be next for the “mask killer”. Thus, we are introduced to our cast of dysfunctional heroes.

      Dr. Manhattan, the only technically “super” hero, who through a scientific experiment gone wrong (do they ever go right?) has the power to manipulate matter on a molecular level. However, he has started to distance himself from humanity and finds it hard to fit in with normal people.

      Ozymandias, who after the government act revealed his identity to the world, has made millions in the merchandising of his and his fellow heroes images. Nite Owl, who overweight and retired, tries every night to convince himself that he doesn’t miss being a hero. Silk Spectre, Dr. Manhattans girlfriend, who is watching her lover fall more and more out of love with her. Finally, we have Rorschach, described as a sociopathic vigilante who has no mercy for those who prey on the weak and a moral code as rigid as steel.

      As a fan of the comic, seeing these characters on the silver screen is a dreamlike experience. I was particularly worried about Rorschach, but when he spoke for the first time I was sold. If you haven’t read the novel though (and I urge you to) you probably have no idea what to expect. Don’t go in expecting something along the lines of Spiderman or Ironman. It isn’t an action flick, more an exploration of flawed people who have to save the world. The closest thing I can compare it to would be The Dark Knight Returns, with added pathos and two parts dysfunction.

      And please don’t take your kids to see it. Watchmen was based on an adult graphic novel and pulls no punches. Coarse language, sexual content and some extremely disturbing imagery (you can tell that it’s the same director of the Dawn of the Dead remake) mean you should leave the kids at home for this one.

      In closing, I appreciate the faithfulness to the original novel, but for someone who knows nothing about these characters, it may be hard to get into. Give it a try though, immerse yourself in this alternate depiction of 1985, where blue men walk on mars, people dress up as owls and patrol the city streets and where heroes aren’t so much super but human.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Semi-employment, the sequel

So i've got some part time employment thanks to a Phillipino friend of mine. She managed to set me up with a design gig and so far it's been pretty good fun. It's good fun designing things...resizing things...printing things. All in all it's like getting back on the graphic design bike. You never forget how to ride the thing.

I will say though, i didn't miss the big name clients who can't decide that the fuzz it is they want. It would be a perfect world if the design process went, concept, mock, final product. Instead of concept, mock, second mock, new concept, third mock, new concept on a completely new level of retardness, fourth mock based on retarded concept and then the fifth mock. 

The Great Divide

Well, Lawrence has seen Watchmen, John has seen Watchmen and so has Wilson, and i'm worried about my opinion. I've written my review (which will be up after it's published) and it's not a glowing one. I know the film is inaccessible to people who aren't comic book fans. I knew John would love the action bits. But yeah...is it a good movie? From a film point of view, it has its ups and downs. It's visually stunning, yet it drags on a bit.

From an adaptation point of view, i would say is about 90% faithful. Making something like watchmen means you can't take huge liberties without pissing someone off. Case in point, i have no quarrel with the ending. (Spoilers up ahead, uh-duhhh) I actually think that it makes a bit more sense. Also, i'm sure the giant explosion made John all a-quiver. I do however, have an issue with Rorschach hacking someones head in with a hatchet when in the comic he just tied him up and left him to DIAF (die in a fire).

Sure, i can see how it would be really similar to Saw. So? Watchmen came first, its an integral part of Rorschach becoming who he is, and instead of delivering justice he murders the fucker. I was not a happy camper.

Lawrence... was disappointed. I mean, we all have our own way of looking at things, i like how i can argue with him about things like this though. It makes it much more interesting than just agreeing on everything and shit.

Watchmen, for me personally, is about what it would take to unite the world. How people who are supposed to be heroes can let millions die for the sake of world peace. It's about how its less about the super, and more about the human.

But thats just me :)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Thankyou Ronron

For leaving all those vectors and brushes on your computer ^_^

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

So i watched Watchmen. I don't think i've ever had to seriously think about a film review as much as i will have to think about this one. It makes you think about so many things at the same time it actually made me a little depressed. Which was probably the point and a testament to Alan Moores writing and the gang who adapted it for the screen.

More on this as it develops. Watch this space.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Who watches the Watchmen watching the Watchmen?

So, i have had an action packed last couple of weeks. There was good news, bad news, and slightly weird but understandable news. We got robbed last week, some burgulars pried open the bars designed to keep them out and raided the house. Didn't take too much, but what they did take was pretty damn expensive. After a whole day or two of drama and strife, my mum got back the laptop that was stolen due to the efforts of an ex-cop who's now a security guard at the CC. 

It was like an episode of Walker: Texas Ranger without the roundhouse kicks. And then this Friday, i was home alone with my sister and grandma, when the watchmen next door knocks on the door. The landlord decided that since the house was vacant, he should get us a watchman to keep an eye on the place. 

Me: Hey man, whats up?

Watchman: Uhh, there was this guy next door, he told me he was here to take my job and that i should clear off. 

Me: what? no man, i wasn't told about some new watchman. 

Watchman: well, that's what see said. He's a pretty big guy too, i was scared. 

Me: well...come on, lets go talk with him, see what the fuck he's up to. 

Watchman: umm...

Me: come on, they'll be two of us, right? 

Eventually i managed to coax the watchman into coming with me to look for this guy. When we reached next door, he was gone. Soon after that, the watchman took off home. This was at around 8ish mind you. Completely, fucking useless. 

So, i tried calling the crimestoppers number, and got an engaged tone for the next half hour (after calling up over and over of course, i didn't listen to the tone for half and hour, that would be dumb). Then i called my uncle, who was much more effective, and actually brought some cops with him over to the house. 

Yeah, the excitement, it never stops around here.