Next up in the Rainbow thread is the Red Guardian, a fun design I always liked as a kid. I've done the next colour but for some reason that and this Red Guardian piece are coming off not much better (or bigger) than the A-Z pics. This isn't TOO bad but the next colour's definitely not getting posted, I need to spend a bit longer than the 10-20 minutes the first two took.
I'm more happy with the other pic I'm working on. It's a lot worse than I envisioned--the face is OK but is a poor likeness and the pose is fairly uninspired. However, it dawned on me that the the original pose I had in mind was pretty similar to an Adam Hughes Wonder Woman cover. I could have still kept the pose exciting but chose to go for a fairly straight on "iconic" shot instead. I drew this at A3, reduced it to A4 and am now pencil shading it before scanning it in for colouring---even though it's not great, I'm taking my time as so far it's not that terrible.
In other news, my reading pile is now reduced to one coffee table book and two Euro graphic novels. I found I really liked the first Immortal Iron Fist (which explored the Iron Fist mythos in a new way that opens up the premise much as James Robinson's Starman did) and am quite looking forward to the second one (must look for Vol 2 later this month). However the book that really impressed me recently was Locke and Key.
There's been a bit of a buzz around Joe Hill lately and I may have to check out his novel, Heart Shaped Box, which sounds pretty cool. I'd heard good things about his IDW comic series Locke and Key so decided to pick up the first collection. The art was a bit cartoony for my tastes but I'm always complaining I can never find anything new and interesting so decide to give it a chance anyway. The story essentially follows three siblings returning to their ancestral home after the death of their father. Once they return, the house slowly reveals mysterious secrets as a worldly threat follows them home.
Within a few pages, Hill showed a better grasp of storytelling than most other writers and his characterisation and pacing are impressively strong. The art soon grew on me as, though slightly cartoony, there's solid and crisp drawing that proves to be very engaging. What's better, this collection is formatted in a way that I haven't seen for ages in a collection but is one I always wanted to see return. There's one artist throughout and no dead filler pages to allow for double-page spreads or covers interrupting the story. Instead there's one continuous uninterrupted block of 6 issues' worth of story with only the chapter headings to give any indication of issue breaks. As these are incorporated, Heroes-like, into the underlying art and don't feature numerous credits, this makes the collection feel more like a book than a collection and feels so much better for it.
This is the most satisfying comic I've read for a while and a most recommended suggestion for anybody's read pile.