Friday, February 10, 2012

It's rainin' cats, hallelujah!

This month has seen some interesting changes, not least of which is my sudden overflow of cat-related artwork! Most people who know me, know that I have two true, sickening obsessions... My boyfriend Billy, and my cat Bubba (whose proper name is Prince but which has been obliterated due to overuse of nicknames). I've been itching to make a children's book for a while, now, but couldn't seem to get any of my ideas to work once I started tinkering with them. It almost felt like my brain and my hand were more occupied with getting into some sort of epic slap-fight with one another than doing my bidding, which really didn't sit well with me. Frustrated by my sudden art block, I complained to my flu-ridden boyfriend that I couldn't seem to do anything I really wanted to. Now I'm not sure if this was a stroke of brilliance or a stroke of fever talking, but he said "Why don't you write a book about Bubba?"

From there on out it was like DUH, WHY DID I NEVER THINK OF THIS BEFORE?!?!? The tentative title is set to be "The many faces of Mr. Bubba," which is a book about all the things my cat does that we decide are him pretending to be something else... like a doctor when we're sick, or a mountaineer when he climbs on top of us while we're sleeping. I was super excited by this concept and immediately got to work planning the character designs and laying out a couple of pages... including the cover, for which I've decided to use a different style than my norm. Here's a preview of the in-progress work for it!

I tried about a billion zillion different cat designs before I settled on making him absurdly cute, with eyes almost as big as his whole head! Interestingly, the process I've been using is super different from what I've been doing all year, which I think is actually one thing I was craving. I was getting bored with being comfortable and wanted to branch out and experiment again, so.... Voila! Not a single drop of ink was used in this piece, and in fact... the bits of red you see are the remnants of the roughly 1"x1" pencil sketch I used as my guide for this. I haven't done enough purely digital stuff, and so far... this has been a lot of fun!

Now of course, like some sort of act of fate... The derby was announced yesterday as being kitties! How crazy is that?!?!? In the middle of me drawing cats, I'm actually encouraged to draw MORE cats?! Well obviously, I decided this was an awesome idea and produced the following t-shirt design, which I'm hoping does well this week! You can vote for my design at the derby, which I would very, very much appreciate. But, if you'd just like to see the design, here it is!

I did not appreciate just how 80's Lion-o's hair is until I got to draw it... Man... That mane is glorious.

Well, that's all for now, folks! And rememmber....