Strange Smash FanComic
Created by Sebastián Castro
Pencils by Lucho Inzunza
Inks by me.
You like it? More to come soon.
Back in September 2016, Ralf Singh, a talented german penciler asked me to develop a digital sample inks panel of his new comic. It featured a dragon flying between tall linear buildings. It got me right away.
Ralf ‘s style mixes simple expressive lines but highly ellaborated backgrounds. He leaves the characters have the strenght on each panel and the backgrounds speaks volumes of his love for detail. So i tried to do the best of the dragon, but I really pushed myself to accomplish the most postapocalyptic, doomed, detailed, window by window on the buildings.
I totally failed on the dragon, but he liked the backgrounds. So I got a second chance. After the approval I decided to go very careful with the backgrounds on the sequentials. Luckily, Ralf is as methodic on the paper as he is on the communications. We use to hang out – or skype or Discord, before inking a page to focus on several details. Thanks to that kind of closer relationship, it helps a lot to enhance the final results.
As I said, Ralf linear work invites the inker to a work full of details and patience. Since the digital sample panel, and the HangOuts, I realized that my job was to potentiate the realism of the damaged environment the characters are in. For that matter, best thing is to work with Clip Studio Paint. That software gives me room for improvement in order to create a reliable background. Remember that it’s London with Dragons, so they don’t have much care of the buildings. Lots of cracks, smoke and broken windows.
On this gig, I always start with the backgrounds. Since the first scene takes place in Picadilly Circus all visual references are welcomed. I delineate the bigger volumes with a straight line giving the damage effect freehandedly. I like to add cracks to reveal the material all buildings are made of and play with the planes with lights and shadows. That way I can give more of a 3D look and make the objects (building, cars, et al) pop up.
Besides, I believe that in that postapocalyptic city all things must look like worn out, dusty, old. After discussing that matter with Ralf I had green card to loose myself a little bit on the objects like weaponry.
Then, I ink each character and there I try to go as faithful to the pencils as I can only giving some inking decisions such as 3D effects and shadows.
Finally, I give some smoke and splatters effects to loose the linear effect the pencils has and give it more realistic look.
Zinnober is not a dark comic, and artistically you can tell that it bears a little bit of hope in the pages. There are not big black areas – at least on the surface scene – which makes lines more important than ink spots. For that matter, inking a single page also takes a long effort. I spend between 15 to 20 hours per page.
I can’t wait to see this book printed. I invite all of you to visit Zinnober Facebook page (In english and German) and be around to the final announcement.
Zinnober created by Ralf Singh & Thorsten Brochhaus
Story – Ralf Singh & Thorsten Brochhaus
Inks – Cristian Docolomansky
Colors – Ilaria Fella
Lettering – Taylor Esposito
So, a new year comes to an end. And this has been a weird one.
It’s Dec. 31, and we are supposed to do the all new year’s preps but just three minutes ago I finished my last gig of the year, a 30 page inking graphic novel, the sequel to Attica, for BRM. Deadline meet!
So, in comparison with the other years, well I’m short of time so I’ll take my pal Kelly Bender’s way to make the review and I’ll do it listing Top and Low parts of the year.
TOP: My top moment this year (I’m writing this in a rush, so probably I’d lose some in the process)
- Teaching comics to children in rural schools outside Santiago: Thanks Diego Toro for inviting me. I was scared, but i discovered something I thought I forgot: that I love comics and I enjoyed teaching that to kids. That was a very high point.
- This has been the the most productive year:
- Starburn was finally published in the UK. Inks – Thanks Kelly Bender
- La Senda Del Errante – Pecados – Inks and Letters – Thanks German, Sebastián, Lucho, Fafo, Danny and Carlos.
- Back To The Future: Citizen Brown #3 and #4 – Inks – Thanks Alan
- Attica: Kinslayer – Inks and letters – – Thanks Bill, Lucho and Kóte.
- And lots of short stories in anthologies like IF Anthology; FutureQuake, Dogbreath, Monster Smash-Ups, and Chronicles of Terror. – Thanks Alexandar.
- and the James Bong webcomic with – Thanks, James, Bianca, Joaquin, Luca
- Last but not least, I got asked to do some helping hand for IDW for the first time. Not many pages, but it was a start. Thanks Alan for the call.
- STARBURN will be published in the US via INSANE COMICS, which accoplishes – I hope – a new chance to make this book available to new readers. The old publisher left me with a bitter taste because we saw no promotion, sales or even care for the book.
- I finished my first miniseries, TEAR, with Mike Simon. It took three years, but it was a very satisfying feeling seeing the huge stack of pages and the evolution. I hope to keep involved in the project next year. – Thanks Mike!
- I tattooed myself. Yeah, many of you have tattoos, but i have being postponing the idea until I got hired by a major publisher and since time was flying by and nothing seem to happen, then i decided to push things and grab a piece of paper, threw some inks with many sense and had that tattooed in my arm. it’s a huge step forward to me and my self-esteem, and up until today, seems to work.
- I believe that 2017 would probably have some news from the following comics
- Zinnober – Thanks Ralph, Illaria, Thorsten, and Taylor
- The Drif T – By Bender and Ching.
- Raupatu – By Gatonyi, Shilito, Inzunza and Kote.
- and I hope, many more!
- Many of my publications were made with no payment whatsoever. Just to grow portfolio. It’s ok, but sometimes it’s quite frustrating seeing no income for such amount of work.
- Yeah: Inner demons, too. I mean, 4 years being isolated somehow leaves you wondering if you have what it takes to make comics for a living and mostly if you are an inker. The feeling of dependance of third parties and some patronizing towards the craft left me thinking about the future. Then came the school teaching thing and that disappeared.
Thanks for all who helped me to keep working, and my first hug goes to my espectacular wife, Paula and my dog Facundo.
c’ya next year!
I am free to share this:
STARBURN is coming to America thanks to Insane Comics, LLC & will be a trade paperback!
This is a miniseries I worked with Kelly Bender, Brian Balondo and Laura Lee back in 2014 / 2015. After regaining the publishing rights from Markosia, Kelly offered it to his preferred publisher of choice for the american Market, Insane Comics. The new book will feature a new TPB cover by artist Brian Balondo.
STARBURN is the greatest ship in the Galaxy, and everybody wants to own it. But it’s not the kind of ship you can buy, you have to steal it!
Its current owner is Captain Aphi and his motley crew of space scoundrels, are hired for a simple pick up and drop off job. The crew quickly finds out that nothing is simple when STARBURN is involved, battling giant space creatures, armies, space pirates and each other, the crew will have to make tough choices to not only survive but retain STARBURN.
COMING SPRING 2017 FROM INSANE COMICS
Just to tell you that I have just recently finished the 6 issue miniseries named Tear. it’s probably more than 150 pages.
This has been in production for a long time, since mid 2014. Long time since we started issue 01.
Mike Simon is the creator and writer and Argentinian penciler Federico Zumel gives his energetic pencils. I did my best inking traditionally.
Production is in coloring and hopefully it’ll be starting lettering pretty soon so we can see who’s the publisher.
I expect to see it printed in 2017. I’ll keep you posted.
Let me talk about Rich Friend. He’s an alumni from the Wildstorm Studios. He is an inker, but also he makes awesome art. Look on this post some of his work.
He has recently launched a Vlog (with a V, for the newcomers, just like me: A Vlog is a video Blog posted daily or in a periodical schedule on youtube): On that Vlog he discusses his current art situation, new goals (he’s penciling his first comic. I heard him wanting to do a comic a couple of years before and now he’s decided to. And if he pencils just like his Black Drawing, or his pin up, this will be good, trust me). He also recommends tips for inkers, discusses the current inking scene and the economic reality of working in comics.
Many of you surely know him on his run inking David Finch on Wonder Woman or – to me one of the pinnacles in comic book inking – inking Travis Charest on that short-lived but groundbreaking Wildcats run back in 1999/2000. And if you know me, That means a lot to me. Not as a fan, but also as an aspiring artist.
To me, those 5 issues tops great all-time penciler / Inker partnership like Kirby / Sinnott, Byrne / Austin, Lee / Williams. Really, Rich is that good. That lead him teaming up with the best artists in the field, from Jim Lee, to David Finch, Viktor Bogdanovic, Whilce Portacio, J. Scott Campbell, Dustin Nguyen, etc.
But most important, is that he’s a cool guy.
I have rarely see before an artist with an impressive portfolio being able to share his experience in the field with such passion and openness. He says that he probably does not have what it takes to be a teacher, but to me, he’s generous sharing his view and humble enough to receive feedback. He wants to express as much as his art does.
The Vlog appears almost daily. It depends on his own schedule. He tapes before of after meeting his daily deadline and makes you feel almost inside his studio. It’s a good listening. It helps when you are feeling down or not motivated enough (look at Vlog #9, it came in a very opportunistic moment for me). It also helps to re-engage with the inner creativity hunger that art produces in us. It’s also a cool touch with one of the greats in the business. It also works while working as a constant way to see beyond your own daily inking and helps setting new parameters.
You can find Rich Friend here (click on each link)
So, I can’t think of anything better to say about this Vlog and or about Rich Friend. I really hope that many of you will take the opportunity to watch it, share it, probably learn something from it just the way I do.
Have a good week.
Hi you all.
November seems to be a strong month regarding lettering.
I’ve been lettering as a side choice on comics and it has become my strongest asset since inking is definitely getting a slower pace than I expected. Sad but true. But I fear not since I believe this will only get better.
So. Starting last week on JAMES BONG: CANNABIS CRUSADER – ELECTION SNAP!. We did a special story that had to be re-lettered because of the US Election results. Turns out that the people were not electing what James Bong desired to be the next US President. You can find the story here (And by the way, help the team behind James Bong Adventures).
Second, third and fourth lettering gigs came by the hand of Alexandar Altman, a new Zealand writer who I have been working with for this entire year.
Published by FutureQuake
“Durham Red- Cold Turkey”
Written by Alexandar Altman.
Art by JP Vilchis.
Letters by Cristian Docolomansky
Published by FutureQuake
“Be Careful What You Wish For”
Written by Alexandar Altman.
Art by Fran Strukan.
Letters by Cristian Docolomansky
And finally, a Graphic Novel:
Pencils by Luis Inzunza
Inks by me.
Colors by Kóte Carvajal
Lettering by me
Hope that you can grab some of those and tell me what do you think