Notes from the Manager
Related Strips: #275: Death Race, Part One
Three updates this week, all hand-drawn. See you on Wednesday and Friday.
To draw these pages, I draw and redraw thumbnails until I have a good idea of the basic layout, then create the panel borders in Illustrator. I lightbox the borders onto Bristol drawing paper, then pencil in the panels loosely with dark blue Colerase pencils. I find the light blue/non-photo blue ones too hard to see. I tighten up the pencils where needed with a regular 2H lead (although I suppose I could just use a different Colerase color) before moving on to inking.
I inked this page with a crow quill, because I'm only working at about 8.25" x 10.5" — not much larger than actual size. The bright white spots and the pitch black art show where I've done a bit of digital retouching. For instance, the shadows below the fronts of the karts and most of the checkered pattern on the sides of the karts were added in Photoshop, simply because I forgot to pencil them in the first time around. And the drawing of Kurt in the final panel was composited in from a different page, because I screwed him up the first time.
You can see panels 1–3 from this page over at my Flickr page. I inked those panels with a brush, because the figures were larger. If you compare the scan to the final panel, you'll see that I fixed Franklin's wonky eye digitally. Even when I work "traditionally," I do a lot with a computer.
You can also see a preliminary sketch of Kurt in his kart over at my LiveJournal.
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Sunday, November 1, 2015
Thank you very much for the outpouring of kind words since last Friday. It meant a lot to me, and I’m happy to say that I have great news: things may not be quite so bleak as I thought last week.
For some background, since I haven’t shared much of this publicly, my cat Punk very nearly died in September from a urinary tract infection. A slew of medicines turned things around after a rough couple of weeks, and he had two great weeks but then relapsed. As it turned out, the strain of infection he had was resistant to the antibiotics he was on, so he had to go on some new meds.
Because he wasn’t back at 100% (as close to 100% as an 18 year old cat with three chronic diseases gets, anyway), the recovery this time was very, very hard on him. Punk had to be taken to the emergency room last Wednesday evening, then he wasn’t handling the pain medication they prescribed very well — or eating, except when I would spoon feed him baby food — so I was… in a very bad headspace last week.
With non-stop attention and some tweaks to his medication dosages, he began improving steadily on Friday evening, started to eat on his own and seek out my company on Saturday, and he even meowed for the first time in two weeks on Sunday.
If this keeps up, this will be the third time he’s cheated death (last month, and a bout with pancreatitis a couple of years ago), but I’m still nervous about him relapsing yet again. There’s also the very real possibility that there is something else going on behind all his recent troubles…
But… he’s a tough little guy, and he’s had a great couple of days,which is very encouraging. He has even managed to get back to work on the strip with me (pictured above!), and we’ll hopefully be able to keep at it.
The Multiplex update schedule may be a little erratic for the next couple of months. If that happens, hopefully it will be because I need more time to finish my MFA thesis, not another downturn in Punk’s health. Either way, thank you for reading, and thank you for all your support — financial, emotional, and… egotistical?
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