• Family

    Deirdre’s 40th, Mark Twain

    Yesterday was actually Deirdre’s birthday, so we had a party for her. I’d just arrived in Dublin when Ted got a call saying our wretched escape artist dog was loose, which seemed goddamned impossible because he’d been IN THE HOUSE but no, no, he was loose, he’d figured out how to open the back door ane made his escape, so I had to come tearing back from Dublin to get him and bring him home and lock him in more thoroughly and then go rushing back in to Dublin. I have never made the walk from the train station (where the lads who’d found the damn dog brought him to me) to the house so fast.

    I called a taxi to meet me there to get me back to the train station, figuring there was no chance at all with 5 o’clock traffic that I’d make the express train that would get me back to Dublin in a vaguely reasonable time frame, but to my sheer astonishment I made it with about six minutes to spare and got to the party.

    Ted, at Deirdre’s request, cooked a vegetarian Mexican feast of nachoes and enchiladas and rice, all of which was incredibly good. Wow so good. I made Stacked Raspberry Chocolate Cupcakes (recipe forthcoming at the patreon page next month!), which were also a hit.


    And I gave Deirdre her birthday present, which was one of the Elfquest coloring books I’d gotten from last year’s Kickstarter.

    There’s context to that gift: when she was about 9, she colored in one of my original black and white Elfquest comics, which utterly enraged me and although she apologized she really couldn’t, at the time, understand why I was SO. ANGRY. (About two years ago the topic came up and she winced and said, “Yeaaaah, I’m really sorry about that,” which was a much more sincere and therefore much funnier apology, given that thirty years had passed, than the original. :))

    Anyway, so that was the context of the coloring book, so I gave it to her and she immediately BURST out laughing, which was just what I hoped she would do, and we were both terribly pleased with ourselves. :) She asked where I’d gotten it and I explained about the Kickstarter last year and she was like “Oh wow have you been holding on to it all this time then?” and I was like “yeah basically,” which she thought was great. :)

    (Ted said, “Did you color in the first page?” to me, which made us burst out laughing again. I WOULD have, too, if I’d thought of it!)

    And lastly, during the party we were explaining the word “schlep” to my 13 year old nephew, and how it meant getting oneself (or something) from one place to another, but connotated effort, plodding, weariness, a heaviness of soul.

    I said to Ted, “What’s the…that word where…” and despite these words being almost entirely incoherent and certainly failing to reference any point which would clarify them, Ted, without missing a beat, said, “Trudge,” as he fully understood that I was thinking of Paul Bettany’s naked Chaucer scene in A Knight’s Tale. :) :) :)

    So it was a good little party and I’m really glad I made it.

  • Daily Life

    holiday coloring

    I did a little coloring whilst in Amurrica. I might’ve done more, except the next few pages I can do with crayons and I didn’t have any. (More accurately, I only had access to 24, which is totally not enough. Also I screwed up and didn’t put a color-catcher page between two of the pages so I need to see if I can erase the colored pencil shadows that got pressed through onto what’s supposed to be my next page to color.)

    (Other people don’t worry about things like this, do they? Oh well.)


    Indy: How come you didn’t color the lady?
    Me: I did. She’s just really really pale.
    Indy: *looks so dubious*


    There are like…four versions of the swooping off with Leetah scene in this coloring book. I mean, okay, one is Leetah saving Dewshine from the zwoot & her and Cutter being all sexytimes above it, so it’s not exactly the same, but it’s damn close, and then there’s this one and there’s another one with Cutter snatching Leetah & breaking Rayek’s spear and then there’s a THIRD that’s a simplified version of the scene/emotional content that was done for a potential, not-using-the-book-art coloring book that never happened, and honestly, one of those would have been enough. It’s a like 32 page coloring book, it really didn’t need four versions of that scene. Or two. Especially when I can think of dozens and dozens of frames I’d have loved to have seen in the coloring book.

  • Elfquest Graphic Novel 'Coloring Book', page 5

    a bit more coloring

    I’ve forgotten, in the interim between posting the last coloring pages and these ones, what exactly I did with the photoshop levels to make the whites so crisp and clean last time (Ellen, you posted a coloring how-to blog or something that was profoundly enlightening, but I can’t find it again!) so these colors aren’t so nice, but they’re pretty good. :)

    I actually thought I’d long since posted the first of these, as it’s been done for ages, but apparently I hadn’t, so here’s two, but not the two I’d planned on posting. I’d been gonna do the two facing pages of the second page all at once so I’d be consistent with which colors I used. I did a bunch of skin tones (and kept missing entire, like, torsos, which, just, wut? I was looking SO CAREFULLY, and still missing them!) and hair (ditto missing them) but then got drawn into leaves and wolves and things and finished up one page without the other being more than a quarter done.

    I believe Nightrunner (Cutter’s wolf) changes color in every single frame he’s in in these two pages. I’ve read enough comics in my life to know that’s a hallmark of professionalism. :) (Also I honestly don’t remember what color he’s supposed to be. Mostly I’m like, “Brown, wolves are grey or brown,” with the occasional moment of WAIT DEWSHINE’S WOLF IS NAMED LIONSKIN HE’S GOLD NOT BROWN that primarily goes to show just how many long-term memory brain cells I have dedicated to ElfQuest…)

    Elfquest Graphic Novel 'Coloring Book', page 5


  • Coloring,  ElfQuest

    a bit of coloring

    It’s taken me about two weeks to do the fourth Elfquest graphic novel coloring book page. I reckon at the rate I’m going, I’ll do about one issue a year, and be finished around 2036. :)

    I hadn’t posted page three yet, so here you go. I also hadn’t figured out how to manipulate the levels with Photoshop (or possibly I didn’t have photoshop installed) yet, so the color in it isn’t as representative of the TRUE BEAUTY OF MY WORK as I might like. :)

    For page four I had Photoshop for sure and the levels are therefore manipulated and this is actually very close to the colors. I’m going to need an entire box just of green pencils to get through this issue!

    This is the best coloring book ever. :)

  • Coloring,  Compulsive Hair Disorder,  Daily Life,  Family

    family, food, funny

    Nephew: Excuse me? I have an important question. How powerful is Captain Britain? Could he beat Superman?

    Me, having already described the “the one who serves the story best” aspect of this kind of question and delighted to be asked: I *believe* CB’s power is drawn from the spirit of the British people, so potentially yes but probably only under certain circumstances.

    Nephew: Right, great, okay. How about Captain Britain against Juggernaut?

    Me: They’d go toe to toe.

    Nephew departs, totally happy ♥ :)

    I made Blackberry Pi on Monday, in celebration of Pi Day. It set up *perfectly* and is a wonderful blend of tart and smooth. SO NUMMY!

    This morning I made Lazy Baker’s Cinnamon Rolls, which is to say, I used storebought puff pastry for the dough. I thought they were rather wonderful, although the other people in the house thought the regular ones with homemade dough are better. Ted, however, conceded that this was a lot *easier*. :)

    Last summer I said, for some reason, that I had quite a lot of grey hair at my temples. Dad, to whom I was speaking, said, “Nah, that’s just the sunlight hitting it,” then leaned forward for a better look and was like, “…oh, no, wow, you’re right, you really do…”
    It’s possible I should stop bleaching my hair for the movie-style Rogue stripe and go with Classic Rogue, streaked at the temples, since that’s what my hair is doing anyway. Although it *does* have a movie-style streak of white. It’s just that it’s in the middle of my head–you can see it in the part, in this picture–rather than at the front. You had ONE JOB, hair…!

    “Mmmm,” Indy said, breathing in the scent of the new book, “it smells like fresh ink!”

    And last, because the above was clearly not enough pictures, I’ve done another couple pages in the Elfquest coloring book, and the second page of the graphic novel ‘coloring book’. The latter is actually really satisfying because I can do a panel and feel like I’ve Accomplished Something, but the color on all of these is particularly bad because I just took photos instead of trying to scan them in. The originals are prettier. :)

    This was a lot of purple. It really doesn’t look like it, it looks more heavily green here, but it’s a *lot* of purple.

    I did this all in one day, of which I am disproportionately proud. Apparently I really am five. And the colors are so much nicer for real than in the photo, but oh well. Also, does anybody else worry about Savah and her skinny neck holding that giant gold plate on her head all the time, or is that just me…?

    I’m going to try to get to a convention with the Pinis sometime and get them to sign this thing. Even if I only have twelve pages done. :)

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