spqrblues: (boom)
2005-11-20 10:45 pm
Entry tags:

[sticky entry] Sticky: SPQR Blues I

BOOM--no, wait, not boom yetSo, there was this cow on this arch, and suddenly this volcano . . . Why don't I start the story a little earlier? I'm going to try doing an ongoing storyline. But there will still be Daily Angsts, too. We'll see. We'll see.

The quiet little seaside town of Herculaneum...

...with a wonderful view of the mountain )

spqrblues: (Blues 5 Felix colour)
2017-06-19 12:01 am
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SPQR Blues Chapter V: LXXXIII

Once I got started drawing--after a lot of warmups--finishing the pencils and inking went quickly. The dialogue started fighting back and being stubborn, though.

I accidentally left a speaker ambiguous a couple of comics ago, by having an off-panel not-yet-seen speaker. This time I thought I'd try doing it deliberately.

Read more... )
spqrblues: (arch scribe)
2017-06-13 11:00 pm
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ICYMI: sketches of today

Posted on Twitter today: I played with a sampler of QoR watercolours today (instead of getting the next comic done--but it was something I could do while thinking through the next complicated(!) steps in the plot).

QoR paints are made with a synthetic substitute for gum arabic, a binder traditionally used in watercolours and mostly sourced from one type of acacia tree in Sudan. I've heard that the synthetic binder is used in art preservation, but that disqualifies QoR paints from joining my ancient palette, even as a substitute for something poisonous :) The paints needed some finessing to work nicely on the sketchbook paper. They wouldn't be my first choice of paints, but some artists like them. I'll keep playing with them until my tiny sampler runs out.

These are photos, not scans, so the colours and proportions are slightly different in each Iusta image.

(click 'em to see larger)

Read more... )
spqrblues: (arch scribe)
2017-06-11 03:04 pm
Entry tags:

Still warming up

Today's warmup features antique & new dip pens; J. Herbin's archival black ink Encre Authentique (said to have been used by all the classiest ye olde French notaries); a variety of Rohrer & Klingner inks (the two iron-gall inks are not waterproof, the overenthusiastic burnt sienna is); and Copic markers, which I admit is a very weird combination of materials.

I grumped about the black ink not working with one of the nibs, but eventually got it going. The Copics sopped right through Stillman & Birn Alpha paper, but they blended reasonably nicely.

Read more... )
spqrblues: (Antikythera hands)
2017-06-04 02:56 pm
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Sunday Red: warmup sketch

Warmup sketch with two reds--kermes (bugs) on the left, cinnabar hue (substitute for genuine mercury vermilion) on the right.

I'm always worried I'll overshoot the mark and ruin a painting by overworking it, but I'm planning to do a second layer (glaze) on the cinnabar red and on the skin tones when this is fully dry.

Read more... )
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Felix colour)
2017-06-02 12:11 am
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SPQR Blues Chapter V: LXXXII

I kept falling asleep all day, or this would have posted before midnight Eastern time.

I'm not sure I'm awake right now, either. This is a common condition for me.

Read more... )
 
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Mus colour)
2017-05-29 03:00 pm
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SPQR Blues: Monday extra

A little scene. Painted with the ancient pigments--some ochres, malachite, indigo, a touch of cinnabar, a tiny bit of lapis lazuli, and some smushed-up bugs.

Read more... )
 
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Mus colour)
2017-05-26 05:13 pm
Entry tags:

SPQR Blues Chapter V: LXXXI

This here is a comic and all that:

Read more... )

Sometimes you burn the finest grapevine shoots for your black paint, sometimes you just grub around in the oven.
spqrblues: Ave Sweetums Rose (Default)
2017-05-25 09:35 am

New Bits

The next comic is inked & lettered (it needs scanning & cleaning) but "what I want to do" has to wait behind "what I have to do" for a little while. Hopefully just a day. Maybe less than that!
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Iusta colour)
2017-05-20 12:01 am
Entry tags:

SPQR Blues Chapter V: LXXX

I found the missing art boards (I'd left them at the art space where I work once a week, because I'm just that aware of my surroundings) and finished up the inking and scanning today.

I have a big project to complete tonight and tomorrow, so I'll aim for a Sunday comic next, but probably not a Saturday one :)

Read more... )
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Felix colour)
2017-05-07 11:21 pm
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SPQR Blues Chapter V: LXXVIIII (both rows)

OK, made it through the talking heads section. Next comic...action? knives?! wild animals! small children!

Read more... )
 
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Felix colour)
2017-05-06 03:53 pm
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SPQR Blues Chapter V: LXXVIIII

For now, just this one row of talking heads (oh, talking heads, you are so easy to draw). I'm working on the continuation. (Could it be more talking heads? The anticipation!)

I'm already weird/wired early in the morning (it's very early as I'm type this), and I haven't even had any caffeine. Must be spring.

Read more... )
 
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Mus colour)
2017-05-03 12:02 am
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SPQR Blues Chapter V: LXXVIII

New comic, inked and lightly shaded.

Posting here, on spqrblues.com, and a little bit early on Patreon. Next, I plan to post a Friday comic. After that--maybe a regular schedule again?

Read more... )
 
spqrblues: (Blues 5 Mus colour)
2017-04-30 12:00 pm
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SPQR Blues Chapter V: LXXVII

New comic!

(No further commentary at the moment; I have to hurry back to work :) )

Read more... )
 
spqrblues: (Blues 5 ROMA)
2017-04-28 10:30 pm

Chapter V: LXXVI

It might take me a while to do the shading on this one, so here it is in, um, the nude.

ETA: I've swapped in the final version (with the inks-only version below).

Read more... )

spqrblues: (Blues 5 Felix colour)
2017-04-16 09:47 pm
Entry tags:

SPQR Blues Chapter V: LXXIII-LXXV (row 1)

Time to try posting a comic entry here!

Some were already posted on LJ, but the more recent ones didn't make it there. I still need to tweak the page layout here to display the comics more tidily, but it looks like everything's working.

Read more... )
spqrblues: (Ave Sweetums)
2017-04-15 09:07 am
Entry tags:

Where to find SPQR Blues

With the confusing new LJ user agreement situation and some confusing concerns about restrictions on LJ content, I had decided to update the comic only on spqrblues.com and Pateon going forward. Some folks suggested transferring everything over to Dreamwidth, so I'm working on that even as I type. (This has definitely been a bonanza for Dreamwidth...)


If the import works, the new address will be spqrblues.dreamwidth.org. I'm hoping it successfully transfers all the comments too. I would hate to lose all the great conversations we've had over the years. I'll update here s few more times to let you know what's going on with the new location.


I really really hope all of you here will come read SPQR Blues on the other site(s). A lot of you have been along with me on this story a very long time, and I'd like you to stay with it to the...whatever the end may be :)

spqrblues: (Ave Sweetums)
2017-03-30 12:01 am
Entry tags:

Do art wrong: Cu, Hg, As, Pb

At some point, I seem to have decided that learning about and using authentically ancient paint pigments and other art materials is more interesting than, say, not poisoning myself so as to have a long, non-Van Gogh-style life. I reason: I won't ever have any children to raise and I don't have to worry about them licking my paint; I won't be able to afford retirement in any case; I'm generally grumpy and irritating and annoyed about life anyway. On the other hand, not poisoning myself would give me a little longer to create more, less toxic art. It's a conundrum.

OK, not really.

I'll be bunny-sitting next month, and nothing is going to be around the bunnies that I wouldn't lick or breathe myself, so that will make me behave for a couple of weeks. Mad Scientist Food Experiments will resume for a while. Before bunny-time starts, I want to get in a few more paint experiments.

click here for rambling about pigments )
 
spqrblues: (arch scribe)
2017-03-29 12:01 am

Sketch of the day: balancing books

At this rate I'll actually fill a sketchbook. It's been a while since I've done that.

Read more... )
 
spqrblues: (SPQR olc.net)
2017-03-28 12:01 am

Sketch of the day: battle goddess

Felix swears, he really did have help in that battle that time.

(click to see larger...)


 
spqrblues: (White Rose)
2017-03-27 12:00 pm

Sketch of the day: slightly foreshortened

I'm making my way through the pages of that Stillman & Birn Alpha sketchbook and, y'know, I don't hate it. It's ok. One good thing about it has been that, because it's been such a challenge to see whether it can live up to its hype, I've been filling the pages with test pieces, instead of being too timid to "ruin" the book by doing art wrong.

This sketch took me a while to figure out, and the pencils were erased many times before the page was inked then the light wash was put on. The paper held up extremely well to all the erasing, and although it seemed to buckle a lot with the water, it's flattening out. Not completely flat, but no worse than the previous pages.

I was going to watercolour the whole thing, add in more Felix-y details, and include Venus in the drawing, but started liking it as is. Of course, he might see Venus anyway. It's hard to tell with him.

Alternatively, he might be describing a fish that got away....

Read more... )

Hmm. This just dredged up a memory. Once when I drew something and didn't completely define each finger, the editor said it looked like the character's fingers had been "fused together in a horrible industrial accident." I'm not bothered.