Gettin Flashy

With a little ingenuity, I've sidestepped my file type limitations imposed on me by flickr.com and blogger.com. To host the wonderfully animated flash banner you see above you, I had to find some way to host .swf for free. With a brainfart last night, I came up with the idea to open a Geocities website. They provide 15mb of space, and basically allow you to build whatever web page you like (as long as you don't mind a bit of overbearing advertising). But I really didn't care, seeing as I just needed someplace to sit this file and access it with a url link. I've found that you can do a lot of stuff for free on the internet if you have the ambition to look around and set up accounts left and right. And, a lot of these freebies are customizable if you can hack apart the provided HTML (I'll thank Mr. Pilot again for his help).

As for the animation, it wasn't too difficult to achieve, but it took a little drudging of the memory banks. It's unbelievable how much junk one forgets when one doesn't use it. Man, I used to be unbelievable with Flash. Well, let's say pretty darn good. I was all into actionscripting (the backend coding junk), manipulating movie clips, drag and drop features... I mean, I've seen a lot cooler stuff out there then I've ever done, but I think I got fairly proficient with that program. That was back in '02 with Flash 5. Now we have the new fangled Flash MX with its unsightly usage of tool bars and menus. I find it almost impossible to operate the god damn program without a secondary display set up. You either have no space for the main stage, or you're constantly maximizing and minimizing windows. I think if I ever seriously get back into flash I will be able to do away with the extraneous items, but being so rusty and unfamiliar with the program itself, I'm not sure what I really need up there.

Till next time...enjoy the flying electrons.

     Sunday, June 26, 2005
     Work In Progress



Here are the wonderful sketches that I had promised. Some are pretty rough yet, but it'll give you an idea of what is yet to come. A lot of these characters are the preliminary sketches for future story lines I have cooking up in my noggin. I know it's not much, but enjoy.

     Thursday, June 23, 2005
     Another Disappointment

So it seems that I didn't get a blomic done for this week. I basically spent the whole time sketching characters that may or may not appear in future strips. As a consolation prize, I'll be posting a collage of my sketches that I have worked on. They are very rough, but will give you an idea of the artistic style that I have almost worked out. I still have some technical issues yet to work out, but I am almost 100% on how I'd like to do these things. First step (which you will see in my preliminary drawings) is the sketching stage which is done with my handy-dandy Wacom tablet and Painter 8. Next, is to take the rough sketches and trace the lines and fill in the color with Illustrator. I will also make up the text bubbles here as well. Then, it will be onto my old pal Photoshop to compile all the frames into the extravaganza that will be known as a "Subablomic Comic" (you may also to refer to it as the "intolerable-shit-you-get-in-your-internet-cache-while-surfing-the-web").
Right now I'm getting ready to head off to Gayburn to do that roofing job I had previously mentioned that got cancelled due to thunderstorms. But I'll have them sketches up by Sat. for you all to drool over. Please place a towel over your keyboard to prevent any damages*.

*Subablomic is not responsible for any damages that may occur to your software and/or hardware. By reading this, you have waived all liabilities and have promised your vital organs to be harvested should the creator of Subablomic need and/or want them for his own organ replacement due to unhealthy lifestyle choices and/or his whimsical pleasure.

     Sunday, June 19, 2005
     And To Your Right...

I've been doing more reading of online comics than actually developing my own as of late. But just like writing your own song, it sometimes helps to see what others have done before you. What works, what dooesn't, and what you can steal and get away with. I've noticed a few little tricks here and there (blue pencil sketching is awesome)that will help me get started, but this comic thing is about as much work as I figured it would be. And if I do it the way I want, it's a lot of work! Not that I'm complaining, even the little bit that I have done has been a lot of fun to put together, but it takes a lot of time right now for me to produce these abominations. I'm still struggling with a style (which you can see if you compare the comics posted) and each comic I'm doing I'm approaching it with a different angle. This means thinking, deciding, and a shitload of preliminary sketches before I can lay some solid lines down. At some point in time, my goal is to produce three comics a week. Two black and whites during the week (say a Tuesday/Friday thing) and then a color comic for Sunday. But right now, I'm going to be happy if I can get one a week done. If I take my time, I hope to get things right from the start.

The other thing I noticed about these web comics is that these guys have huge archives. Penny Arcade and PvP are just a couple of great comics with an insane volume of work. What I need to realize is that these guys have also been doing this for years. I hope to one day have a repertoire of material like this, but give me a little while, and I'll get there.

If I might jump ahead a bit, some may ask,"So...Is this like what you want to do for a career perhaps?" Right now I'd say no. It's just a hobby at the moment, a side project, something to fill a small void in my life. If the Interweb gods smile on me and it does produce a small amount of popularity and I can make a few bucks, well sure. Why not. I mean, what else was my training in high school drawing pictures of ugly retards (students and teachers alike) meant to produce. I've pretty much have forced my path in life to produce something like an online comic. It all adds up and I think it's cool. Now if I can only get past my laziness and procrastination, I might do great things. But a final answer to why I'm even embarking on this drawing quest, would be to say I'm doing it for me. To see if I can do it. And if a few of my friends get a laugh out of it, then I have been successful.

Now, to bring your attention to the new blog feature, look to your right and you will see the "Blomic Archive Drop Down Menu" (triumphent horns please begin). This is designed to cope with the outrageous and incomprehensible volumes of work yet to come. The way this blog site is structured (which is great for blogging) it helps to efficiently archive your blogging into previous months. The design effectively eliminates any ease of searching for something that happened not to long ago. And, how I'm not overly concerned that my readers study my past texts (however interesting and rambling as they are), I want them to easily pick a comic and go straight to it, without having to sort through pages of links that generally discuss my boring life and what my fart smelled like three months ago (by the way, it was delicious). I still have to work out a scheme for back and forth buttons, as some comics will work in series, and having to go to the drop down won't always be as useful.

So, have fun with the archive menu, please let me know if you find a bug (a.k.a. dead link) and let's cross our fingers for a new blog for next week. It'll be a gooder.

/Peace.

     Thursday, June 16, 2005
     It's Funny Cause It's True

realitycheck

(Sorry about the poor quality. I had to resize it with img settings. I don't have photoshop on my comp. yet, and I'm not sure where the disk is either. I'll have her fixed in a couple days. Bear with me, but I figured a blog was well over due.)


This is a comic about my buddy and his Battlefield 1942 antics. I personally have begun to develop a passion for the online gaming (which I had ignored for a long time), but I doubt I'll ever develop a passion for the online community. It seems that one half is a bunch of hardcore assholes and the other half is a bunch of n00b retards that don't know what the hell they're doing. And they make your gaming experience shit because of it. I am exaggerating those figures a bit for effect, but there are a lot of them. And when these people get in your group or on your team, they really take the fun out the whole game. Maybe that's why I don't do as much group work in WoW. I've had a lot of bad experiences with idiots or people that make me feel like a stupid n00b because I don't have a handle on all the inside tricks. On the other hand, a really good group that works together makes the game almost ecstactic. Everything is easier and more enjoyable. The grinding (in WoW) is taken out for the most part (or seems to be taken out). Things get done and that wonderful sense of good team effort and accomplishment sets in. The way these games are designed, one person can't do it all. And that's good. It should be designed to encourage grouping with others, or what's the point of an MMO?


I would more or less call myself a n00b for the most part, even for games that I've been playing for months. I really am a casual gamer that enjoys to step out of my mundane life and frak some guy with Anti-Aircraft rounds or kill troll after troll to complete some quest. It's a past time for me. Other friends of mine (this guy included) take things a little more seriously, but in a quasi-healthy way. They don't get too worked up over the other assholes and it only dominates a small portion of their life. I wish I could be more hardcore about some of these games (WoW especially), but I am hard pressed to find the time, energy, and patience to become one of the l33t.

/I wasn't going to write much cause it's late and I'm tired. I have a roofing gig to do in Weyburn, and it's going to be an early morning tomorrow. But I'll enjoy being outside for once and doing some real manual labour. It makes me feel good to get my hands dirty once in awhile. I prefer to get them dirty with pencils and other art junk, but roofing tar and tiny shingle scrapes are o.k. in moderation.

Till next time...

     Wednesday, June 08, 2005
     What The F%@K?

Ok, so I need more channels or something. Maybe Spike needs to get a few more episodes of CSI, 'cause I seen 'em all too many times. But whatever, I ended up watching Canadian Idol. The competition for the most part doesn't seem too bad, but Ash had pointed something that both Ash and myself feel is very odd.

Some may remember, some may have tried to forget, and some don't really give a shit, but I believe it was before the turn of the century, and after Mmmbop, a band called The Moffatts had existed. Now this family of gay rock music had experienced some success. Their success quickly faded, much like the gay stylings of the Hanson brothers, but it seems that one Moffatt just didn't get enough.



This is Dave Moffatt.
Pictured left in his glory days as a teenage rockstar.
Pictured right is his new plan to reclaim his former glory: Singing his heart out for the for retarded Canadian Idol judges. Or is it just that his mouth is permanently stretched out from sucking record exec cock. I don't know, you decide.

The point is, this guy was once "successful" in the music biz. Shouldn't this contest be open to those people who haven't already had recording contracts?; people who haven't already had an opportunity to be in the limelight?; people that haven't been Canadian pop icons yet? But the way shit's going these days (I will refer here to the grand shit splattering of the new Backstreet Boys comeback (sorry Ash)), I guess he gets another shot too. But honestly, I think if you are washed up by the time you're 21, you obviously didn't have the talent to do it the first time around. You got lucky, were at the right place at the right time, pleasured the right man, whatever. Does lightening strike twice? I guess we'll have to tune in to see Mulroney make an ass of himself to find out.

    
     I'm Still Alive Folks

Been a bit since my last post. I did get my computer going again. Nothing like a nice wipe and reload. If it wasn't a bigger pain in the ass, I'd do it once a month. But after that, I had to get a little work done on me.


Last Wednesday, about 10:00 in the a.m., a friendly, quiet Dr. Grieman stuck a small needle into my hand. It was a slight pinch, but I was more curious about what was to happen soon after. I asked the doc, "So, what's actually in this stuff?"

He responded without alarm, "Well, it's basically a mixture of morphine and valium."

With a slanted smirk I reply, "Intersting. How long till it kicks in?"

"About three minutes," he began to explain. "After the first minute, you'll feel a little woozy, like you've had a couple martinis. After that, the full effects will kick in. You'll be able to respond to my questions, being semi-awake, you just won't care. And you won't remember much of what happened."

He was right. A few minutes after this banter, I don't really recall much of anything. I have some recollection of what I believe to be something like plastic plyers holding my mouth apart, and a sensation of tugging on my lower left jaw. That's about it. To me, I was just enjoying a comfortable nap in a chair until someone had the audacity to tap my shoulder and wake me from my very deep, dark, dreamless slumber.

"Feeling O.K.?" the docter asked (the man who woke me up).

"Yeah not too bad." I really didn't feel too bad at all. I couldn't feel much of anything to be honest. My sister-in-law Wendy was there to pick me up and take me home. Standing up seemed to be a little tricky however. I was still pretty woozy. Not that I'm complaining, it was like a nice, gentle drunk feeling. Almost a weightless effect. It's weird now that I recollect, that after coming under, things took a little while for me to realize what was different. I couldn't move my mouth very well, and talking didn't work to good either. This was most likely due to the fact that four wisdom teeth had been wrenched out of the back of my mouth. Other problems that I slowly came to realize was that my whole mouth region was frozen numb, and I had two giant wads of gauze in the back of my mouth as well.

Wendy took me home, where Ash was waiting with some tuna fish sandwiches. I slowly and carefully ate those with my front teeth while Wendy went and got me a smoothie and some drugs.

To move the story along, I took the next two days off from work. I couldn't really open my mouth very wide, so eating and talking were still slightly hindered. My mouth slowly leaked blood for about three days as well. But by Saturday, my jaw began to move again and the bleeding had more or less stopped. Since then, it's kind of been a back and forth between feeling really good (generally first thing in the morning) to feeling sort of stiff and sore (like right now at 10:30pm). I am recovering well, and this whole ordeal wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. I'm not saying I want it to be a yearly event, but it wasn't the nightmare of pain and suffering that I've heard from others.

So here's crossing my fingers in hopes that everything in my slowly heals and resumes to feeling normal again. I think the only problem in the near future is that there seems to be a little flap of flesh that either didn't get completely cut out or sewn shut with everything else. It also could be a loose stitch. I don't know. It doesn't hurt, but if it is gum tissue, I could see food getting stuck in there and giving me grief later on. I'll just have to wait and see about that.

I'll make another update about this whole surgery and my healing process in a week or so. Hopefully I'll be fully healed by then.

Later.

Oh, and by the way, I totally milked it for all it was worth. "But Ash, I just had surgery... You're going to have to take out the garbage."

It didn't work as well as I had hoped.


I know this looks dumb. It's just a test graphic.



Name:Binns
Home:Saskatchewan, Canada
About Me:Read my blog.
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