Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Halloweird



I had two concerns this evening:

1.) Increase tooth decay amongst the children in the surrounding neighborhood.

2.) Watch the Kobe-less Lakers battle it out with the Suns.


That being said I came home and got ready for the siege of lil' "Treaters" as I like to call them.



Let the battle for candy begin!!!



just than...I heard a beat...


yes...


a beat


...in the distance...


In the words Jack Skellington


"What's This!!!"


I went outside and my neighbors kid had brought his set of turntables onto the porch and was dropping some Pharell and Snoop cuts..

you know..."for kids"



I rolled up on him just to see what was "crak'n".




The kid weighs a good 250ty and that's being kind...

but there he was cutting it up on the wheels of steel...like he wanted to win the Technics Dj contest...


he sort of hung over the turntables...like a willow tree...

a big fuck'n willow tree



I introduced myself and said what's up.


He seemed worried I was going to bust up his show...

He said

"Ahm jus out he-ah giv'n som canD' too da kids and play'n some tracks"

and yes that's a quote...and you can quote me on the quote...

I gave him a ok playa pound and I was back to the crib to settle in for the battle..


first off..I felt like I was in a cross between Lord of the Rings and Pirates of the Caribbean ..because I have never seen so many tiny pirates in all my life...


I saw a kid in a Tigger suit..and yo this kid had a fuck'n goatee...WTF

There was another kid dressed up like the soda cup from Aqua Teen Hunger Force...

These two kids showed up one as Dash from Incredibles and the older one as the Flash...the little one was already tearing up the chocolate...

I swear the kid looked like he had taken a bath in Snickers bars...

he even had chocolate on his belly that was sticking out of from under the foam muscles...

their dad came as Diniro from Taxi Driver..he seemed really psyched when I guessed it..


...and of course he did the “are you talking to me” bit...

He might have been taxi driver...but he was no Diniro..I'll tell you that for nothing...


I saw some zombies and vampires and witches...

The best one of all was a mom who brought her four daughters (dressed as some strange princess/witch fusion) up and all at once they sang a really long Halloween song..


I actually clapped as they took their bows...

Strange indeed...


62 bags of candy later..

the Lakers beat the Suns!!!.



like I said..

Halloweird..


KA-lifornia


Talk To Karl!

Monday, October 30, 2006

88 Sneak Peek 04


Another quick look at my new OGN "88"

"The strike team moves into position"

Experimenting with leaving more open space for color...


As always..more soon....

k

Saturday, October 28, 2006

In The Spirit of Halloween

In the spirit of Halloween..I give you...


THE INDIAN THRILLER

MJ ain't got shit on these Bollywooders...

dig the synths!!!


Kooky Kooks

I dig this jam from the Kooks..

in fact here is the video

Monday, October 23, 2006

Comic Sales..where are they going?

I was looking at the numbers for comics sales in Sep.

[link]

and I was shocked that there were very few non Marvel or DC books in the top 100. There seems to be more books over the 100k mark but many books that are often talked about (Walking Dead, Invincibles) are locked into the barely 20k ghetto. Invincibles is an amazing book and it hits around 14k.

I was doing the math. At those numbers it would be very difficult to make any money off the books.

Maybe none of this is a newsflash but I still find it shocking that some of the best comics being made today are selling such low numbers.

I looked at the graphic novel sales and in the case of Walking Dead it sells exactly half what it sells in floppys in trades but at a higher price...So why not just make Walking Dead OGNs and skip the floppys.

I know Marvel and DC will always be around with their crossovers and events..but where will the indie books go?

The Web or graphic novels?

Indies used to be the minor league for Marvel and DC but as the indies get squeezed out where will new talent get a chance to shine? DA?

Any thoughts on sales trends?

Talk To Karl!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

88 Sneak Peek Part 03


Here is another sneak peek at my new OGN 88. This is the first time we see the main character of the first book...

more very soon..

k

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Time Flies..when you are bullshitting...

It's official..I've been blogging for over a year now. My first entry on this blog was August 10th 2005...and I didn't even celebrate the anniversary.

I didn't have any real ideas what I was going to write about..and if you've read more than one of my blogs you can see I'm all over the place...

Sometimes I pimp my art..

sometimes I make observations..

sometimes..I go off on abstract concepts...


...It's a strange combo of diary..portfolio, art show and opinion column...

It has turned me into equal parts artist,art dealer,marketing department, hack journalist, bullshitter...and opinionated fuck...


I heard that most blogs never get past two entries...and I can see why..it takes a level of dedication that I didn't realize I had...


Here's to an interesting year..


Coming this year...

more art

more abstract bullshit...


count on it...



KA-lifornia



Talk To Karl!

88 Sneek Peek



Here's two images from the new graphic novel I'm working on...."88"

Trying to take it to a whole other level....

More soon...

KA-lifornia


Talk To Karl!

Even More Rostam


Here is yet another page from the graphic novel I'm working on called Rostam.

I feel the pages are getting better...

a little loose..but I think that's bringing some energy to the table.

I hope to be done with the book soon..I'll post info on where to get it..

Also..going to start stepping up the postings on the blog...been falling off...but it must be said..posting on a blog can become a serious commitment..

More soon!!


KA-lifornia

Talk To Karl!

PS I still have a few sketchbooks left. I'm going to start putting them on ebay again..so if you want one drop me an email..great for x-mas.hehehe...hohoho..here's some artwork!!!

Monday, September 11, 2006

9-11-Media Coverage and Thoughts

With all the coverage of 5th anniversary of the 9-11 attacks everywhere it got me thinking about it..


here are my thoughts...random and from the gut.

..just a few thoughts and opinions..


I enjoy talking politics...but nothing get's people more upset than politics and religion...hopefully my opinions won't offend..

that being said...

I don't think I'll ever forget what happened on 911...I think anybody that needs to be reminded of what happened because it's fallen off their radar somehow.... does not have their head in the game in the first place and do we really care what they are thinking anyway...

The thing I don't like is when something so real..yet surreal is made to be entertainmet..like the movies that have come out about it...I know there were heroes..I've seen the footage ..I've read the interviews..it's like making a movie of the week of a funeral...when the attack happened..it was a very personal attack on each and every American..and it should be honored in that fashion..I'm just not into a tear jerking spectacle when it comes to something so..important and so tragic...it trivializes the importance of the whole issue. If you ever wonder why people in Europe think we are a bunch of yippy kay yah motherfuckers...look at how we deal with our tragedies...it shows a lack of understanding...and I think that coupled with the power we have..scares the shit out of people. As Amercians we have to be better and live up to a higher ideal. Torture..imprisonment without a trial..I can only speak for myself..but that's not my idea of what America is all about. Part of the plot of terrorists was not to just kill as many people as possible..it was to change our way of life and change our ideals as people..and in turn lower the worlds opinion of us..that is where the battle is really raging...not on some roadside in Iraq..but in the hearts and minds of the world..and in our souls as Americans. It is often said we are in a battle of cultures..East vs. West and Islam vs. Christian...but we are really in a moral battle between living up to the standards we have set or lowering ourselves to the level of our enemy and than using their behavior as justification. We have already fallen into the trap..it will take a deep search of our moral center to find the courage to pull out of it..


The question I ask people who support our current course...what is more important invading Iraq..where almost as many Americans have now died as did during the 911 attack...or capturing Bin Laden...who is still at large?

If a week or a month after 911 the world had seen Bin Laden in chains or dead that would have sent a message that if you attack Americans there will be consequences. Right now terrorists act with impunity because our resources are tied up in Iraq...As much as I like the idea of a "free" Iraq...was it really our job to make it happen? How did it go from searching for WMD's to building a Democratic republic in Iraq? Am I the only one who saw our mission change...and yet what does any of this have to do with capturing the people responsible for 9-11? We should have honored them by bringing their killer to justice...not making a movie out of their/our tragedy..






k


Talk To Karl!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

More Rostam



Working on my horses!!!

More pencils from the Rostam OGN..Coming soon..

ka-lifornia

Monday, August 07, 2006

Color Tips


Here is a quick tutorial on coloring with depth. This is just an overview. I might do a more detailed version later if it turns out to be helpful for peeps...

check it

ka-lifornia...

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Postal: A Homicidal Love Story Part04


And here it is..the final installment...8 pages with a 9 panel grid was the test and here are the results..

more experimental stuff on the way..


dig it

KA-lifornia

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Postal: A Homicidal Love Story Part03


It took awhile to get all my ducks in a row...but here it is..part03 of Postal...

Part 04 is done..but I need to refine to lettering a bit before I drop it...


I hope you dig it..as always feel free to drop me a line and let me know what you think..


k

out

Monday, July 17, 2006

Postal: A Homicidal Love Story Part02




Here is the next thrilling installment of my run and gun short story style.




Scroll down for part01.




KA-lifornia

POSTAL: A Homicidal Love Story



Here it is...part one of my "web only" down and dirty series of short comic stories...ok...


say that ten times fast...


I'll be posting the other parts later this week..



feel free to read...email...post....upload..download..print...distribute..color..this story.

All I ask is that you keep the copyright in the right hand corner...

other than that do what you will...

More soon....

KA-lifornia

Sunday, July 16, 2006

While the Iron is Hot

Like most artsy/writer types..I'll be driving in the car or in the shower...about to fall asleep and I'll get an idea for a story..

Of course I think it's the next best thing since sliced bread and I will want to drop everything and start working on it...

Stirke while the iron is hot....so to speak...


but than reality sets in....


Don't I have a full time job?


Don't I want a bit of a social life


Don't I already have a ton of other ideas that are in various stages of development..and like starving kids with big Anime quivering eyes..beg for my attention???


yes


yes


and hell yes...



So most of the time these ideas get kicked to the back burner..



well I got to thinking the other day..why don't I just do something down and dirty?


so I've decided to do a series of short comic stories that will be "web only" and will be done in a 1-2 days time..


Fast...


Sketchy...


Free...


yes free...



free for anyone to read...email...post....upload..download..print...

Sounds like that F*&ked up Daft Punk song..






as long as I am given credit...


do what you will with them...




The first story is called:


"Postal-A Homicidal Love Story"




I'm hoping to post it tonight...but it could be tomorrow.


stay tuned...


k
k

Friday, July 07, 2006

Fists of Fury!!!




I finally got back to my drawing class tonight. I've been feeling off my game and I'm trying to work out my drawing muscles by drawing from life. You know it's the drawing cure all!!!.

My drawing class has themes and tonight was BRUCE LEE...the guy looked more like Jackie Chan..but I tweaked him a bit to get that Bruce action going..

now a word from Bruce...

Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless--like water.
Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup,
You put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle,
You put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot.
Now water can *flow* or it can *crash*!
Be water, my friend.
-- Bruce Lee


KA-lifornia

Komic Kids

There was thread about comics for kids the other day on a message board..here's some of my thoughts..excuse the typos and spelling..it was free flowing...


I could write a long post on this..but I'll try and keep it brief.

1.) There are two comic worlds. Comics written by adults for adults and comics written for kids.( Manga, Archie, Simpsons maybe Spiderman sometimes).
The comic industry has painted itself into a corner by catering to the adult consumer of superhero fantasy comics.

They don't make comics for kids anymore. If they were clever they would find a middle ground ala Manga and Harry Potter. Instead they juice as much as they can out the shrinking audience. That's why the prices are high on comics..because they are not trying to sell to mom and dad..they are selling to adults with disposable income. They don't care..because...

2.) ...they are not in the business of getting new viewers/readers..that's the job of the comic properties once they go into other media..movies, video games. etc...
The comic books exist as a cheap form of property maintence...that's it...that's all...If you look at Marvel..they have gone through most of the big properties they have...within the next five years I think they will have used up much of their ability to crossover into other media...have you noticed how there are not many new characters being created?...because they are only out to exploit the existing library they have and own. They don't want to do a movie based on new characters because they want to profit off the ideas they own 100%. This does not make them evil. It just puts them in a certain business..and comics as a viable art form is not their business....the future readers of comics are not their concern...So don't fool yourself...As far as the Big Two are concerned it's not about the fans or the readers or price points or availability....it's about selling the ideas to larger media outlets...comic book publishing is just a neccesary evil to keep the concepts in play. Sad but true.

3.) Comics need to be in libraries and schools, bookstores, markets. etc. This would take a shift in content and format. Tradepaperback style format. All ages content. No cussing..no sex..no heads getting blown off...so pretty much everything from the 90's wouldn't be there...manga is way ahead of the curve and until the big two or a small company that understands what kids like and has the commitment to the kids market...it's going to be up to Naruto to bring in new readers....
Everyone who sits down and reads a comic..boy, girl..adults...anyone..they love them...and they should...comics are an amazing form of entertainment...the statistics show..if you read comics as a kid you will read them as an adult..all I can say..is thank God for Naruto..who is selling 2000 mangas a week in Borders alone...a whole generation of readers is being grown through the manga craze...

So there is a future for comics for kids ...it's just going to be manga...


That being said....all it takes is one comic to have that Harry Potter level buzz and every kid will be reading American comics again...but who is working on that..and who is going to publish it...

After I finish my current graphic novel...my next series is going to be an all ages series...I think it's up to the comic artists and writers to set the path for comics...the Big Two aren't...




The next post is a reply to someone saying that they don't think All Ages comics are cool and will interest kids..

here is my answer.






I don't think it has to be either or in terms of "All Ages" vs. "Adult" comics. It's not like TV shows or movies make just one type of content. I think there needs to be comics made for kids..and I'm not saying Captain Carrot that talks down to kids..I'm saying Harry Potter or 80's style Marvel books..interesting and engaging and fun..with some depth..just no sex and crazy violence...

The industry needs to expand and learn to target their demographic...make some comics for teens and some for adults..and God forbid some for woman...come on...a Legalos (sp) book would bring in every teen girl and crystal rubbing fan girl for miles around..or some some teen drama stuff that's funny and fun..either way..less skulls and guns...I love guns and skulls and @$$ whupping...but it's not for everyone and right for every age...

The die hard fans are dieing out...that's why the industry needs to move beyond Superheros...Crossgen tried to do it..but I didn't buy one of their books..they all seemed boring to me...If you are going to do it..do it with some excitement...it's going to take some Walt Disney level vision to make it happen...

In the end the industry lives and dies with the quality that the creators bring to it...so I have faith that the industry has enough creative minds to solve the problems that it faces..the first issue beyond that is getting the money into the hands of the artists..so they have the resources to make changes...that's why I loved Image so much..it put the control into the hands of the artists and I'm all for that.



I'll be posting more of my thoughts on this as they develop..

more later..


remember two things..Save an Indie..Kill a cape...and give kids your old floppy comics...they will appreciate them..


KA-lifornia

Monday, July 03, 2006

Anime Expo-06



I went to the Anime Expo in Anaheim today...

The show has really grown and there were lots of peeps in interesting Anime costumes...tons of Narutos and surprisingly still lot's of Sailer Moon's..

Final Fantasy still get's some costumes..but not as much as in years past.


The show has become more of an Anime fan swap meet.


Pokey

Swords

Books

DVD's

Plush Animals

Robots

Robots

Robots!!!

Tons of School Girls...and the Gothic Lolita fashion style seems to still be in full effect

There was even a Hard Gay sighting UUUUFFFFFFFFFFOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

(if you don't know who Hard Gay is yet. Go to You Tube and start livin' La Vida Loca!!!)


as well as the now legendary Man Faye..and yes his hairy butt@@ is still impresive/gross.

There was also all the Mario Brothers...including Wario..they did a little skit using a boom box and some Mario Brothers Rap from the 80's..

Impressive...most impressive....




I must mention that the dealers room was very hot..and some of these kids need to learn about Right Guard.

It' was an Otaku smell O' Rama!!

Got a chance to watch Howls Moving Castle..and although I am a Miyazaki fan even I was impressed by this movie.

I highly recommend it...very clever and a great love story...and of course..well animated..


Right now some Anime Kids are ....eatting Cup O Noodles...drinking Red Bull, smoking weed and watching Ranma 1/2 all night long!!!!



Party on Otaku...


...party on...





kk-san

Ii tenki desu ne?

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Everything In It's Right Place.


I just got back from seeing Radiohead in Berkeley...

I'd seen the band during the Ok Computer tour and to say they have improved would be a gross understatment.

they have managed the unique feat of not only improving as a band but taking their work to another artistic level.

They played some great tracks from Ok Computer..Kid A, Hail to Thief and Amnesiac as well 6 new songs!!!

The new music they are playing is a progression of their past music but very different...



dare I say...more "funky"...




The visuals of the show were top notch..they used this cool style of focusing on each member of the band and puting them on odd shaped video screens...while using some filter that gave them this high contrast look...amazing..it must be seen to be believed..



I've been lucky enough to see many great bands live but this show with it's perfect set list and an encore of "Fake Plastic Trees" pushes it into my top three of all time fave shows...

In the words of Ferris Bueller..



"if you have the means I highly recommend it"..


Ka-lifornia

Email me!



Set List courtesy of the wonderful site Green Plastic.

Green Plastic

01 Airbag
02 2+2=5
03 Where I End And You Begin
04 15 Step
05 Kid A
06 Dollars And Cents
07 Down Is The New Up
08 Nude
09 Paranoid Android
10 No Surprises
11 The Gloaming
12 All I Need
13 Climbing Up The Walls
14 Go Slowly
15 Myxomatosis
16 Bangers 'N Mash
17 How To Disappear Completely

Encore 1
18 Fake Plastic Trees
19 Arpeggi
20 Black Star
21 True Love Waits (Thom only on Rhodes, intro to EIIRP)
22 Everything In Its Right Place

Encore 2
23 Bodysnatchers
24 The Tourist

Friday, June 23, 2006

Strike Hard...Strike Fast...Blood Strike!!!!!



Back in the day I used to draw this comic called Blood Strike..it was about a group of super soliders that would get killed and get reanimated by the government.


High concept...

high bodycount...



I was brought in as the monthly penciller and co-writer on the series as part of a reboot of the original series...

...we were allowed to do whatever we wanted pretty much...so being that I was a kid at the time..I just wanted to draw guns and shit blowing up and lots of covert ops type crap...with lots of little lines and scratchy detail...my motto was.... when in doubt render the shit out of it...

I was able to hold down a monthly book so I found myself working my butt off on this series..and having to cut some corners to make it come in on time...This was a great boot camp because it pushed me to work hard and to learn when to let a page go...I would not say it was my best work...but it was a great learning experience for me...



that being said...the book was well received by many fans and still holds a place in their hearts..everytime I do a convention I am asked to sign the books and it brings back fond memories of a time when I used to draw whatever crazy thing that came to mind...not to mention I was paid obscene amounts of money to do it...such was the way of comics back in the day...

ahhhh...good times...


That brings me to the other week..I was going through my out of control archives...


(sounds like a big vault..but it's really just a couple of boxes in studio closet)

and I found some artwork from the Blood Strike era...going on 10 or more years old..it hurt my eyes..but warmed my heart at the same time...I've taken a few pieces and put them on ebay...to make money for the publishing of my new graphic novel..(got to be a forward thinker.)

check here if you want to add it to your archive.

BloodStrike Ebay

I am posting the artwork on here for the fun of it...
....so get out your guns and ammo..stealth air ships...zombie soliders... masked men and covert thingys...and let's go blow up the 90's....

"Blood Strike Style..!!!!"


k


PS

For those of you interested in my sketchbook.

Feel free to...

Email me!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Roll'n With Rostam.




I've been working on the 2nd issue of Rostam the graphic novel.

Here's a few of the pages from the story.

More info and artwork..soon..


dig it..



Ka-lifornia

Rough'n It Up



Rough drawings for a Koni Waves Pinup



and a drawing I did of the White Queen...


More art and comments soon....



Ka-lifornia

M.I.A.

Been off the blog tip for a minute...






I have been writing though...




just not posting...





I've been a busy boy and in a very reflective mood...





but mama raised me right....





so soon I'll be ready to share...





until than....



try



Thom Yorke's- The Eraser





and Nacho Libre....






both gave me much joy....






Till we blog again...


ka-lifornia

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Is the future the past? Comic Books vs. Tech

I’m sure thousands of years ago the book seemed really high-tech.

It was portable idea storage.

On the go info.

Long before Blackberry’s and cell phones and every other portable tech de jur’

...there was the book...


that idea has been stuck in my head.

the book

and for me...



the comic book....





as technology




I talk to a lot of comic people and there is always a discussion about how tech has impacted the industry.

Think about how comics have changed in the last 20 years.


The computer coloring.


The paper


The computer lettering.


The digital inks.


Web comics


Even the online community that has grown up around comics.


It’s all driven by taking old tech...(the book)


and trying to marry it with all the new tech...


my question is...


is the technology of the book..the final evolution of the comic...???



does it need to evolve further...


does it need to be downloadable?


or displayed on a website?


or live on a hard drive or DVD somewhere?


Artists and consumers always think that technology is a cure all/ must for everything.


bigger screens on your TV...with more pixels and surround sound.




Maybe the comic as is...


is perfect.


hard to believe but the truth may be that the comic has evolved into it’s perfect form.



it does not need sound



or animation

your mind is the hard drive..the big screen and the power source.


Pictures and words that come together in just the right way to paint an imaginary world in your minds eye.

Does it really get anymore high-tech than that?

The evolution of the comic is not going to come from it being downloaded or put on DVD.

It will come from the minds of the creators that take on the art-form and it’s evolution as a challenge.

They will have to see it as vehicle for every possible transfer of ideas.


Want to learn about dating?


Read a comic.


Want to perfect your golf swing.


Read a comic.


Want to learn the classics


Read a comic.


The applications for comics are endless.


The only thing that stops it is the imagination and bravery of the creators and the willingness of the viewer to open their minds.



You have a piece of amazing technology in your hands. The ability to change minds and
bring a whole new perspective to the world by speaking directly to a person’s imagination.

You have the comic book.




cheap to make





hard sell





amazing to experience.







time to get to work.


KA-lifornia


Email me!



Top reasons to buy my sketchbook:


1.)I'm running low on funds for world domination. (Giant Robots... that shit ain't cheap!!!)

2.)I've gained some weight so I need to get a Ninja outfit that fits.( I'm strickly name brand)

3.)Damn those new Jordans look tight. I'd sure like to have a pair.

4.)Yo, gas is pricy and my H2 really drinks that shit like water.

5.)You really need to cut down on the Starbucks. You know how bad that stuff is for you?..I'd like a double Latte half caff espresso...gracias!!!

6.) Come on you own enough Anime style artwork from some kid in Europe. Time for some good ole fashioned Americana!!!

7.) I put a lot of cool work into the sketchbook and it's cool to support the arts.

Drop me a note if you want one. I promise it won't $hit on the rug and will not even ask to be walked. What a deal!!

25 bucks...plus 5 for shipping...what you expect me to drop it off at your house...dude you want everything!!! I told you my H2 grubs on the gasolina. Chill!!!

Sunday, April 30, 2006

New Old Stuff




Been real busy lately..work's been crazy...

I've been working on toys for Spiderman 3 and it's been a lot of fun so far.

Here's some various pieces from the last couple of years..some I wish I could do over..all of them are part of the process of getting better..going to hit a life drawing class this week (crossing fingers)..I need to eat my artistic veggies..

I have a few issues of my Lost Treasures Sketchbook left. They are $25 bucks and 5 bucks for shipping....and it is worth every penny.hehehe..email me if you want to be the first on your block to have to one..

Email me!

New music to check out..

Body Rockers..very Ipod friendly ZZ top meets Daft Punk!!!

Gotan Project..sort of Pink Martini with a more trip hop bent...if I didn't tell you ..you might think it was Thievery Corporation...

Still working on my OGN...will be a happy camper once I hit my groove with it..till than it will be the latest monkey on my back...

Movie fucking suck right now...with no relief in sight.

thank Baby Jesus for the NBA playoffs or I would have just thrown my TV out the window...

love and kisses

KA-lifornia...

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Save an Indie Kill a Cape



Two weekend ago I went to the Wizard World Los Angeles show.

For those of you that don’t know about it…it’s one of the various regional comic book conventions Wizard the magazine throws. Their main show is in Chicago and it’s by far the best of them.


LA has never been able to support a convention for as long as I can remember.


There are various reasons.


It’s sandwiched between shows in No Cal and San Diego.

Too many monthly cons with discounted books

It’s too spread out.

LA fans are passive.

Too much to do in a big city…

No real mass transit...

…it’s all of the above.



This made for a pretty slow show.

There was mainly looky loos trying to catch some nerds in their natural habitat or perhaps get a pic with a big boobyed booth girl.





One thing has become clear to me about the comics industry.

It’s no longer a place for artists.

It’s a place for brand maintenance.

It’s a place for marketing.

It’s a corporate Petri dish.

Cheap testing for larger media concepts.

It’s a place where retailers are caught up by the product. They don’t choose the product they carry…

that’s an illusion. They buy what the big two push…because if they don’t it will sink their business.


I can’t blame them. I bet if you asked most retailers you would find they don’t enjoy most of the books they sell. Right it off to fanboy hate...the truth of the matter they sell what is available.


The industry is also a place where the artists are paid so little for their art and ideas they are forced to live in a state of fear as to when and if they will be able to continue working in the field most of them love. I’m sure if you asked most of the artists if they love the concepts they work on..they would echo the retailers and say they do what they do for the money. Most of them want to work on their own concepts....but like everyone seems to be saying.

“it’s a bad time to be an Indie”



or so I have been told.



Ok so that’s the bad news. It’s not a newsflash...I think everyone who works in or around comics has seen it coming or knows it has arrived.


Sure you can say that every Ultimate,Civil, Infinite,Identity fiasco bumps up the numbers and gives the people what they want. ..but don't fool yourself..that sucking sound is just not the quality of the books it's the sound of the air being sucked out the room. When these books come out..they eat up all the retail money...tying up the buying power of the retailers and pushing out the indie books.



"You can't try what you can't buy"


If a book is not on the shelf than it has no chance...if a retailer does not have the money to carry the book...no matter how good it is...well you get the picture...




sobering...




Or you could mention that Diamond’s numbers show an increase in comic sales each of the last three years...More tied in product streamlined for your consumption boosts numbers...just a lil bit...that's the real newsflash.


great stats that impress the stock holders



...but baby



...where is the creativity?


where is the originality?


where is the voice of the creative people?


Where


is


the


good


shit?


You know...the stuff that get's you hyped...like when you first saw a Terrada book....or the first time you saw Star Wars...or the first time you played Final Fantasy..

where is the imagination and the creative freedom that drew us into the industry in the first place...?




Let it sink in...





than breath deep and read on...



I could go on and on about how the industry needs to broaden it’s horizons and bring in more outside readers..Get more female readers or create more Romance comics..or Westerns..or Sports......but I’m not going to test your patience with all that...


The industry is not in the hands of creative people...


The people who control the industry are interested in one thing..


awww come on..do I really need to say it...



money...


how do they make money...


by selling regergitated half baked over hyped crossed overed madness..


at the expense of the growth of the indsutry.





the only way to free the industry is to hit them where it hurts...



I’m going to keep it simple.




Kill a Cape....Save an Indie.




.... this is how it works...


next time you go to the store to pick up whatever X-Super-Bat Civil hacked out disaster...




Take a minute...


Put it down....


...walk over to the indie section (if it exists at your local store) or go online


.....and buy an Indie book.


Ok who am I kidding....this will not change the course of the comic industry in America.


Or will it?



If you want to see real change than it starts with a simple choice. Insure the future of the artform you love by putting your money on the only thing worth backing in this industry..





the creative minds and endeavors of it's writers and artists...




I hear the artists and the fans clamoring for the industry to become something bigger...something more interesting....


You vote with your money...


Don't worry Superman will be ok...he's got a movies and other stuff in his corner..


your local comic book artist is not so lucky...all he has is you...



there’s tons of non cape comics rocking the shelf and the internet.





...Love and Rockets, Blankets, Walking Dead, Demo, DMZ, Bone, Optic Nerve






if you can’t find something email me and I will help you.


Email me!





Put the creative people back in control of the industry...




Don’t let the last free art form in America fall prey to the same corporate wolves that savaged the movie and music industry...



don’t let it be a land of focus groups and demographics...


open your mind...


open your wallets...



and pull the trigger on a cape....




KA-lifornia

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Lost Treasures Sketchbook/Update


Putting the final touches on the sketchbook. I'm doing a short run for Wizard World LA...I've jam packed it with comic book goodness..so be sure and come by tmy table during the show. If you can't make it feel free to email me for a copy...

Email me!

here is the revised cover...

k

Monday, March 06, 2006

Lost Treasures Sketchbook


I've finally put some sketches together and I am printing up a book of them.

The majority of the art will be stuff that I have not shown before (babes monsters, guns/tech, cartoony stuff)

..and a few of my faves that I never get tired of showing (hehehe)

It will also have a sneak peek of my new graphic novel and I will be randomly putting in small hand painted sketches on postcard size paper.

How's that for a deal!?!

It will be 8.5x 5.5, 32 pages 8 pages color and 24 black and white with a very short print run.

If you are interested in getting one. Contact me via email at Email me!

They are $25 bucks each and $5 buck shipping in the US and $10 bucks everywhere else.

I will be printing them on my birthday April 7th.

All proceeds will go towards the printing of my graphic novel...

Thanks to everyone on DA for showing me so much great support!!!

All the best

Karl

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Meta-Artistic-Tools


I'm been working in Painter lately..trying to see if I can find a style I like..


it's strange because there is so much to choose from in terms of tools..



but it's reverse of what I'm used to..usually you take some paint or markers or whatever and start doing something...



as opposed to Software..where you try and find what it can do and than see what you can make with it...it's the era of the artistic meta-tool...



not just one style of paint it's all styles all genres at once...crazy...but interesting..

ka-lifornia..


PS

Check out the Jazzanova remix of Fat Freddy's Drop.."flashback"

good stuff

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Sketching and Thinking...




Been working like a dog lately..arghh very tired..managed to do some sketches..here they are for your enjoyment...

back to the drawing board...

k

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Serve the Servants




So I’m at Ralph's the other day picking up some stuff for dinner and this week’s lunch menu...

and this heavy set kid starts making a ruckus...

he’s got this part Chunk from Goonies meets Mickey Dolenz vibe going...

He starts yelling “ Mom I’m not going to push this cart...it’s too damn heavy”

he than proceeds to run the cart into the Dorrito display...just for effect...

I looked around and most everyone turned away...like..


glad it’s not my kid...

The boys mom comes up and says “I’m sorry mommy made you push the cart”...

he screams “ I HATE YOU!!!”

uh...ok


Now maybe I’m old school...but I’d have knocked that little “Hey Hey We’re The Monkeys” lil’ brat into the middle of next week...

because where I come from..if you ever said something like that...people in my family would have gotten in line to “whup” my ass....

but it’s a different time now...

Parents “Serve the Servants”

What do I mean you ask?....

When I was a kid..we worked for shit...

dumped trash...

went and got drinks

cleaned..

cleaned...

and when everything was clean....

we helped with dinner..

and we did it when we were told to....


or you got the Weapon of Mass Destruction upside the head...

we were servants...

and I didn’t bitch about it..I did it because it was the role I had in the family..I always thought when I got older I would have a different role


...and I did...

but part of my upbringing was to respect your elders and do your part..

but now..


parents...serve the servants....

they feel they are there to serve their kids...

they must have everything..

all the clothes and video games...

and cell phones ...

etc...

you get the picture...

the simple truth is parents today are giving them everything they could want or need from a material standpoint...but they are not giving them the tools to survive in the real world...

responsibility...

work ethic...

respect...


ok maybe I’ve got it all wrong...

kids shouldn’t get WMD’d upside the dome...

kids should say what they want...hey,....they are people too....

kids should enjoy their time as a child...they don’t need to be distracted by chores or other mundane tasks...


yeah it read like bullshit when I typed it...

The truth is kids are not adults..they don’t have the capacity to make good decisions and when they are faced with choices they don’t understand or cannot decide on they freak out and go crazy within the limited amount of emotional maturity they have...

they are primitive man and they respond to being told what to do..because in their heart of hearts they have a thirst to learn the way of life and to be shown how to do things the correct way...

so it’s not Chunky Monkey’s fault he drove the cart into the Dorrito stand..it’s Mom’s fault for not understanding that it’s better to be teacher than a peer when it comes to parenting..

Keep Your Pimp Hand Strong Momma...it’s the only way they will learn..

KA-lifornia

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Creative 6th Sense

No I don’t see dead people.


…but I do feel like I can spot trends in art and see where things are going….



Is this my mutant ability (oops my geek fell out)…


I don’t think so…


It’s what most creative people have…





A Creative 6th sense..





That’s why ideally artists create the trends rather than respond to them…



In my opinion..

That’s the difference between an artist and designer…



An artist has blue sky..



They push the ideas…



Saying the things that need to be said in a way that they have not been said before…



Designers have problems..



Problems that needs solving…



They take bits and pieces of art and the language it speaks in and use it to describe and or communicate a message..

That message can be anything from by new and improved dog shit…

To…”I’m love’n it” ad campaigns…




Don’t get me wrong pal..I’m not saying..one is better than the other…

They both have a job to do and ideas and creativity to express…




…but they are different




so do yourself a favor my creative comrade

..make sure you know what you are being asked for when you work on something…






are you the artist or the designer..




or little bit of both…


ka-lifornia

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Sketch Madness



I've been on a sketching terror lately. I've been drawing on napkins, old copy paper, notebook paper...plots...


You name it..I've been sketching on it...

so here's a couple I scanned..more on the way..

k

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Highly Detailed Street Artist

Almost done with the layouts to my OGN. Thank baby Jesus for that. Now comes the hard part..doing all the real work...why have I brought this on myself you ask.

It's because I have something to prove.

Ok I finally said it.

I don't feel like I've ever really realized my potential as a comic artist.


And chances are not given they are made...

so this is my chance to push myself to another level and do something I'm truely proud of...


than I will have to go back to my drawing board and do the next volume of it..and I will keep going until I've created 6 volumes....


Cut to four years later.....

,,,,,,than I will pack up all my worldly possesions in my car...


drive it off the pier...


and fake my own death...



than I will move to Europe where I will become one of those street artists and do highly detailed drawings on the sidewalk and than watch as the rain washes them away...

such will be my fate..

Time to get back to work...



k

Friday, January 06, 2006

Father Hero.

I hear a lot of squaking about the prices of American comics. There’s debate about floppys vs. graphic novels and what is the future format of the industry...I'm intrigued by the Manga vs Superhero debate...People either love Anime/Manga style or hate it..there are many questions as to why...but the answers are all around us..you just have to be willing to look outside the comic store...

The thing about pricing is that manga has shown that it's content over production value. I've been in mainstream bookstores and seen kids buying three or four Mangas at a pop. With an average price of $9.99 that's a cool $30.00 bucks. Imagine if kids were dropping that much at the local comic shop.

All this on black and white some times soso paper...smaller images/pages and not to mention some of the scans on them are pretty blurry...still the content/format is what sells it...If American comics put more time into creating stories that kids dig and finding a price point kids were down with...well ok..that's asking too much...

I think the average kid nowadays is more of a Hello Kitty/Yu Gi Oh/ post Pokimon type kid...


thin Anime guys with big hair and ninja moves is his bag...


I grew up on the Indiana Jones/ Batman/ Wolverine type characters...


My generation wanted to be like our fathers


older..


and worldly...



we were attracted to characters that represented that archetype.



Kid's today want to see themselves..Teen Titans...Harry Potter...most popular Anime has a kid or teen characters as the main characters....as does most Manga..


....what kid today wants to read about a maladjusted guy who dresses like a Bat and complains about the death of his mom and dad...

but yet...
give his side kick a Manga/ Anime twist..and voila..instant fan fave..

Robin in the Teen Titans resonates with kids because he is cool and young..which is what kids nowadays want to be.
Maybe it speaks to some deeper issue about how this generation sees it’s self. Media in general is geared so much to the individual..first person shooters..Ipods and PSPs all cater to the mindset of “me”...

In the end ...


...it's not the ideas that our turning the readers away it's the telling of the stories...


It’s all about how you frame the story and the tone in which you tell it..


..just make sure the characters have big eyes and speed lines and you should do just fine...



k

Must reads:
Walking Dead...it’s a Zombie comic that has nothing to do with Zombies..it’s all about people and character..run don’t walk..read it today...

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Infinite Endless

Most people I know get the “New Years Eve Blues”



They get caught in their own reflection.



Past loves...



missed opportunities



Left instead of right



yes instead of no.



the past is not what it seems it’s not the one choice we made.



it’s the tiny choices we made before the one we remember...



Trust me if you could have done better at the time..you would have..the stars were not aligned or your sox were too tight or you got up on the left side of the bed not the right...



what was .....”is”




Most get so busy sifting through the “endless, infinite, endless”...looking back with such a critical eye that they forget the most important thing....




..to look forward...




...because that’s all you really have.




Although the past teaches us lessons it’s not a place where you want to live




...nice place to visit..yadda yadda..





You can’t stop being you




...as much as a new hair cut or new clothes may speak other wise..



you my friend..


are you.




You can’t just stop “being” you...





but you can be a “better you”...




and the only place where that “you” exists is in the future.



...so when the “New Years Blues” hits you...



remember...



you are moving forward



...to a better place



..where sooner or later



..you will be face to face




with a smarter,




wiser...



better you....



Happy New Year!!!



KA-lifornia