Showing posts with label Sailor Moon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sailor Moon. Show all posts

Thursday, December 31, 2020

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

A Touch of Sailor Moon-Related Updates

Yoooooooo. Listen. Errr… read. I finally bought my first Sailor Moon S.H. Figuarts figure. I picked my favorite character, Aino Minako. And she's here in my favorite of her two heroine identities as Sailor V. As opposed to Sailor Venus–which I plan on getting sooner than later. Sailor V is Naoko Takeuchi’s first Sailor Senshi. So that counts as well.

Anyway, I stopped buying Sailor Moon figures and collectibles a long time ago. I suppose that's a product of my getting older and focusing more toward the manga and video releases. Still, I wanted to make the exception here with this figure.

Friday, January 4, 2019

I Guess the 1st Book Haul of 2019

Barnes & Noble Pick-Ups

Murder with Fried Chicken and Waffles (A Mahalia Watkins Mystery) by A. L. Herbert.  I’ve seen this floating around once or twice.  It’s a black cozy mystery (series) with a soulfood-themed hook.  And Death by Dumpling is in the same vein of a food inspired mysteries.  Except the author, Vivien Chien, takes on the Chinese noodle shop as her hook.

 Barnes & Noble Online Pick-Ups

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

"Manga" Flavia ~ The Girl Who Dreamed of Sailor Neptune & Alan Bradley

We got another one!  Finally, after spending the summer away from the drawing board, I picked up my pen and paper and got to work.  The idea was just sketch something out.  Sometime simple.  Something clean.  Just anything to get the drawing juices flowing.  Gathering my supplies, I decided to include some extra equipment.  That would be my camera and my lamp.  And this is where I ended up...



Saturday, February 28, 2015

The Girl Who Dreamt of Earl Moran

She has a name, and it’s Emiko (although I conceptualized her, her surname escapes me at the moment). Japanese? Absolutely. And she dreamt of posing for famed pin-up artist Earl Moran. Or, at least, that’s what inspired all of this; the blueness and semi-sailor look. Oh, also the binoculars that don't exactly look like such (who ever said I could draw inanimate objects anyway?). I have a book on famous pin-up artists, and I use it whenever I want to draw something but am uninspired by anything. So, I take to that book during dry spells. And considering I've promised myself that I would try to draw a new image once a month for 2015, I landed on Earl Moran's chapter. And since today is the last day of February, I’ll let the process images do most of the talking as I try to post this before midnight. Enjoy and comment below. And the image source is HERE!

The usual penciling process.  Sometimes I hate this part because my OCD really kicks in–knowing that if I don't get it right, it's all done for.  While I'll never be 100% accurate or get my proportions right (who needs them in comic and cartooning?), I do use my handy bathroom mirror to reflect the sketch back.  That way, I'll catch some of the obvious little misalignments.

The inking part, of course.

Copic markers for shading and outline.  I've always done this however way.  So not into light sources.

Ah, the stenciling and scrapping part.

I took another piece of bristol board and painted it blue.  A seafaring blue (whatever that is).  The point was to make her backdrop look something like the side of a boat.  I'm going for a theme here.

Dying to use this particular material; I turned her scooped out parts into a shirt.

More color, more pizazz.  I almost didn't get through this, as I was entranced with catching up with How to Get Away with Murder.  Man!  They gave us two episodes this week and they were soooooo good.  I don't think I even ate yet.

I taped the shirt down, seeing that another layer would be added.  Then glued her down to the backdrop.  Neither were as much of a mess as I anticipated.

All done!  Scanned, revived, retouched a bit.  Since I'm not a computer person, I did what I could.  Anyway, Emiko is happy.  Her usual prickly disposition does not show.  I haven't drew her in a long time and have been thinking about her as of recent.  Here's to my girl.


Saturday, February 21, 2015

~ 2. Back to High School - Towel-Style ~

Here we are with the next five pages.  Click HERE for the first five.  Or you can follow the labels at the end of the post.

Obviously I made my pages super busy.  Busy, packed and hectic.  Nevertheless, that's how I saw a lot of manga pages; busy and occupied.  I suppose I was just copying, but to an extreme.  I wish I had the skill to tell an efficient (as well as effective) story without too much fuss.  Maybe if I tried to do this these days I could get it right.

Once again a busy page.  I didn't have an manga screens (though later I started to print pictures on tracing paper and go from there), so I had to do all of my backgrounds and effects by hand.  I used what I had.  That's why I always tell people to just start wherever you are and enjoy the process.  

I love Towel and Clip's teacher in the top left corner.  "Break's over!  Let's go!" he says.  And as always, Towel decides to call him a "patty mouth dog."  I don't know what that is.  Should I ever get the time to write her these days, she would never say something like that.  It's not clever enough.  Nonetheless, here her and Clip continue to peep the new girl.

I remember showing this page to a friend of mine and he made a comment about the top panel character's (if you didn't catch it, her name is Miino) expression.  He was pretty direct in his observation that the character looks as if she's about to do something salacious.  I'll leave that to your imagination.  Nonetheless, what I want to point out is how the teachers always seem to be yelling at Towel.  Even this female teacher on the left is yelling at her to take a seat.

Towel's trying to be friends with the new girl, Miino.  Instead, Miino is more interested in strangling Towel.  The scene transitions over into the gym area where Towel and Clip reunite to discuss the new girl, as well as some of the male students playing ball topless.  Said boys have taken a liking to Miino–naturally.  This makes Towel even more curious as to who this new girl is.

I don't think Japanese female students wear bloomers anymore for gym class.  However, this is another obvious testament to my love of the shojo manga genre.

The bloomers again.  Other than that, here is where I introduced another male character (other than Towel's best friend Cornbread).  I'm cringing here as I revisit this particular page.  Why?  Because while I was shaky, I don't like how I drew this guy at all.  I think my drawings of him will get better.  But yesh!

See you guys in the next post...

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

~ 1. Back 2 High School–Towel Style ~

Now this is hilarious. It started out really quite simple: I needed an eyeglass repair kit–but not for eyeglasses. I needed to replace my cell phone’s USB charger port and had all the equipment in one kit, including a useless micro screwdriver. So convinced that I had another one in an eyeglass repair kit, I scoured my room searching. Eventually, I dived into my closet, pulled out a couple of plastic storage crates, and ran across this old comic I drew back in my junior year of high school. It’s where I started to develop and understand this character that’s been in my head all my life. Her name is Towel. (Nicknamed if you will.) She’s young. Highly misunderstood. Stubborn. A romantic. Senseless and often times forgetful. However, most of all, she’s a hero. She’s lived and manifested in many different forms and appearances. Many different races. Many different occupations. Nonetheless, she’s always been influenced by my love of Sailor Moon, Buffy and a variety of other forms and medias that represent women in power.

So it took me a while, but I finally whipped out my scanner, thinking it would be cool to share some of these scans just for the hell of it. It’s rough. It’s hard.  It's random and confusing.  It’s impulsively drawn. But it’s here. So be tickled.  And sorry that some areas are cut off. My scanner isn't that large.

And no. I never found that eyeglass repair kit. Therefore, I was left making a run to the Dollar Store for one.  However, eventually I got my phone repaired.

I’ll release these in a series of 5 per posts...

What other way to introduce Towel other than to make her late for school?  Why was she late?  Because she was busy admiring a dress.  Heavily–and I mean heavily–influenced by Naoko Takeuchi and Miwa Ueda's work, I placed her in a sailor-style uniform just like Japanese students.  Which only exacts her locale.  

While I was rarely late for school/class, I will say that I was not liked by a couple of teachers for other reasons.  Like Towel, I kind of didn't have a filter on my mouth.  I remember one English teacher calling me out because I proclaimed "this sucks" during one dull, boring class period.  It really was boring listening to her read out of some book.  However, school was like that for me; I was always bored.  And though I've always tried, I find it hard to hold back how I feel.  Especially when it comes to the urge to create.

While she may be located in Japan, Towel definitely had my Southern wit.  I also want to mention how, as it regards manga/anime, characters who have blond hair and blue eyes are not necessarily considered white.  In fact, you'll know when a white/foreign character is present in either form, because of the difference in his/her appearance and behavior.  However, the obvious is a silly caricature of say an American or Russian.  

I never really saw Towel as white, mixed maybe.  Eventually she became a black character who dyed her hair blond.  Why blond?  Because Minako/Sailor Venus is yellow-headed of course.  Plus, the color is so light that it's easiest to product and hide mistakes over.

I've always loved these little character introductions in manga.  A quick, running page of information regarding the star and her buddies.  Clip (later changed to Klip) and Cornbread (we'll talk about him later) were always the characters I had in mind as Towel's best friends.  Both have changed tremendously over the years.  Something I'll realize more and more of as I re-read these early introductions.  

Nonetheless, back to Towel.  I wanted Towel to be sporty, unlike myself.  So I made her a basketball player (like my sister at the time) and a gymnasts (so she could do flips like the original Pink Ranger).  She loves to write, which is something that did come from myself.  Ultimately, I shot for well-rounded.

And here enters a character inspired by Naoko Takeuchi's Rei Hino (my second favorite senshi), or other known as Sailor Mars.  She becomes Towel's school rival and later something else entirely.

Perhaps now's the time to ask that you stay tuned for the next half...

Monday, October 27, 2014

Sailor Moon English Book Collections

I should share a little bit more concerning my love of Japanese manga artist Naoko Takeuchi's Sailor Moon empire.  It would take all day and then some to write it all down, though.  Nonetheless, at its base, this manga/anime series gave me all of my dreams since I first discovered it when I was 12.  So in keeping with that, I've filmed and re-filmed some of the English-language books I collected during my teen years.  And, well, here they are... 

From the Spring of 1999 to the Fall of 2000 came the English novelizations of the first quarter episodes of the Sailor Moon anime. This included episodes that were previously not dubbed for the English adaptation released by DiC Entertainment. The books were written by Tokyopop founder, Stu Levy (he only wrote the first book), and once famed Sailor Moon fanfiction author, Lianne Sentar. I read these books repeatedly as a teen.  Furthermore, I appreciated how the missing episodes were novelized during a time when many of us had absolutely no access to them. (This was a time when everyone was on dial-up and there was no Youtube.) Nonetheless, I was never totally won over by the actual writing. I remember cringing at the inclusion of Western references (one being an American boy band), and the lack of detailed writing surrounding the girls’ transformations and other events that the stories were based upon. I was writing Sailor Moon fanfiction at the time and, honestly, I felt like I could do better; granted the fact that these books were written for younger readers.

Here we have the English adaptations of the Sailor Moon character books–or character guides. During the time they were starting to release, Sailor Moon S was preparing (unknown to me) to air in June of 2000. I think we were about two books in (Mars and Venus were the first releases if I'm correct) before Sailor Moon S aired on Cartoon Network for the first time. Therefore, material from these guides included pictures and references from that season. That would include shots of the Inner Senshi with the Outer Senshi as well as other story points regarding that season.  Unbeknownst to me, I would get the chance to see all of that material from Sailor Moon S come to life months down the road. However, these guides followed mostly the dubbed adaptation of Sailor Moon. That would include the characters' names (at least in regards to the Inner Senshi) and a few other references.

Last is the complete collection of Tokyopop’s (formerly known as Mixxine) English adaptations of Naoko Takeuchi’s Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon manga.  At the same time, the series was running in comic book form and via Tokyopop's Smile magazine between their volumized releases.  Nevertheless, they had their translation issues (like anything translated wouldn’t).  They used the character names from the DiC dubbed.  They also looked like they were printed and reprinted through a Xerox machine.  However, despite all of that, you have to give credit where credit is due and celebrated the fact that we even got these things. Seriously, I could only imagine how difficult it was for Tokyopop to get the rights to the English version of Naoko Takeuchi’s beloved manga series. Heck, I remember as a teen I wrote (yes, as in snail mail) Tokyopop asking if there were any plans on a Sailor V translation. Their answer was quite simple: “Not at the moment.” That turned into never

Nonetheless, I cherished–and I mean cherished–my copy of the first volume the second I bought it out of a local comic book shop. I mean, that thing meant the world to me.  Before, I would constantly look through my Mixxine magazines at the order form, begging for my mom to order them for me.  Eventually they landed in the local bookstores as well, so I just bought them there.  I remember the Summer of 1999 where I read my copy of the first volume repeatedly.  My fingers actually stained the edges of the paper.  Until that point, the only ever time I read Sailor Moon was through the Chinese version. An exchange student used to lend me her copies in exchange for allowing her to read my short stories. 

 Naturally, these books inspired me beyond measure.  And that's putting it lightly.  No, seriously, you don't want to get me started.  I am literally tempted to do a character sketch and manga and anime review of the series.  Including the newly released Sailor Moon Crystal.  

Have you been inspired by Sailor Moon or any other manga or anime?  Share your story.

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