Rime of the Ancient Mariner: Phase One Complete!

Just in case you haven’t heard, since I’ve mentioned it pretty much everywhere but this website, I’ve finished illustrating all the stanzas of The Rime of Mariner! I got it all concluded a day before New Year’s Eve, so I wasn’t even feverishly working on it in the minutes before the rollover to 2014. In many ways, I wasn’t ready for it to be done. Right after I finished, I found myself recounting and cross-checking. Had I really finished every stanza? Did I miss one somewhere in there? I’m chomping at the bit for the next project!

Before I can start the Next Big Thing in earnest, though, I need to finish the Current Big Thing, which means I’ve been coloring away since the calendar changed. If you’ve been following The Tyranny of Pants, you likely noticed a shift in the coloring style last spring, which was the beginning of “practicing” to get started on The Mariner. I’ve been applying that practice lately, and so far I’m pleased with the results. I’m getting my color palettes dialed in, and I’m really enjoying the look of the finished work. Now I find myself starting to wonder what it might look like in print…

In the meantime, I’ve also let myself get started on a smaller project that’s been an ambition for a few months. It’s not done yet, but I’m making a little football zine. I haven’t given it a formal title yet, but I’ve been thinking of it as “I Don’t Know Anything About Football.” The idea of the project is that it can serve as a tongue-in-cheek introduction to the principles of grid-iron football, for people who are as illiterate about it as I am. I know what a touchdown is, and who the quarterback is, but that’s about the extent of my knowledge. What’s a fullback, or is that a soccer thing? Is there a difference between a wide-receiver and a running back? In the era of miniaturized technology, why do coaches wear those comically-giant headsets? I hope to answer these and other questions for you, in an entertaining but informative fashion.

I’ve been working on it more aggressively lately since Seattle has been in the midst of play-off fever, and now that the Seahawks are Superbowl-bound, the whole city feels like it has a little spring in its step. I don’t know if I’ll have it ready and available to read before the big game next weekend, but you can look forward to seeing it in a within a week or two… just in time for football season to be over! So, be sure to read it before the season starts again in the fall, and we’ll all be experts in no time, or at least able to blend in with out football-enthusiast friends and family a little better.

I’ve also been working on building a mailing list for a proper e-mail newsletter, primarily to help keep folks updated about the State of The Mariner, but it’ll also let you know about other projects I’ll be working on. My plan it to make it worth your while, and to not send it out with annoying frequency: it’ll be monthly at the most, but most likely every two or three months to start. You can find a link to the sign-up page here (via MailChimp), and you’ll hopefully be seeing the first “issue” of that in the next few weeks too.

And, before I get back to work drawing a bunch of football players for the zine, I’ve got one other bit of news: I’ve got a few drawings on display in The Push Pin Show at the Gallery at Town Center in Lake Forest Park, just north of Seattle. The show will be up through February 22nd, and the gallery is open from noon to 5 pm, Tuesday through Saturday. I’ve got four little sketches in the show, but there’s a bunch of work by all sorts of folks!

Alright, time to get back to drawing defensive linebackers, or whatever they’re called.

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