Friday, December 25, 2020

Eucharistic Infant


My Christmas card picture for the year. 

This year has been very painful for almost everyone. But one of the things that has really shone through it all is the vital, absolute cruciality of the Blessed Sacrament. The wicked tried so hard to to cut us off from It all the while they cut us off from each other--from communion, both sacramental and social. I don't have my thoughts all drawn together to speak extensively... and I fear being cruel, because I myself haven't suffered very much this year. Blessings have been showered on me, really.

But know that you are not alone. He is with you in being human, in suffering, in being alone, in being imprisoned. Somewhere around 2020 years ago, He came to earth to sacrifice Himself for us. And through the Eucharist, this continues to this day.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Scene from The Naval Treaty


He walked past the couch to the open window and held up the drooping stalk of a moss-rose, looking down at the dainty blend of crimson and green. It was a new phase of his character to me, for I had never before seen him show any keen interest in natural objects.

"There is nothing in which deduction is so necessary as religion," said he, leaning with his back against the shutters. "It can be built up as an exact science by the reasoner. Our highest assurance of the goodness of Providence seems to me to rest in the flowers. All other things, our powers, our desires, our food, are all really necessary for our existence in the first instance. But this rose is an extra. Its smell and its color are an embellishment of life, not a condition of it. It is only goodness which gives extras, and so I say again that we have much to hope from the flowers.”

I absolutely love that speech. The fact that it's in the story right before "The Final Problem" adds to the poignancy. This is a picture I've wanted to do for almost a decade, but couldn't until recently, because, well, my original desire to do it was different. I wanted to illustrate the scene since I first read it, but I didn't want to use the typical, Sidney-Paget's-illustrations-combined-with-Basil-Rathbone's-performance character design. At that time, I would have used the Benedict-Cumberbatch's-performance design, and I wanted to embark on a whole fanart series of illustrations of the stories using the likenesses from the BBC show. But then, that series had him deny the existence of God.

Which is just, um, what? Not only is there the above speech, Sherlock Holmes more than once quotes the Bible and considers as a compliment the implication he would have it always at his side; he met his college friend Victor Trevor "on the way to chapel"; his response to people thinking events are supernatural is not to discount the possibility but to say then they're beyond his power; he "breathed a prayer of gratitude" when Sir Henry Baskerville wasn't killed by the hound; and he credits the fact that he did not become a criminal, not to mention his survival at Reichenbach, to the grace of God.

So that rather threw a damper on my plan. I didn't do those pictures then. But now, there is the Great Ace Attorney version. And oh, I'm so happy Shu Takumi did so much better in that regard, as well as others, than the BBC. So now I can finally illustrate scenes from the stories with adaptation-specific character designs, like I wanted to so long ago. So expect many many more such pictures!

I'm very very happy with how this turned out, and there were several times I was a bit anxious. As I often do, I sketched it on paper not meant for wet media but then found that's just what it required. It's gouache with marker on top and then watersoluble colored pencil for the rays of light. I've recently thought my work doesn't have enough value contrast in large areas, so this technique of gouache for shadows is one I intend to use much more. Then, for the final touch-up of the outlines, I was using a dark grey Marvy Uchida Le Pen, and I was almost done when it ran dry! And there were none to be found in any local shop, so I had to order online and wait weeks for them to arrive! Which was tricky because this is my introductory piece to this series and I have another lined up for Christmas! Fortunately they arrived in time.

Being events from the books, naturally they won't spoil the games, but they will have some characters in their roles which don't get explained until later in the games, so if you don't want to be spoiled, maybe don't pay too close attention. I will mark off parts in the descriptions where I refer to game spoilers, like shortly below.
As I'm approaching this, I'm not worrying much about chronology nor publication order. Pedantry on this matter (including my own) will be disregarded.

And as for Watson: as I reread the books this time through, imagining the GAA versions, I just let each individual story unfold naturally whether Iris or Mikotoba appeared in that role in my mind. As we saw in the games, in her writing Iris was drawing freely from both Mikotoba's case notes and things that were happening at the present time. And you will see, I interpret some of the stories as occurring after the games... and affected accordingly.

Returning to this specific, beautiful scene, I even have to wonder... Giving Sherlock's gear a flower motif as Iris's mark of craftsmanship, and the mention of the single flower that was there when Asougi awakened from his coma, which only Sherlock could have left... I can't help thinking they might have meant to hearken to this speech and its significance, of faith in Divine Goodness in the face of death. An apt theme indeed.

Monday, November 23, 2020

All Souls Day 1900


The final trial of Great Ace Attorney 2: The Resolve of Ryunnosuke Naruhoudo begins on All Souls' Day, which is very appropriate, seeing as how it involves so many deaths and so many who grieve for them. Ryuunosuke even has a line in the narration about "all sorrows coming together" therein. And so, I had the idea to make the jurors' flames into flames of Purgatory with all the souls whose deaths were related to the case. This is of the same series as my 12 Christmas pictures and Good Friday 2019 picture, particularly calling back to one of the Christmas 2016 ones.

It's late, yes, but it seemed particularly suitable for this year, I might not be able to do it next year, and this year the indulgence for the Holy Souls was extended through all November!

You may say Jezail would be in Hell, not Purgatory, and I would agree, but one of the lessons of All Souls is that while we still live, we cannot know for sure, so we pray for all. And Susato's book is Praying for the Deceased for Dummies, of course!

Thursday, November 12, 2020

Work complete on first Bovodar and the Bears comic book!


I have just finished work on the cover for the first issue of Bovodar and the Bears the graphic novel! Now the writer, Jack Mikkelson, and I need to wait to hear back from our preferred publisher. If they don't want it, we'll figure out how to publish it ourselves. Either way, I'm very excited! I'll be revealing said cover when we know how and approximately when it will be published.

In the meantime, consider reading the novel on which this comic is based, available in paperback and on Kindle!

Saturday, October 31, 2020

Halloween on Fresno Street


Yes! I finished this before midnight!

Halloween Great Ace Attorney 2 picture, done at my sister's suggestion. While it is about a holiday and what happened on that day in Ace Attorney, it's not of the same series as my 12 Christmas pictures and the Good Friday 2019 one, thus the different style and title format. After all, I'm not sure if Gossip was actually there on Halloween; was that when he was ...investigating ...those guys? (I'm keeping this spoiler-free). Anyway, it's more about the mood than the accuracy, thus also the presence of Madam Rosaic.

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Baker's Dozen 6 - Detective


The sixth of my 13 Ace Attorney fanart prompts I'm doing this year as an abbreviated Inktober. This theme is Detective, and I chose Dick Gumshoe, because he's my father's favorite Ace Attorney character. And I went all film noir with it. In the movie he had cigarettes, didn't he? Or was it Phoenix? Or was it both? I should watch the movie again.

You may think I'm running out of time, but since this isn't formally an Inktober, I can continue it however long it takes! (And it's not like one can't do that with a formal Inktober, anyway).

Here is the prompt list.

Friday, October 16, 2020

Baker's Dozen 5 - Defendant


The fifth of my 13 Ace Attorney fanart prompts I'm doing this year as an abbreviated Inktober. This theme is Defendant, and I chose Espella.

The reason why is her percentage of being the defendant: out of the four trials in that game, she's the defendant in three of them! Also, since this is my Inktober this year, it's good to have some drawings with a spooky mood! I've actually drawn her for Inktober before!

I think this drawing is the best of these so far! That means this is working as training!

Here is the prompt list.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Baker's Dozen 4 - Victim


The fourth of my 13 Ace Attorney fanart prompts I'm doing this year as an abbreviated Inktober. This theme is Victim, and I chose Doug Swallow.

Mainly because I had this composition in mind, but also, he's a pretty crucial figure if you think about it. ...And when I was looking up references for him, I noticed a resemblance in his face and hair, and a similarity in how he fell, which would give him an ancestral reason to wear a British flag shirt if a certain person lived out his days there, which is not unlikely...

Which yields an awesome parallel, really. Doug saved Phoenix, in the case where Phoenix is accused of the murder actually committed by a beautiful young woman who steals poison from the university pharmacology lab. What's really sad, then, is that Doug and Phoenix didn't get the chance to become friends.

The prompt list is here.

Monday, October 12, 2020

Baker's Dozen 3 - Prosecutor

The third of my 13 Ace Attorney fanart prompts I'm doing this year as an abbreviated Inktober. This theme is Prosecutor, and my choice is a major spoiler of Great Ace Attorney 2: The Resolve of Ryuunosuke Naruhoudo, so the picture is below the cut.

Monday, October 5, 2020

Baker's Dozen 2 - Sidekick


The second of my 13 Ace Attorney fanart prompts I'm doing this year as an abbreviated Inktober. This theme is Sidekick, and I chose Luke Triton!

I particularly portrayed him during the time when he was being--minor spoiler follows--Phoenix's sidekick: lying low in the back streets of Labyrinthia. But as an adherent of the assertion that Ace Attorney and Professor Layton are one story, I'd probably accept any suitable Prof. Layton character for any of these prompts if you can make an argument for it.

Here is the prompt list.

Sunday, October 4, 2020

Baker's Dozen 1 - Attorney


The first of my 13 Ace Attorney fanart prompts I'm doing this year as an abbreviated Inktober! The first theme is Attorney, so I chose Apollo Justice.

Skills I want to work on in this exercise: speed, dynamism with simple compositions, precision with an ink-filled waterbrush, close-ups, male faces, and proportion and placement of facial features so as to achieve something between anime and realism and not uncanny valley. On that last one, I'm not sure I quite got it here: Apollo looks kinda weird to me. But that's the point, to see my weaknesses and improve on them!

The prompt list is here.

Saturday, October 3, 2020

Holmes hugging


Iris Watson and the Great Ace Attorney version of Sherlock Holmes. It's just the sweetest thing!

There was a time when I would draw a lot of quick, pencil-and-ink-wash pictures of characters hugging. I am glad to say, this time has come again.

This isn't part of the Ace Attorney fanart prompt list I just embarked upon, by the way.

Thursday, October 1, 2020

Baker's Dozen fanart prompts


Having just finished watching a translation of Great Ace Attorney 2, I'm raring to draw a bunch of Ace Attorney fanart! And it's Inktober time, but I know I won't manage every day, so I settled on thirteen prompts, a baker's dozen.

For each one, I might choose my favorite exemplar of that category, or that I think is most iconic, or whom I haven't drawn before, whatever! 

If you draw and like Ace Attorney, feel free to join in!

Sunday, September 27, 2020

State of my Stories master list

For my own benefit, I thought I'd make a list of all the story projects and ideas that I currently aspire to complete and assess where they stand. This list doesn't include collaborative projects. This also functions as a little introduction to each one.

Paper Doll Veronika
Cut-paper webcomic, to be found here. 

The whimsical journey of Veronika Bosch, kicked out of her house by animals, and the adventures she has with magical dresses. 
This is currently the most active of my own story projects. I'm nearly ready to start Part II, and I decided not to wait to do all the bonus material mentioned here before posting it; the bonus stuff will come alongside the comic itself. The script is written as far as midway through Part IV.
Seven-volume graphic novel.

Becky Kinford is trapped in the past and seeks the help of her grandfather Anthony in finding a way home.

The script is complete, just needs a little revision, and with what I've recently learned regarding publishing independent comics, I feel ready finally to embark on this as soon as I can get a collaborative project or two out of the way. Having waited so long isn't so bad, since my drawing skills are way better now than they were when I wrote this.

Mary's Mazes 
A series of pictorial mazes to be navigated via links on a website.

Haven't done anything with this yet except for mapping out four mazes, deciding their themes, and writing their riddles. But I am rethinking my approach to the planned art; I had been planning thin-line pen-and-ink, but now I think brushpen will be both faster and more evocative.

Journey to Earth
Illustrated children's book.

Archangels Raphael, Gabriel, and Michael accompany God the Son on a symbolic imagining of His journey to become incarnate and be born of the Virgin Mary.

I wrote this long ago; I need to see if it needs revision, and then do the illustrations! My drawing skills were definitely not adequate when I wrote it, now they might be! And then I need to research self-publishing books with full-page color illustrations. Manuel Guzman has done so, I should check out his work.

The Last Haunted House 

In a ruined world, detective Kasimir Candle and his sons, Whit and Karol, are invited to a mysterious house.

I just got inspired for a total re-imagining of this, and I like my new idea a lot. I need to read some more examples of the genres I'm going for, and then plot it out and develop all the characters.

26 Palaces Under the Sea

Anders, a young fisherman, is hired by the mysterious Miss Lilac to travel to lost palaces in the sea.

I haven't thought about this one for a while, since I kind of lost interest in fairy tale retellings, of which this is one. But I did actually buy a sailboat, which will most probably yield lots of inspiration once I get it fixed up and into the water, hopefully next summer!

Thy Brother's Wife
Single-volume graphic novel.

Prince Sandro accompanies his brother, King Piero, on a secret mission to end a war, but the real danger is closer at hand.

The script is written, and this is short. Maybe I should do it before Beckyless in order to practice the whole formatting and publishing process?

Dreams and Thorns
Multi-volume graphic novel, or maybe an illustrated novel?

Rosamund lives with her godparents at a private academy in a forest, but her life is not what it seems. A retelling of Sleeping Beauty.

Very up-in-the-air, but I can't let go of many of the images from this one. We'll see.

White Snow
Illustrated novelette.

Prince Alban sets out on a ceremonial journey in a land of everlasting winter, but someone is seeking his life. A retelling of Snow White.

I don't have all the details worked out, but I know exactly how I want it to look, and it's my favorite of my fairy tale retellings.


As I figured out recently, it's worthwhile to make creative works featuring iconic characters who are currently being held captive by corporations that desecrate these legacies. Someday, they'll be public domain!

Batman: Decadence
Batman comic. The first few chapters may be found here.

Okay, this one is kind of a collaborative project, with my sister Anna slated to write one of the stories. There are nine of them: Masque; Ward; Engage; Water like a Stone; Kings and Monsters Used to Lie Above this Deep, and the Princess in the Dark Tower; Do we Not Laugh; Dies Irae; Far as the Curse is Found; and Beyond: Decay. I don't know when I'll get time to return to it, but it needs some revision when I do.

All's Right with the World
Three short Batman and Superman illustrated stories. The first, "All's Fair at the County Fair", may be found here.

A while ago, I'd planned never to do fanart anymore except of a few select things, and I admit, this was the hardest thing to sacrifice for that stance. Now I see I made that decision for mistaken reasons, so here we go! They're all written, but the illustrations take longer than you might think from their simplistic style.

The Curse of the Scarab
An interactive DC Comics mystery, to be done either through a website or with an interactive novel program.

Michael Carter invites prominent figures to the unveiling of his friend Ted Kord's archaeological findings, but soon there's a murder! The reader will take on the roles of Batman and Catwoman to uncover the culprit.

This is such a fun idea. I've plotted it, done the character redesigns and started writing. But executing it in proper interactive form will be very difficult.

Nibelheim Grocery
Diary-format fanfiction of Final Fantasy VII and Dirge of Cerberus. What there is of it may be found here.

I don't think I'll be finishing this one. I think it had a lot of good parts, but it was going to get more and more miserable as it went and my time and creative energy being limited as they are, I'd rather direct them to other things. Ah well, farewell! Someday, I may return.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

What a pretty name - process


Sketch and line-art for my "What a pretty name" drawing. I really like the sketch.

Sunday, September 13, 2020

We have much to hope from the flowers -- Brand Zero emendation

 I recently finished watching a translated play-through of The Great Ace Attorney: the Adventure of Ryuunosuke Naruhodou, and there is so, so much to say. This will mostly have no spoilers; the spoilery part will be below a cut.

It drew together and clarified so much for me about stories, including a current problem that many have written about: corporate franchises ruining legacy story worlds, such as Star Wars, Marvel, DC, etc., turning them into degenerate, perverted, SJW Marxist sludge. There are Mistakes I made about the matter, there's a Solution that has been overlooked, and there's a looming Villain to be pointed at in accusation and condemnation.

To begin with, this game is in no way a ruining of this story world. Not at all, it is a deepening, and a wonderful one! The cases are fresh, dramatic, and cleverly interwoven; the new gameplay element of Deduction Theatre seemed very fun (sadly I can't comment on gameplay as much as I would like because of the necessity of watching rather than playing); the music is excellent; environments gorgeous and detailed in meaningful ways; and the characters! Never have they engaged emotional investment in new characters so fast! The concept of going back to the ancestors of the characters we know and love is a rich one; it gives the audience a reason to care from the get go; it makes us root for Ryuunosuke not only to triumph in the courtroom, but to find a wife so he can beget Phoenix's grandfather! (Or maybe great-grandfather? I think grandfather makes the most sense) It draws on the deep civilizational principles of parenthood and posterity, tradition and revering the past. Something the spirit of cultural Marxism hungers to destroy.

The wonderful themes of Friendship-Love and the pursuit of Truth, core to Ace Attorney, are strong in this one. And I was pleasantly surprised at a theme of Patriotism too! I'll talk more about these in the spoilery section below the cut, so if my opinion of the quality of this game is all you're interested in, you can stop here, or skip down to there, because next is a very long amount about the current problem with stories that I mentioned, and what this game revealed thereon.

First, the Mistakes I made about the issue of stories ruined by SJWism. This is going to get personal and a bit confessional now. Please forgive me for talking so much about myself.

Those who have known me on Deviantart for at least nine years may remember I absolutely loved the BBC series Sherlock. I wrote ecstatically about how transcendentally great was its expression of the heartbreaking glory of the pursuit of Truth and Friendship-Love. It kicked me out of the worst depressive episode of my life. I regarded it as the best show I had ever seen.

And then, with a Christmas special bloated and vomiting the vile bile of murderous feminism, it ruined itself.

I didn't watch any more after that, but what I've read about subsequent developments sounds likewise horrible. And so I just let it go and tried not to think about it, as I had done with Doctor Who and Legend of Korra when they ruined themselves, and Homestuck when its ruinous nature became undeniable.

Later, I read and witnessed how fandom is an idol for some people; they build their whole identity around it and all their emotional vulnerabilities are centered thereon, giving fandom the parts of one's heart that should be given to real life relationships, or even one's soul, that should be given to God. And I knew, there but for the grace of God would have gone I.

Around this time, I experienced a tiny bit of the incredible strenuousness and sweetness that goes with the mission of marriage/parenthood when I took a trip to help out with my nephews, and I overcorrected. I concluded that fun things like video games, comics, roleplaying, are meant to be for children and adolescents, and the best way for adults to enjoy them is in sharing them with their children. Those who make fandom their identity are misplacing the zeal for make-believe that is meant to enrich the bonds with the children they're not having, unnaturally extending their own mental and emotional adolescence instead.

There's certainly some truth to that, but it's not the whole truth, and then I went on to conclude: So all of us who do not marry should live like ascetic hermits, give all that up and live on prayer and penance alone. But I couldn't bring myself to give it all up, so I made a list of what stories I would still invest in. At the same time I proffered allegiance to independent stories, but that was actually kind of a separate matter. I was conflating the question of what to do about ruined stories with the question of giving up stories as an ascetic sacrifice, while attributing the wrong kind of essential significance to the distinction between corporate and independent, regardless of good or ruined status.

It wasn't selfishness, however, that made me hold onto the ones on the list, especially the first two. Before I'd made this overcorrection, I was given the realization, at Mass, in Lent, during a terrible time under serious attack from multiple fronts, that there was an astonishing piece of Eucharistic imagery in Layton's Mystery Journey: Katrielle's Mystery-Solving File. That led directly and immediately to my discovery of the devotion to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament as "Prisoner of Love." Suffice it to say, this was never a mistake: I know no devotion more wonderful.

That should have tipped me off that stories have purposes in addition to sharing with one's children, but at this point I only felt justified still caring about those stories which had undeniably brought me closer to Christ, while implicitly rejecting all others. I felt vindicated in this when DC Comics, particularly with Young Justice and Batman, went on to make complete its ruination of itself.

Do you see the problem here? It may have been fine if I had kept this to myself, as indeed, a real hermit or contemplative would have! But in publishing this online and telling it to others, I was implying that only the stories that had brought me closer to Christ were capable of doing so at all, to anyone! I was making myself the standard.

I also thought and indicated that stories, once ruined by SJWism, were irredeemable, or at least that at best, you could cut them off at a certain point and keep the past, but that no further new good fruit was possible after the ruination had happened.

I am sorry for these mistakes; I know they hurt at least one person, my sister and best friend, Anna. The Great Ace Attorney showed me my mistakes in this as it pointed to the Solution to ruination of stories.

We return to Sherlock. Obviously, the BBC show is an adaptation and everyone knows the distinction between it and the original Conan Doyle stories.

But there is a question of what is canon and what isn't, which isn't always clear-cut. Sherlock Holmes fans have been an inventive lot from the beginning. One could ask, what is meant when you say, "I love Sherlock Holmes"? Presumably, the Conan Doyle stories, but probably also for many nowadays, the Benedict Cumberbatch or Robert Downey Jr. portrayal. Similarly, what is meant when you say, "I love Batman"? Comics, from what era? The Animated Series and the Christopher Nolan movies are likely. The Joel Schumacher movies are unlikely. With things that have many people adding onto a story and making adaptations, some of it is going to be awful and even contrary to what it is that people love when they love that character. Especially when you have SJWs who want to use every franchise as a cudgel to beat straight white Christian men. Then you get the ruination of which I speak.

I submit that what is canon is what is true to the soul of the story. The true soul of the story may not be fully known even to the original author, but the better the author, the more the story conveys it. The soul of the story is its unique reflection and refraction of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty.

Jon Del Arroz pointed out that the ruination of comic book heroes is just as much fanfic as any fujoshi's filthy fantasy, it just has a corporate stamp of approval. It isn't by the original creators and isn't true to the soul of the story, so it isn't canon and should be ignored. But, what do you do when such ruiners have a monopoly on the story you love?

The solution to stories being ruined by SJWism, especially corporate SJWism, is the public domain. That is where fictional worlds and characters belong once the original authors have finished their work with them, earned their due, and gone to their reward. That is what allowed The Great Ace Attorney to reconsecrate Sherlock Holmes to Truth, Goodness, and Beauty after the BBC had desecrated him. No, he wasn't exactly like Conan Doyle's Holmes. But it was an adaptation made with love, not deconstruction or pandering, and was true indeed to the meanings of Love and the pursuit of Truth that are core to Sherlock Holmes, as Sherlock was before they ruined it. More particulars in the spoilery part!

If Star Wars, Marvel, and DC characters were in the public domain, imagine what wonderful, restorative works people who love their true souls would make! Yes, there would be lots of rubbish, but there already is, and the cream will float to the top.

So, I don't know enough to have a firm opinion about how long copyright should last exactly, but I know the current terms in the USA, 90 years for a work owned by an individual, and a repugnantly inequitable 120 years for a work owned by a corporation, is too long.

And you know it's wrong when you look at who is responsible, the Villain that exerted riches and influence upon the very Law of this nation in order to satisfy its verminous greed. The same who has been promoting sodomy in its theme parks for decades. The same who has been sowing self-will and rebellion in little girls from Little Mermaid to Frozen. The same who ruined Star Wars and Marvel. Disney.

The Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998 expanded copyright to these lengths. Disney was its main pressurer, along with Warner and the Estate of Sonny Bono. It was exactly timed to prevent the entrance into public domain of Mickey Mouse.

The good news is, due to people abandoning Disney's ruins and to the Corona scare, Disney is losing billions upon billions and may collapse.

In light of all this, my new take on what one who loves stories should do is as follows.

- Don't give money to ruiners, but you don't have to lose hope for the ruined.
Because someday, those characters will be freed into the public domain, and a version of them never approved by corporate diversity and inclusion cultists may stand tallest in people's imaginations.

- Pray for the collapse of corporate villains and the extension of public domain, patronize good works including independent ones, and make good fanworks!
I no longer consider myself restricted to the Brand Zero list I earlier espoused, as I did so for mistaken reasons. Neither am I denouncing the Brand Zero movement, but taking another path, hopefully toward the same goal of Good, True, and Beautiful popular culture.

- And if possible, marry, have as many children as feasible, and love and care for them the best you can.
I was wrong in thinking only children and their parents together have a right to share the gift of stories, but it is true that the role of fiction in forming young ideals of heroism is tremendously important!

If you do not marry, still do what you can for the God-ordered benefit of your kin's descendants, whether by active/creative work or contemplative prayer (or best of all, if you don't marry because you have a priestly vocation, sacrificial worship). Let us live Goodness, fight for Truth, and build Beauty, so that someday, they will be inspired by the stories of their great ancestors.

 And now for the spoilery part where I further detail what I loved in this game:

Saturday, September 12, 2020

Holy Name of Mary coloring page

Today is the Feast of the Holy Name of Mary, commemoration of the victory over the Muslim Turks at Vienna in 1683!

The above coloring page may be downloaded for free in high resolution as part of The Little Flower Activity Book edited by Aleksandra Gieralt, which you may find here.

Monday, September 7, 2020

What a pretty name

Quick pretty Ace Attorney fanart piece of Iris Hawthorne and Iris Watson among the irises.

Done with Faber-Castell brush-pens and Caran D'Arche watersoluble crayons.

Friday, August 28, 2020

Paper Doll Veronika on Webtoons

This first chapter of my webcomic, Paper Doll Veronika, is now up on Webtoons here!

Further chapters should be there soon. The uploading interface is very easy to use, but it tends to freeze, probably because of my slow internet connection. Also, each page requires the addition of a border to fit the format. I really hope the text isn't too small on mobile, because that would require more difficult reformatting, and the main reason to post on Webtoons is for the sake of telephone readers; my own site doesn't work too well thereon.

Of course the comic will remain and update first on said website, that being also the place to find bonus material and animated panels, which I won't be able to do on Webtoons.

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Adventurers' Guild exceeding limits

Today is my younger brother's birthday! On this day, I salute his accomplishment with his webcomic, Adventurers' Guild.

Art is often strengthened by limitations. I admit, however, that at first I thought he had limited himself too much with the medium of sprite-based pixel art.

But as it went on, he has found method after method of pushing the boundaries and exceeding the ostensible limits of this medium. Which makes for heightened intensity at those moments!

Check it out on the Adventurers' Guild website or on Webtoons!

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Another Hungry Kitten coloring page

Author Elizabeth Fust had me convert another illustration of The Hungry Kitten's Tale into a coloring page! You can download it on her website.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Bl. Imelda coloring page preview

This is one of the coloring pages newly made especially for The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, Volume 2, which contains saints for every single day of July through December. It's available here or from Amazon.

Volume 1, which has January-June, is available here.

Blessed Imelda Lambertini was a figure I particularly wanted included in the book, which is why therein she's given the alternate date of December 20; her usual day is May 12, but that's an observed day, of St. Pancras. She was a young religious oblate who dearly wanted to receive the Blessed Sacrament but wasn't going to be allowed to until she was 13 years old. When she was 11, the Sacred Host levitated over to her, so the superiors relented in the face of the miracle and she was given Communion. She died of ecstasy.

It's beautiful, and it goes to show how thoroughly, damnably stupid it is to forbid Mass and Communion because of  the possibility of contraction of a virus that might cause some people to die. If we truly understood in our hearts what is happening whenever we receive Communion, WE WOULD DIE. Like Blessed Imelda. So I suppose according to the people who think possible death must be avoided at all costs, we should ALWAYS forbid Communion!

Obviously, I am not saying that we should not take reasonable care to preserve human lives, but I am saying that death is by far not the worst thing in reality, and that many things are far more important than avoiding the possibility of death. The Blessed Sacrament primary among them.

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Villains of Bovodar and the Bears

Promotional art of the villain characters from the Bovodar and the Bears upcoming comic, written by Jack Mikkelson a.k.a. Laramie Hirsch, art and lettering by me.

If you want to know who all these dastardly creatures are, check out Mr. Hirsch's post!

You can preview the first seven pages of the comic here. I am excited to say that the work on Issue One is complete, so now we are preparing to approach a prospective publisher!

The novel on which this is based is available in both e-book and paperback!

Friday, August 14, 2020

Bl. Thomas Ochia Jihyo coloring page preview

This is one of the coloring pages newly made especially for The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, Volume 2, which contains saints for every single day of July through December. It's available here or from Amazon.

Blessed Thomas Ochia Jihyo was a Japanese Augustinian priest who ministered under the persecutions of the 17th century. Known as Kinstuba, he used subterfuge and disguise. After six years, he was captured and martyred. His day is November 6.

Volume 1, which has January-June, is available here.

Saturday, August 8, 2020

Trapped me in your Lies

Symbolic Ace Attorney fanart of Dahlia Hawthorne putting on Phoenix Wright's mask.

Heck yes it's meant to be topical.

The title is from the first theme song of the second season of the anime.
Done in gouache and marker.

Friday, August 7, 2020

St. Lucian coloring page preview

This is one of the coloring pages newly made especially for The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, Volume 2, which contains saints for every single day of July through December. It's available here or from Amazon.

This scene shows St. Lucian before his conversion, at the incident which triggered his repentance. You see, Lucian was a sorcerer, a devil-worshiping practitioner of Satanic magic. When he tried to cast a spell on a Christian maiden, she made the Sign of the Cross, and the black magic failed. Astounded by this, Lucian repented, converted, and was later martyred. Nowadays, with Satanism resurgent in our culture, we could really use St. Lucian's prayers. His day is October 26.

Volume 1, which has January-June, is available here.

Friday, July 31, 2020

Paper Doll Veronika addition

It has to be admitted that in the past couple of months, I haven't been working too much on all the Paper Doll Veronika interim extra material that I listed in this post. First there was my sister's wedding and the attendant family visits, and since then I've been working on collaborative projects, mainly Jon Del Arroz's Clockwork Dancer and Jack Mikkelson's Bovodar and the Bears. I am close to done with my portion of Issue Two and Issue One of those respectively, so I want to push through to the end!

But I did do one of the Paper Doll Veronika things in my spare moments: I added an additional ornamentation to each chapter cover, which has some relation to what the chapter contains. So if you haven't yet caught up on this webcomic, or you were thinking of rereading it sometime now that Part I is complete, this is great time to do so!

And I forgot to mention in my earlier post, another thing I plan to do with Paper Doll Veronika is post it also on Webtoons!

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Conscientious Objection


Masks do not protect against viruses whatsoever;

The novel corona virus has a relatively low fatality rate anyway;

I believe mask mandates are nothing but psychological conditioning operations to prime the public to accept forthcoming vaccines unquestioningly.

And since I believe forthcoming vaccines are very likely to contain sterilizers,

I conclude acquiescence to mask mandates to be immediate material cooperation with evil and my conscience will not allow me to comply.

Now, on the individual level, it is remote, not proximate cooperation. Your circumstances may be such that the harm that would befall your family if you do not comply would outweigh the good of your individual resistance. But I encourage everyone who can to resist. It is not enforceable if enough of us resist.

The one exception I am making for myself is if a face covering is demanded to enter a church for Mass. I will be deeply saddened by such obeisance on the part of the clergy, but the good of Mass attendance outweighs the evil of such a momentary cooperation by far.

By the way, I think it is perfectly acceptable to make use of medical exemptions. The medical condition of oxygen deprivation under nose and mouth restriction is one we all have.

Pray for me and for our nation.

Monday, July 13, 2020

St. Bega coloring page preview - with St. Oswald

This is one of the coloring pages newly made especially for The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, Volume 2, which contains saints for every single day of July through December. It's available here or from Amazon.

This fairy-tale-like scene is the page for St. Bega, an Irish hermitess. Her hermitage was so remote nobody but the birds knew she was there, until St. Oswald, King of Northumbria, came across her when he was out hunting bandits. He persuaded her to join a nunnery under the authority of St. Aidan. Her day is September 6.

Volume 1, which has January-June, is available here.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

St. Agricola coloring page preview

This is one of the coloring pages newly made especially for The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, Volume 2, which contains saints for every single day of July through December. It's available here or from Amazon.

St. Agricola was bishop of Avignon. Once he warded off a swarm of cranes which would've ruined the crops.

Volume 1, which has January-June, is available here.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

St. Melchizedek coloring page preview

This is one of the coloring pages newly made especially for The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, Volume 2, which contains saints for every single day of July through December. It's available here or from Amazon.

Melcizedek, Priest-King of Salem, offered bread and wine in a prefigurement of the Eucharist. Today is the Feast of the Precious Blood of Jesus! St. Melchizedek's day is August 26.

Volume 1, which has January-June, is available here.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

St. Lydia coloring page preview

This is one of the coloring pages newly made especially for The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, Volume 2, which contains saints for every single day of July through December. It's available here or from Amazon.

St. Lydia was a cloth merchant who gave shelter to St. Paul, whose feast it is today! Her day is August 3. 

Volume 1, which has January-June, is available here.

Monday, June 29, 2020

St. Hedwig/Jadwiga coloring page preview

This is one of the coloring pages newly made especially for The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, Volume 2, which contains saints for every single day of July through December. It's available here or from Amazon.

St. Hedwig, or Jadwiga, was king of Poland. That's right, she was officially "king" even though she was a woman, or girl rather, at her coronation she was 12 years old! Her day is July 17.

Volume 1, which has January-June, is available here.

Friday, June 26, 2020

The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, Volume Two

Happy octave day of the Sacred Heart! I was happy to hear that Jesus with His Sacred Heart exposed would be the central figure on the cover of the second volume of The Day-by-Day Coloring Book of Saints, which is now available here or on Amazon!

(It's actually been available for a while now, but I missed posting because I've been offline for the past couple weeks for my sister's wedding!)

It has illustrations by me and text by Anna Maria Mendell, and includes saints for every single day of July, August, September, October, November, and December.

I'll be sharing samples of a few of the pages over the next few days, and Volume One, which has January-June, may be bought here or here.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Paper Doll Veronika plans

My webcomic, Paper Doll Veronika, has just reached its first milestone, the conclusion of Part I - Forest! If you've been reading it, thank you very much! If you haven't, you can do so here.

There will be an interim before I start posting Part II, but I will not be spending that time not working on Paper Doll Veronika, nosiree! (As well as all my collaborative projects, thank you for your patience) Here are my plans to expand it during this time:

Firstly, I will build up a buffer of prepared comics for Part II. As you may have been able to tell, I was frequently riding last minute with the updates.

I will go back and add unique ornamentation to each chapter cover;

I will prepare bonus materials, some of which will be for all to see:

- More chapter bonus art
- More character profiles
- Character portraits

And some will be for Paper Doll Club members (I'll also put together some graphics to describe and promote membership):

- The first of seven short "Animal Story" comics, about what the creatures are doing back at the mansion;
- Printable paper dolls of special characters Rosila and Burton;
- Printable outfits that have been featured in the comic, plus others;
- Complete gallery of backgrounds;
- Outfit-themed bonus art; and
- An ongoing map of Veronika's journey.

And that's what I want to do with that. By the way, I stumbled across a little sort-of review of Paper Doll Veronika! Very exciting to see!

I readily admit the criticism has legs, especially when it comes to being unclear what was happening with the tree. Clarity of movement is definitely something for me to concentrate on improving! And I'm so glad they enjoyed it overall!

Paper Doll Veronika update

Paper Doll Veronika has updated; Chapter 24, "For want of the odious mountain" is posted, and this concludes Part I, "Forest".
The chapter begins here.
The story begins here.

There will be an interim between this and Part II, with many expansive plans for that time. I'll post more information about those plans shortly!

Veronika Bosch, who's never left her father's estate, has to go on a journey when envious animals kick her out. Half collage, half puppetry, it's the traditional media equivalent of an elaborate sprite comic.

Friday, May 29, 2020

A glimpse of a world of bears and wolves

Writer Jack Mikkelson a.k.a. Laramie Hirsch has posted some fascinating background on these bears and the world in which they dwell:
Taking a break from the world’s insanity, let’s escape to that favorite world of mine—the one where an ancient wolf was given power by the very angels, shortly before their eternal imprisonment and Man’s expulsion from the Garden. Let’s return to a world that serves as a prison for this being, who endowed with powers beyond our reach, is both demigod and emperor of his corner of the universe. We return to this place, locked away and kept from men, but ruled by animals and all manner of beasts who, unnaturally ensouled and endowed with speech, go about their lives oblivious to whatever cataclysms may shape our Earth.
Read more here.

Honestly, it truly reminds me of Tolkien, but a more earthy, frontier milieu. The first novel of this world, Bovodar and the Bears, is available in both paperback and for Kindle, and the graphic novel adaptation is underway!

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Dandar Farles Tapperbear

Another character introduction panel from the in-progress graphic novel adaptation of Bovodar and the Bears by Jack Mikkelson, this is Dandar, grandson of Urgor, and his symbolic background is storm clouds.

The novel on which this comic is based is available in both paperback and ebook!

To get updates on our progress, sign up for the newsletter here!

Monday, May 25, 2020

Urgor Tapperbear

This is Urgor Tapperbear, from Bovodar and the Bears by Jack Mikkelson. For this character introduction panel I was told to use artistic freedom, so I gave it a background of oak leaves, which I think make a good symbol for this bear.

The comic book is in progress, and the novel on which it's based is available in both paperback and ebook!

To get updates on our progress, sign up for the newsletter here!

Friday, May 22, 2020

Paper Doll Veronika update

Paper Doll Veronika has updated; Chapter 23, "The Standard of Defeat", is posted!
The chapter begins here.
The story begins here.

It updates every Friday (occasionally Saturday). I recommend using the "Save your place" gadget, even once you catch up, because the site starts at the beginning and updates are several pages.

Veronika Bosch, who's never left her father's estate, has to go on a journey when envious animals kick her out. Half collage, half puppetry, it's the traditional media equivalent of an elaborate sprite comic.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

This year's pysanky

I'm getting better at it. This year I switched from a plastic kistka to a traditional one, and that made it a lot easier to keep the lines smooth. I'd like to make them year round!

Happy Ascension!

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Paper Doll Veronika update

Paper Doll Veronika has updated; Chapter 21, "Battle of the Branches", is complete!
The update starts here.
The chapter begins here.
The story begins here.

It updates every Friday (occasionally Saturday). I recommend using the "Save your place" gadget, even once you catch up, because the site starts at the beginning and updates are several pages.

Veronika Bosch, who's never left her father's estate, has to go on a journey when envious animals kick her out. Half collage, half puppetry, it's the traditional media equivalent of an elaborate sprite comic.

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Paper Doll Veronika update

Some suspicious characters appear!

Paper Doll Veronika has updated; Chapter 22, "Battle of the Branches" has begun!
The chapter begins here.
The story begins here.

It's a rather small update, I'm afraid. I'm very behind on things and disorganized right now. I'll try to catch up in the beginning of next week and make a buffer, as well as get up to speed on other projects before I have to go away for a while.

Paper Doll Veronika updates every Friday (occasionally Saturday). I recommend using the "Save your place" gadget, even once you catch up, because the site starts at the beginning and updates are several pages.

Veronika Bosch, who's never left her father's estate, has to go on a journey when envious animals kick her out. Half collage, half puppetry, it's the traditional media equivalent of an elaborate sprite comic.