Monday, March 22, 2010

This blog has moved

This blog is now located at
You will be automatically redirected in 30 seconds, or you may click here.

For feed subscribers, please update your feed subscriptions to

Monday, June 02, 2008

Fantasy without elves?

Well, no. :) A lot of menial stuff came over the week that kept me away from the computer, including storms and blackouts and urgent house chores, but here it is, finally... the first look at what amounts to "classic" elves in Nahast: the Maehvindra.

Also, a peek at a couple of members of the Nahastian exotic-but-still-normal fauna: the Zephyr Stag, which the elves tame to use as mounts, and the Bullhog, which the pointy-eared guys use as beasts of labor and war mounts. Poor is the bandit that tries to ambush an elf caravan. I'd give them d20 stats but... well, D&D 4th Edition comes out this week, so I'll be saving my game-designing efforts for that new ruleset :)

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Of dates, deadlines and futures

Well! That was one long dry period. First of all, I want to thank everyone for your patience. Many a night a sat typing after returning from work, looking at the laid out and half-sketched page that you see today, wanting to work on it, but with a pressing, then overdue deadline staring at me accusingly.

Well, the dinosaur is out of my studio, Damocles' sword is back in its scabbard and ((include another "I'm free" metaphor)). I did send my portfolio to Green Ronin's art director in the hopes that I'll get to do some illustrations for my own book, but that will come when I deliver the art order document... which I'm tempted to deliver in a sketchbook form, but I don't have time for that.

What's in the future now? Well, for one I can stop going to bed late, so I won't be dozing off at my job the next day, but I already have things planned. Because I still have the M&M document unfinished, I didn't sign up as a freelancer for a D&D 4E project, and thus I didn't get an advance copy of the rules. However, we're only two months from the new edition's release, and what I will be working on is to fully develop Nahast's setting information, putting together all my notes and ideas so that, when I do get the rules, I can work on classes, feats, rules and other options. Now, depending on how different things look, I will release the material I managed to finish for the d20 3.5 system... possibly for free, or for just a small amount.

And lastly... today's my birthday! ^^ I shall get a donut to go with my morning coffee to celebrate <.<

Saturday, December 08, 2007

On delays and workings and stuff

I haven't been updating the comic, true, and I could have updated the rants section, but whenever I remember I should, I'm at work and I don't remember my password... however, I remembered it now, so I'll give a situation update and address a few issues, from work (I'm working on a Saturday :P).

The comic update is advancing slowly. This new job I have is intellectually demanding and I arrived in the middle of a project that was behind-schedule, so it's been pretty intense. Add a 2-hours commute total (1 to get to the office and another to return home) and my free time is spent vegetating or zoning out. The page IS there, base coloring done, but I just don't have the energy to do all the process quickly.

That's why I opened the Chronicles site. I can write tidbits of each chapter from work during off-moments when I need to clear my head and during lunch. Final edits happen both at the office and at home, where I do the quick illustration sketch for the even chapters. I can't draw and color from work.

Now, to address Wanderer, The Hawk Furies is not a sequel to Lands of Strife; ten years is enough for the girls to have forged their own backgrounds independent of what happens to them in the comic (and all my plans for them in the comic are already factored in their adult personalities). Lands of Strife has an ending... it might be far, far in the future as I work at a snail's pace, but Derrexi's story in Beldatz will have its conclusion way before it catches up with the story of The Hawk Furies. So, aside from Tzie's ascension to the Beldatz throne at an unspecified moment in time and her relationship to Gisako, there's no major spoiler to the comic's story. The comic's protagonists: Derrexi, Xu're, Larriki and Yanti are off doing their own things far away, and Eclipse is too busy being Governor Tzie to be part of the main plot of The Hawk Furies.

Besides, when the first "book" of The Hawk Furies is done, I will switch to Moonrise, which is completely independent from the comic.

The project at work will be done just before the holidays, after which we're all getting a week-long vacation, which I will use to draw more pages to create a coloring queue. By then I expect to have posted two comic pages already sitting on my queue. Sadly, the comic is not my priority; I almost hit rock bottom with my savings during this unemployment phase and survival is number one on the list. I had planned vacations to Germany to visit AngelChyld, but those plans were scrapped because of the above lack of money and the priority of securing my livelihood by working hard to keep this job.

If you have questions, comments and other stuff, drop me a line on the forums or by email. I check both daily.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Happy Birthday (to me?)!

Five years ago, on the year of 2002, I finished ten colored pages and uploaded them to my Keenspace account, which had been active for several months as I tested the code and designed my site.

Five years ago, Derrexi Tzelan arrived at the South gate of Beldatz and got into a whole heap of trouble.

Five years ago I was drawing Nahast on sheets of paper, inking with markers. I drew each frame independently, hoping that I could unify it all in my trusty copy of Photoshop 6. I had a LPT scanner that shared port space with my printer, and I was coloring everything by mouse. The pages were all of different sizes and the coloring was, frankly, of dubious quality, as was my style.

Today, I draw Nahast on a single sheet of Bristol board, inking by a combination of brush and cartography pens, using dipping in a mix of Pelikan school-grade ink with Staedtler engineering-grade ink. I cut the board on a rubber mat so it will fit exactly the scanning surface of my UBS scanner, opening on Photoshop 6 for coloring with a Wacom Graphire tablet, and compositing the lettering on Fireworks, which I also use to export for web display.

Nahast's original fan base was around 500 hits per month, now it's nearing the 20,000 (still a pittance compared to other more popular comics, but, hey :) ). My art style has progressed and my life has seen a series of extreme highs and lows, during which the only constants in my life have been Nahast and the moral support of my girlfriend AngelChyld.

I celebrated Nahast's first anniversary with a fanart contest, with the winners taking a deluxe edition of Big Eyes, Small Mouth d20 (which I contributed material to). The second wasn't as successful, and I didn't quite bother to to do anything special save a special art piece.

So, what to do for Nahast's five years? Expand it!! Today I inaugurate Nahast: Chronicles of the Fifth Age, a new blogsite where I will publish stories set in the world of Nahast, which I will update concurrently with the comic, and hopefully a little more consistently as pure text is easier to produce than a full-color comic page.

So, visit! Bookmark it! Tell your friends and spread the word! Nahast is 5 years old and still going!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

This is Halloween! (sung to Nightmare Before Christmas)

I usually would do something special for Halloween except for a couple of things:

a) I have a job! Or sorta... I'm in a training/trial period at a translation agency and thus my times for doing Nahast-related stuff are limited.

b) I don't celebrate Halloween. No, really... as fun a holiday as it is, I much prefer my national, traditional holiday of Day of the Dead, which comes on November 2nd.

c) Nahast's Birthday! This friday Nahast will be 5 years old! I'm preparing something else for that:

d) Surprise! I'm feverishly using my free time to get something special ready for Friday. Can't tell you what it is, only that fans of Nahast's story and setting more than the characters and art will get a huge kick out of it.

e) Update? Well... at least the script and storyboards are done...

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Hard one!

I would have liked to get this update done earlier; in fact, the base colors where done by monday, but a lot of things have been coming on that delayed things. I've been editing my mother's autobiography, doing some art for a corporate presentation for my sister's employers, trying to find emergency funds sources to finance a possible trip to Germany to visit AngelChyld... phew.

I kept getting stuck on the first frame. I usually do backgrounds last, but I chose to do the first frame first, being one big background. I kept getting stalled in the details, and then distracted by all the other things. When that frame was done, everything went a lot more smoothly. I liked doing the sea in the second to last frame; seems oceans and mountains are becoming my landscape specialties... I need to master vegetation too, and find a quick way to do cityscapes.

And I changed the character design of Niriko's dad a little. I figured... he must have been something to have an elf fall in love with him and have his child, and the original drawing made him out to be an old scroogey guy, so I made him look rougher and more solid and manly. Besides, I haven't drawn the man in about 4 years and my style has changed since then, so, why not fiddle with the design? It's part of the clauses in my artistic license. :)