The Post Office

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Masha has some trouble with the subtleties of plausible deniability and the black market. The fence in the post office probably thinks she’s dumb as a post. You know, a fence post.

Moving House

My wife and I moved from our apartment of eight years to a house. It’s been very exciting upgrading to a larger space and a new set of responsibilities. With the help of friends and family, we’ve moved most of our belongings at this point…including my computer and art supplies. So now that the dust is starting to settle, I had some time today to work on this cartoon, which has been “in progress” for over a week.

Stylistic Experiments

I tried several new things with this one, but here are the most notable:

  • leaving the linework even more sketchy than usual in places. There were certain passages which I felt had the right implied action or gesture, and I didn’t want to overwork them. I think the resulting sloppiness is not really noticeable unlesss you look for it. Except maybe in the last panel — that’s pretty dang sloppy.
  • using the burn and dodge tools, with textured brushes, to overlay some texture. Not sure, but I think it adds some depth, and even helps guide the eye in places.
  • creating bolded words. It was tricky getting the line-weight I wanted. I ended up duplicating the words I wanted bold into new layers. Then I applied a layer style — stroke — to create the illusion of thicker text.
  • Finally, I wanted to see if I could emulate the look of cel animation a little further. So, I created a copy of the layer with the characters on it, reduced its opacity, and shifted it down and to the right. I put this layer underneath the proper character layer. The result is the kind of shadow often seen in older animated movies — the shadow cast on the background art by the paint on the cels. It’s a pretty subtle effect, but I think it kind of livens up the cartoon a bit.



2 Responses

  1. Msr. Donahue: I commend you on your excellent comic. Fine artwork, realistic historic storyline, interesting characters… you are among the masters of (forgive the Americanism) furry illustrated novels. I look forward to seeing more of your work!

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