Stranger Dweef, The amazing Gene Ha
What is up moyng friends!?
I hope you all are lucky enough to be loving this Southern California weather like I am. I feel like Mother Nature stuck her finger into the face of the Winter Warlock and said “suck it!” Anyways, the new year is upon us and now is the time to start cranking away on all things that must be completed by end of year. My brain, nice and cooked, is still actively processing yesterday’s workload. What was the workload, you ask? Why issue 5 boards on Win City, boards on issue 2 of ERATHUNE, and lastly, layouts and concept designs of a new kids book… yeesh.
But what is Win City? Well, I will tell you (in brief). Win City is a really killer science fiction story that was written and created by none other than the illustrious Ken Locsmandi. Filled with all things great and apocalyptic, I am having a blast changing into 2nd gear, getting out of Asunda and into a new world of futuristic design. Now going from swords and sandals to drop ships and 100,000 ton mobile planetariums can be quite the drastic change. My brain almost didn’t make it through the transfer. But, I have made it through, and this is how I did it.
Part of my process is to go through image after image of amazing concept designs by other artists. Doing this, I purged my mind of the fantasy realm and munched my way into the universe of sci-fi. Interestingly, when I sat down to absorb the genius, only one artist blew my mind with his technical abilities. That artist was Gene Ha.
The image below is one of my favorite double spreads in any comic book.
This is the cityscape of all cityscapes. Take a moment and look at it. There are a few factors that make this image so amazing. First, the perspective is flawless, in my opinion. From the composition of the buildings, the train, the waterfront warehouses, and the skyscrapers, to the colossal structures in the background, everything lives where they are supposed to. Second is the detail. Every last window, every pipe is there. Tons and tons of line work riddles the colossal structures, adding so much dimension and depth to each tower that I can’t believe he made this up. Lastly, the blend of post WWII architecture and the futuristic design of the towers work nicely. Sometimes when an artist works in an era, they miss the mark. But here, Gene has successfully pulled the reader into the obscure world that Alan Moore has created in The Forty-Niners. Bravo.
I fell in love with these two pages the first time I saw them. I was floored by Gene’s designs and kept going back and looking at the pages over and over. But as I turned the pages of the book, new angles and perspectives kept popping up. Most artists will not go to these lengths to pull their audience into their work. It takes time, effort and talent, and it seems to me Gene had bags of each when he drew this book.
When I draw, I try to remember images like this because it helps me turn out better work. When I have been drawing rocks and rocks and more rocks and I am completely over it, I say to myself, “Hey, douche bag, keep drawing or this page is going to suck.” It works most of the time, and when I step back and look at the result… I see tons of orcs running across my rocks, and I realize that it was all worth it. Thanks for the inspiration, Gene.
Here are some links to Gene and his work, check it.