Posts Tagged ‘art’

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Erwan Le Goupil, The Real Gotham artist welcomed to the Cat-Tales Gallery

March 13, 2017

Cat-Tales is thrilled to welcome a new artist, Erwan Le Goupil, to the Solo Gallery with his striking Bat-Family Portrait: The Real Gotham.  Gallery assistant Sergio C. sat down with the artist for a quick Q&A about his art, and of course a little bit about the Tales…

SC: How long have you been drawing?
ELG: I’ve been drawing, or at least doodling, for as long as I remember. My father was constantly doing that, whether it would be his own cartoons, drawing from photographs or from famous artists, for the fun of it. When he drew me a gorgeous Daredevil piece once, I was hooked. So I started copying my favourite characters, both from European artists and from comic books. Then I started creating my own characters. I didn’t have the patience or the training to actually do comics or stuff like that, so I created illustrations for the stories I imagined. I pushed that to the next level when I started writing and when I discovered Photoshop. My biggest weakness had always been colouring. The digital medium helped me overcome that and so i started creating artwork for my stories and sometimes for others.

SC: What materials do you like to draw with?
ELG: I’m a pretty basic kind of guy on that issue. Pencil and paper is the base for most of my stuff. I usually ink it with Pitt artistic pens. Sometimes I go with the pencil rendering alone. The next step is the scanner and then I colour using both Photoshop and Painter. I sometimes draw directly on my digital tablet, but I still feel more comfortable with a pencil on drawing paper. I do paint over photos when I want a more realistic effect (for a poster-type project), but I still get better result starting on paper. 

SC: How and when do you hear about Cat Tales?
ELG: I think I came across this on ffnet for the first time. I was looking for stories about Batman and Catwoman to be able to read on my way to work. I found the stories on this fan fiction site but I quickly found the website and followed the whole thing on there.the-real-gotham-detail-2

SC: Who is your favorite Gotham City vigilante in Cat Tales?
ELG: Aside from Bruce, I’m going to have to go with Nightwing. His point of view cracks me up and his relationships with Bruce, Selina and Barbara are delightful to read.

SC: Is there any specific story from Cat Tales that is your favorite?
ELG: I have a fondness for “Knight Before Christmas” and the entire arc about Dick and Barbara’s wedding, but that’s because I’m a huge shipper of those two. Aside from that, any kind of story that involves either Ra’s or Riddler is usually in my top stories.

SC: Who is you favorite Gotham City Rogue/villain in Cat Tales?
ELG: While I love Chris’s take on the Joker, Riddler gets the top spot, because his view of things is brilliant and his position as a tweener (for lack of better term) is pretty cool to follow. His relationship with Selina does a lot to enrich his character, too.

SC: Overall what is your favorite aspect of Cat Tales?
ELG: The characters dynamics. The banter, the dialogue, the depths of the personal issues even some minor characters go through, all along the story, is awesome. Chris’ writing is at its best when she follows a new point of view and builds it up enough so that everyone appears alive, at some point. Her story is the deepest plunge in Selina’s and Bruce’s psyche I have read in a long time, but also in Dick’s, Tim’s, and going as far as getting us to care about the waitress in the Iceberg Lounge. That’s certainly no small feat to make me laugh with the director of Arkham evaluating his personnel.

Le Goupil’s Cat-Tales: The Real Gotham is on view in the Cat-Tales Gallery. Additional works on DeviantArt.

 

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You Are What You Eat

December 6, 2010

Had some interesting responses to the last blog Please Drink Responsibly, so I decided the central idea was worth revisiting from a wider perspective than writers or comic folks.

Briefly: you’re only as good as what you take into your system.  If you do anything creative, then you’re drawing on your imagination in a very special way and it is not a good idea to poison it.  Well duh, it’s never a good idea to chug poison, right?   The disconnect seems to be in recognizing the imagination can be poisoned and that these things are.  Consider an athlete who ate a steady diet of Big Macs and smoked two packs of cigarettes a day.  Would you be surprised when he failed to win a marathon?  Would you be surprised if he fell down dead at Mile-18?  Of course not, because we all get that an athlete is using his body to do what he does, and we all get that the cigarettes and junk food are not good for the whole air in/air out/blood pump/muscle flex process.  Problem is, few of us see our imaginations that way and far too many of us act like it doesn’t matter what we take into it.

First Principle: anything you do that’s creative comes from your soul – Okay, that’s a big word.  Forget the soul.  But there is a part of you that’s… better.  When you create in any medium, whether it is writing or painting or music, you hook that magical sacred part of you up to the Universe and channel something that is bigger and greater and infinite… Hell, I don’t know what it is, but it’s the reason it’s good to be alive.  Bob Fosse called it Joy.   And when it comes through YOU, you infuse it with your ideas and your emotions and your life experience and everything that makes you who you are.  It makes your story, your song, your sculpture or performance unlike anyone else’s.  And it’s your imagination – the part in all of us that first looked up at the stars instead of down at the dirt – that’s the core where all this happens.  So what you’ve got laying around in there matters.  If it’s Michaelangelo and Mozart and Dickens, great.  You’ve got more options than someone who only has Daniele Steele and Nickleback, but it’s not the end of the world if you don’t have a database of classics to draw on.  What is the end of the world is if you’ve got steaming piles of dog shit in there.

Now, for any newcomers to this blog, I write a metafiction series about Batman, and yet, I haven’t looked at a current comic in at least 4 years.  The reason is that the current output at DC is toxic and I won’t pollute my imagination with it.  This is more than not wanting to give DC Comics $2.95, what economists call “Dollar Votes,” in favor of making more of the same.  It isn’t about money, it’s about poison.

Someone sent me a link a while back to a website that posts scans from the current comics, and I can tell you right now that if I’d followed that link, that would have been my day.  Why?  Because if you step out of your house in the morning into a steaming pile of dog shit, that’s where your focus is going to be for quite some time.  The unpleasantness of the initial experience stays with you—in this case, my anger and disgust at whatever went on in those pages.  That’s going to come out in the writing.  Then there’s the smell that lingers: I would be aware if I used certain characters, alluded to certain ideas or events, everything would have a resonance in relation to their crap.   Now, your story should be your top priority, not an editor’s agenda, the marketing or the merchandising.  The story.  Making anything else a priority is a mistake, making their story the priority?  Hell no!  (We won’t even discuss the practice of, having cleaned off your shoe, going into a forum of people discussing the dog crap as if it’s fine French perfume:  Eau Merde de Fifi.)

Look, there are people out there who thrive on anger and disgust.  I find it doesn’t lead to creative output.  I find it leads to stuff like this:

Those who do create from those negative places, their stuff doesn’t last.  Occasionally, if the timing is just right, it will make a splash for fifteen minutes, but before too long, its popularity wanes and future generations just laugh at the goobers who found it profound or shocking.

It’s the stuff that comes from the good place that lasts:  from a sense of play, loving what you do, loving the characters, loving the process of creation and being excited to share it all with an audience—it’s that love and joy that is infectious.  Love of the characters, celebrating them, holding up the essence of what they are supposed to be, what we’re all supposed to be…  The stories that last have always been about the same things: heroes, redemption, coming of age, going home, the power of love.  We tell the same stories over and over again because they are true, because they are universal, because they resonate in our core.   And that’s where we connect as human beings.  That connection, that’s everything.  That’s why we do this.

The people I talked to after Please Drink Responsibly are not in comics.  They are in another industry that is broken in ways nobody fully understands, but where everyone recognizes that something is profoundly wrong.  Look, I don’t know if any one artist can hope to fix a broken system, but we are all in the business of “making a hat where there never was a hat.”   Who’s to say we can’t?  It starts with making that connection.  And to make it, we’ve got to detox, folks.  We’ve got to stop taking in poisons and polluting our imaginations with the artistic “product” of people writing comics or making music the way Pumpkin the Pekingese takes a dump.  If you’re one of those saying they read/saw/listened to such-and-such “and of course it sucked LOL,” stop laughing.   “Of course it sucked” means you knew better before you took that thing into your head.  You went right past the surgeon general’s warning and you took that poison into your system anyway.  You are what you eat.

All that said, Cat-Tales had a fabulous week.  Electron 29 posted its final chapter, which means it is now available in one complete download as ebook or print-quality pdf.  As if that’s not enough, Book 5 is ready!  That’s the compilation of Cat-Tales #51-59 including fan favorites Riddle Me-Tropolis, Vault, War of the Poses, Armchair Detective, Not My Kink, Do No Harm AND alternate-reality game fodder I Believe in Harvey Dent – all that in one compact ebook download – or, naturally, print-quality pdf.   Just in time for Christmas.  Meow.

Chris Dee
www.catwoman-cattales.com

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From the mailbag: Museum of Beauty

March 3, 2010

We all know Selina has a weakness for art and Bruce has one for cutting edge, high tech wizardry, so this find from a CT reader certainly speaks to both of them:

The Konica Minolta
Museum of Beauty

It takes a while to load – and it is well worth the wait.  This 3-D rendering of the Venus de Milo is presented as an interactive film with clickable hotspots that take you to breakout data with more detail on that particular point. The breakouts are not all that detailed, but the technology would certainly support more exhaustive information.

Meow.  This is one link which is very, very meow.

Chris Dee
www.catwoman-cattales.com
cattales.yuku.com
cattales.wikispaces.com

Thank you for reading. If you are viewing this post anywhere other than The Catitat you are reading a mirror. Please visit the original posting in The Catitat to leave a comment.

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This week in Cat-Tales

February 15, 2010

I’d say the biggest public development for Cat-Tales fans last week was this fantastic Just-in-time-for-Valentine’s Day piece by DC artist Dustin Nguyen, that JoannaC chipsnopotatoes brought to our attention (sorry about that, Chips):

i can’t stay long by *duss005 on deviantART

DC Pros, wherever you may be, that’s what pleasing readers looks like. Just in case you were wondering about that strange reaction beneath the image, where the DA readership wracks up 30 pages of enthusiastic commentary on the couple, the costume, and the twitch-smile, where they’re setting record numbers of favorites, Facebook shares, Diggs, and downloads. Your predecessors experienced this – well, not the Facebook part, obviously, but the lack of rocks and rotten eggs hurled at their heads. That’s the result of making the audience happy instead of alienating them. It’s actually a pretty good feeling, just in case you want to try it some day.

But back to Cat-Tales, eh? Our own Thundering Monkey released the picture for his Batverse calendar:

Poor Harley.

And me? Nothing visible accomplished this past week, but an extraordinary amount happening behind the scenes Some work done on the TBA, and I got some unexpected help and support on that project from someone who I haven’t seen in months. Some of you guys are so kind and generous, it’s just unreal.

That said, the TBA is now officially a no deadline affair. For the best of reasons: A friend and client’s book is now officially speeding towards publication. He has battled with the crap economy and he has won. YAY. That does create a fair amount of RL work for me which takes precedence over the CT stuff. But of all the reasons I don’t mind postponing a CT project for a few weeks, this is the best. A man of ideas getting his ideas out there into the world to rise or fall on its merits, that’s the alpha and omega for people like us. That’s how the system is supposed to work, and every time it actually does, the sun shines a little brighter, the birds sing a little sweeter (which is nice for us and it really annoys the life-is-shit Miller crowd, so win-win)

Anyway, that’s the week in review. Today, I can finally return to writing the chapter. Meow and Huzzah.

Chris Dee
www.catwoman-cattales.com
cattales.yuku.com
cattales.wikispaces.com

Thank you for reading. If you are viewing this post anywhere other than The Catitat you are reading a mirror. Please visit the original posting in The Catitat to leave a comment.

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