Diversification

All of these are different yet similar.

I’ve wanted to do a post like this for a while. One of the things I’ve tried to do with my personal site is to create an artistic journey from where I started, to how I’ve developed, through what I’ve tried, and (finally) to where I’ve ended up. Or at least where I’ve temporarily ended up. If I know anything about myself with any degree of certainty it’s that I always change. I always look for something new. Be it a different material, a different subject matter, or a different style.

DiversificationI’d like to think this post will capture a glimpse of that journey. It’ll also highlight some of the older pieces that some newer readers may not have seen yet. As always, there’s a whole heap of creative posts over on the Art page so feel free to stop by and have a read! You might find something you like. (I hope you’ll find something you like.)

DiversificationOver the last ten years of traditional art shenanigans I’ve tried a wide range of materials. I’ve also changed my style(s) quite consistently, looking to keep each material unique and interesting. Trying to use each one in a way that would be instantly recognisable. Some of these pieces have influenced the development of my style(s), too.

DiversificationI’m glad I was able to fit in some fantasy pieces. I do, however, wish I could have included some scenic/landscape pieces. That said, while scenic/landscape pieces were prominent earlier on (2006-2009) they’re pretty scarce these days. If I’m entirely honest about it- I just really like trees. That’s all there is to it.

DiversificationStill, as is the point of this post, there’s quite a bit of diversity here, drawing from a range of different inspirations. I’ve certainly adopted more inspirations over the years. Can’t say as that’s a bad thing, though- more things to work with as I create newer and more interesting pieces. Which I hope to do for some time to come.

DiversificationIn any case, I hope this has been an interesting change of pace. I’ve never really done anything like this before. Whether that’s a good or a bad thing is up to you. I liked it, taking more of a curator approach to my own work and highlighting some of the things I’ve really enjoyed. We may see another post like this at some point in the (distant) future. It’ll take some time to work towards another collection of pieces like this. 2016 is certainly looking like the year for it, though.

Have a nice week, all!

Moggie

Art, design, and the like found herein (unless otherwise specified) is drawn and owned by David Wilkshire (also credited as Moggie) from 2006 to present date.

Guardians of the Galaxy, Groot, Rocket Raccoon, and all associated trademarks and devices are owned by Marvel Comics.
Dead Space, Necromorphs, Isaac Clarke, Plasma Cutters, and all associated trademarks and devices are owned by Visceral Games.

Slasher – 2016 – Ink – click for full view on site!

Even a sign offering free hugs wouldn’t make this any less intimidating.

It’s been a while since we’ve been here. Aboard that rickety ol’ hunk of space junk, infested with the newly risen dead, and surrounded by corpses who probably would have survived a little longer if they hadn’t hidden everything useful. Seriously, who disassembled the control system for the ship and hid the parts all over this space station? Why would you do that?! What are we going to do now in the event of an alien-biological-parasitic-zombie-like outbreak? Die. That’s what. Thanks, Jeff. I appreciate it.

Necromorphs have always been an interesting enemy.

What’s better than regular ol’ zombies? Alien space zombies! I also enjoyed how they chose to go about putting precision over power, requiring precise strikes, and disarming the opponent (quite literally) was necessary to put them in the ground (again). Keep an eye on those vents. Walls, too. I don’t trust that ceiling, either. Keep an eye on everything.

When revisiting this piece I used the original as a very loose reference. It might seem I’m overly negative about the result of the original piece- which in some ways I suppose I am- but I do believe it has redeemable qualities. Which is a funny part of creating anything. Sometimes, while you don’t like the overall result, you will like parts of it, and you’ll want to preserve those parts in the next attempt or future compositions. I don’t revisit as many pieces these days as I used to, either. I enjoyed going back to some of my older pieces and improving them, but some weren’t worth the effort, and while you’re doing that you’re not creating any new work.

Slasher – 2016 – InkDetail was always a key consideration in the composition of this piece. As was using some recently acquired anatomical references to make sure that it’s more realistic than I’d previously aimed for, or could achieve, due to a lack in technical skill. Even with the progress made in this piece I still have a ways to go. That said, I believe that the improvements (in several areas) are pretty clear to see. Especially in comparison with the original piece which is only two years old.

However, things have changed quite substantially in the last two years.

While the progress in this piece is quite considerable- I can do better. I know I can. That said, I have to appreciate the progress made, as these results are not inferior, and I shouldn’t feel like they are. It’s an ongoing struggle. One that a considerable portion of creative people are likely going through.

It’s a tenuous balance of believing in what you’re doing just enough to keep going and always looking to improve. I dare say these improvements have been staggered for a while, what with the events of the last few years, and other things in my personal life, and we’re only now seeing them. Probably because I’ve reached that point where I’m experimenting with just about everything, and throwing all my conventions out of the window. I figured I’d have to start doing that at some point. In any case, I hope this is an interesting insight in my current creative tendencies and not a whole bunch of waffle. We’re out of maple syrup for waffles at the moment.

Have a nice weekend, all!

Moggie

Art, design, and the like found herein (unless otherwise specified) is drawn and owned by David Wilkshire (also credited as Moggie) from 2006 to present date.

Dead Space, Necromorphs, Isaac Clarke, Plasma Cutters, and all associated trademarks and devices are owned by Visceral Games.

Bleeding Ink

You should probably get that looked at.

You should also avoid injuring yourself near any easily stained surfaces. That said, I’m pretty sure my blood is almost entirely black coffee at this point. There’s no way a man could ingest that much and not alter his biology to such a degree. Still not pooping coffee beans, though. If I could I’d be like one of those cats from a tropical climate that poops luxury coffee.

That would certainly be one way to build a retirement fund.

I’ve got a couple of new-ish ink pieces to talk about. The first, the older of the two, was an experimental piece which went in all sorts of unintended directions. I originally intended to throw together something quite quickly as I wanted to test out a new marker style, however, as the piece developed, it took a little longer than expected. Or, rather, a lot longer than expected. I’m still undecided as to how to approach the marker style and so it’s currently sitting in a pre-marker state.

The second, which I started just yesterday, should be finished and find its place on my personal site within the week. This is an update of a piece that is already on my personal site (that I’ve never really liked). I’ve been thinking about replacing it for a while, but, until now, I hadn’t really decided how I would approach it. You can get a sneaky peak of a current work in progress over on Twitter. This is another attempt and experiment spawned from my recent adventures with my 0.1 Copic Multiliner. It’s certainly a different way to apply ink, especially considering the nib is so fine and allows for so much more detail and depth in even the smallest areas of the piece.

I’m starting to lean ever so slightly towards making ink the first choice for many of my pieces. It’s so versatile and the level of detail is almost unparalleled on the same scale compared to pencil, which does have its own unique qualities. Such as heavy shading that blends ever so deliciously together. Still, I’m really enjoying what’s going on with ink recently.

Moggie @ WordPress has seen a few changes, too.

I’ve been working on the various categories on the blog. I’ve set up a category hierarchy which happily nests all of the creative categories under the main art category, while, barring a few issues with tag and category conflicts, I’ve been thinking about doing something similar for the gaming category. Hopefully nesting some additional categories for the most talked about titles under the main gaming category. Just a tiny improvement that will make content (both new and old) readily accessible and appropriately labelled.

I’ve got a long term goal to make the collection of sites almost automated (for lack of a better term), where they will no longer be changed fundamentally to any significant degree, and where the creation of content is where the majority of time will be spent. Maintenance will simply become just that- maintenance. Making sure that everything still works and improving or adding features where necessary. But, for the most part, the layouts and external links and other necessary information will not change. The primary focus then becoming the consistent creation of quality content (and maybe even some new types of content). I’m making good progress so far, but I’ve got a ways to go yet before the idea is fully realised.

Have a nice week, all!

Moggie

Dead Space

Remember, in space no-one can hear you being violently dismembered.

So, not too long ago I decided to lay down some money for Dead Space in a sale. I had played the demo before on XBox and was kind of interested to see how this would play out on the PC, despite, at the time of playing the demo, having zero experience with FPS games and generally not being interested in them. Then along came many first person games and hundreds of hours of playing said first person games and let’s just say that has probably changed. Also, the addition of an XBox controller for PC has kind of made it easier to play games like these (though it’s arguable if that was a benefit).

Dead Space, is, however, quite unique in the way it plays out.

There are some unique mechanics like the complete removal of a HUD. All of the information about Isaac’s health and current Stasis energy is displayed on the back of his RIG, any ammunition remaining is displayed next to the weapon as you aim it, the inventory and menu systems are all displayed as an interface through his RIG, and when you’re wandering through the desolation there’s absolutely nothing on screen besides the character and the scene. It’s a pretty cool approach. That said, it would only really work for a game like this where you have one controllable character and where there aren’t too many resources to juggle. It can be a teensy bit annoying when you’re escaping or backing up against a tough opponent as you can’t tell how much life you have, if you can use Stasis, or if you’re going to survive the next hit.

Dead Space

“This is the path to freedom Isaac! Hahah, no, there’s more of those dead things down there.”

One of the other things (from a purely aesthetic point of view) that I love is how the main character is just a regular guy. I mean, well, obviously not that regular, as how many people could survive that- but he acts very regularly. He isn’t a warrior or a fighter. He walks at a normal pace, he breathes heavily when in low oxygen, he sways when badly hurt, he limps, he staggers, and generally he’s very much alive. He also has a rather unique series of deaths which (depending on what kills you) ranges from the gory to the obscene. Still- points for giving him life!

Thematically the game plays out very realistically and you do feel like you’re on a ship out in space. There’s the funky zero gravity environments where you can turn gravity on or off and float about from surface to surface solving various puzzles, dodging necromorphs, fighting necromorphs, or generally exploring the floating containers. While there are vacuum environments where you have only a limited amount of time/oxygen to finish the objective. So, again, points for creating these realistic and neat experiences. It helps break the monotony of wondering what the next thing to horribly eat your face will be. It also helps reinforce the story and opens up a number of “what if?” scenarios that other games would leave purely to speculation. Such as my personal favourite “what would happen if I jumped onto that asteroid while those massive arms rotate across its surface?”

I’m divided on the story personally. It’s good, I like it, and it’s something different to what you’re used to in most games. But the game doesn’t yield a massive amount of play time and is fairly linear so despite checking every last vent and toilet you can’t really extend it, however, it does have a certain level of difficulty that involves learning your foes, and really comes down to how well you play it rather than how well it plays out. So if you manage to learn about/exploit the enemy weaknesses then you’ll clear it quicker than if you spend the game shooting wildly at nothing. There’s also the humorously self-destructive crew. Like in one mission they practically say there’s a shuttle out there which you can use. However, it has no navigation circuits so you need to find them. All three. Scattered around the rooms at random. There’s also this other thing you need. You might also be interested to know that nothing works with anything so you’ll need to manually load the cargo.

Kind of makes you wonder if they might have had a better chance at survival if they didn’t keep hiding all of the important items across the ship at random, or randomly damaging things, or just generally sabotaging themselves in the event of any kind of ship wide event. Still this is slightly sarcastic as name me a game this doesn’t happen in.

For the price I paid I can hardly argue with the game as a whole, though. There’s also the option of continuing the story with the same gear to maximise on the opportunities you have or starting over with Impossible Mode which I assume by the name is… quite difficult? That and there’s a unique experience to be had here. I certainly recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good FPS, or enjoys horror, or just likes a good scare now and then. Not that they are that scary once you get used to the fact that they come from the vents. Always watching the vents. Except that big hulking one that doesn’t need an introduction he just mauls your face for fun and laughs. Well, who’s laughing now?!

Have a nice weekend, all!

Moggie.