Archive for August, 2012

August 7th, 2012 | filed in News

Medical Leave

Okay, I went to the doctor yesterday to have my hand examined. Over the weekend, while my hand and wrist got a little better, the pain was spreading to my arm. Then on Sunday the pain in my hand turned into numbness in my fingers. I panicked. I’ve been reading up on carpal tunnel syndrome, and had been talking with other cartoonists about the issue, and convinced myself I’d injured myself pretty badly. I had a moment where my career literally flashed before my eyes.

So, it was time to see a professional. After describing my symptoms, and what I’ve been doing the past few months, the doctor gave me good news: it’s not carpal tunnel. Instead, it’s a nerve in my arm that is being pinched due to bad working posture and has become inflamed due to overuse for the last couple of months. The hand and wrist pain were secondary issues related to this main one. Basically, not only have I been working too hard (mostly on things you haven’t gotten to see yet), but I’ve been spending a lot of time writing and drawing on the couch. Turns out this has been terrible for my neck and back, and the symptoms in my arm are a direct result.

The bad news is I’m looking at a 6-8 week recovery and physical therapy to correct my posture. Luckily since I went in as soon as I noticed a change in the symptoms, we caught it early, so it should be relatively easy to treat. But, I’ve been ordered to take off work for the next week. So, no drawing, no significant writing. I’m making an exception to post this so you all know what to expect.

Considering my arm and hand are my livelihood, I’m taking this very seriously. So, I’m sorry to say, I must put PS on Medical Leave until my arm gets better. If all goes well, I will be back to drawing in a week or so, but I don’t know how much I will able to get done until my arm has had a chance to recover fully. I think the safest course of action is to cancel this month’s update. If all goes well, I’ll be back to posting next month.

In the meantime, I’m going to focus on healing, reconfiguring my work space to prevent future injuries, and writing once my hand and arm are up to it again. I will keep you posted. Keep an eye on my twitter feed for timely updates. I’ll post here again when there’s something significant to say.

I know this year hasn’t gone the way any of us would of hoped, but we work with what we’re given.

Thanks again for your patience.

August 3rd, 2012 | filed in News

Next PS scene update pushed back to August 13th

I’m afraid I have to announce the next scene update needs to be pushed back. Before Otakon I managed to injure my drawing hand and wrist due to some bad ergonomics and repetitive stress. Frankly, I’ve been writing and drawing a TON lately, but doing it on the couch with a cheap pen is a bad way to go about it.

Those of you who caught me at Otakon may have noticed I had a hand brace on. I’ve been unable to hold and use a pen this week, but I’ve spent the past couple of days trying to rest it and now appear to be on the mend. However, I lost several days and there is no way I’m going to have the next scene ready in time for August 6th without risking my hand. So, I’m going to push back the update one week to August 13th.

I hate to do this, because I’m gung-ho to get back to drawing, but it’s not worth risking the long-term health of my drawing hand. I’m going to take the weekend to finish recovering and see how things go on Monday. I’ll tell you if anything else changes.

August 3rd, 2012 | filed in News

Otakon: Post Battle Field Report

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Wow, Otakon. Amazing weekend. Once again Michele (@DarthReznik) and I took up stations behind the the table for the show. This year we had the pleasure of sharing a double table space with the one and only Garth Graham and his friend Saber.

otakon-2012-36Things got off to a rough start when first arrived. Long lines, red tape, and a broken elevator made loading into Artist’s Alley a real headache this year. Despite arriving on Thursday night, we didn’t actually finish setting up until Friday morning. I’ve voiced my concerns to the organizers, and i hope things will improve next year. Even then, I was still late to my 1pm How to Draw Comics panel. Better late than missing, though. Once I got there, it all went smoothly.

otakon-2012-20As did the rest of the weekend. I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with this show. The logistics are more difficult than any other convention I do anywhere (including San Diego), but once I’m in the door and set up, the love we get from the crowd makes it all worth it. And nowhere was that more apparent than at Super Art Fight on Saturday night.

otakon-super-art-fight-15 We performed in front of a huge crowd on the Main Events stage. It was a midnight show, and was my first 18+ bout, and the madness that ensued was exhilarating. My first match was up against Nick “Ghostfreehood” DiFabbio, one of the founders of Super Art Fight. I was nervous and delighted to take him on, but when he came out clad as a Dark Wizard in black cape, skills, and white makeup, I was not prepared. Then he unleashed ‘Cock-Thulu’ and I knew it was time to step things up. I countered with Godzilla and ‘Muffra’. And a pony on fire. Truth is, I’ve never drawn so many dicks before that night. I felt dirty, but I had an amazing time.

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I lost the match, but it didn’t matter. The crowd loved us, and I had the time of my life. The following match between Kelsey “Killer” Wailes and Michael “Spaghetti Kiss” Bracco was even more impressive. Kelsey came out clad in her “Stompadon” costume, complete with monster head and feet. Then she actually fought in it! Awesome. Bracco continued his pro wrestler look, and the battle continued with Robots vs. the cutest Xenomorph aliens I’ve ever seen.

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The final match teamed Bracco and me (the losers) up against Kelsey and Nick (the winnahs), and we battled it out in a tag team match. I lead with Voltron, Nick countered with AKIRA, and pornographic hilarity ensued. Somewhere in there Kermit was porking Miss Piggy, and Voltron formed blazing sword below the belt. At this point it was well after 1am, and we were on fire. It was amazing. After every bout, the crowd swarmed the stage to take pictures, and they mobbed us in the end. We finished the night with the whole crew giving high-fives to the crowd around the stage. Simply incredible! Thanks so much for coming out to see us, everyone!

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Also, my buddy Dave Lister of Studio Nasu made a huge announcement over the weekend about Crisis Heart Brawlers: Clash at Otakon, the official game based on the show. I helped out to put together the demo they debuted at the con, doing the background of the Baltimore Convention Center. I will be doing more background work in the final game as well. I’m really excited to be a part of it.

Crisis Heart Brawlers - Start Screen

Crisis Heart Brawlers - Start Screen

Crisis Heart Brawlers - Gameplay

Crisis Heart Brawlers - Gameplay

otakon-2012-33After pulling over 16 hours Saturday, between Artist’s Alley going to 11pm and the midnight Siper Art Fight show, Sunday was a blur. Somewhere in all that I found time to draw Dr. Doom, sign too many books, and even draw Kate as a My Little Pony. My hand is now not very happy with me, but I would not have traded it for the world. Or curse we saw amazing costumes, had plenty of great conversations with readers and future fans, and had a great time all around.

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Now, if only I’d found a way to have a beer in there someplace, it would have been perfect.

Anyway, here’s a few more pictures from the weekend. Enjoy!

Super Art Fight!