When I’m out and about working on Blink, people who take a look at my original art often comment on the detailed nature of my work. “How long did that take you? It must have taken forever.” Well, sometimes, it seems that way. It usually takes me anywhere from 10 to 15 hours to draw a single page of Blink. Sometimes it’s less, but when you factor in all the time spent writing, sketching, drawing the layout, then getting to the final pencils and inks, and then scanning, clean-up, tones, digital lettering… 10 to 15 hours might be a conservative estimate. I’m sure you’ll notice that I don’t do very many online updates on the progress of the book. I’d like to, but I’m way too much of a perfectionist and sort of want to show off stuff from the finished product. (I’m only about a third of the way done with the second chapter of So It Goes).
On Monday, I thought about a way to keep Blink in the eye of the reading public. Every so often, I come up with (or overhear) little ideas for quips, insights or whatever that my Blink characters can say. But it’s stuff that’d be more apt for a comic strip, rather than a graphic novel. I’ve done Blink comic strips in the past, but I approached those more like mini-comic pages of the comic book, rather than simple comic strips. That meant that each strip took me a looong time to create. If I was going to go back to making a Blink comic strip, I’d need to keep it simple so that I can stay focused on the ongoing (and time consuming) creation of the graphic novel.
And so, I have developed the Blink Sketchbook Strip. The first one took me all of an hour and a half to write, draw, scan and clean-up. Nothing fancy. Nothing time-consuming. Just a simple comic strip. It’s a challenge for me to keep it this simple, but if I want to do this thing on a weekly basis (which is my plan), then I cannot spend much time on it. I also can’t let myself worry about whether it’s good or bad. I can’t get caught up in details and I just need to do it.
So here it is--