Saturday, July 31, 2010

Keeping Watch

Good evening... I mean morning.

Well today ended up being busier than I originally thought it would be, but only because I took half of the day off to spend it with my girlfriend and daughter. We had a ton of fun out in the sun, but as a result I completely forgot about my sketch today.

So I just whipped up a sketch of your friendly neighborhood Spiderman.

Not exactly the best sketch I've done in a while. But at least I got one done. No gaps in posting this week.

I probably only really spent about 15 minutes sketching this one in CS3 with the Bamboo tablet.

Anyway, thanks for tuning in for another week of sketches and I'll see you all back here on Monday. Have a great weekend.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Another piece inspired by a game I normally don't like

Good evening everyone. Time for me to do my real Thursday update.

The sketch I present to you this evening is another one based on the game Starcraft. The first one, not the new one that just came out.

As I said before, I wasn't really a fan of the RTS genre of video games. Never did I enjoy playing Warcraft(s). Though I did find clicking on the sheep rather amusing.
And likewise, I didn't enjoy playing Civilization, Starcraft or any other RTS styled game.

However, after watching the completely stunning trailers for Starcraft II recently, I decided to procure a copy of the original Starcraft and try my hand at it one more time. The cinematics didn't hold up as well visually, but the direction really shows that Blizzard has always had a talent for movies.

I'm not having such an aversion to the gameplay styling as I used to when I was younger. Though I'm still only in the tutorials so it's pretty quick gameplay right now. But I assume that once I start getting into the longer campaigns that I'll quickly be reminded that I hate having to wait for my game to play it. Another reason I'm not a fan of non-linear/sandbox games. I'd rather just play the game. Enjoy the story and get to the end. I play games for the same reason I watch movies. Entertainment. And when I'm just sitting around, or am unable to get to the next part because the next section just isn't available to me I get bored very quickly and turn the game off.

Anyway, I'm getting way off topic. Today's sketch was done in about 25 minutes in CS3 using my Bamboo tablet. And portrays a lone Terran Infantry Unit, cautiously trying to regroup with his unit. Will he survive? I'll let you decide that.

Anyway, I'll see you all back here tomorrow for my final sketch of the week. I'll try not to make it another Street Fighter or The Ninja sketch.


Hi everyone. Sorry for not updating the blog yesterday.

I even did some more work on the Nicholas Linear/The Miko sketch and everything. This time I spent time on fleshing out Nick some more. The only real problem is that I made him a little more detailed than his female counterpart.

I also added in some white on his gi pants (which I realize was a serious mistake as he was training in ninjutsu as a child, so he would have been in a black gi), some additional shading on The Miko and making the blade in her hand stand out more by making it white as well.

It turned out to be a pretty decent sketch. I just wish I didn't completely space posting it online yesterday.

Oh well. Tune in later today/this evening for today's sketch.

Later all.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Nicholas Linear meets his match

Good evening everyone. Welcome back to a Tuesday sketch.

And yes, it's another sketch based on Nicholas Linear and his many tribulations. This time he's being tormented by a mysterious woman, familiar, exotic and deadly. I don't want to give too much away if anyone is planning on reading the Nicholas Linear series. But let's just say, it's some great reading.

Martial arts action, corporate intrigue and a lot of 'sexy time' as a friend of mine would say.

Anyway, I ended up making the sketch a little more involved than I needed to, so after 20 minutes in CS3 I only got about... well, 1/3 of the way through the sketch.

Hope you all enjoy. And I'll probably finish it up tomorrow. Unless I decide to do another sketch instead.

Good night and good reading.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Training with the Jars

Good evening everyone.

Welcome to another Monday installment of ninjaboy's sketch-a-day.

Today's sketch is another in the series of Ken and Ryu's early training in karate. This time I decided to show Ken practicing with the clay jars found in traditional karate from Okinawa. I haven't drawn anyone using these training tools yet, so it was fun to sketch out.

Some of you may also notice that I gave him a brown belt instead of a black belt. This was intentional as I wanted to help convey that his training was not yet complete.

Anyway, I need to get some shuteye, so I'll see you all back here tomorrow. Hope you all dig and have a great evening.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Nicholas Linear, doing what he does best

Well everyone, welcome back to the friday edition of ninjaboy's sketch-a-day.

Well, what can I say, I just have EVL's book The Ninja on the brain right now. Today's sketch isn't based on any scene in particular. Or even from the first book. But it is a depiction of his character Nicholas Linear kicking some ass. Something that he does very well.

I wanted to showcase his ninjutsu more in this sketch, so I used some pictures of Togakure Ryu for reference. I didn't want it to look exactly like the pictures. But I always wanted to portray him using more traditional ninjutsu than the heavy focus on Aikido as is seen in the books.

Anyway, I hope you all like the sketch. See you back here next week. Have a great weekend.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Silent, and oh yeah, he's deadly...

Good evening everyone. Glad you could make it back for another one of my daily sketches.

Today's sketch is inspired by the prologue in Eric Van Lustbader's book The Ninja. Go figure huh?

Anyway, I have downloaded three book reader applications for my iPhone and not one of them has this book available to purchase/download. Which is a real shame. I mean, yeah I already have the book in hardcover. But I would love to have it on my iPhone so I could have it with me everywhere I go. But I guess that won't be happening anytime soon.

Anyway, it got me thinking about the book (naturally) and so I decided to do a sketch from the first action seen in the book.

It took about 20 minutes in CS3 with my Bamboo tablet. I spent most of the time trying to correct a mistake that I made involving the layers and what was on what layer. Oh well.

See you back here for my last sketch of the week. Have a great evening everyone.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

This is Starcraft?!?

Good evening everyone. Welcome back for my Wednesday sketch.

Today's sketch was inspired by the amazingly awesome video Blizzard released recently for Starcraft 2. All I can say is, this video is for an RTS?!? What the hell. This video looks fantastic and honestly would make a great CGI movie that would kick Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within's ass.

Anyway, I decided to do a sketch of the character Kerrigan from the video. I know all of nothing about this character, other than what was shown in the trailer. Apparently she gets turned into some sort of Zurg queen. I never played Starcraft as I'm not a fan of the RTS style of gameplay, and I know that it had a story, but the only interactions I had with is were my roommates in college playing the game with each other. So you'll have to forgive my ignorance on ths one.

Anywho, hope you like the sketch. See you all back here tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Saya Doing What She Does Best

Hey there, you know what time it is? That's right, it's time for another Sketch-a-Day.

Today's sketch is of Saya from Blood(+). No I didn't make a mistake. I put + in ()'s because I still feel that the OVA is the best of the series. But the show is pretty damn cool as well.

Anyway, I realized that I don't think I have ever done a sketch of everyone's favorite demon slaying Vampire. I recall doing some sketches inspired by the album Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots by The Flaming Lips that kinda reminded me of her. But I never really did a picture of Saya before. So I decided to fix that problem today.

I spent about 20 minutes in CS3 with my Bamboo tablet and produced this sketch. It's not bad for an outline, but I didn't quite capture the tension and movement that I intended the illustration to convey. Especially considering the yoko uchi strike that she is using to dispatch the unseen threat. But oh well, that's part of the reason I do this blog. To keep the pen moving and work on the weak points in my kihon (basics).

On that note everyone, it's time to head to bed. Hope you all have a great evening and I'll see you back here tomorrow for my Wednesday sketch.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Monday Knife Fight

Hi everyone. I'm back for another Monday (night) update.

I didn't have time do dow more than a quick ten minute sketch today. Which means that I didn't have time to really finish the sketch.

I finished reading/listening to the first Anita Blake audiobook this weekend, and it has a knife fight near the ending. So, my drawing hand being incredibly motivated by the entertainment media around me lately I of course had to sketch a knife fight.

As I said it took about ten minutes in CS3 using my Bamboo tablet.

Now if you excuse me it's time for bed. See you all back here tomorrow.

Friday, July 16, 2010

One more Street Fighter and Naihanchi sketch

Good evening everyone.

As promised, here is my Friday sketch. Thanks to iTunes, I downloaded a number of free anime episodes today, including the first episode of the Street Fighter 2 V series.
I had this on VHS years ago when i was going to the Art Institute. One day I will finish watching the series, but the first 5 episodes were pretty decent. Nowhere near as awesome as Street Fighter 2: The Animated Movie, but hey they can't all be animated action gold.

Anyway, the opening credits for this show has a very brief segment of a very young Ken and Ryu sparing. Ken comes in with a seiken zuki (straight punch) and Ryu blocks it with a soto ude uke (outside forearm block). It's very brief, but the scene has always stuck with me. And I would love to see a series, or manga of when Ken and Ryu were training together.

Anyway, I decided to do a sketch of Ryu practicing a kata (considering that I did a sketch of Ken yesterday, I wanted to balance things out a bit) and that kata ended up being Naihanchi Shodan again. Weird. Though, it is becoming one of my favorite katas. There's a lot going on in there.

Anyway, when all is said and done it probably took me about 35 minutes to sketch in CS3 with my Bamboo tablet. Hope you all enjoy it.

Have a great weekend and I'll see you back here on Monday.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Ken, to make up for a miss

Good evening everyone.

Wow, I got 2 days into the week before I missed a post. I'm really bumming about that.

My day got pretty darn busy yesterday, and when I got home I realized that I left my Bamboo tablet at work. And I didn't get the chance to do a traditional sketch and scan it in before passing out. So yeah, I missed a post.

I didn't want that to happen again today, so I managed to work in a 30 minute sketch of everyone else's favorite Street Fighter, Ken.

I don't think I've done many sketches of him in the past. Even though I like his design better than his counterpart's. Weird.

Anyway, this one took about 3o minutes in CS3, and most of that time was spent playing around with colors. Hope you all get a kick out of it. And I'll see you back here tomorrow for my Friday posting.

Good night everyone. Oosu!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


Good evening everyone.

It's time for a Tuesday edition of Sketch-a-Day.

Today's sketch is of an Aikidoka demonstrating a throw on a Karateka. You might be thinking, what? But ninjaboy, you're a Karateka yourself. Why would you portray your favorite style being defeated by another?

It's simple. I love both arts. And there are a lot of aspects of Aikido that I think is incredibly effective and useful. It's one of the most fluid, captivating and yes, beautiful martial arts to see practiced and to practice yourself.

I've had the privilege to practice at a few dojos and learn some of the basics of the art. And have been learning from others who are skilled at the art over the years. I also find reading about the art fascinating.

As usual, the sketch was done in CS3 with my Bamboo tablet. And it was another quick sketch, clocking in at about 10 minutes or so.

I hope you enjoy the sketch and I'll see you back here tomorrow.

Mongolian Chop Squad

Hi everyone. Welcome back to another Monday (sorta) edition of Ninjaboy's Sketch-a-Day.

Man, it really seems like a long time since I've typed that. Oh wait, that's because it has been a long time since I last typed it.

Anyway, today's sketch is of the character Koyuki from the manga/anime Beck: Mongolian Chop Squad doin' his thing on stage.

If you haven't seen this anime you should do yourself a favor and check it out. Though, if you can find the original versions from Nihon (Japan) that's the best way to watch them.
I'm not just saying that because I'm an anime fan, and love to watch fansubs. But more to the point I'm a music fan. And the original versions have some songs in them that are not in the American releases and honestly, the US versions actually suffer a little as a result.

The last couple of episodes have the band performing I've Got a Feeling by the Beatles in the original version, however due to legal reasons I'm sure, the lyrics were replaced in the US version and it really pulls the music fan out of the show. I'm not even a big Beatles fan, but hearing the music with different lyrics actually made me a little mad.

Anyway, the reason I was inspired to do this sketch was because a coworker turned me on to this website, and if you're a music fan it's flat-out awesome! What a fantastic idea. The folks at From the Basement have a great thing going there, and I'm so glad that the large number of artists have contributed to the site. They are HD videos of bands performing a song in a rather nice looking 'basement recording studio'. It's way better than any video you will find on YouTube as the picture quality is fantastic and the production is clearly done by the hands of music fans. Every shot was done out of love of musical performance and makes it feel like you are really there, watching them perform. I love it.

Which got me thinking, I wonder what Beck/Mongolian Chop Squad would look and sound like in that type of setting.

What can I say. I'm a geek.

Anywho, hope you dig the quick sketch I did in CS3 using my Bamboo tablet. I only had about 10 minutes to sketch it out, so forgive the significant lack of polish. After all, I am getting back in the swing of things.

See you tomorrow.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Look Who's Back!!!

Hi everyone. I'm back!

With a new sketch.

Man, it's been a crazy couple of months, but I'm done with my uber project and it looks like I'll be able to resume my sketch a day duties.

And to celebrate, I have for you a 10 minute sketch of a samurai. Nothing special, and it's very rough, but hey, I haven't been in CS3 for a few months now. Whattya expect.

Anyway, hope you all have a great weekend and I'll see you back here Monday.

Man, it feels good to be posting again.