Apartmageddon was originally written as a film script, but it turned out to be too long for a short film and too short for a feature. After sitting in a drawer for years I decided to finally dig it out and turn it into a web comic.
Back when I worked as an illustrator, my work was always very clean and precise. I inked with technical pens and did dense line work with tight cross-hatching. It looked great in print but took forever, and had a certain stiffness.
So I started this project with a few rules for myself, to keep it fresh, fun, and loosen up my style:
Don’t be afraid to change styles. I’m allowing myself to draw any panel in any art style or level of detail I feel like. Serious or cartoony, heavily shaded or almost black & white, whatever excites me and seems appropriate for the moment in the story is allowed!
Don’t be afraid to use large blocks of text. Some things you might want to say in a story don’t really ask for an accompanying illustration. Comics like Hyperbole and a Half and The Oatmeal have shown that it’s okay to let text do the work sometimes… as long as it’s pleasantly laid out and flows with the page. So some parts will have word balloons, some parts will be more “Prince Valiant” style, and some may look like a big scrolling “Otameal” style thing.
Don’t get locked in creatively by formal page sizes. I’ll always maintain a consistent page width… but it’s the internet! A page can be as long or as short as you want! So if a panel would look better shorter or taller, I’ll just DO it, and let the page length fall where it may!
No Rulers when inking. Unless absolutely, positively neccessary. No point in killing myself if repeated attempts fail to yield a straight-ish line. But in general, this is part of my excercise to loosen up my work, to get results more like Paul Pope than Brian Bolland.
Doing this all digitally has allowed me to ink in a more brush-like style, which I’m very happy with. I’ve also been shading in the style you see here for quite a few years, though mostly in storyboards for unreleased films, so not a lot of people have seen it.
Final note! This is something I’m working on in-between paid film industry jobs, so it WILL NOT have a regular schedule. Sorry about that. I’ll put it out whenever I can, and I hope you’ll forgive that. Enjoy Apartmageddon!