Archive for July, 2008

Invasion update

July 29th, 2008 by Reinder

I'm finally picking up the pace on Invasion again. Here's what I've got so far:
Page 109: Coloured, not lettered.
Page 110: Lettered, partly coloured. Two different colourists were involved in these pages.
Page 111: Scanner-ready.
Page 112: Characters inked.
Page 113: Characters inked.

Amazingly, most of the work was done in the past week. I expect Invasion to start updating again, as a weekly, next week.

ROCR character art for sale on Comicspace

July 27th, 2008 by Reinder

I've added 11 character drawings made in preparation for Feral to my Comicspace galleries and put price tags on them. These were some of my most popular postings on my DeviantArt space at the time. Prices range from $ 15 to $ 30, with shipping free if you also buy an original from the Feral or Invasion gallery. Sorry, the Devil originals are sold out. All originals will come with a print of the finished digital artwork as published.

One thing that's different about this new gallery is that it contains no NSFW images, and so can be seen by all visitors even if they don't have a ComicSpace account. With the other ones, I probably lost business as a result of the galleries being blocked to visitors who weren't logged in to Comicspace. I would encourage everyone who wants to buy one of my images from the older galleries to sign up; it's easy, free and painless, your data will not be sold or given away, and it'll allow you, if you want, to boost my profile within Comicspace by adding me to your friends list and marking the galleries as your favorites.

However, I'm looking into ways to host the sale of art on my own server, which should resolve the problem of people being blocked from seeing the images for good.

Oh, God, not again.

July 26th, 2008 by Reinder

Spare us: In the gym with Barack Obama.

HE CURLED 32 KILO DUMBBELLS NEXT TO ME +++ BARACK IS TOP FIT +++ HE DIDN’T SWEAT AT ALL

This shit annoyed the hell out of me four years ago, but for some reason I didn't think to say anything about it. Let me correct this now:

If Barack Obama's ability to arm-curl 32-kilogram weights is at all relevant to whether he should become President of the United States at all, why doesn't he just arm-wrestle John McCain for the presidency? That way we could skip the rest of the election campaign and be spared all the tedious and costly circus that comes with it.

Slight delay for ROCR

July 26th, 2008 by Reinder

The changeover to the new server and design took a big bite out of my comics writing time last week, and still does, so I didn't get the script ready to send to Aggie in time for a Monday update. I'll be back to writing script for Feral and drawing Invasion (the total number of new Invasion pages now stands at three, but at least that story is scripted all the way to the end) this weekend.

Please realize that this is not my day job anymore, and that I like to have a life outside of cartooning these days. I want to produce the comics in a manner and at a pace that keeps it fun for me, rather than working my ass off on it - I do that for the job that pays the bills, thanks. A delay in updates does not mean that the comic is dead. I am, however, committed to completing both storylines that are still ongoing, as well as Muscle, King Groy, and another low-key crossover project. That's at least two more years of Rogues of Clwyd-Rhan even if the update frequency picks up again.

Faerie character sketches

July 23rd, 2008 by Reinder

Some character sketches for a story to come after Invasion... maybe.
Aleas, chieftain of the Wodeskovian settlement
Revised, curvier version of Aleas. Photo reference: Belenen at DeviantArt, used with permission.

The faerie Sash, Squirrel Wrangler in the Wodeskovian settlement
The faerie Sash, drawn with slightly more distinct facial features. No reference.

Neither of these are likely to get deleted from DeviantArt, but I do want to show them in a place that I control. And try out the scheduled posting in WordPress.

Oh my God, it’s dwarf porn!

July 22nd, 2008 by Reinder

A couple of weeks ago, I got an image deleted from my DeviantArt site for the first and only time. It was a piece drawn for Einar's birthday and titled "Dwarf Porn for Einar." I don't think it was particularly pornographic:
No sense of humour, those Deviant Art guys.
Really, those DeviantArt people have no sense of humour anymore.

You have to shrug this sort of thing off, really. But it does sort of bring home the need to host images somewhere where I have control over them and can count, within reason, on them not disappearing all of a sudden. Which is one reason for the server move: it should give me more freedom to post what I want. I'm looking for suitable WordPresss plugins to make image/gallery management more convenient, but it can wait until I know what WordPress's image library can do out of the box. Expect some sort of gallery feature to reappear here in the next few weeks, though.

People of the Sewer, now on ROCR.net

July 21st, 2008 by Reinder

My 2003 guest series for Fight Cast or Evade, People of the Sewer, has now been added to the archives at ROCR.net. Read it one page at a time or all sixteen installments as a giant vertical scroll.
It's almost a year since Fight Cast or Evade ended, and it's time I brought this story home. It's another affectionate parody of the fantasy clichés underlying so many fantasy/RPG webcomics, so I've archived it under Unfantasy. It's different from the other comics in that section of the website though, because it's a rare foray into Furry comics for me, and because it has a lot of poop-based humour. And haikus, but mostly poop. It's a yin-yang kinda thing.

Drawing those animal characters was a lot of fun for me back in 2003. I'd like to do that again some time.

Inventory

July 21st, 2008 by Reinder

So.. what is new on the new website? What did I spend upwards of 12 hours on?

  • New top area design with a smaller logo and space for a large ad;
  • Nav area with important site stuff moved out of the right column to the top, where people are more likely to see it.
  • Below the fold area on the home page simplified. Left bar with "Current story" and "Featured story" taken out because I didn't maintain them anyway. Blog now has 500 pixels of width.
  • Comic page navigation is no longer made up of fake buttons, but ordinary links printed larger.
  • The site now has a real footer.
  • Right column is now reserved for advertising, giving existing ads more visibility.
  • One large new ad on top of all pages in the CMS; more pages have the square Project Wonderful ads, in a visible spot. Google ads are now treated as legacy ads, to be given a low priority if not removed completely.
  • More pages are now part of the CMS (14 added over the past few days); more pages already within the CMS run off the same style sheet.
  • Some pages not in the CMS also run at least partly off the main style sheet. These are pages like the Rogues of Clwyd-Rhan cast page where constructing them from the CMS is more effort than maintaining them by hand (most of the individual cast entries are in the CMS though).
  • All materials copied over to the new server, except the old Gallery installation. I may or may not build a new one, or build a gallery from either WillowCMS or WordPress if I need to.
  • The blog now runs off WordPress.

Still to do:

  • Move all remaining cast pages to WillowCMS. Fill up the empty spots on the cast list.
  • Get the WordPress templates to behave, particularly in Internet Explorer, which I don't have.
  • Make a stripped-down version of the blog to iFrame under certain pages of outside websites.
  • Check all the links and especially image references in the blog so they don't point to the space on Xepher.net anymore.
  • RSS feed for the comic.
  • Minor consistency fixes as and when I come across them.
  • Logos for the various non ROCR comics on the site.
  • Possible OSCommerce installation to sell art through the website.
  • Fix a few archive pages that are missing or broken or not remastered.
  • Approve some more Transcriptions that have been sent in.
  • I guess it would also be nice if I wrote and drew some more comics.

Server move!

July 20th, 2008 by Reinder

If you're reading this on the ROCR.net front page, you're seeing the new site, hosted on Lunarpages. This has been one of the smoothest server moves I've ever been involved in, but there may still be some broken links here and there. Please use the comments to tell me if you see something badly wrong.

The old server on rocr.xepher.net will probably stay on air for a while - I haven't discussed this with Xepher yet. But please always link to http://rocr.net if you're linking to the comics.

Doe Maar review, addendum

July 13th, 2008 by Reinder

If the rumoured new Doe Maar album actually materialises, I will do a "Countdown to... " on this blog in the days leading up to the release date, like I did with the Kate Bush album Aerial. I'll review all previous albums in order, one a day, including the live albums and the Dub album. I might draw the line at reviewing all the compilations, though.

It's that big a deal to me, and besides, it'll be fun introducing a nationally-famous Dutch group to my international readership and trying to explain why they're a big deal.

In my review, I said that the songs from Klaar didn't have the relevance that the earlier albums had. I've been listening to that album though, and my statement shouldn't be intended to mean that the album is bad. It's very, very good - just not up there with their 1980s material in terms of hitting the nail on the head all the time.