Johnny’s top movies of 2015!

for those of you that care, here’s my top picks for movies in 2015!

    1. Ex Machina – what a concept!  great acting all around plus great visuals
    2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens – JJ does it again with a solid all around movie, but he better watch out for duplicating past plots too much (i.e. Star Wars Into Darkness and Wrath of Kahn)
    3. Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation – i love the MI franchise and Tom Cruise doesn’t disappoint.  i hope the addition of Ferguson in the next installment doesn’t ruin the dynamic.
    4. Mad Max: Fury Road – that guitar guy sealed the deal for me
    5. Everest – speaking to the adventurist in me, i enjoyed the grittiness and true story aspect
    6. The Martian – fun humor with a fun cast
    7. Furious 7 – the action is so ridic you have to respect that
    8. The Gift – a surprisingly dark movie that has perhaps ruined Jason Bateman for me
    9. Kingsman: The Secret Service – a breakout role for the male lead and i enjoyed all those British actors in one place
    10. Southpaw – i’m a sucker for boxing movies

biggest disappointments for me this year have been:

    1. Spectre – weak plot and action sequences that made no sense
    2. Ant-Man – despite Paul Rudd and an excellent entourage, perhaps i was expecting too much but this was way too predictable and that romance doesn’t feel organic
    3. The Avengers: Age of Ultron – i hear it’s better upon second viewing but it got too convoluted for me

good, but perhaps overhyped:

    1. Sicario

made more enjoyable because the friends i was with:

    1. Straight Outta Compton

movies i haven’t seen yet that may make it on this list:

    1. Macbeth
    2. Creed
    3. Revenant
    4. The Big Short
    5. The Walk

criticizing my own art

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so, what went wrong with the left image? I didn’t see how off it was until I was done with the face, when it just looked wrong. the jaw looked off, the chin seems too narrow, and the combination of the eyebrows and eyes made him looks Asian (which I did not intend this time!).

so, I did what always takes courage for me and erased it. when I drew it again, using a photo reference of myself, I realized I needed more “stress” in the jaw. I mean, if he’s opening his mouth wide, there should be more stretch in the skin and therefore show more cheek bones (I think). in any case, the one of the right looks much better. plus, I wanted to make it not just photo-real but more bounce, like a cartoon.

my last comment, do yourself a favor and look up the artist Eric Canete. he’s fantastic. and when he draws, he’ll draw and redraw the image until he gets it right. like a master sculptor bringing the image out of the paper. he gives me inspiration to not give up. thanks.

finn

well, friends, this is it.  the final Finn comic strip.  i’d like to say thanks to everyone for reading and visiting the site.  i’ve been drawing Finn and crafting relationships for him for over 5 years now.  i started this web comic with the simple goal of keeping me drawing regularly and to challenge my artistic skills.  Finn’s friends were created from the various moods i have, and letting them play off of my predominant characteristic, ala Finn.  looking back on my comic strips, i do notice a growth in my style and comfort in drawing emotions thru body expressions.  i’ve decided to stop the series now because i want to challenge myself in different art endeavors.  what that means is that my goal is to get this site active in a few months with all new stories and characters.  i hope you’ll come back then and see what new adventure i can drum up!  thanks!

penultimate

here we are, second to the last Finn comic strip for the foreseeable future.  and here we have Finn making amends with a lost friendship a while back in the comic’s history.  i think the concept of closure is overplayed many times in tv shows and movies, but there’s something to it as well.  i’m not sure how much time you spend dwelling on it as opposed to leaving something unresolved.  in the end, it’s just a matter of can you go on with your life with or without that closure.  the other point here with Finn is having the emotional maturity to accept a personal failing and owning up to it.  that’s something i find rarely happens, and maybe that’s just because personal growth doesn’t happen all that often.

antepenultimate

well, we’re down to the final three Finn comic strips!  i’ve decided to stop the comic strip, and take the time to work on some other art projects.  more to come on that later!

for this week, i thought it would be fun to see all most of the friends Finn have interacted with over the years.  i’m a bit proud of this one because i drew it without photo reference (except for the occasional hand reference)!  i also think all the lines look pretty clean.

in case you’re wondering, from left to right is:

  • Owen (introduced on Aug 14, 2010)
  • rancher’s daughter (introduced on Feb 4, 2013)
  • Remy (introduced on Feb 24, 2008)
  • Finn
  • Aly (introduced on Feb 22, 2010)
  • Rancher (introduced on Jan 21, 2013)
  • on the couch, Alex (introduced on Jan 21, 2008)
  • and Ivy (introduced on Mar 14, 2008)
  • standing up, Stacy (introduced on Oct 1, 2012)
  • girl with the nice house (introduced on Nov 4, 2013)
  • girl with the marketing job (introduced on Apr 29, 2013)
  • sitting on the floor, random friend (introduced on Nov 26, 2012)
  • Ace (introduced on Apr 21, 2008)
  • leaning on tv, another friend (introduced on Jan 23, 2012)

reaching another level

so, this week’s strip is a throwback to the comic strips of March to June 2012.  it was about when Finn had a falling out with a friend and decided to cut him out.  after some growth and maturity, we may realize the decisions we made back then, we would do differently today.  the question is will we correct our past transgressions?  it’s hard and humble to confront our own failings, so no wonder it’s not done very often.

for the artwork, i am pretty happy with that last panel since i drew it with no model or live picture reference.  everytime i do that, the body posture may not turn out right, but it does make it more cartoony, and thus more ‘life-like.’  as fo that second panel, i took that from a a picture of a President pondering out the window.

what is this all about?

i wonder how many of you all out there have had such a journey or moment n life, when you experienced a new level of insight and self-awareness.  i don’t think it happens too often, but i think you have to both paying attention and open to it, for it to actually change you.  for me, i find myself all too often running between event 1 to event 3 and onward to event 50 before i catch my breath.  but when i do, when i choose to take a moment for myself, boy do i feel great!

it’s back to the “talking heads” type comic strip!  when Watterson had to do these, he’d put Calvin & Hobbes in a toboggan and send them over a hill crashing.  for me, i’m working on body expressions and gestures.  hope you like it!