June 16, 2018

Sublo & Tangy Mustard #10 - Battlefield

Breaking the record for Shortest Episode Ever, here's Sublo & Tangy Mustard #10 - Battlefield!

In which Sublo can't handle the brutality of war, and Tangy Mustard reigns victorious.

I love Simon Hanselmann's Megg and Mogg comics, and one of the things that makes reading the big collections fun is you never know whether the next story is going to be two pages or ten pages. I like that since I'm doing these cartoons on my own, there are no rules on length, and so I was inspired to make a few mini-episodes for this batch as filler in between the long ones. I thought about doing mini-comics as stopgaps instead, but didn't get around to it... Maybe next batch. Anyway this is the shortest one for now, and probably the only one other than maybe #5 (Opposites) that I really had trouble calling an 'episode'. Still, I hope it was fun!

May 06, 2018

Studio Ghibli's early 90s "modern" era

I wish Studio Ghibli had done more films with contemporary settings. Obviously they're known for doing fantasy really well, and I would never argue that they don't deserve that reputation, but my favourite Ghibli era is that window in the early 90's when they dabbled in more down-to-earth 'modern day' stories -- mainly Whisper of the Heart, Only Yesterday and Ocean Waves. It was probably the peak of their efforts to become a well-rounded studio instead of just being Hayao Miyazaki's backing band -- it's when they started hiring people as full-time employees rather than freelancers for project-specific short-term contracts, and tried to nurture younger talent. Before that they weren't really financially established enough to risk giving the reins to less experienced staff, and afterwards they increasingly became the "Miyazaki-brand fantasy factory" especially once that brought them a bigger audience in the rest of the world. Not that I can blame them-- I don't know if any of Takahata's movies ever made a profit. But artistically I think Ghibli's 'B-movies' are some of their most interesting films.

[EDIT:
I just learned Pom Poko was the number one movie in Japan of 1994, and the Japanese submission for Best Foreign Film at the Academy Awards. So Takahata didn't always flop financially!]


None of them are directed by Miyazaki, so they're less publicized and consequently I didn't get around to seeing them until after I'd gone through the "main" Ghibli canon. Miyazaki's fantasies are so synonymous with Ghibli that the rest of the catalogue almost feels like the work of a different studio. I wish people were more aware of these great slice-of-life films, but fantasy always seems to be an easier sell in animation. Of course Pom Poko is nothing if not a fantasy film, but it also has some beautiful scenes of urban life. And Whisper of the Heart was written and storyboarded by Miyazaki, and he was a producer on Only Yesterday, so I don't mean to say he wasn't part of these films too. I think in general he was so critical and resentful of modern culture that he avoided focusing on it in most of his work though.

Anyway, this whole post was just an excuse to share some frames I like from Pom Poko. Enjoy!



 


 















March 24, 2018

Sublo & Tangy Mustard Voice Actor Interviews

When we recorded the current set of episodes for Sublo and Tangy Mustard back in the summer, I filmed quick interviews with as much of the cast as I could. I thought it would be cool for viewers to get to see behind the mascot suits!

Interviewed here are Ryan Long (Sublo), Kevin Doan (Tangy Mustard), Heather Mazhar (Katy), Phylicia Fuentes (Vanessica and other voices), Jeremy Polgar (Chick-Chick in episode 9) and Moises "Mocherz" Jimenez (Night Shift Charlie and other voices).

March 08, 2018

S&TM#9 "Bad Guys" Backgrounds

Here are some backgrounds I did for the latest episode of Sublo & Tangy Mustard, "Bad Guys." As usual for the show, I drew them in Flash so I could follow and tweak the line art while animating, and coloured the flats in before exporting to Photoshop to add some colour variation, texture and painterly effects.

 


 
And here are a couple of in-progress images.


March 03, 2018

Sublo & Tangy Mustard #9 - Bad Guys

So much for 'monthly episodes!' Well anyway, here's the latest Sublo & Tangy Mustard episode, "Bad Guys" in which the boys must enter enemy territory to redeem themselves after causing trouble for Katy.

I have more to say about this one but this is a busy weekend (for starters it's my girlfriend's birthday) so it'll have to wait!