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Shaenon: Among the many things I can't draw (circles, two-point perspective, gerbils that look like actual gerbils), technology of any kind ranks pretty darn high. And yet my cruel collaborator, one Jeffrey C. Wells, came up with a plotline involving virtual-reality gear. Is this fair? Is this right? I think not.

My first VR sketches, as you can see below, were sad and made people ashamed to know me.

It was all so pathetic that friends and loved ones stepped in to help me. My husband, Andrew Farago, tried his hand at a ton of VR designs, most of them influenced by 1980s G.I. Joe comics and/or the later years of Jack Kirby.

Although Andrew's bottom sketch is the coolest tech-wise, I like the next-to-last one for capturing Nick's charming personality and sense of style.

As it happened, comic-book artist Lea Hernandez was in town that weekend! She tried to help too.

Sadly, I continued to draw unfortunate VR gear. As the below sketch dramatizes, I rejected one of my designs after realizing it made Nick look like an evil squid from "Super Mario Brothers."

More next Sunday...


Channing: I'm such a bastard to work with. For the record, this a slightly-edited sample from one of my written scripts:

The camera is pointed straight at Nick's closed apartment door. It's an unlovely, utilitarian, painted aluminum door which makes no bones about the fact that its primary purpose is to keep people from just waltzing into your pad and ganking your stuff. It's not exactly high security, but it's fairly sturdy and bears the wear marks of a score of tenants before Nick. The one concession to any sort of decoration is the slightly scrolling look of the apartment numbers screwed to the door's metal surface. There's just enough artistry to the numbers to create a sense of cognitive dissonance with the door itself; they are mildly fairytaleish numbers bolted to a decidedly non-fairytaleish door.

And then I go on for a while longer, too. This is about the freakin' door, which we see for about one and a half panels. I don't know how Shaenon stands it, but it probably builds her character as an artist or something.


Shaenon: That script was actually super easy to draw, because no matter how intricately you describe a door, it's still basically a rectangle with a knob on it. (I left out the hard part of the script, which was a hand ringing the buzzer. Hands? Pah!) I like that Jeffrey went to such great lengths to describe the numbers on the door without at any point mentioning what the numbers were. I made my own selection.

44 comments:
Aaron Shades (prof_tinker) says: Is it sad that I like the squid design best?
Rob (rrreed) says: Now what does that second drawing by Lea Hernandez remind me of? Ah, yes!

"Hu-mans, listen to me. Due to an error in calculation, there are still a few of you left."
Daniel Barkalow (iabervon) says:

I see Jeffrey comes from the Umberto Eco school of door description. 

Shaenon Garrity (shaenongarrity) says: I actually like the squid design, but it wouldn't have allowed me to draw Nick's adorable face.
Tiff Hudson (tiff_hudson) says: If two-point perspective is the only one giving you trouble, my trick for easy two-point is to use three-point perspective, but pretend that the third point is in Meccah. Of course I always have to bring a compass so I can face east.
Petsky Piyamaradu (peropi) says:

The third-from-the-bottom drawing really looks like the original concept drawings of the Borg from Start Trek TNG:  

http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/memoryalpha/en/images/thumb/0/08/Borg_(concept_art_1).jpg/180px-Borg_(concept_art_1).jpg

 

I feel like that's something Dave Davenport would have said. 

Edwin Quantrall (reynard) says:

The first drawing makes Nick look like he's wearing the World's Largest and Most Cumbersome Pony-Tail...and he doesn't like it *ONE DAMN BIT!!!*

Sam Daniel (samhdaniel) says: The squid design reminds me of Dark Helmet from Spaceballs....
ribbles (ribbles) says: See, now I have to go back and look at that damn door.
Matt Hume (mithical) says: The squid is called Blooper, for future reference. Something tells me you will end up referring to it in the future, too.
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The education bestowed on Shaenon K. Garrity by her parents had been expensive, athletic and prolonged. ... full profile