Thursday, 17 December 2009


REMEMBER THE OLD question that goes something like: "But how do you get them ideas for your drawings/poems/scripts/stories/novels/music/whatever?"..?

I haven't been honoured with such a curiosity by anyone but thought it would be interesting to share with you one of the secrets how things might happen when creative process is shared, let's say. In this case, it's the team-up of Jovial John Gallagher and Yours Truly, Bashful Boyann M. Johnny was kind enough to share with me one assignment, giving me a chance to do some kinky illustrations for a special kind of adult publication, a picture-book of sorts for... y'know... stuff that I love to draw. I never saw the script or the final text version - Mr. Gallagher did the 'chewing' for me in the form of prepared roughs which I was supposed to turn into a more or less finished version[s] for publication. So, first here's Johnny:

As you can see, he drew what used to be called 'a scribble' - rough sketch that sometimes editors provided an artist with, to avoid misunderstanding and go straight to the point, like "This is The Way I Want It".

With practically everything sorted-out for me in advance, I've sharpened my trusty F 2mm lead in the leadholder klutch pencil and doodled away the following:

Of course, I wouldn't be what I am if I didn't use the wood-clinched light blue pencil for rough underdrawing, for backgrounds first and then adding figures, tightening them a wee later with graphite lead. Small JpegS were shared with John via the magic of Internet and, with his blessings, I've proceeded with... INKING..!

For years I had this bottle of FW acryllic black ink that I've been saving for... what..? Eternity..? 'Till it dries and turns into a goo..? Realizing that a good ink is left in vain unused, I took my beloved Hunt 22 nib [with a touch or two by the incredible Gillott 290] plus Winsor-Newton series 33 brush No. 5 [yeah, I've been careful to save my best, series 7 WN sables for non-acryllic ink!] and did this homage to the mixture of horror and superhero illustrations with lots and lots AND LOTS of cross-hatching. So there: an evil Mistress Of Pain takes the lovable, innocent Heroinella into the Dungeon Of Endless Sufferings which I've made a suggestion of with a hint of the great Wally Wood machinery quite in place for some Mad Scientist's secret lab. But... did you think that I've forgotten to show the inks of the next pic with our tied but still defiant Heroinella..? More on that just a wee later, folks.

There's the thing: I've PhotoShopped the colouring on the inked FIRST drawing and -- the very same second drawing as it is - left in penciled stage, only tweaked in PS to appear darker, 'blackier'... just to give it a whirl like in modern comics where many pencils are left uninked, just coloured for the viewing pleasure.

I remain by all means the supporter of inking - the real 'wetworks', not digital fiddling to ape the real thing. Whether it's a brush, nibs, markers or even rapidographs -- I don't care, as long as the inking is applied the way it's supposed to be done.


Now, if you check out site, amongst many things there you'll notice that the latest issue of DRAW! magazine is out, where the interview with the incomparable RM Guera - artist on many European comics and DC's Vertigo title 'Scalped' - is done by Yours Truly, using his nom de plum Brian 'Duke' Boyanski. Guera is my childhood friend now living in gorgeous Barcelona - the most beautiful city in the world situated on the Mediterranean coast of Spain. He is one of the best comics artists in the world.

So c'mon -- order the mag this instant [or at least the cheaper PDF version for upload] and enjoy the best magazine on the planet devoted to the art of drawing and making better comics.

Even better - apart from making the editor Mike Manley and me richer, check out other phenomenal TwoMorrows publications and make yourselves richer with knowledge, insight how things are and were done in comics and for comics. Above all - have fun.


Sunday, 13 December 2009

The MASTER At Work, no less..!

FOLLOWING OTHER BLOGS when I have the time can be enchanting, making me simply fotget that I also have a blog to run and, at least, throw-in an update or two every now and then.

Yup, there are pages and pages of the stuff I have been involved with these past several months, but not all of them are appropriate to be shown here.

Exactly!.. They're even more hard-core than those I've shared with you previously, with gratuitous nudity and whatnot. It's true artists have to draw certain things if others aren't available -- and some like me even love drawing such stuff for money AND pleasure, so...

But today I am sharing with you a video of somebody else doing the creative magic before the camera... And NOT 'just anybody' but The Somebody of the legendary status amongst the comics giants - Mr. Neal Adams, boys and girls.

The Man draws... pencils... inks... attempts to turn on the light-box which happens to be unplugged... talks to his daughter [and studio manager, off-screen] Chriss... and has oodles of fun before our very eyes.

We see how he does it; the size of the original he is embellishing or transferring via light-box from the rough sketch underneath; the brush dipped in ink [and the brand is even readable!]; the pencil - ordinary wooden yellow school pencil, not some fancy-shmantzy special mechanical micro-lead wonder we imagine 'big guys' are using to create graphic[al] magic..!

Come to think of it -- the greatest amongst the great always showed modesty concerning their tools, never going for gadgetry or drawing gizmos - just the basic equipment and that's it. See, Neal Adams' brush even has split hairs, not 'the perfect' point 'good brand brushes' are supposed to keep always.

I want you to enjoy this and hunt down other YouTube videos of masters at work. It can be the next best thing to actually sitting next to the creator knocking out stuff that makes us love this wonderful medium and wish we can also do it, like them.


Now, instead of P.S. --- if you check out YouTube links:

... you can see my band and me in action. PLAYING MUSIC, not drawing.

What does it have anything to do with comics..? Well, IT HAS, since the gig was shot on Sept. 24th 2009 at the Grand Opening of the Seventh Comics Salon in Belgrade, Serbia. FATAL CELLULITE OBSESSION performance was my personal gift to the Salon, its organizers, colleagues, friends and relatives who've bothered to pop-in and have some R'n'R fun in the comicdom assembled there and then.


Thursday, 23 July 2009


THERE USED TO be a time when I've discovered in my mis-spent youth that specialists of sorts called inkers treat the drawings of pencil pushers with embellishment. Yeah, we know CHASING AMY movie sequence with fistcuffs resulting from the discussion whether an inker just traces what penciller draws or contributes something more than enhancement for the printing process.

God bless Kevin Smith...

Anyway, I've learned that 'even an inker' has to know at least basics of drawing. Plus, I've grown in [then] Yugoslavia where the very concept of team-work in comics was non-existent at the time.

Years have passed. I've gone through experiences with begging talented friends to allow me to demolish their pencilled drawings with my inking attempts, then I started to learn how to draw [and continue to this day]; tried my hand in coloring and inking AND animating [of course, first I have cleaned thousands of previously used cells for new films to be made], then I drew tons of comics, inked my own pencils and spent 18 years in England going through many jobs, animation and comics drawing included.

Now, in my autumn years I've got a chance to try my hand in professional inking of somebody else's pencil drawings. That 'somebody else' is the gem of Macedonian comics art, Aleksandar Sotirovski [ ] who's got a chance to do an urgent job for a comicbook series CARRIE NATION [Dabel Brothers Production, written by C.E. Murphy] since the original artist [whose name simply escapes me at the moment] decided to bow out. Aleksandar's first choice for the inker took his time gentlemanly whilst the deadline turned into a merciless monster...

... so, who do you call in urgent times like these..?

Suffice to say, I've managed to help Aleksandar to make the deadline, pages were colored, probably even lettered [ God, how I passionatelly HATE modern comics with 'mute' pages instead of dialogue balloons and captions as the organic part of images..! ] .

It needs to be stressed that my hands never ever touched Alex's originals; he's emailed me TIFFs [300 dpi] of his pencilled pages, I've loaded them on my trusty Flash memory stick, used the 0-24 photocopy/printing shop in the neighborhood to print the pages on 300 g. smooth cardstock in the lightest imaginable cyan and slosh the black lines and shapes over it. My chosen tools of the trade were Faber Castell PITT markers and also other Faber Castell pens, Ecco pigment. They worked the best. Rapidographs, brush and nib haven't been taken nicelly by the cardstock provided by the shop since they didn't want to accept my own paper. My job was to deliver 5 inked pages in two days - and we've done it on time.


Tuesday, 30 June 2009

My Humble Contribution To The SOON TO BE LOST ART OF INKING - pt.1

HEY-HEY-HEY..! How's things, my fellow komikeros..? I've been -- well, really idle and I mean it. Only some storyboards here'n'there plus a few pages to be inked for an American comicbook publisher.

Strange story, indeed... when the time's ripe it'll be told in full. For now let's scratch the surface: a bloke called Adrian withdrew himself from a project that needed to be finished urgently so my mate Aleksandar Sotirovski [check out his blog!!!] gets the penciling gig by a twist of destiny and also a friend [who'll remain nameless] inker who took his time making the deadline even more lethal. To make a long story short -- Yours Truly is invited to save the day so here's the baby in it's full penciled and inked glory... colours by Jason Embury just make the art shine better in its glory..!

Suffice to say -- the day was saved, deadline met and things almost looked cozy...

Sunday, 3 May 2009

Cartoony Madness Doesn't Live Here Anymore...

AND THIS, CHILDREN, is how things should be done.

Now, try to make me believe SQUAREDIAPERS BOOMBO or any 'modern' cartoon has even a tinniest spec of credibility, style, integrity, beauty, lovability, kookiness... you name it.

Damn -- I am over-using the word lately, ain't I..?

Now, find John K.'s blog and enlighten yourselves.

[ b ]

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Broads, Blasts and Big Guns

WHEN A FRIEND asks for help I usually never ever ask back for understanding - that I might be busy with something else or that there are 'other priorities'. I simply help and that's it.

In this case, a short comic drawn for someone as a present [by that friend of mine] needed my penciled input on a couple of pages plus cover. I did the best job I could do at the moment, providing the geezer with enough material to work on and add his inks.

The cover was a special case - we wanted to try the uninked drawing treated with PhotoShop. So I got an idea after I was told what should be on the cover [a nuclear explosion, sexy voluptuous dominatrix kind of a girl with nasty gun leaning on the head of a Humpty Dumpty shaped boyfriend], grabbed a plate from the kitchen shelf and made a circular panel inside which I penciled-in the scene with a 2B soft lead inside Caran D'Ache mechanical lead holder.

My friend Gotze B. did a TERRIFIC colouring job that I don't have saved - yet. I hope I'll manage to post it soon-ish.


[ b ]

Saturday, 18 April 2009


SHANE GLINES HAS one of the best blogs in the Universe -- along the others I love to follow and read regularly. Plus he draws like Hell!!!

One of his sites is his blogspot:

The additional fershlugginer 2009/04/caricature-tutorials-by-mads-tom.html written after the basic URL thingamajig serves the purpose to take you to Tom Richmond's absolutelly unavoidable Portrait Drawing Adventure. It needs to be seen to be believed..!

And trust me - I know what I'm talking about: I earn my everyday bread by drawing a regular Sunday strip page for Serbian PRESS in the vein of MAD parodies [the old school of Mort Drucker, Angelo Torres, George Woodbridge, Jack Davis...] and attempting to draw political 'celebrities' [yup, I'm NOT dabblin' with the good ol' showbiz...] and make my scrawled images look like the persons they're supposed to represent -- oboy, it's teeth pulling.

Even worse...

Tom has his own site and it's chock-full of the whole caboodle of goodies - drawing tutorials included.

Be good to yourselves, bookmark the links I've just shared with you and be happy to have me to share this knowledge with you.

Damn -- some people draw too good for their own good ...


[ b ]

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Hamming It Out

MISS DANA HAMM shares her surname with one of my bass-playing idols, incomparable Stu Hamm. As far as I know, they're NOT related.

When I asked her once upon a time for her permission to delineate her in a situation dear to me [exuberant display of beauty, wild animal presence -- like in the old-school illos with beauties and beasts], she didn't hesitate to grant it to me -- even more, she honoured me with including the following drawing on her own myspace site.

I am grateful for her compliments. But deep inside, I felt that I could have done more -- better -- bolder.

Never ever did I dare to even attempt to draw her again, neither form memory nor by using her photo for 'straight reference', the old-school way, the GlamourPuss way.

Hard 3H pencil lead was applied for underdrawing; PILOT drawing pens [markers] and PENTEL fountain brush for inking.

Darn -- will have to do something with classical nibs dipped in good old waterproof ink and sable brushes to do justice to the chosen models..!


[ b ]

Monday, 6 April 2009

And the Featured Lady Is...

IT HAS JUST occurred to me that I haven't mentioned who is the actual beauty featured... She does exist indeed and she is a musician [bassistesse, no less] who also practises healthy lifestyle, models and competes in the fitness arena. Her name is Crystal Fawn and can be found on myspace:

Please, check our her sites.

For today I am submitting another attempt to delineate her.

Standard procedure discussed in the previous post.

For the polka-dot pattern on her bikini I didn't dare to use the correction pen with opaque white fluid, fearing it'll give me a messy result. Instead, I drew carefully wee circles and - filled the black away with marker pen. I reckon it was STABILO brand. Everything else was done over the 2B pencilled underdrawing with PILOT fibretip pens.

[ b ]

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Referencing Stuff

JUST REMEMBERED CERTAIN drawings I did -- well, some time ago... Before I became aware that Dave Sim will make a splash with Glamourpussy series as the love letter to the 'photo-realistic comic strips' of yesteryear, I got an urge to try to do it the way I've assumed it could be done.
Not by making my own strip in the vein of greats like Alex Raymond, Warren Tufts, Stan Drake, Neal Adams, Al Williamson, Ken Bald, John Prentice, Alden McWilliams ... or even Dave Sim himself... only by giving it a try with several illustrations of beautiful women I've made contacts with on myspace.
Don't get me wrong -- I've always been well informed, knew that certain artists use photo reference to make their drawn results more credible etc. Some relied on photos faintly, some totally; some needed photographs for documentation -- and some to create it all from scratch, transforming one medium into a totally different context and artistic result.

What I wasn't sure of at all was -- how the Hell did they do it..? Did they cut the newspaper or magazine photos out for their 'morgue' [documentation in folders] or they took snapshots staged according to their 'directorial' vision [almost like creators of 'fumetti' - photostrips]..? Or was it a combination of ALL of it, and then some more..?

Then -- did they just look at those photographs/snapshots, eye-balling them like some kind of 'model' to draw directly onto the cardstock where finished artwork will appear, or on separate sheets of paper to be celaned-up by tracing onto the mentioned cardstock..?
Or did they do it like Mr. Sim does it on the shown youtube video?

Nevertheless, being adventurous and curious I first wrote emails to couple of the prominent ladies of my choice on myspace and, after getting their permissions, I decided which pictures were to wind up transformed into the drawings.

Bear in mind that naturalism - much better definition for what is usually called 'realism' - was never my forte. My earlier attempts with 'eyeballing' photos whilst attempting to draw upon them bore rather sour-ish fruits... So I guessed that MAYBE using the tracing paper is a good start! Therefore I've printed out the chosen photographs taken from the ladies' myspace[s], laid a sheet of tracing paper over the photo[s] and - traced away the best way possible. I used a very thin marker, omitting intuitivelly what I assumed is to be omitted, stressing what I thought needs to be stressed and so on.

The finished result was far away from what I wanted to achieve, but no worries... The next stage was my embellishing treatment of those tracings, forgetting that they were based on photos and treating them as rough sketches in need of a light-table refinement and tightening. In this case, I've used a pad of layout paper - quite thin and transparent, but white, sort-of-opaque and durable enough for a hard 3H pencil interventions. So I lightly transferred SHAPES of the drawn subjects, not contoured the drawings beneath, the same way as I'd have done it on thicker cardstock over a shiny surface of a light box.

After finishing as preciselly as It was humanly possible [for me at least] the transfer, I've tightened the drawings with a quite soft 2B lead in a mechanical Caran D'Ache pencil.

Then they became ready for inking which was done with FABER CASTELL PITT markers and PENTEL fountain brush.

Suffice to say, I was quite impressed with my achievements -- for a time being. Then I realised that lots and lots of hard work at improving my drawing skills is needed even for the process some might call 'ordinary tracing'.

Instead of my conclusion, PLEASE listen carefully what Dave Sim says whilst demonstrating what and how he draws and pay attention to the segment towards the end when he re-tells the Al Williamson anecdote.

There's NOTHING else to add to it.


[ b ]

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Meanwhile, Back In The Octopus' Garden...

MY UNDERWATER SAGA mentioned before had a lot of things happening, making me ripe for questioning about my sanity.

The pages that until recently could have sent the creator straight to jail WON'T be shown here. Instead, just a hint of what's to happen in OCTOBOOBS... eventually.

Thing That Made Me go... HA!

ONCE UPON A TIME I've seen an Adam Hughes sketch of Tomb Raider's Lara Croft posted on a website showcasing his stellar artwork. Miss Croft was depicted struggling to squeeze-in her abundant chest into a too tight blouse, with pitiful (but eye-popping) results.

It was but a simple pencil sketch - still oozing sex appeal and pure graphite energy.
I was inspired to give it a try -- not as a slavish copyist, but rather a hommage-giver of sorts. So there - my very own raven-haired beauty, delineated with a 3H lead pencil, in almost the same AH!-inspired situation. Only... AH!'s heroine fought to PUSH her treasures IN -- mine doesn't struggle too dilligently to prevent 'em poppin' out. 'S all.

THERE IS SOMETHING quite attractive about athletic ladies who happen to be well endowed. I never thought of superheroines - with or without masks - out of costumes and really, REALLY fit.

This one might be the one to inspire and be the blueprint for more to come.


- no reference photos used

- quite rough cardstock attacked with a clutch-pencil holding a 3H lead - very hard one

- thin red marker for pouting lips

Do I Have To Censor Myself When I Draw?

CAN'T REMEMBER THE occasion when I sat down, pencil in hand over the blank sheet of paper, thinking something along the lines 'Now, THIS is too much, I can't let myself do it...'.
I've never ever censored myself with pseudo-moral restraint or out of political fear. Just had the [semblance of] common sense what [not] to jot down or delineate.

After all, there's the feeling that some OCTOBOOBS pages simply wouldn't be appropriate even for my blog, in the same vein as breaking wind in a decent company is unacceptable... no matter how [not] good I am with that.

Won't bother you with musing about the [lack of] morality. I'll show you some drawings from my sketchbook dedicated to the character of Nurse Florinda that I'd love to exploit in some future wacky erotic comicbook escapades. There is one sketch done with - you guessed it - blue pencil and finished with mechanical holder of a 2B lead; there are two versions: one with visible nipples on hoo-hoos too big to be held inside the nurse uniform, the other with ... PhotoShop intervention that blurs them nipps for the sake of 'decency'.

On I have several picture albums, one of them being CYBER BEAUTIES. I felt sorry to omit my lovable Nurse Flo but good ol' myspace has a very strict policy regarding the nakedness, erotica and such. So, to avoid the risk of having my site shut down or picture removed by Guardians Of The Newfound Morality, I've 're-touched' her hooters.

Other pics are my attempt to draw a different Flo and try the colouring 'shorthand' with darkening the pencil outlines so that they appear almost as inked.

Not good, but still sexy.

And we DO love sexy, ain't we..?

Thanks for stopping by etc.etc.etc. You know the drill.

Hope to have you and some new visitors again.

[ b ]

How Many Stages for Drawing Pages?

IF I WANTED to go poetic on purpose... could'n have done it like this... 'Stage'-'Page', get it..?


Okay, drawing stages... or rather gradual steps. I am just elaborating upon my yesterday's example of layered approach to creating a single image - a cover 'on spec' which was intended to be a 'Tomb Raider' parody by writer/layout man John Gallagher & Yours Truly last year's long hot summer. It never happened due to the several reasons, one of them being the dissapearing act every now and then by a publisher who, otherwise, managed to be on time with payments for done things and when he decided to be available. John got involved with other artistic endeavours and me -- with drawing too many different things here'n'there and playing bass with too many different people in various bands.

The done thing I am discussing now is an 18 pages long wordless [porn] epic called OCTOBOOBS which I did on my own, as writer, pencier, inker and colourist. It's the sick story with two humans of opposite sex passionatelly interacting mostly UNDERWATER [hence wordlessness] and having a gigantic octopus pitch-in for an additional 'fun'.

I'm telling you - sick.

Anyway, the story was done, published, paid and life took the publisher and me into different directions. John and I are still in [in]frequent contact.

To avoid eventual problems with taste, offensiveness of the shown imagery etc. I'll trust my own judgement and present only the visuals staying within the boundaries of what I consider 'tasteful'.

Therefore, Page Seven -- the first one actually done, which got me the OCTOBOOBS gig. When I started drawing it, I only knew the quirky title and the fact that it's going to be without any dialogues or captions and that most of the action happens under the sea. Nothing else. The aforementioned publisher wanted a plausible and 'credible' explanation for the humongous breast[s] enlargement of the heroine and I knew that somehow I'll need ... well, an octopus to get involved, nasty and responsible for the fershlugginer.

I didn't know that Page Seven is going to be seventh in a row. It was just 'an audition page' to show what I can do - and how. Everything happening before and after was somehow built around the situation depicted on this slice of visual narrative.

So - my trusty blue lead pencil in hand - I did the rough: no human male in sight [yet], just the heroine still with the same hoo-hoos dimensions struggling and losing her blade whilst an evil octopus takes advantage in his natural wet habitat...

And that was it. Just that. A montage of an underwater beast getting an upper tentacle, so to speak.

My next stage was mechanical 0.7 Pentel pencil rendering with HB lead [the first one I got a hold of in the messy clutter of my then-working table in London UK]; I tightened the blue breakdowns adding details and then it hit me: COPIC MARKERS..! Got several of warm grey ones in my drawer, had some storyboarding experience from before so what the hell..? Let's!

Before grabbing several FABER CASTELL [or were they PILOTS..? PENTELS..?] markers, I've added warm greys for the background, creating the visual style for the other UNDERWATER scenes to follow. Then, I inked [markered..?] tightly everything else, trying my best not to imitate any admired artists - especially not Frank Cho.

When the black lines went dry, I used the kneaded eraser to... well, erase the graphite under the inked lines. Then I scanned the page, used the best of my [then meagre] knowledge of PhotoShop colouring and the page turned as it is.

All the described stages were duly scanned and saved, probably because I sensed that the moment might arrive for me to show-off.

Each time I feel that I am improving... maybe in milimetres, not in kilometres as I hoped I could have done in my younger years... but still I manage not to remain on the same level as before.

Thanks for stopping by, hope to see you again - maybe even in the funny papers!


[ b ]