Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Colors in progress

Kablammo, here is a teensy weensy preview. Still working on the colors, so shut up about my silhouetting for the time being.

1 week left.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Pencil sample

Here is where I'm at.

Food Yes, Cook No #1 is still available for sale!

Finally I'm putting it up for sale. It was put together in November for APE 2008, and since then I'd just been too busy/lazy to announce its availability otherwise.

But suddenly I couldn't resist having the yellow "Buy Now" button on my blog, so here tis, with a coupla previews. No way can you read it from here, so you might as well get it.

FYI: If you buy it from me in person, it's just the $5, cos we ain't gotta do no crazy ship charges. Plus, you know, I can lick it or something. Or I can just sign it like a normal person. Whatever you want.

So if you were to buy a foodzine-related art print from me, what would it look like?
Please give me some ideas! Thanks :)

Sunday, August 9, 2009


I have 100 views on my blog. Not bad for not having officially announced its existence these past few months :)

So I drew 5 pages of my first short comic, in blue pencil. I'm reworking the staging of the fifth page, which I'll probably need new photo reference for, but I'm glad I figured out it needed changing before I wasted any more time on the wrong thing ... Actually I'm basically scrapping everything I had for the fifth page and will DEFINITELY need to reshoot photo reference. SIGH. I think I'll just start with a fresh piece of board instead of erasing this whole page.

My perspective skills are still as poor as I remember they were in school. I was hoping they would have improved with time, as my line sensitivity has improved since graduation. My instructors likened the process of absorbing lesson material to a snake digesting a rat. Or something. It's supposed to mean, don't think about it, just swallow everything we say now and you might understand what we mean later once it's all come out on the other side.

It was actually true in some cases. So make of that what you will.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Blue pencil page in progress

P.S. Those are my friends in my photo reference. Aren't they great? YES THEY ARE

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The only good thing about August are the Leos.

... the good Leos, anyway. I'm part Leo but you wouldn't know it.
Here are some sketches, wherein I discovered I love drawing people at shows.
Folks included in these sketches are: Bryce of Lakebed Recording, Roberto Miguel, and Star St. Germain.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

My desk

Wow, it's been a month since I've posted anything. Sorry about that. I am drawing again after some problems (some being life and some just being my lame brain), but I should have some blue pencil drafts to post soon.
I am working on one in this pic I took tonight:
work bench
So that's proof!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

It's also photo reference time.


Nibby tests

Messing around with how I want to draw dis thang, so naturally I checked out my nib treasures. I have lots of good ones! And so far they are pretty fun to use, too.
nibs test pg
Now if only it wasn't so bullshit to scan.

Now it's under-drawing time. I'll check in later.

Friday, June 19, 2009

How Hair Flirts

Almost ready to draw, but still on these damned storyboards! Well now I know I take longer in pre-production than I usually anticipate. WELL DONE ME, I GUESS.

In the meantime, here is a study on How Hair Flirts:

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Hit a snag

I have become obsessed with Roy Orbison and have been listening to him nonstop repeat (except while sleeping) for the past 3 days. Incidentally – and I hope these things are not related – I have not been able to produce any good work for the past 3 days also.

Today I experimented with a couple computer-drawing approaches that failed utterly. I was trying to be more direct about it, and most of all, I just wanted to save some goddamned time. Pencilling, inking, scanning ... wouldn't it be great to condense those 3 steps into 1 by just drawing it directly into some photoshop file?

Unfortunately, my pshop doodling working method is totally incompatible to the 2 short stories I wrote recently. But really, the bottom-line is: I'm just not good enough at tablet drawing to justify using it.

So I'm literally back to the drawing board. I'm behind on my personal schedule but I'm sucking it up. Wish me luck.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Still working on storyboards/layouts. Which for me, takes FOREVER.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Zig Millenium .05 Pure Black Pen + Hellen Jo = <3

Ignore the inking on the large hands. The others are better, no? hopehopehope
I was copying the hands and feet Hellen Jo does. She makes it seem so easy.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Body sketch

intercom_body types_sized
Alright, here's the first attempt at drawing them without reference, and with body & head attached.
oh my god i need to get back to figure drawing UGGGGHHHHHHHkillmenow

Mo character sketches

Thus mo blatant ripping off of fan pics. I found the man quite tricky to draw (without the famous musk ox stripes in his hair, anyway). I'm not happy with any of these but the bottom right one. Doesn't look like him, but a striking resemblance is not what I'm after. Of all his chameleon-like incarnations, this specific look and feel is just right for the character I have in mind. Luckily it's also the least stiff of the bunch, so I hope that means it won't be too much of a drag to repeat.

And here's something from the first sketch page again. I was practicing with different inking pens. The left one took DONKEYS to dry ... won't be using that pen for this project, methinks (it's a brush pen I bought from Kinokuniya that I normally looove). The one on the right was inked with both a plain old Tombo and a Faber-Castell artist pen. I might stick with that combo until further notice. Yuck I need to practice more.
sketches (inked)_06-06-09

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Character sketches

The first (but not the last) sketches!
Totally based off one of my favorite SGs. But hey, I do what I can to stay motivated.
Speaking of which. This is what I actually consider Being Naked On the Internet. ::shudder::

Saturday, June 6, 2009

The 2nd best thing about James Iha

The 2nd best thing about James Iha
He "is a second-generation Japanese-American, and is only able to speak a little Japanese." (Wikipedia)

"Oh, I'm sorry"
I'm not against learning that language of your native cultural background at all. If you know anything about me you know I've always regretted being unable to speak Cantonese. But it's hella annoying how it plays out almost every single time. Once the Chinese figure out you don't speak your home tongue, they act as though you've not learnt it out of stupidity, laziness, or sheer defiance. And then in a split second, you become a non-person, akin to a very young child, or perhaps a dog or cat. In the rare instance a Chinese person would continue looking or speaking to me after they discover this shocking flaw of mine, they'd express their pity and/or disgust quite clearly, and THEN commence ignoring me. I can't tell you how many times this has happened, and how many more times it will – predictably – occur in the future.

This used to shame me before, as I absorbed the idea that my sister and I just weren't smart enough to be good Chinese kids. Sure, no one ever spoke Cantonese in the house unless my parents were fighting (and they didn't want us to understand what it was about). Sure, no one ever thought we should try to learn Chinese until I was 15, when the rest of our first level classmates were 5 or 6 years old, and all the teachers looked at us and said "Good Luck" with their eyes and proceeded to treat us as described above. And sure, being unable to learn Chinese reading, writing, and speaking strictly by rote memorization only served to enforce the idea that my true identity (or at least half of it) was going to be completely lost to me ... wasted on an ungrateful dumbshit American-born kid like me.

Sure this is how it panned out early on, but I assumed it was my fault for not overcoming the obstacles anyway, since all the other Asian kids in my school also had less-than-perfect parents, but STILL they got 5.0's, played a perfect game of tennis, were key members of 7 different social and academic clubs at once, attended every lunchtime Agape meeting, play virtuoso violin/piano, AND STILL they could speak unaccented Chinese to their so-pleased grandparents every weekend at dimsum. How could I still think I was just as smart as those kids (if not smarter in some cases) when I couldn't even figure out how to do just 1 of those million things they juggled daily?

15 years later, I'm not ashamed anymore, and I especially don't compare myself to most other Asian kids anymore (doubly-true when they resemble the kids I grew up with, even slightly). I decided long ago that it wasn't healthy to care about the Why-Aren't-You-Like-Them's, since all I could ever seem to manage was to be myself, anyway. This is the only Traci I am familiar with. So if I still lack after all these years, FUCKIN TOUGH SHIT

And anyway, I AM going to learn Cantonese, so keep them friggin shorts on. But please just give me this: I need to get all the other languages out of the way first – because I know I can learn them fast and I'll enjoy it – but most importantly, I need to know first that it's not because I'm dumb or lazy or that I hate all culture except for the white-American one that I can't speak Chinese yet. I need to have these other languages under my belt because maybejustmaybe that's what it will take to finally muster enough courage to learn the one language that makes up the other half of my biculturalism. Deal? OK deal.

After all this time it's still hard to reconcile certain disparate parts of me ... and here in the first 45 seconds of this 1992 interview, all Iha has to do is laugh and think, Honey, don't you know I'm still a rock star anyway? and then proceed to rawk Tokyo's face off. Hence the 2nd best thing about James Iha, learned here:

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Goddamn I need a haircut.

goddamn i need a haircut
I can barely see anymore. Perhaps the length of my bangs is becoming oppositely proportional to the fatness of my wallet.
I've written some travel articles for Trazzler, which you can read here.
Those were a lot of fun, and I hope to write more soon. Let me know what you think, or if you have any suggestions for new trips to write about. So far I've only got local stuff but then again I haven't been trazzling for years now, other than to LA or Kansas for family. Getting domestic fever ... MUST FIX SOON.
I'm not allowed to enroll in classes right now, so we're taking the summer off from ASL. We're meeting with our ASL buds every week to sign anyway, to stay loose and improve our fluency, so it's not a huge loss on anyone's part really. But the best part about taking the summer off? Instead of going to ASL class, we're going to study Italian and French at home, for FREE.

I'm hella excited, especially because language learning programs have dramatically improved since last I studied German or Cantonese. I realized just recently that language study during my academic years was so shit; I feel like our generation was cheated in this regard. Rote memorization? Focus on grammatical correctness over conversational skills? Mandatory language education starting at age 15 instead of nursery or grade school when the learning is easiest? All written comprehensive tests, but rarely expressive or oral testing? Fuckin-A, you dumbasses. That makes no sense.

So here I am at 30, trying to learn all the stuff I wanted to know at age 15. A little late, but luckily my brain is way more receptive to actually absorbing the material (for good) than it was in the day of braces, acne and freshly-broken teenage hearts ... Except now it's dental insurance, acne, and constantly-reshaping adult hearts. Heh, I guess some things never really change all that much.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Vintage Paper Fair treasures and such

Found some nice shots last weekend:
New stereoview
The bottom right reads: HOW A WOMAN CLIMBS A FENCE. It looks fantastic in stereoview. I would
really like one-a dem stereoview thingamawhatchits. Then I could look at the rest of my small collection.

"Guess who?"
Written on the back in cursive: Guess who?

A bit of Hughes/Plath
This one makes me think of Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath without fail.

The light in this one, the quiet mood, the old-timey but still with-it grandpa. Reminds me of Grandpa Leung.


And now I'm off to eat a sandwich. MADE OF ICE CREAM.
I leave you with this:

Traci: What's that buzzing sound? A fly?
Damon: It's your cat. Snoring.

Saturday, May 23, 2009


Turns out, you CAN put a price on nerdness, and that price is nearly half my rent.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Food Yes, Cook No #1 available for sale now

Finally I'm putting it up for sale. It was put together in November for APE 2008, and since then I'd just been too busy/lazy to announce its availability otherwise. 

But suddenly I couldn't resist having the yellow "Buy Now" button on my blog, so here tis, with a coupla previews. No way can you read it from here, so you might as well get it.  

FYI: If you buy it from me in person, it's just the $4, cos we ain't gotta do no crazy ship charges. Plus, you know, I can lick it or something. Or I can just sign it like a normal person. Whatever you want.

Oh man.

It's bedtime and all I want to do right now is live in New York so I can order 24-hour Ma Pa tofu delivery. Also I want Tofu Fa. So a 24-hour Chinese grocery would be pretty handy right now too. 
My sister sent me this pic of her and Mom's dinner because she unconsciously knows that THIS is one of the few things I really miss about living in Alhambra, and she wants to send me psychic (not to mention gastronomical) pangs of regret for not living there anymore. She is evil. We can all agree.
No Chinese food might be the only drawback to my plan for European domination, I can see that now. I was going to use off-color wording to phrase that sentence but instead I'll just say that the punchline was "chink in armour, get it? hahaha!", and otherwise keep my racist jokes to myself. For me, By me ... FMBM.
I know you're grateful to have been spared. You can pay me back with a lifetime of servitude, or alternately, you can take me out to an Ocean Star, or an ABC Cafe. Your choice, I'm easy. 

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Stolen spot

This is not my cat, Crow. This is Damon's cat, Suki. She's sleeping in a stolen spot. Let me explain.

MY cat likes to hang out with me at my desk while I'm working, even though there's barely any room left for him. There are endless stacks of books, pens, discs, magazines, postcards, gallery pamphlets, fashion catalogs, letratone sheets, takeout menus, receipts, you name it, it's all here, and my cat has to work around them. 

Lately he's been resigned to staring at me, and then at one particularly large pile next to the window, then back at me, then sighing. He paws at it, and sometimes he tries to sit on top of it. Inevitably, he gives up and then just lays down on my arms. If you've ever tried to work without the use of your arms, you're awesome, because personally I find it quite difficult. 

It's been like this for months, as I could just not find time to deal. I just built up a lot of forearm strength as I developed a new method of typing that allowed for simultaneous cat  cradling. But since my work situation up and changed, I finally got the chance to do this obviously super important thing in my life. Yessss. It wasn't easy but I banished the pile in question, and then installed a makeshift catbed in its place. 

I was proud. He laid down it in once. Then that was it. The next morning, I found Suki (this grey one in the photo) enjoying it thoroughly, while Crow was lying down on the floor in the bathroom.

That was 2 days ago, and even though she's not sick or anything, she still has not left the bed. She's there right now, her legs are all twitching and I can tell she's totally massacring an entire flock of geese in her sleep. Or maybe sparrows or some mice. But all I can think of now is, how often do cats need to get up to pee? Or eat? Previously I thought it was at least a few times a day, they'd at least get up and cat stretch. But there's no evidence to support that theory now.

So. Should I kick her out so that Crow can take his rightful spot back? She just looks so damned comfortable. 

Or does the root of the problem stem from the possibility that I have just made the most comfortable catbed ever known to catkind? 

ooohooh she's moving
... nope, she just changed positions. 

Have I condemned Suki to a certain, slow, motionless death by allowing her to slumber in this stolen gift of wonder? Should I try to rescue her from her terrible yet deceptively pleasant fate??

Let me know. I've got to get back to work.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Last minute dental

I knew it. 

Even though I take care of my teeth more carefully than Damon, it turns out that I have 2 cavities and he has NONE. 

Please tell me how this is fair.

Hair haiku

I want this haircut 
But it would be bad for me.
Boohoo I'm not cool.


Bonjoo. Since I can't seem to figure out how to set up my actual blog, I figured I should make it less hard on myself and do it through blogspot like all the cool kids are doing. 

I might take a tip from Jillian Tamaki and disable my comments, but since I only have 1 follower now, there's no urgency. Comments are cool and all but even if I don't really care if I get them or not, it reminds me too much of the comments competition on SG. Suddenly I care if I get 1 less comment than I did with the last post, and I start whoring out pics of myself to get my readership up. Funk dat ... I just wanna POST, man!

Welp. Let's see how long it takes for me to get another post up here. Not to mention pictures of my work.