camping

Camping Full Page

All the pieces together...I have been showing the progression of this page over the past few weeks.  Here is the finished page.  Can't wait to go camping again this summer. 

Guilty Faces

Last panel of the page...

     The end of the day, just remember to save some hot dogs and marshmallows for mom and dad.  Especially if we are getting the tent ready for bed.  The best camping spots for us are up towards the bridge in upper Michigan.  We went to Porcupine Mountains last year, much farther north.  Very beautiful but to many bugs.  Camping next to the big lakes, a little away from the larger campers, in a "walk to" spot seems best.  

   Capturing a few of these moments in sketches, gives me something to look back on.  Also good storytelling practice.  Even if I embellish a little.  A dad can do this....

Hot Dogs and Stars

    My  favorite part of camping.  Eating outside under the stars.  Warm fire and yes, franks and beans.  Two items I usually don't eat at home.  But for some reason, they seem to be perfect for camping out.  Afterward, we usually go for some marshmallows and chocolate.  A lot of nights spent watching the fire.  The kids are young enough to not object yet.  I am sure this will be "boring" soon enough.  But until then....

Dinner time camping

This is the first panel of a single page.

     Camping is fun but with pre-teen kids sometimes the obvious is not so obvious.   Often our lunch or dinner had a few lines like this.  As the kids sat surrounded by the unloaded supplies from the car. The lazy question was bound to pop up.  I don't imagine we are alone with this.  I just think it funny, sometimes it feels like a reflex question more than anything.

     The answer, "turn around and look" or we say " No, we weren't planning on feed you both until we got home....is that a problem?..hehehehe

Bed Time story

The bed time story, late at night after the campfire is dying out.  It is always one of the best parts of camping.  If you are not to tired out of course.  Sometimes it can be a challenge to keep my eyes open.  Natalie is always the first to fall, but Ethan, seems to only get more awake. Finally they are all asleep.  Everyone but me.....

Tenting

We always work together to set up the tents. It takes a bit of practice to get it all set up before dark.  We are still working out the bugs in the system....

We bought new sleeping bags this year.  They couldn't wait to test them out. From outside the tent I heard the yell "Worm Wars!"...They were flopping about in the bags on the air mattress.  They didn't sleep much....

After Dark - the trail

I never get lost in the woods.  I always know where I am ...wink wink. Its the trail that moves.  Like fish in a stream the "Trail Trout"  swimming through the dirt and the well worn trails.  Every so often they change direction and take the trail with them.  

And the "Mudd Bears" that lie on ground sleeping all day.  If you happen to walk on them while on the trail, they let out this crazy sound.  Its the Mudd Bear, always the Mudd Bear....never Dad....

It's Been A While...

Been out of my head for a while and found it difficult to write, sketch or post. I am sure this happens to many.  Not sure where to go next.

My last project had to do with our summer camping trips.  We spend time in Northern Michigan along the big lakes.  It is very beautiful and allows for great quiet getaways. We spend time with the kids, tenting and hiking in the woods.  I think I like the cookouts the best.  Hot dogs, beans and s'mores are all better outside under the stars.  

Last year we went out in the woods and Nat asked about the animals.  We made up a few of our own.... hope to show more of these in the coming days.  

Camping Creatures

     After a pretty busy summer, trying to get back into the comics and stories. We had a good set of little adventures over the past few weeks.  Now it is the last days of vacation and the kids are getting back to school. I did sign up for my daughter's "Art Parent" volunteer in her 4th grade class.  My oldest is out of grade school and won't be getting any more of my visits. This class will be a split with 3rd and 4th graders.  I can use my previous books and drawings but many of the kids have seen these so I need to develop a few new books.  Usually I ask my kids their preferences but if anyone has any ideas....

 

     Here is a page I am working on that came from a conversation with my girl while in the Porcupine Mountains. I was sharing my knowledge of the little known woodland creatures.  Animals seldom seen or talked about in class. She is so lucky to have me as her window to the world of science.  There was the "Crock-a-Squirrel" who hangs in the tree and wait to pounce.  The "Trail Trout" that constantly moves the path after you walk it,  which explains why I have trouble finding my way back to the car.  The "Mud Bear" is the creature that makes that "toot" sound from behind, sounding  like a middle aged man passing wind....we walked over several on that trip.  We ran into a few more animals and bugs that should appear here...

Source: https://www.google.com/

I got to go!

The middle of the night bathroom visit, comes along with any camping trip.

After Dark page 2

Here is the second layout test. Experimenting with layout and detail. Realizing how cropping and details can be much more effective than full view shots..

Here, again, is the original...

After Dark Page layout

I have been posting a few panels about our summer camping trip over the past few weeks.  Originally I liked the sketches, they were quick and a little crude but looked decent. After looking at a couple of very inspirational online graphics such as

Sithra

 by Jason Brubaker and some good pod casts from

Jerzy Drozd 

I am trying to rethink the layout process....rendering light and dark in ink is still giving me trouble, still need to think less 3D and more graphic....

Here is page one of two for "After Dark"

Here is the original layout, that seemed a little boring...hope the above shows some improvement..

After Dark Full Page

I reworked some of the different panels and modified the text a bit....hope it looks better...

This really happened to us this summer while camping...if you ever hear screams in the woods at night it just might be a Red Fox or a Bobcat....but it does sound human....

Recording

So I put my phone outside of the tent and recorded the strange yell.

Human

screams from outside ....is there a crazy person in the next camp?  Should I go out and look...or is this all in my head?

Yell in the woods!

All was still when I awoke to a human scream from far off in the woods.  I thought someone in the camp was playing around, a stupid joke.  But it did not stop.  It sounded like it was getting closer....

2:00 AM!

It was quiet and still out in the woods...

Later

it was the start of a long night

 So l covered my head and tried to sleep...

And on...

Back and forth, over and over. "Back up a little farther!"...."your not going to fit"...yelling like no one else was around. I definetly need a plan for these people next time I go camping!