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Notes on Chapter 1
Catherine's incoherent babbling
8.23.02 Yay, chapter 1 is finished. I'm really happy about the two closeup inserts in panel 1. I'm also glad that I actually did the background in panel 3. Unfortunately the details in the eyes disappeared. Some of the lineart in panel 1 was done with my awesome brushpen. I think those the are most realistic boobs I've drawn for a long, long time. Hehehehe.

Finally figured out the problem of the crooked line. It turned out the problem was because of the scanner and not my incompetency. Now I'll have to scan each page in 2 parts instead of as a whole.

Who knows how long I spent on the second to the last panel. Doesn't Jon look so cute in the last panel? I think that's the best b/w close up I've done so far. I also came to the conclusion that I hate drawing hands.

Woohoo! When I submitted Down to, it was chosen to be a "Good Read." I guess the editor of the site thought my comics was "generally a notch above [other comics], and well-worth checking out."

Ugh, I'm having the problem of drawing hands too small. Grrrr. The problem of drawing too big of a head still there too. I did more details in the eyes again, but too bad nothing can be see at screen resolution.

Thursday update instead of a Friday update because my friend's coming today... Ugh, the background for the last panel took the longest time to draw. The positioning of the characters weren't correct so it took a lot of effort to make that panel look ok. Also, I noticed that the shrinking of the image has taken away a lot of details in the eyes. Oh well.

I also added to new images. One is just a practice CG. It's boring. The other one is a request from Amel. She wanted me to blow up panel 2 of page 27 and color it. She called it fan service panel. heh.

7.26.02 Another page that didn't take too long to draw. This page is really crowded but then again, I don't want to spread it out to two pages and spill into the next scene. I keep my pacing by ending an action by the end of a page. I actually didn't draft this page a year ago because I was very hesitant about drawing a fire engine (fire engine reference pic was found by Yanwen). Plus, I wasn't sure how to pace this part.

Wow, this page actually didn't take days to finish. I actually finished this on 7.13 but I decided to wait a week to link this. I think the gestures and expressions of the finished page look much better than the draft, especially the last panel. This page was referred to as the fan service page by the girls, but I don't think so considering Jon doesn't look very good in this page. Heh.

Being a firm believer that a page of text does not count as a real 'page,' I added 2 pages instead of the usual 1 for this update. I have to thank BrionF of Flipside for the idea for page 23. Surprisingly, in page 24 the beaker panels took the longest time to draw.

Page 22 is just weird, but I bet you didn't expect that one, did you? I was tempted to add another page before that to set this page up, but I was unmotivated. Besides, more depresso pages coming up soon anyway. This page is partially inspired by the cheesy safety video everyone in chem lab class should have seen (put together by NSF, I think) and personal experience. I actually had to use the Kjeldahl for anal (analytical) chem back at Cornell. I had no problem with the setup and the protocol, but many of my classmates had accidents because they didn't mix the acid and the base well (thank goodness no one got hurt). The perspective in panel 4 is messed up, but almost all the 'action' poses turned out better than expected.

Page 21 is done. Starting with page 20, I'm experimenting with detailed background with no shading or hatching of any sort. It might force me to rely on perspective for 3D and details for filling in spaces. Also, as suggested by Wid, this style might make the characters appear 3D while pushing back the background. I also changed my way of coloring Jon's hair. Now I use brush pen with nib pen for touch ups.

Introduced a new character, Dillen Claire. He looks better here than the original design. Plus, he's more buff. I can't have too many skinny boys in my story, can I? Dillen's shirt was inspired by one of my friends. His personality was inspired by one of my bf's friends and Amel's RPG character Linden Eclaire.

Finally, some of my friends said that after seeing my comics has motivate them to draw again. I'm so touched. :D

Page "2a" is added (consider it as a splash page). That drawing is probably the most depressing thing I've ever drawn. Then again, when I started the drawing, I was in a pretty bad/depressing/anxious mood. I'm too gutless to color it in marker but in the end I think the cg turned out well. Also, I've been having lots of problems drawing full body recently (head too big), so I practice drawing Jon and also designed some clothes for him.

6.7.02 A brief introduction is added.

After a half year hiatus, Down is back (and better?). I spent the most time on the first panel. That background was hard to draw. I'm really proud of the fire extinguisher and Jon's jeans. This is another page with big changes in the layout (before and after). I think in the last panel, Jon's head is a bit too big. Also, an awesome gift from Amel.

No time for comics, but here are an oekaki and a b/w drawing of Jon.

Page 19 is done, more or less. I could have some internal dialogue and stuff, but I'm too busy with other stuff to think of something good for now. First time drawing a car in my comics. It's such an ugly car and I should have done speed lines.

Wow, It's been a month since the last update. I doubt I'll be able to do more update for a month or two because I'm writing my thesis. Gotta graduate, right?

Page 18 is kind of finished. I should do some marker shading on it considering that I spent time looking for the right ink that won't be smudged by Prisma. I'm using sumi ink now. I feel sick so I'll stop writing now.

- I got my brand new computer on Thursday. Yay! I finally finished page 17 after weeks of inactivity. I had a huge problem of making the page look interesting. I settled with what I have now, but I still have to find more interesting perspectives and angles.

10.5.01 - Jon makes a cameo appearance in a CHA CHA (Club Haus Adventures) special. Down will be updated next week. I got pass writer's block on page 17.

9.25.01 - I had fun drawing Jon's pajama pants in page 15. Plaid is fun to draw. :) I really liked how the cross hatching on the blanket turned out. The head shots at the bottom row were suggested by Yanwen when I showed her my draft.

Page 16 took quite some time to draw because I decided to redo the layout. Check out the original draft to see the difference.

- Page 14, a.k.a. fan service page, is added. I really, really like how the first panel turned out. I think it's my favorite panel in the story so far. Needless to say, I put the most time in that panel than anything else on that page. Amel gave me the idea of doing a bird's eye view.

I also did a quick one page 'story.' I dedicate page 14 and this one pager to Amel, Fiesan, and Yanwen because they've supported me and my stories (plus, they're Jon's #1 fan).

- Laurie driving Jon crazy. I think people are definitely less patient and less 'nice' when they're with family. I know I am.

The bottom left hand panel took forever to draw. The background... gar.

- Not much to say. Page 12 is done, sort of. I couldn't draw the appropriate background for the page.

Image 12 is added. Feel free to fill in the blanks and send it to me. If I pick it as my favorite, you might receive a little drawing.

- No update this weekend. I'm going to visit some friends in Ann Arbor.

I'm doing more and more background which also means that the amount of time to finish each page is getting longer. At least the page looks decent. I'm also less afraid to change panels from the penciled version to the final inked version.

before: fail11.jpg; after: faildr.jpg

- I'm on a roll, a jelly roll! Yay, I'm on page 10. I guess I'm about a third done with chapter 1. A certain somebody said the drawing (smile.jpg) is too girly because of the pink, but I think it goes well with the blue. Heh.

- Woohoo! Page 9 is done. Plus 3 more quick sketches of Jon, Laurie, and Alice (images 8, 9, and 10). My favorite panel in page 9 is the second to the last panel. Prisma markers are so much fun.

Have you ever notice that small changes in gestures can change the picture dramatically? For example, in my draft Jon looks like he's going to slap Alice, but with a little twist of the wrist, Jon does look like he's looking at his watch.

before: p9last.jpg; after: p9last2.jpg

- I spent the most time on panel one of page 8. I was trying 2 point perspective. I think it turned out well. I also like how the last panel looked.
It seems like Alice and Amel's character Eveline (from her new story Adam and Eve) have similar personality and physical appearance. Both are hyper (energetic), short, and look like 12 year olds even though both are 20-something. Eep! Amel inks faster than I.

- Page 7 is added. I actually drafted 20 pages of Chapter 1 already. I have a feeling that it's going to be around 30 pages. A couple of sketches.

First one (lalala.jpg) is just a really quick doodle I made. The brothers are too close together. It looks like they're holding hands. Second one is a CG sketch. I did a pencil drawing of the brothers and I decided to do a really quick coloring job because I was waiting for a friend and I was bored. Jon looks happy and Laurie looks a bit pissed off. heh.

Wah! I got an awesome gift from Fiesan. Jon is so sad looking but still cute. Heh. She's awesome and I really like all the gifts she's given me. :D She's definitely improved a lot in her CG and composition since I first met her.8.14.01 - Page 6 is added. More hatching/marker goodness. Ooooh, another character added. This time, it's a girl! A doodle (image 5) also added.

8.12.01 - Page 5 is done. First time drawing rain. Gray markers came in very handy for this page. Isn't Jon, completely drenched with rain, looking so pathetic? I think I'll make Jon's hair another character. Hehehe.

Image 4 is the CG titled Cake. I'm liking the soft CG look and the cake is so yummy looking. Now I want a piece of strawberry short cake.

Oh, be sure to check out the picture of Jon by Yanwen. I like the title of the book: Math Sucks. She draws my characters better than I do.

- I think book shelves can tell a lot about the owner... or not. 2 nifty CGs of the perfect brother from Yanwen. :) I always like her gifts. :D

8.2.01 - I really like the cover of Chapter 1. I already have an idea for the cover of Chapter 2. :) Basically, on this cover I paired up two very different people--Jon and his perfect brother. I guess in this story one of the themes I want to explore is duality, haha, or not.

7.31.01 - Introduced another person. A whole story about Jon moping around is just not fun. Heh. Laurie is too perfect... or is he? I might change his name later. It's too girly. Well, I guess Laurie could be short for Lawrence.... Then again, I do have a guy character named Ashley. I tried to do a more 'spot light' effect on the brother. Not sure if it worked. Page 3 is added.

7.26.01 - Image 3 added (request from my friends to draw the character in a tank top).

- Page 2 is online. Markers make things much easier (and less time consuming) though the greys made it hard for me to add text. The title was a suggestion from Waiji.

7.24.01 - Page 1 is added. It took me no time in inking tonight. Must be because of the lack of hatching. I think I killed Waiji's brushpens with my excess amount of black. Ugh, I thought one shouldn't capitalize prepositions and such in titles, but it looks funny.... I guess Down but Not Out (I called it Failed but it's too angsty sounding) is now open.

7.21.01 - I started this story on 7.12.01. I have 11 pages drafted already when I was resting at home. :)