Real Life: In Pursuit of Illustration

During a periodic obsessive file organization spree, I found this rant — written just after my switch from SCAD to Full Sail University. Despite its modest age, it’s still quite relevant. Enjoy.

In the olden days, Adobe Illustrator was provided to me for free by my college. Unfortunately for my graphical needs, I decided to leave that college with what little sanity I had left and transfer to a better one. This meant that Illustrator — one of the few good things SCAD ever gave me — was brutally ripped away. Naively, I thought the impact wouldn’t be very large. It was just a vector drawing program. There were surely countless viable options in the wilds of the internet, and all I had to do was find one that was cheap or — better yet — free.

So, I experimented. Inkscape had issues starting up, and even when it managed to start, it couldn’t open my files correctly. Considering the most complicated thing I tried was a 32×32 file with a little transparency, I deemed it unworthy of my time. iDraw fell into a similar category. At some point in the process, I decided that my file type was the problem, so I converted everything to SVG. Even with that hour long manual switch, neither program could open anything correctly. It seemed obvious that if a program cannot even open a file type it just saved, it was not worthy of the large amounts of graphic work I had in store.

My options were limited to one. I needed Illustrator. (Continue Reading)

Meh Book: The Complete Maus

From an academic standpoint, The Complete Maus is excellent. It covers several storytelling aspects unique to illustrated mediums, symbolism through character design, and the importance of perspective.

From a historical standpoint, The Complete Maus is excellent. It includes tragic tales from a real-life Auschwitz prisoner, his ingenuity and cleverness that allowed for survival, and potent descriptions of the destroyed lives in Jewish community.

From a technical standpoint, The Complete Maus is excellent. The art style is consistent, legible, and easy to follow. Character expressions are obvious, and emotions are conveyed flawlessly.

From my standpoint, The Complete Maus is a bit boring. (Continue Reading)

Good Book: The Curse of Chalion

If you’ve followed my read-through of The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold, you likely have an accurate idea of my overall impressions. If you haven’t followed this progression, I suggest you do so (while reading the book yourself). However, if you’re interested to read a condensed and slightly less ranty version, read on. (Continue Reading)