Joshua Meehan

meehan.joshua@gmail.com


Leave a comment

Kobble Milestone

So this wont be the last time I post about my personal project titled Kobble, however it does mark the end of a glorious journey in making the art!
That’s right! When I started painting Kobble in September 2013 the project it was just sketches on index cards. Colin, game designer of Kobble, called myself and a few of our friends over to try a game he had been crafting. After the first game we kept playing, trying out new strategies and seeing what the fate of the index cards had in store for us. I remember leaving that night thinking, “This should be a thing.” It had all the pieces, new and interesting ways to simulate chance, and a nice balance between strategy and luck. Most importantly it felt right. It was the first game I’d played of Colin’s where we finished it in one sitting and as a casual tabletop player that was important to me.

So after a lunch meeting was set out a timeline and the scope of the project. It was to be 40 cards in the beginning with expansions to bolster the deck. But as we kept going I kept getting revisions and new card lists. The passion project soon grew to 144 cards and that’s when I had to yell stop! It certainly is a robust game and having all those cards helps keep the game fresh. We kept playing he game throughout development with family, friends, and testers. They all seemed to enjoy it. I had a lot on my plate and wanted to see the project through. I thought, “well if I keep going at the current pace, a year would be an appropriate timeline.” Boy was I naive.

It has taken 2 years and 10 months to finish all the art, I’ve improved much since the beginning so some of the art needed redoing. Honestly some of it probably still does. It is easy to let a project get stuck in production purgatory, and with the amount of time it would take to fix every little thing I’d want, we’d restarting the project over again. There were a lot of struggles just to get to this part, with poverty, family, and holding down a day job, while trying to make it in the freelance world. All these factors have pushed the delay to where we are now. But I kept my priorities in line and I’m happy with where everything is. ๐Ÿ™‚ So if you have read this much then damn, I hope you learned something from my experience. To those who scrolled through the babbling to see the pictures, clever girl. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Elemental Infusion

elemental_infusion

Thank you for the support and here’s to the new stage of getting the game into production!


Leave a comment

Kobble Art update

This is gonna be a short one mainly cause art is flying off very fast and with the day job I’m trying to go for ultimate production mode. Prioities. BUT with that being said, I wanted to share the newest piece in kobble. An event card called Ambush which can come up as an opportunity.
ambush
Very happy with how it turned out and there is a process gif!

ambush


Leave a comment

Big Bad Blog Update [July2016]

Hey there,
another month has rolled by and since liberating myself to get better at art things have been a roller coaster of astronomical proportions. New living space, a designated working space with scheduled hours (still work at home), and the ever present balancing the financial side of my life. Personally and emotionally I am learning to deal with the fact that some people I love very much are no longer here on this earth. So things get put into perspective. We never know how long we have left, only today. So do what you can, to do what you love, with the people you love to do life with.

As I’ve simplified and prioritized my life art is definitely a stable and major force towards my inner peace and personal growth. Its my calling and my passion. I never want to stop improving, luckily I got some great advice and critique on the last piece I did, Merlin from space.

Some of the best examples were that in the redesign I didn’t maintain the symbols that make up Merlin, and it basically was just an alien with a beard. So I took this to heart in the next piece and I’m still not convinced I’m there. It’s pretty hard to capture that magic, but I know I am getting closer.

This is Big Bad, the science fiction adaptation of the big bad wolf from little red riding hood.

Meehan_Sword_BigBad
So I basically broke down the character who was meant to be a serial killer in hiding. Our Heroes, Merlin, Aguy, and Num num run into him in the Forest just outside the main gate and thus Aguy and Num Num team up to vanquish their first foe on their journey to the portal of doom thing.

Again I busted out the sketching phase after reading the prompt (found on the Draw or Die’s facebook page) Loved the creepy vibes I was picking up.
But as I went to render I found I didn’t solve all the problems before moving on and had to redesign the character and I tried to save the background.
That was my first strike.

Next I got the character to a silhouette I was happy with. So I started working the background to the level I wanted the entire painting and kept working each part individually. This was my second strike.
After I was happy with the individual parts I sat on the piece for a few weeks. Moving on to other projects and sending out more emails to try and find work and a day job. So the day prior I worked on this all day, realizing I had a character blocked out without any definition and I began at the face and working my way down till the painting was at a level I was happy with. 30 mins before the deadline. THIS WAS MY THIRD STRIKE.

So parts are left unfinished, the painting didn’t have a lot of extra elements that I was hoping for and I’m left wanting with this piece.
I find its painted well, but there isn’t a story being told visually and I really wish there was.

Here is a gif which showcases the process and you can see what I missed in the sketch when I went to final.

Meehan_Sword_BigBad_process

What I learned:
Follow the process.
When you hit a problem, solve it before moving on.
Work the whole image.

20160708_162355~2


Leave a comment

Merlin from space [june2016]

Hey hey!
This month I have a new piece of art which makes 3 months straight of production ๐Ÿ˜€ When I started my new personal pieces in the beginning of this 3 month period it was stressful, felt like stretching and I got tired a lot more than I used to. I had to build up my stamina and relearn the steps for making good illustration. It wasn’t about speed but momentum.

Each month I focused on something different and now I’m happy with my process and producing art at my optimal speed. ๐Ÿ˜€ This feels great. My mental and emotion states are higher because of the artwork. It fulfills me.

Any way here is the piece which will be added to the gallery front page.

Meehan_Sword_Merlinn

This piece had a lot of design challenges and bugs that I had to work out. But nothing out of the ordinary.
It was great getting community feedback about this piece as well. It reminded me when I was skipping steps out of impatience and when I was taking away information. There could definitely be things added to the piece but the most important thing was nailing the character and executing a great mood.
Here’s the Process gif to see how it changed.

32_Marrel-linWith these 3 solid months I now feel confident in submitting my portfolio to companies I’m very happy with the characters and my next personal piece will focus more adding the environment.


Leave a comment

The late may update.

Hope you are all well. A lot has been going on so apologies for the late entry. The past month has been great and its been bleeding into this month. I have been having 10-12 hrs a day devoted to Kobble and other personal work.

Kobble has been a great learning experience with a massive plate as far as art goes. When I started working on the project it was mid 2013 and here we are almost 3 years later and its coming to an end. ( yes I say that a lot) but I’m confident with the artwork for different characters and opportunity cards completed, and environment cards just needing respective adjustments. We only have a couple more months to go.

 

Cardback designs and a box art redo are all on the list to complete. Which will be quite different from my normal character illustration side. I’ll have to flex some design muscles .

Kobble has taken so long mainly cause I am the only one painting every single character. Every piece has to be concepted and illustrated to a set standard. So with our extra time we have spent some of it to redesign or redraw a couple of characters we were not happy with. This can be for a number of reasons like, the artwork is too old and doesn’t meet the standard set by the rest of the game, or a piece is too similar to a licensed character, or even the quality of artwork is drastically different. These are all reasons that have applied to one or multiple pieces I’ve done lately.

 

One character is the druid. The original art had a pose that was flat ‘ disjointed so it needed a complete redo, a pose that emphasized his age, showcased how old he was, but still using his powers.

Druid2 DRUID-ANIMATION

The process gif. It always starts with the pose because in a short time I can answer all the questions. “Is this a strong silhouette? Does the pose create movement across the piece? Does the pose convey the personality I want it to?” answering these is more important than is the lighting good or a body part is not in correct proportion.

 

Because I want my audience to connect emotionally and become inspired to imagine what their unique combination looks like.

 

Well I hope this was entertaining and informative into my process. ย Thank you for reading and have a great rest of your day!


Leave a comment

New Kobble art

For the past 2 years I have been working on a personal project with a colleague of mine named Colin Mulkerin. Where he is the game designer and I am the artist. It has been a grueling two years and we still have some time to go, since it didn’t get funded through kickstarter we have had to do other jobs to make ends meet. While that has slowed production of the project it certainly has allowed us time to refine the card game and look at our options to simplify getting it to the people who want to play.

Here is some of the new art featuring the location cards that each gang will claim as their territory.

We had to standardize the cards and since we now have our templates the location cards had to be adjusted. plus the ones we had before were very rough and not at a quality I would prefer. So it was great getting to update them. Here’s an example of a previous one and it’s updated counterpart.

treasury treasury_a

Here are the other paintings and locations that each gang can claim as their own.

Academy_a theatre_a smithy_a mansion_a gallows_a docks_a Chapel_a brothel_a bakery_a
As with all Kobble art, it’s a work in progress and is aspect to change.
Thank you for looking and on to more artwork!

 

 

 

 

 


Leave a comment

March 2016 Arting 24/7

Hope everyone has had a great month! Spring is in the air and big changes happened in February and March for myself. A few weeks ago was my last day working at Michael’s. I worked there for 8 years and ended as a Custom Framing Manager. I met wonderful people, ran a financially successful shop, and framed some amazing projects. Leaving Michael’s was in fact one of the hardest decisions I ever made. However, the great thing is that means more art and simplifying life to invest in my passion.

This month meant that I have begun working on Kobble again.
We hit the 94% mark for the project and have 4 more pictures to go which is great! Colin and I have been looking into different ways to bring the costs down and will be coming to a decision soon so we can have the deck made with all the cards.

Personal Work is going nicely thanks to the prompts from the Draw or Die facebook group’s monthly Challenges, and I can see a direct improvement in the pieces I am completing.

So things are looking up and my brother is being taken care of and is doing well again in school. I’m happy to say things are back on track.

So the next blog post will just have a bunch of art. I’m happy I can do those again ๐Ÿ™‚

 


Leave a comment

Back from the Mountain top…

It’s been too long since I have been active in the community. Almost too long. I know I have gotten my fair share of messages and emails asking if I am dead, and I am here to say I am not dead!

I am changed.

In 2014 I made my last update to Kobble right before we began the Pheonix Comic Con and that went well, we didn’t raise the money to make the game however which just ment back to the grind which Colin and I have known too well. The game is still in production, just slower.

When 2015 hit I had a lot of energy from completing Illuxcon and working at michaels was easy enough with rides. I had a lot of time between my shifts to paint. Then it was a series of events with family reasons that finally knocked me off the internet and productivity roll I was on, but my brother needed me to step up. So I did.

I got an Apartment (which I cant afford), I got a car (which I can’t afford), and I brought my brother to live with me. It’s across from his school so for his senior year it is a huge benefit, because he will be getting the university treatment. The idea was he takes care of his own dishes and homework, and I take care of the bills.

For a time this has worked. I had some savings from client jobs saved up and the artwork was still rolling at the time so I figured it would continue and I could make it month by month. Financially things went smoothly and parents as well as family members helped me through.

My brother is a smart kid, I mean top 1% smart and deserves his chance at a college degree, focusing solely on studies and his pursuits.

Now it’s been almost a year, I’ve run out of savings, and even filled up a credit line while I tried to get a raise at work (which I do deserve), and things aren’t looking bright. I have started to warm up my art again, and with some hefty cuts to phones, internet, and food. I should be able to get my life back and begin doing art again AND NOT SCREW UP MY FREELANCE. But that’s for another time, I learned a lot of lessons, I’ll be sharing everything I’ve worked on since it all came out, and I look forward to more art in the present/future.

If you have any advice or have been in a situation like this before (I can’t be the only one) I’d appreciate anything you found helpful.

So back from the mountain top so to speak, time to get my ass kicked.


Leave a comment

Kobble Feature

promo_pcc

This week is more kobble art! Hope you enjoy and we are just a few weeks away from the kickstarter! June 4th, 2014. Also Kobble will be at Phoenix Comic Con June 5-8th,2014 where you will be able to play the game see the cards and even donate on the kickstarter! Thank everyone for your interest and support it means a lot!
Angel crystal mage5

draconian_01 ranger

skeleton stormcaller


Leave a comment

Kobble update double feature!

This week is a double feature since I didn’t post the previous weeks updates! I’d like to thank everyone for their support of this ambitious project as it is a big milestone for myself and Colin! I look forward to showing you more as we get closer to the kickstarter!

This week in art we have The Observer, The Archer, The Minotaur, The Shieldmaiden, Theย  Slime, and The Bard!

The Observer

obersver

This little guy was the first to show the glowing eyes that most magic users possess in the game. With white backgrounds as the primary back it was important to make the body darker for more contrast. He also has a lot of spunk for a little guy and was a lot of fun to make! I stayed really close to the original card art for this character.

 

The Archer and the Shieldmaiden

shieldmaiden archer

After creating the Warrior and Mage these classes ended up coming together rather quickly and nicely. These were very close to the original sketches as well and had a couple variations on the color. The most important parts were needed to stand out like the shield maidens shield. So keeping the graphics bold and simple so they were easy to read were successful here! Also with the archer the ground texture starts to develop creating slight variations for each character.

 

The Minotaur and the Bard

minotaur Bard

These guys ended up having different proportions and what needed to be important was the silhouette. While the anger in the minotaur and his horns were the biggest emphasis, the bard’s needed to be more flamboyant and yet still read as an agressive player. That’s where looking at rockstars and guitarists in bands became the ultimate persona for the class.

 

The Slime

slimeSlime

The original slime was just a ball with no personality so it was changed to have a grinning mouth to add more personality to it. I liked the idea of it just appearing out of the sewer and it would then slither around like a snake before plunging down into the sewers again. The cool part was figuring out how to make these cobbled stones for the street rather quickly and once I was able to do that a lot of characters now have that as the base to add context to the characters and give a reference for scale.

 

So that’s it for this week and I look forward to sharing more later!
Until then keep drawing!