Last week I asked for your best replacement dialogue for the following image:
and here are the top five entries as judged by yours truly:
Oh dear, JR’s been going through old blog posts again and has decided to do another one off Big Question.
So yeah, I was going through some of the old Big Questions and I stumbled across one of the earliest ones I did (think it was number 9 or something) where I asked what peoples first comic book experience was, and whilst reading through some of the replies I saw a comment by Niall Mor where, near the end of his comment, he started to talk about how he started out with Heromachine. So that’s this weeks Question, because I’m genuinely interested and I know that everyone here has a story here, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this. So, how did you discover this website? How did you become part of the Heromachine Community family? Tell us your Heromachine story.
Personally, I started out with Heromachine 2 in, I think it was around 2006. I was bored whilst staying down at my Grandparents house one day and I started messing about on their computer. I can’t remember what exactly lead me to the site, but I probably searched “Create A Superhero” in google and this site was the first thing that came up. I dutifully set about creating my own comic book fantasy world, full of characters either myself or my friends (who all loved this new toy I’d discovered) had thought up with our twelve/ thirteen year old brains. I was quite happy just messing around with the basics for a while, until the 2.5 update. Around then I stumbled across a collection of other Heromachine art. I think it was still on the site, it must have been on the blog or the forums but it blew my mind. There was stuff there that I didn’t know was possible to do, it was the first time I saw any of the alternate skins or monster bodies, I remember seeing one female character that had a transparent 1st skin colour with a purple 2nd colour and I basically went and memorised every aspect of that character and went into the program and rebuilt it. I can even visualise it today. That got me into actually experimenting with the program, although this kinda slowed when the other versions of the program where introduced (Modern Warrior Creator, then HM3). Then it was just translating my 2.5 characters into 3 with my very limited skills at the time. It took me a few years before I looked properly at the blog, I focused again solely on my own little world on the program its self. But then, for some reason I took a look and, as with the previous time I ventured away into the unknown depths of the site, I discovered wonders. I found the contests and through those the art of AMS, DiCicatriz, Anarchangel (I have to say guys, you have no idea how many of your characters I tried and failed to recreate the way I did with the transparent girl) Kaldath, Asder, Zyp and SeanDavidRoss. I discovered that there was a whole community built around this program and there were people out there doing this amazing work with this thing that I was barely scratching the surface of. And you know what I did? I turned round and said “I’m gonna try and beat them.” God, if you look back at my first contest entry, I was such an idiot. I didn’t stand a chance and not only because I didn’t name my entry correctly. It didn’t take me long to realise that I could do better, so I ended up on deviantart, where, once again, I started look at how other people were using Heromachine, in specific; AMS. I started trying to copy his style and whilst I didn’t fail spectacularly, it’s safe to say, I was no AMS. Thankfully, he humoured me and gave me some advice on shading and how to improve my art. Shortly after that I got up the confidence to join the forums, which was actually because I wanted a bit of help on a picture and Jeff told me to go to the forums newly opened “How Do I?” section. A few days later I started up my thread and the rest, as they say, is history.
So yeah, that’s how I got started on Heromachine and how I got into the community. So now it’s over to you.
Oh and if anyone’s interested, I still have that first Heromachine picture that I made round my Grandparents all those years ago. I know it’s terrible, but I was thirteen (maybe twelve, I can’t exactly remember the date). I think his name was The Eagle or something like that.
Now, I’m very excited about this one.
For those of you who haven’t quite figured it out yet, this week marks the 200th Character Design Contest on the Heromachine blog, counting all of the contests hosted by Jeff, Hammerknight and myself. And, since the 100th CDC was a best-of contest, lets make this one the same.
The rules are simple. Each person gets ONE entry and one entry only. The original submission rules apply, so that’s the rules on file naming that were in place when Jeff ran the contests (which will be listed below). You cannot enter a piece that has won a contest before, or made it onto a poll, however, previous contest entries are otherwise allowed. Any entries that do not conform to these rules will be disqualified, and I’m going to be being very very picky about this. ALL the entries will be put into the poll for the week, I have absolutely no say in who goes on the poll, if you enter you’re guaranteed a shot at the win and the prize.
Now what is the prize I don’t hear you ask because I’m typing this in advance of it being posted. Well, in addition to the usual dblade patented Whiz Bang Item, your winning entry will be immortalised in the Heromachine Hall Of Fame alongside the best artworks produced by the greatest heromachiners of all time.
Oh, and just for the record, as I’m not judging for the poll this week, I’m gonna be entering. No prizes for guessing why I’m excited now.
Anyway, as I’ve already said, only one entry per person, and as usual the contest will close at midnight Saturday (blog time). The winner gets to claim a custom made item from dblade to be put into heromachine, so long as the item conforms to his prize rules, which you can find here: http://www.heromachine.com/forum/the-heromachine-art-gallery/dblades-whiz-bang-item-dispenser/. Please make sure you read the contest rules before entering, because it would suck to get disqualified from this contest. Have fun and good luck to everyone.
Rules for posts, contests, and challenges that I am hosting: Original characters only, no copyrighted characters, no characters based on copyrighted characters, no characters based on RPG’s or other games. The characters must be your own design and not based on any character that might be copyrighted in any way. I have the right to delete any post that I believe crosses this line without warnings. Please make sure your entries are named properly, because I’m not going to go and rename them all myself. If they’re not named properly, they just get ignored, I’m not even going to ask you to rename them, they just get skipped. I’ve made it plain enough, you don’t do it right, it’s your look out not mine. Them’s the breaks I’m afraid.
Sorry this wasn’t up yesterday guys, I promise I’m not trying to make a habit of it. Yesterday I was out all day and I got back just before the show started but I was just too tired to even watch it. So it’s going up today.
Ok, first off I have to say that this week poll was ridiculous. Previously, there record for one of these polls was 216 votes and last week I made a big thing about the fact that the winner got over 100 votes. Well this week, the person who came in 5th place got more votes than last week winner and the total vote count ended up at 626 votes, more than double the previous record. I have absolutely no idea where all those votes came from, but it did make the contest interesting. Every single entrant was in front at some point during the week and it ended up with there being only one point between first and second. But of course, one point makes all the difference, especially for this weeks winner, Blunt Object and his team the Deaths Head Squadron. Congrats Blunt Object, make sure you see dblade about your prize, and well done to all of our other entrants, especially the finalists, you obviously impressed this week.
Hey, Linea24 here. Since I’m now a Blog Author, I thought that the first thing I would do was bring back Open Critique Day as a regular weekly feature. Now, before I say anything else, since this is my very first time ever doing a blog post, I ask that you go easy on me. As for how this goes, you post a work of yours, finished or WIP (aka work in process, for those who are new to abbreviations), and then others give you critiques on your work. Right now, I’m going to go ahead and say that I would prefer that you post HM pictures, but I do not mind if you post the occasional non-HM picture or piece of writing. All I ask is that you only post pictures that are your own design and not any that copyrighted or based off of copyrighted characters. As for pieces of writing, I’m not sure about whether fan fiction is allowed, but for right now, just in case, don’t post fan fiction either.
I will apologise for the excessive amount of hyperbole and fanspazzing in this weeks post, however, if you look at the title of this post, look at the name, who it is that is being featured, I’m sure you’ll understand.
Yes, that’s right, after an extended absence, “the man after whom the technique of shading on heromachine is named after” has returned. Zyp is back. And he immediately makes everyone else look amateurish. Apparently this was meant to be an entry for the Going Japanese contest, but he missed the deadline, zypping probably. All I can say is, if this had been an entry, it probably would have been a much closer contest.
Anyway, onto the actual justification bit. And, although the picture its self should provide justification enough, I feel compelled to talk at length about it (so what else is new?). We’ll kick of with the character. The pose just screams badass, she looks at the ready to slice and dice with that katana and the expression on the face would suggest that she couldn’t care less who said katana slices and dices. It’s such a wonderfully aggressive expression. It basically sets the scene for the picture, gives it the depth needed for the rest of the image to tell a story.
Next we have the composition of the picture, by which I mean the background elements, the angle of the focus and the colours. I love the fact that this picture is on a slant. It means that the focus of the picture is not centred, which draws your eyes around the image more than having a straight central focus would. Your eyes are drawn from their default centred position to the right so you see the face, then you are drawn around the picture in a clockwise motion, down the body, around the floor and up the sword until you reach the sky, then back to the face. It’s so easy to take in the entire picture just by following the elements that make it up. This is helped by the wonderful use of soft and warm colours. The pinks and yellows of the sky set of the greens and greys of the middle focus perfectly, and the two contrasting colour schemes are combined on the main focus, the character, in such a way that they don’t clash or contrast but work together, making all three layers of the image fit together so naturally. I must also mention the fact that Zyp has changed the line colour of some items where he is including the reflection of the sunset on the character. I know I say this a lot on these posts, but it’s such a simple idea that works so well. Attention to detail and a bit of extra creativity can turn a picture from a great one to a masterpiece.
And finally, the obvious thing that one has to talk about when critiquing a work by Zyp. Really what do you want me to say. He’s Zyp, you expect me to trash talk his shading? Look at that freakin’ sword. The subtleness of the colour differentiation on the clothes. The block shadows on the arms. That sky. And of course the aforementioned sunset reflections. *shakes head* What am I meant to say.
“We are not worthy” *throws self to floor Waynes World style*