Wednesday, October 03, 2012


The change has been made, and the change is good! Formerly known as "The Duck Factory", my blog has been rebooted with a new banner and a new title. As my work is typically identified as being either cute, creepy, or a good mix of both, it seemed a fitting title for my weekly news feed. I'm actually thrilled with how this turned out, and it was much easier to pull off than I expected. I have a real appreciation and loyalty to for creating free web space that's so conveniently tailored to the individual user.

 From these following photos, you can see that I've dabbled in photo/cartoon fusion before, which I refer to as my "Roger Rabbit Process" (click to enlarge)...

 "Street Fight" (2004)
 "Dead Duck" promo. Sarah "Sid" Sydlowski, model. (July 2009)

 "Homecoming" art for release of "Dead Duck" (November, 2009)

"Bakshi Alley". Nick Bonoduono, model. (December, 2011)

My new blog banner is my most recent attempt at this method, and I feel it shows my growth within the process (adding airbrushed shadows and using the blur tool to smooth down cut edges are some new advances for me). But this past weekend, I really went nuts with my process, and brought Bodie Troll into a whole new dimension.

To the right is my character Gossamer, a world-class spoiled brat and upcoming character from "Bodie Troll". To the left is Kimmy Hay, a University of Michigan student and actress. I met Kimmy through my wife, Laura, when they performed together in a recent production of the musical, "Anything Goes". I was immediately struck by how much Kimmy looked like Gossamer, and asked her if she'd want to portray the character. Despite my ham-handed attempt to verbalize a totally visual process, Kimmy agreed. The finished product turned out fantastic, and you can see the results below.

I'll be using these pieces to promote "Bodie Troll" in the coming year. And you can count on seeing more of these with other actors if things keep falling into place!

Here's another sneak peek of the development of the "Bodie Troll" comic book...
Above are the rough pencils for a panel in issue #1, showing Bodie meeting Hunkwood the blacksmith. Below are the finished inks and letters. You may notice more detail in "Bodie" than in my previous works. I feel like I'm trying to live up to great fantasy illustrators like Brian Froud, one of my heroes, and whom I met over a year ago, alongside his equally talented wife, doll maker Wendy Froud.  

Please keep in mind that, just because this blog's title and focus have changed, Dead Duck is still and well. The web comic is going great guns right now, and has seen some of its strongest readership ever. Check it out for yourself here (with new posts every Monday and Thursday) and see what sort of weird fun you've been missing!

Oh, lastly, this Sunday is my birthday. While I'm not necessarily thrilled about getting older, I am thrilled that I'm making it to another year at 30 pounds lighter than this time last year, the healthiest I've EVER been, and with some great new creations on my drawing board, rarin' to come at you in 2013. It's a fresh start in so many ways, and I couldn't be happier. Hope to have you guys following my progress in the coming year! See you next week!



Chris Smigliano said...

Good Going, Jay! Keep it up!

vion said...

Hi Jay. Happy Birthday early to you!!! Love the new look to the blog and the name is very fitting. Especially enjoyed the drawing/photo fusion pieces. You should figure a price and offer this as an option for commissions.
I’ve miss you not having your (semi-)weekly, live sketch broadcasts. And I’m sure with your current work schedule, it won’t seem possible to resume. But may I propose this: have periodic live broadcasts but forgo doing themes and taking requests. Rather, show us what you are, real time, working on- being it you are inking pages of “Brodie Trolls”, thumb-nailing Sesame Street or DreamWork illustrations, or completing your latest "Necronomicomics" piece. This way you can showcase your work; give your fans some insights to your creative process or tease us with new stuff/stories you’re working on. It would be more of an opportunity for fans to watch the master at work without really make you take time away from your multiple projects- we can watch you draw and talk as you keep plugging away.
Hey, it just a thought. Either way, I look forward to your weekly blog updates. Thanks for doing that.
Lastly, I really like seeing the last pix in yer post- the inspiration to Brodie Troll via the Frouds. Wow!