On September 1st, at 4:00 AM EDT, SoulExodus creator Benjamin J. Colon will ink pages of SoulExodus Volume Two for TWENTY FOUR straight hours. What follows is a documentation of that day. Artistic triumph, or slow descent into madness? You be the judge.

 

Slow start, but I'm happy with the page I got done. As things progress, I'll become more familiar with the tools I've gone so long without using, and I may feel it necessary to go back and touch up some of these old pages. It's like catching up with an old friend.

On pace, although I am slowly coming to grips with the fact that in order to ensure work of quality, I won't be able to produce a completely inked page every two hours. Got pretty damn close this time around, though.

I dunno if it was the music, the stroke of the paintbrush, the caffene high finally hitting my brain, the realization sinking in of what it is I'm actually doing here, or a combination of all of those things, but I haven't stopped smiling since about 6:30.

The power of peanut butter and jelly propelled me through these past two hours...although I may need to rest my hand for a bit. Starting to feel more comfortable and the technique's all coming back to me now. Wish it had stayed dark outside a little longer, though. Stupid sun.

I'm at the stage where I cease to percieve time like I probably should. After a while, there's only the page and the tools, and I've been known to lose whole days to them. As a matter of fact, the only thing slowing me down is having to stop to write these updates. Not that I won't, but honestly, I've been at this for eight hours, and I really have no idea where the time went. Ah, that takes me back.

Note to self...heavily lined pages take way, way, WAAAAY longer to ink than pages containing heavy blacks or brushstrokes. Looks quite good - probably the best page so far, but it's taking for-EVER.

Also, hearing Patrick Stewart say "Paddling of the Swollen Ass" on that one episode of the Simpsons will never, ever stop being funny. (rewinds and presses play).

You just haven't lived till you've drank out of a SoulExodus pint mug. But then again, I'm biased. The page I'm working on should be done much quicker than the last. Hell, it's half done already and it's only been about an hour. I'll probably stop to eat now, though.

The mug was made by my friend Mathilda Tanner, by the way. She's a doll, that one.

Damn. Found some fine lines on this page to keep me on it a while longer after all. Oh well. They get addictive after a while. I'm seeing a great page emerging from it, though. That's the thing - sometimes an inked page disappoints you, and sometimes it turns out exactly how you pictured it in your mind. The latter, of course, owes a lot to skill and practice.

I'll give some info on how and why I'm inking the pages you've seen so far: What I do is take all the pages of whatever project I'm working on (In this case, all 185 pages of the graphic novel together), shuffle them up thoroughly, and then put them face down in a big stack, and draw a random page from the top. randomizing the pages I work on gives the book an overall look of consistency. I'm told the pros do it too.

I mention this because I'm noticing more and more that today I've happened to draw (completely at random, mind you) some of my favorite pages from the entire book. That's all well and good, but I'm getting worried about what's gonna happen later on when all I have left are less exciting pages to work on. I guess we'll see.

By the way, I really wish I had more masks to use for these pictures. There'd be a different one every hour.

The first two liter Pepsi is finished...I'm hoping that's not what's giving me a headache right now.

Lots of detail on this page, so it's to be expected that it'll require some extra time and care. Once again, it's one that I know is gonna look phenomenal, in fact, one that I knew early on when I had finished penciling it, and one I'd been dying to ink from time time it was done. The only drawback? The paper's been sitting for some time (since way back in February), absorbing various moisture and perhaps dust in the room, and it's made the normally smooth bristol board kind of coarse, which has slown down the inking even more. Slow and steady, though.

Aaand Saturday comes to a close, and I manage to finally finish off that page in time for this update. Looks great, but man, did it take some hard work. I hope to finish off at least 2 more pages before the 24 hour mark, which means I don't have much time to lose. So it comes down to that. There'll probably be some final quick snack and some final consumption of caffene to take me home, but for the most part, the TV will go off, the headphones will come back on, and the door will close...just like how I began at the beginning of the day.

While I'm sure I'll be done with this page before 4AM, I don't know how far (or even if) I'll be into the next one. And I suppose that's okay...by this point, as it should, the whole "quality over quantity" thing is pretty far hammered into my brain, so I've made peace (at least for today) with the fact that sometimes you have to sacrifice doing the job fast in order to do it right. I guess that's at least one thing I can take away from today's little project.

As it turned out, I did have quite a bit of time for one more page, but not quite enough to finish. I'd call it maybe three fifths, though.

On the day, I was able to complete seven pages and get a fair amount done on an eighth. Not the goal I had planned for myself, but my goals are always nearly impossible. I am confident that if today's progress is any indication, the book's gonna look great when it's finished.

Oh, and I'm gonna do another 24 hour session sometime in the future. Not sure when yet, I haven't thought that far ahead.

I may have some final thoughts on all this, but now ain't the time. I've been up twenty four hours straight, and I think I've done quite enough. Good night.

Viva - B