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Monday | July 22nd, 2019
TODAY'S COMIC: Moose River Gaiden – 5 – I knew that

Jeez girls always just point out the obvious. Yeah, I know that’s your phone number, I use it all the time to call your brother to see if we can hang out. So what? … Of course it’s not until 15 years later while riding on the bus when your mind wanders and you realize that… wait… you mean she wanted me to call HER??

PS: I’m not dead! My workload suddenly increased and I had no time for myself. … That said, this is literally the first new comic I’ve drawn in nearly six years. And frankly, it’s the first comic in 10 years that I drew and posted all at once. Hopefully this starts a trend.

Now because this is the first comic I’ve worked on in so many years, my comicmaking process has changed in that time. I’ll make a post covering the finer details later, but I’ve been using brush pens for inking—again, this is due to being convinced to stopped drawing thick outlines around my characters—and this is the result. I MAY not use brush pens for any VR comics I make, as I’m unsure how brush strokes will look in 3D. But for standard comic pages like this, brush pens is what I’ll be using. … Actually, turns out I did one other comic in this format, the fourteenth and very last guest comic I ever made for Mystic Revolution; this was drawn after I made the switch.

Finally, I will admit that one thing I was concerned about was that my spark had disappeared just as quickly as it had reappeared… but after doing some soul-searching, I’ve come to realize that, no, it’s still here. I didn’t lose my spark. And thank goodness for that. That just means it won’t be another 10 years until the next update, though I will admit that it may now just be a few days between pages, and I feel like I’m now at the point where I feel like I can start working on new pages again. Yippie!


THE BJÖURNAL: Daily News Du Jour

New comics! And I found more unreleased ones!

July 22nd, 2019

Yay! So I decided to continue working on “Moose River Gaiden” for the time being. I don’t know how long I’ll work on it for, and what it’ll cover… I’m just sorta taking this day by day. Today’s comic is literally the first brand new “Moose River” page I started-and-finished in one day since 2009. Hopefully it won’t be until 2029 until the next brand new page comes along, but I’m not making any promises. :3

That said, I am putting some new equipment and methods that I’ve picked up over the past something years towards this new comic effort. In particular, I’ve always wanted a large-format scanner (11″x17″), but I could never scrape up the $250-$300 for one. Prior to that my scanner was at least a Legal-sized scanner (8.5″x14″), but it was only compatible with Mac OS 9, and yeesh, that’s a long story. Since then I was stuck with Letter-sized scanners (8.5″x11″) which sucked trying to scan in high quality pages; I had to resort to drawing two frames on a single sheet of Letter-sized paper and merging them together in Photoshop.

But those days are no more! A few months back I managed to find a large format scanner/printer at Savers for a mere $25! Now I scan draw in a much larger format, allowing me to pack in more details! Take a look at the difference in scale that I’m now able to work with: the page on the left is today’s comic in raw form, while the one on the right is the raw for Page 184. Wow! That’s a lot of extra room!

Part of the benefit for this is when I use a brush to ink my pages with. Since I’ve switch to using a brush pen, but also because I’m still learning how to ink better with a brush pen, the extra room gives me a bit more wiggle room in order to ink in without the errors looking too bad. Hopefully though I’ll be able to have a bit better control with the brush and my comic pages will look far better than they’ve ever looked.

Finally, while digging around my old art files and trying to find old notes to work with (as well as ideas to turn into new Moose River Gaiden pages), I managed to stumble upon the very last three pages I drew for Moose River, which I intended for Chapter 7; they were intended to be pages 204, 205 and 206:

Of course I’m not gonna show anything, silly! Because now that I found them, I might actually ink them and finally include them at the end of Chapter 7, where they belong. Unfortunately they start a new story thread which may never see the light of day, but at least it’s something new!

Anyways, that’s all I got to share with you for now. Sorry for not posting much over the past week… my work load had increased significantly and I had very little free time to draw with. But hopefully this changes over this upcoming week.

xxxGothBOI666xxx?!

July 17th, 2019

Hey, just for a bit of fun, I totally forgot that I had this video uploaded on YouTube. I also forget if I shared this before as well. Anyways, this video turns out to be the Ur-inspiration for xxxGothGrrl666xxx: G0THBoI666

The story here is: I created this character in Phantasy Star Online Ep1&2 for Nintendo GameCube, as a sort of amalgamation of all the various and most common 15-year old-type players. Incidentally this is also where the “Sephiroth” players came from, because like 50% of those edgy teen player characters chose that for their names.

So when it came time to expand Shea’s character in the original Moose River Regular, I decided she would be “GothGRRL666” instead, and live to troll other players in game. And the rest, as they say, is history.

No Sunday, but Monday = Funday!

July 15th, 2019

Sorry, I forgot to work on something for Sunday. But I have an excuse! I linked up with an old friend and fellow creative, one Mark Engels (insert Communism joke here), for dinner and a chat, our first in like 𝓂𝓊𝓂𝒷𝓁𝑒 years. We met back in 𝓂𝓊𝓂𝒷𝓁𝑒 during the Wild Wild West years of the internet when our common interest in Battle Angel Alita brought us to the (now extinct) “New Kansas Chat Room“. Man, talk about the memories (more memories I only just discovered)! We spent some time catching up, learning more about what art projects we’ve been working on in the mean time… I let him know about Moose River and MindVR, while Mark let me know about his novel series, one of which being titled Always Grey In Winter; you can check out more of his work at his website here: www.mark-engels.com

Now I will admit that Furries isn’t my main genre of interest, but I won’t say “it’s not my cup of tea”. I can enjoy Furry stories and characters; consider my long-time link to “Sabrina Online” in the Links page, as well as my sponsoring of “Pokémon City” back on my old Pokémon site. Oh yeah, and Shea’s online character xxxGothGrrl666xxx is a Cat-Girl; in Mystic Revolution she’s technically a “Nekko“. …and… ahem… polt is best girl. …. So yeah, to me “Furry” is just one more type of story to read, and I’m not the kind of person to NOT read something, because I love reading for the sake of learning more about different people, cultures, communities, etc.

So that said, I’m definitely excited to read Mark’s story… at least as soon as I can purchase a hard copy. Mark also sweetened the deal a bit—not that it wasn’t sweet enough because Mark wrote it—by including Korean characters into the story, of which at least one is—naturally—a tiger. Mark also said he did his best research to ensure Korean culture is properly depicted, which is even more bonus points for me and my desire to see a more diverse cast in stories.

Our meet up may have only been a few hours in the grand scheme of things, but I’m glad to have reconnected with Mark like that. I’m excited to read what he wrote, and I hope he’s just as excited to read Moose River! 😀 And hopefully you’ll get a chance to check him out as well!

More Moose River Gaiden pages?

July 12th, 2019

I’m actually having a lot of fun working on these pages again, even though it’s only just cleaning up the original scans from 2013 and posting them. The thing is, I’m getting a lot of positive response for them on Instagram—as opposed to, I dunno, NONE—which is a legitimate surprise and confidence boost for me. Like, seeing random people liking my work after having discovered it through the various hashtags I’ve given it… that’s a real shock for me!

Because of this, I’ve been considering working on new Moose River Gaiden (MRG) pages, at least in between my work on trying to get Moose River VR (MRVR) going. The thing is is that I’ve had a ton of various one-shot ideas, such as this one:

…but because I was working on Moose River as a serial story, I couldn’t figure out ways to incorporate those ideas unless I move the story into a situation where I can write about them.

But with MRG being nothing BUT side-stories outside of the main Moose River narrative, I might just continue to make comics under the MRG banner in order to finally get these one-shot stories out into the wild. If anything too, I can use this as more practice and training to get me back in artistic shape in order to make MRVR that much better… like, MRG can pass the baton off to MRVR so that it can hit the ground running.

So y’know what? I might just do that after-all. Now I’ll still do a sketch-a-day—in fact I have one for “today”, Friday, almost ready to share—but I think I’ll start working on actual narrative comics under the MRG title in preparation for the official release of MRVR. Sounds good? Sounds like a plan to me! 😀

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Moose River
by Philippe Van Lieu
—Fully Charged - June 27th, 2019—

From the bottom of my heart (and the bottom of this page): thank you very much for reading my comics.

Nick15, all related subjects, and all text are ©1996-2019 Philippe Van Lieu
All else are copyright of their respective owners. Used without permission. Dang.