Personal Heroes.

20 11 2008

In recording the influences on my development, I think it’s important to drop the academics for a while and focus soley on the personal connection. This series of posts is an intention to have a look back over the years at the artists and illustrators that I have taken interest in, hopefully, to reach some conclusions about my own drawing and design choices;

Mike Krahulik

Mike K left, Jerry H right.

Mike K left, Jerry H right.

Mike draws the webcomic Penny Arcade (PA, from now on), which is written by Jerry Holkins. PA, to this day almost, is ten years old and I’ve been reading it nine of those ten years. My fascination with PA began a few years after I got on the internet and started playing PC games online. PA quickly established itself as the defacto source of tri-weekly, topical video-game humour. Anyone who was anyone in the world of online games was reading it, as so was I.

Mike’s style has changed a lot over the last ten years, but it’s never lost it’s original spirit, It’s only changed (in my opinion) for the positive.

For a comparison here’s the first ever PA strip in all it’s rawness;
The first penny-arcade strip

Compared to a more recent strip;

The Beta Whisperer

Because of penny-arcades infamous connection with the gaming industry, it wasn’t long before publishers/developers were asking for penny-arcade to produce work for their games, most of which is fantastic;

A page from PA's Prince of Persia, the two thrones comic work.

Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones

Having checked PA almost daily for years and years, I’d be lying if I said Mike’s work doesn’t subconciously penetrate it’s way into everything I draw, if only in some tiny way. To see what he has managed to achieve in ten years, how far he has come is an inspiration, what’s more, PA have recently produced their own game, and the character design is fantastic, and strikingly tongue in cheek, something I’ll likely dive into at a later date, in fear of this becoming a pure fanbased rant.

If you know where to look, Mike keeps a blog that is quite transparent about his process. He posts a lot of sketch work there that often ends up as finished colour works, so it’s interesting to look at for sneak peeks, but mainly to see how his work shapes up;





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