Friday, December 16, 2011

Buy more prints!

This haunting piece of fanart was done by the great Roman Wunderlich of B-Movie Comic, via reader John Cuellar. HOW CAN YOU SAY NO TO THAT FACE?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Awkward Max is awkward

Commissions may be closed for now, but I still have a few left over that need attention! Here's the Max watercolor for your approval.

I'm not sure how active this blog will be the rest of the month, since most of my work is for the book and can't be shared yet, but I hope to have *something* up every few days. Don't lose faith in me, folks!

Monday, December 12, 2011

$20 Magnet and print promotion!

I realize the timing of this isn't the best, but unfortunate events rarely schedule themselves properly. See, I need a new PC - and I need it much sooner than expected. The laptop I'm using now has a dead screen, a dead battery, a damaged hard drive and has recently started rebooting randomly. (In other news, NEVER BUY A DELL!) I have a little stashed away in my "for the comic" fund that gets me well on my way to new PC land - but now *that* is threatened by some upcoming medical bills! Thus, I turn to you!

In a mini donation drive, I am offering one of the new Precocious magnets and a signed 8.5x11 print of almost any Precocious comic for $20. (The "almost" is because triple-decker strips won't fit on the page and I'm reserving strip #1000 for a future mini-poster run.) Make sure you specify which magnet and strip you want when you donate.

I wish I had more incentives to throw at you this time, but I'm so far behind in book work that I can't offer original art for this drive. In fact, I have to close down my watercolor commissions offer until next month. *sigh*

Thank you to anyone who's willing to take part in this. Chrispy loves you!

Monday, December 5, 2011

New Copper Road! - 12/5/11

I know you missed Copper Road while I was on vacation, so I happily announce that it's back! Vote here to see it! It's my brightest, cheeriest comic yet! *snicker* Hey, anyone who has traveled on the interstate can relate!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Portal sketches!

I handed out a few free sketch promises over on twitter (see, it pays to follow me!) and both of the chosen folks decided to play with the same theme of playing in the Portalverse. I confess I've never played the games, but I've been on the internet long enough to catch the companion cube love. Had to look up the edgeless safety cube, though. Anyway, enjoy!

Oh, and here's a "bonus" sketch. Seems *someone* had some brain trouble about which character was requested with which companion object. D'oh.

Thumbs up!

Here are some sketches for another commission, this one featuring Max and his uneasy smile of deception, with bonus thumbs up!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

1000 comics party!

Can you believe Precocious made it this far? This party only happens once in the life of a comic and we should make it a special one! Let's go wild!

You guys are what keeps me going when things get tough on the daily comic front. When scripting gets hard and when my hand aches, I know I need to keep fighting to keep my readers happy and coming back. This is what I love to do, but I couldn't do it without reader support.

Active readers are amazing, and I am blessed to have them. Reading comments on the comics brighten my day. Seeing my comics shared using the buttons on the site gives me hope that my readership can grow. Word of mouth is very powerful on the internet, and I can't keep going unless I keep growing. It still blows me away that people make Precocious fan art. I'm honored that Precocious has a TV Tropes page, a DeviantArt group and a Facebook group. I absolutely love readers popping over to Formspring to ask me questions. Your active participation is my comic fuel. I love you guys!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Cat blogging!

There are four cats in this house and all are adorable!

(OK, fine, I'm just testing a new blogging ap on the new iPhone.)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Everyone suspects the bufferfly

Here are some sketches from my latest commission: Tiff as Chaotic Butterfly!

Sinister? Innocent? Happy? Flying towards her doom? Antenna danglies on or off? We'll see which one is chosen.

Dear lord, what have I done?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

New Copper Road! - 11/20/11

I hope you enjoy this revealing installment of Copper Road, because it's the last one you get for the month. I'm taking next week off from CR due to my vacation. It's kinda hard to update when you don't have a scanner with you. (Don't worry about Precocious. I have a good buffer there.) I'm not sure how my trip will affect my blogging. I will have a camera with me, and I can always blog via iPhone if needed - the question is, however, will I be able to fit some work into my busy schedule?

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Watercolors for you!

The photos aren't that great, but the finals of these commissions are super awesome! Enjoy. The pieces will ship out Monday.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Commission inks

Here are the inks for the three watercolor commissions I have going at the moment. I must say, after testing out the new paper I'm worried about the coloring process. It doesn't seem very watercolor friendly, but it's all I have. I just have to be extra careful.

I messed up a bit on the couch for the Autumn commission, but I think I can correct it in coloring.

And now, more Derpy!

Here's the final sketch for the Derpy/Bud muffin-lovin' commission. I have never drawn a pony this well before, so I'm gonna trace the heck out of it for the final piece.

You'll note tracing is my theme today. Usually I redraw commissions on the watercolor paper, but this time I'm tracing all three. (The third is the Autumn sleeping on the couch sketch, which was conveniently sketched at the correct size.) I think this is a consequence for me going back and making a finer-quality sketch for each project. Usually I do a rough, get approval and then upgrade the sketch right on the final paper.

On an art geek note, since all three of today's projects have scale issues, I'm doing them on Reeves BFK white instead of the watercolor pad I've been using. This paper is new to me, so I'm not sure how it handles watercolors. (I thought I was buying the same brand I've been using, but it seems that was Arches, not Reeves.)

More Tiffmas

Here's a cleaned-up sketch for the Tiffany commission. The only changes I made from the selected pose was switching the side the tinsel lands on and putting an ornament on the tail. If I get an OK from the client, I will next trace this design onto my watercolor paper and do my inking.

Yes, I said I was going to aim to have my inks done yesterday, but I decided to color comics for NINE HOURS STRAIGHT instead. By the time I finished, I was in no mood to do anything else artistic. Today is commission day instead!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Tiffmas time is here

Here's the early sketch work on another commission: A Christmas-themed work with Tiffany! The original idea was to depict Tiffany atop a tree, but size issues derailed that. Thinking about how Tiffany celebrates the holiday (I have a partially-scripted Christmas arc that might never run) she loves original takes on the traditional tree. Why not make HER the tree this year?

These sketches are me fleshing out how to make this idea work. Ears up or down? How to wrap the tinsel around her? Butterfly ornament or Candy cane in the hand? Regular dress or tree-imitating wide? Arms out or more compact? Looking up or looking at the viewer? Which star is best?

If the client likes the idea (I'm being bad by not providing options this time), it's time to choose the final pose/features and move on to inking. With a little luck, I'll have all three outstanding watercolor commissions inked tomorrow. I'm pushing myself as hard as I can, because my Thanksgiving trip can start as early as Saturday. Still got comics to make in addition to this, so no guarantees.

Copper Road Update! 11/14/11

It's double fun with Copper Road today. First, a new comic was posted on TWC. Vote to see it! Second, I update the Copper Road archive, so you can catch up if you missed any. I didn't realize I had passed 50 strips until just now. Kinda wish I hadn't wasted that milestone on a throwaway strip... since soda chugging for 50 would have been much more prestigious!

Saturday, November 12, 2011


In response to Ms. Monster appearing in the background of the latest Ginger's Bread, I'm one-upping things and throwing a Ginger lookalike (if she was a fox) into my strip. Not bad for a 30-second sketch of her, if I can say so. Maybe my drawing mojo is returning.

Edit: If you're wondering why her dress is so out of character, that's because it's more of me copping a design to fill an already-scripted role than making a true Ginger cameo. (Hence why I said "lookalike.")

New commission sketches

Forgive me for the relative quiet on the blog. I've had a baaaaaad drawing week. Combine that with me focusing so much on buffer building, and you get a barrage of Precocious news posts instead of zesty content!

Buuuuut, I have two new commissions to work on now, so let's TRY to get this pencil working. Usually I offer many sketches for new projects, but today I only offer one and a half for you, because that's all that was remotely showable. Clients, feel free to send me back to the drawing board and/or offer up some more suggestions.

Edit: Here's a second Autumn possibility, by request!

The first commission is to show Autumn asleep, dreaming of blackmail. I chose to show her napping against an Ottoman, clutching her beloved binder.

And here we have a fun one: Bud and Ditzy Doo (or Derpy, if you please) enjoying muffins together! Despite liking ponies, I do not draw ponies unless prompted - so getting a good Ditzy was really hard. Forgive me for the quickly-sketched Bud. He's mostly there to show how the composition will look. (I drew too close to the page's edge and couldn't fit a proper-sized Bud in anyway.)

Friday, November 11, 2011

It's Copper Road time again! 11/11/11

Vote to see it! Let us all brace ourselves now for the silliness that will come on the date 11/11/11. I'm sure the Twitter trending topics are going to be original and interesting!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

$25 Commissions are still available!

Update, 12/12/11: Commissions are currently closed. I'll open up again sometime in January.

The old commissionathon page may be gone, but that doesn't mean the fun is over! I'm still taking $25 watercolor commissions. What you get is a one-character watercolor (be it Precocious or your own character) and either a prop or simple background. The size is 8"x5".

As a bonus, I will also be including an extra limited-edition Precocious gocco print. Get 'em while they're still around!

For more watercolor samples, look over the sketch blog. I also have some more-talented artist friends who are looking for commission work, so if you have a big project in mind, use the feedback link to drop me a note about it and I'll pass it on!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

New Copper Road! - 11/6/11

Vote on TWC to see it! In this installment, Kaitlyn takes on the wrath of the changing seasons. Stupid seasons.

Edit: Hey, look! Another week, another Precocious cameo in another comic. Check out Lucy's twitter feed in the most recent Badly Drawn Kitties!

In other news, since it was only up on the site one day before the switch made it go away, here's a second plug for the new Also, Bagels book!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

A Precocious commission!

Look at what appeared in my email today! Here's another shout out to Tiff of The Cyantian Chronicles because she finished my commission today. Isn't it totally adorable?

All I told her was that I wanted all four main kids in there, and I left the rest up to her. I had no idea what the final would be until she sent it to me and I loved every minute of anticipation. The end result is something far more impressive than I could ever have dreamed up! Everything about it is great! You guys should totally go commission her too!

(click the image for a larger version)

Friday, November 4, 2011

Darius in Precociousland

Here are some sketches I made of a Precocized version of Darius, from The Cyantian Chronicles. I needed a cameo, and it was his turn. He was actually offered to me for the Bright Kids, Big City arc, but I ended up using Celina and Sheana from that comic instead. Thus, he was due to be victimized by the kids!

About section upgrade

I've added many of the old about section pages back to the new site. You can check them out by clicking the (surprise!) "about" link in the top navigation. The cast page overhaul isn't quite finished yet, but I wanted to get it out there. The rest, in theory, are good. There may be some outdated info on them, so if you spot any please let me know!

We're still figuring out what's missing and what's not working. (The donation button will return soon!) As always, use the feedback link in the menu to send me any requests for site features, improvements and spotted errors.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Deleted Scene Time!

Here's a quick sketch of a comic that got cut for time. I thought this script was the weakest of the eight I wrote for the week, so it went away. In hindsight, I wonder if using this comic and combining #968 and #969 (making this comic the new 969) would have been better for pacing. Oh well, too late! (click the image for a larger version.)

The slickest of kats

As promised in the last post, here is the final of the Slick Kat commission! I cheated on this one a bit an used pen for the black markings... but they kinda look awesome so I think I can get forgiveness.

Another watercolor done!

Here's the Quincy in summer piece! Slick Kat is up next. I've been holding off on him because I'm scared of his precise markings. Today it will happen, though!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Cameo in Ginger's Bread

Go check out the current Ginger's Bread to see that a familiar Precocious face is back for revenge!

In non-cameo news, how's the new site working for ya? We're still discovering strange glitches here and there, so bear with us as we try to get things fixed. If you see anything weird, please use the feedback link to send me a note about it. We can't fix an error if we don't know it exists!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The best incentive!

October is over, and the daily incentives are gone. Aww. BUT WAIT! That means COPPER ROAD IS NOW BACK! Vote to see it!

Since the site transition caused some troubles, I'd like to share the last of the incentives, and by far my favorite one, again. People need to see it! (Click the image for the full version.)

Much love an thanks go to the artists who helped out: Cookie, Darc Sowers, Pea, Brookes Eggleston and Heidi Black!

Monday, October 31, 2011

My Little Copper Road

The prep work is done for the next Copper Road comic, which I'm aiming to get out tomorrow! As you can see by this sketches, we're trick or treating... AS PONIES!

Hey, I can indulge a bit if I want to!

Here, the Great and Powerful Quincy returns. I have to decide when I put him in the strip whether I want the ears in or out of the hat. Trixie is ears-in, but that looks kinda weird here.

Good old Kaitlyn gets to be Applejack. That hat drove me nuts, and it drives me nuts still.

Yvettershy and Derpy Vincent may not make the comic, but I wanted to draw them anyway!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

The new site is a go!

Today we are transitioning Precocious over to the new site. While this happens, expect a few errors to pop up here and there, so stay calm. Now, let's cover some of the big changes!

The big change here is in the archive organization. Gone is the number-based system and here is one that is date based. I admit it's not as easy to navigate as the number one, but it's much easier for me to update (and protect my future updates) on the back end, so you'll have to deal with it. I'm not happy that a lot of links to my comics are about to break, but that's a consequence of the transition.

This is still a work in progress. Many internal HTML pages aren't in place yet. Some of the missing ones (like the cast page) are coming back soon. Others, like much of the old extras section, are probably gone for good.

The first 100 comics have lost all their comments. That's my fault, due to me not knowing what I was doing early on. The rest of the comments should be in place.

I am sure there are plenty of little glitches lurking out there. If you find one, don't hesitate to click the feedback link in the top menu and let me know what's wrong. I'll also take suggestions if you have them!

Again, don't panic. Take a look around. Enjoy the new features. Test the story navigation! Use the new share buttons to spread the word! (Please?)

Saturday, October 29, 2011

What might have happened

When you write a story - especially a long on like the Birthday Bashing arc - some ideas change dramatically from inception to execution, and a good number of thoughts end up on the cutting room floor.

When writing the water balloon confrontation, I took it through many incarnations before it hit its final form. At one point Suzette was the betrayer. (Or, rather, suddenly a "conscientious objector.") At another, Dionne tried to betray so much she asked for her own balloon to soak Autumn with - which promptly got HER soaked by the males, who weren't buying it. (Autumn was saved!) Finally, I decided to let Autumn have it again - since that seems to be how all gender wars end up.

Because I'm trying to streamline things to finish up the story, I tend to cut a lot of the non-essential connective tissue. The above scene is one of the many possible transition strips between the betrayal and Autumn's soaking. It's not canon, just a possibility, but do note how in the strip before (strip #964) Dionne and Suzette are positioned behind the two males most likely to chicken out. So much could have happened!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The mission remains the commission

Here's a (quickly-drawn) new and improved pose for the Slick Kat commission. The request was crossed arms and I'm going to do my best to comply! I'll need to draw it larger to work out some of the details, but I like this direction. (These were done at the bottom of the page with the other sketches, so I could copy the markings.)

Bonus trivia time: My photo reference for the pose? Homer Simpson.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The mission is commission

Today I bring you two more commission pieces in progress.

The inks for the Quincy piece are done, and now the tough stuff begins. This is easily going to be my most challenging watercolor due to the tree, but I also must figure out how to properly render Quincy as being in the shade. I'm aiming to get to the coloring tomorrow, but don't hold me to it!

And here we have concept sketches for a commission of a reader's character, Slick Kat, done as a Precocious kid. I need to work on the markings a bit more before it's correct, but it's a start. The clothing and pose are not set either, although I do equate vest with "slick". This was just a first try.

I demand a lot from my readers

Look! It's the lost Yvette watercolor! The good lad who received her was kind enough to take the photo I forgot to take and send it to me... and it only cost him the price of a NEW CAMERA! (I appreciate the dedication, but that money could have been spent on ME instead!)

Anyway, if this is a trend, the next person I send a watercolor to has to buy one of those extremely sensitive $2000 large-format scanners to capture the essence of the piece. And then they should send me that scanner, because daddy wants.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Think Summer!

Here are some sketches for my latest commission: A Quincy painting inspired by the summer panel in this strip. I must say I'm surprised that Quincy has popped up again, but I'm happy he's getting attention.

The main tweaks that are going into transitioning that panel to a watercolor composition are changing the tree into a weeping willow so the leaves can reach into the frame and figuring out the position of Quincy's legs. The original pose is in the sketch on the left, with an alternative on the right. I've had fun drawing the spread leg pose recently, and I think it could work here if I figure out what to do with his tail, as it wants to occupy the same space. The final consideration is how close I pull in on Quincy. This will be settled at the ink stage, I guess. I'd love to go to the edge of the paper, but that seriously causes problems for anyone who'd want to frame the art.

I'm glad I got another commission! I was worrying my opportunities had already dried up.


Friday, October 21, 2011

Heeeeeerrrreeee's Quincy!

And the first batch of watercolors is complete. I'm ready for a second batch now!

The reason you only see Quincy and not Yvette is because I totally forgot to take pictures of them before shipping. Yvette was already gone by the time I realized it, but Quincy was still sitting around in an envelope. I ripped it open, snapped a photo and taped it back up again! Hooray for absent-minded artists!

(Oh, and I saw your request, Slick Kat, and gave you a reply. )

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Time for more watercolors!

The inks are done for the latest two watercolor projects. These are the last in my queue, so someone please commission a new one and fix that!

On each project, I was given two "I trust you"s when I submitted the sketches... so you guys are now at my mercy! I made some command decisions on my own and now you're stuck with 'em! (I hope you like it.)

The actual watercoloring should happen tonight, meaning all watercolors should ship out tomorrow. Hooray!