Musical Man Model Sheet & BGs

Still working on the pilot for my planned series Musical Man, featuring a cartoon superhero who fights villains that represent different musical genres. I’m working on the rough animation right now, and will have that wrapped up soon so I can move on to cleanup / color. Here’s what my character looks like, if you haven’t seen him:

Aaaand some more sample backgrounds.

Musical Man Progress

Greetings, readers! I’m in my last semester of the MFA program at CCAD, and I’m plowing away on my Musical Man film, a superhero parody in which a music-themed vigilante fights villains based around different music genres. The story is planned out and the voices (mostly) recorded, so right now I’m in the rough animation phase. I’m hoping to have all of the rough animation completed by the end of February, and then I can spend March doing cleanup and color. Here’s a sample of some animation drawings from one scene:

I’m also working on backgrounds. Finding the right color scheme is important, and I had planned a palette dominated by blues and purples to get a pulpy look reminiscent of Max Fleischer’s Superman cartoons of the 1940s. However, the cool colors I was using didn’t fit the tone I was going for in the scene with the country music-themed villains. Here are some of the backgrounds I drew up initially:

So, to me, these don’t represent the musical genre well at all. So I reworked them and came up with these warmer, earthier alterations. Nothing amazing going on here, but I think the mood is better:

Bizarre Wars Episode II

Hey guys! Still working on my animated pilot film Musical Man and my upcoming Star Wars parody. I locked down the character designs for the film… I’m going for a bit more of a stylized look inspired by ’50s Cartoon Modern shorts, particularly films from the UPA studio and Ward Kimball’s animated segment of Disney’s 1957 TV special Mars and Beyond. I’m liking where they are so far.

I’ve also got the design of the mouse figured out. I started with the sketches on the left, partially inspired by Jerry from the Tom & Jerry cartoons, but it wasn’t really suggesting “mouse” to me for whatever reason. I fixed it up on the right, and gave the mouse a little more of a snout, and I think it’s looking better.

Anyway, I’ve designed the characters, written my second and final draft of the story, and now I’ve moved on to animating and creating background art. I’ve animated the first couple of shots (just rough animation at this point, no cleanup/color) and done a few of the backdrops, including this panned BG.

Bizarre Wars

Update on something I’m working on: my next Cartoon Remake, a parody of Star Wars. It’s going to be called Bizarre Wars, and I’ve started drawing up the character designs:

C3PO and R2D2 are going to be the main players, but there are going to be appearances from numerous other George Lucas creations, including these guys:

And here are some thumbnails. Haven’t done the ending yet, but I’m already seeing some stuff I need to rewrite. Take a look:

Musical Man

Hey everybody! I’m starting my last year as a grad student at the Columbus College of Art & Design and I’m going to be working on a pilot for a potential animated TV series called Musical Man. It’s a superhero parody in which a rubber-suited musical vigilante will fight supervillains that represent different music genres (heavy metal, electropop, polka, etc.) He is aided by his perpetually-exhausted secretary Myrtle and his musical note sidekick Tchaikovsky (who speaks entirely in piano notes). In the short, Musical Man will repeatedly try and fail to defeat the villains by using their own musical genres against them. Only when he recalls what made him like music in the first place – playing a kazoo as a child – does he find his own voice and take them down. Here are some of the designs:

I haven’t started animating yet, but I’m currently working on the outline and storyboards. In addition to this, I’m going to be continuing on my Cartoon Remakes web-series that I’ve been creating the past year (where I made parodies of The Shawshank Redemption and Fifty Shades of Grey). This semester I’m going to be parodying Star Wars: cartoon versions of C3PO and R2D2 are going to be trying to catch Darth Mouse, a troublesome rodent in a black helmet who is the last member of the Galactic Empire on board a ship that the Rebels took over.

I’m going to make this film shorter than my previous films, both because I’m going to have to balance animating the film with animating the longer Musical Man project, and also because the major feedback I’ve received about the others is that they are somewhat lengthy for internet videos (people are more likely to click on a funny video that is two or three minutes than commit to a seven minute cartoon). So… we’ll see how that goes.

Anyway, here’s a school-related cartoon to finish things off:

Jerry Lewis Caricature

Very sad to hear about the passing of Jerry Lewis, a slapstick icon and one of my favorite comedians. He was wonderful in comedies like THE NUTTY PROFESSOR and THE LADIES MAN, as well as his collaborations with director Frank Tashlin, such as ARTISTS AND MODELS, HOLLYWOOD OR BUST, THE DISORDERLY ORDERLY, WHO’S MINDING THE STORE?, etc. He also gave a more dramatic turn in Martin Scorsese’s excellent THE KING OF COMEDY. He’ll be missed. Here’s my cartoon tribute to the guy.