Hey everyone! Scott here once again with a new blog post!

Today I wanted to tackle a short article again based on what inspired me as a creator, I also have a few reports on my progress and a small life detail.

Well, let’s get to it!


“Fan art? Don’t you do anything ‘creative?'”

So that person can go die, fan art is an important part of being a creator and it even shows in big names all around you.

Fan work of other content is just a big way to show your appretiation and love for a person/story and it can often become a beautiful thing.

Many don’t recall the Nick crossover (when nick was kind with their creations) between “Jimmy Neutron” and “The Fairly Odd Parents!” But I do recall it.

And you know what? It was good! Although many would criticize me right now for this since they are in the same studio. (In my heart, this counts as a fanwork of sorts when you crossover with other shows.)

Then how about these examples?

Sonata Arctica/Metallica and DragonForce/Jhonny Cash?

I can’t show the first example (since those songs are copyrighted and I do recommend you support their music on Spotify) But Sonata Arctica made their own song interpretation of Metallica’s “Fade to Black.” And it has a very differennt ambience than it’s original song.

The secoond example, well, why don’t you listen yourself?

Original song “Ring of Fire” by Jhonny Cash:

Cover song “Ring of Fire” by DragonForce

Decades later, Dragonforce decide to cover this song, and their take is rather interesting (and I like it alot.) But where am I exactly going with all of this?

Spare me a few minutes with a small story of my past:

When I was 18 and living in South America, my highschool time had come to an end and I had a huge downtime on my hands. I had time to play videogames! But they wore out fast, and I had not much else to do but draw, don’t get me wrong I loved drawing, but there was something else I felt like doing with that time. There came a point in my life as a creator where drawing wasn’t enough anymore, it needed meaning.

I spent my afternoons at times watching Pokemon (and god damn, the last time I saw the show was in the second season, this one I watched was the fourth,) I loved certain characters designs. One in particular that still remains my favourite, is Buizel! Just your usual cool happy and bouncy orange otter who looks really fucking cool.

You may notice how designs of my favourite characters sort of stick to my own. You can see it everywhere in modern media.

Anyways…

I was so inspired that I actually thought of a story involving that specific pokemon, and then I realized it, I wanted to make a fanfic! At that time in age I thought that fanfics were a bit silly, useless in fact because I thought they offered nothing new. Here I was now thinking about my story as I watched the episodes every day when mom and my sister were away, and god damn it was fun.

“The hell does this have to do with anything? Get to the point.” This fanfiction was my first written story, it was ok I guess, but this helped me practice. Fanfics works well if you want to begin doing stories and see how you do.

Loving a certain universe or story really inspire us in several ways, it also makes us realize that we can find some of the best things within us. Animators discover that they are able to make fan animations, artists make great fan art, writers craft fan fiction, crafters make artisanal crafts or plushies or something similar to that.

It helps find the best within us.

But so what, right? These stories have already been told, nothing new is happening. Those songs are just remakes and reboots of the other ones, crossovers are whatever and fanfics really give nothing new.

WRONG.

When I was done with my fanfiction back in 2010-2011, I realized that I had created an original story somewhere. The whole premise of this pokemon fanfic was that the trainer, our protagonist, had suddenly gone missing leaving his beloved pokemon and best friend behind. The big reveal was that our protagonist was closer than anyone thought!

I know it happens in pokemon, I know the universe is not mine. But if you think about it …

… what if it wasn’t in the pokemon universe?

It COULD potentially be considered original (however, I did put things that are more or less irremoveable from the pokemon concept,) but this goes to show that fanwork can be pretty original too. It just happens in a universe that is not theirs.

Don’t believe me? Then here is another example:

“Them’s Fightin Herds,” this is a fighter game in where we fight as equine animals instead of your usual fighters.

And it looks pretty cool too! (Heck, I already helped with the crowdfunding because of how beautiful the aesthetic is!)

There are only a few people that don’t know that this project used to be a “My Little Pony” fighter project lead by a team of loving fans.

Their game was looking pretty good, that is until Hasbro filed a C&D (Cease and Desist) against the fans. It is of course devastating, the project seemed naught but lost forever except for the few torrents out there.

That is until the creator of the new generation of “My Little Pony” jumped in and decided to help produce the fighting game, maybe she saw the potential in this game (and to be honset, she probably was 100% sure.) All they did was remove the skin and universe that was “My Little Pony.” The game plays the same, and the best part is that it’s now its own original project!

It’s the exact same goddam thing.

You see, the original idea and concept behind a fanwork can be THAT powerful that it can abandon its skin and shine even brighter than what it used to be. (The game has got real polish now.)

 

Of course, there are also fanworks out there that are just a passion project that mashes a bunch of concepts together and does something kickass!

Mark Haynes, created a flash animation that became a culture hit within the internet called “Super Mario Bros Z.” What is this thing exactly you ask? It’s the “Super Mario Bros” universe, the “Sonic” universe and the “Dragon Ball Z” action all packed together, blended in together and became one of the most known flash animations in history.

Just take a look at the first episode of it alone, the work and love given to it is simply OUTSTANDING and a true level of commitment is clear. (This is of course a reboot of the original, but the new version is ten times better, trust me.)

I’m sure finding that originality in this fanwork is way harder, since it’s a perfectly constructed frankenstein that simply looks badass, but most elements are borrowed.

In fact, after thinking about it, this has something original and iconic of the entire saga. (Although, according to my friend CloudyDaze, it comes from another sprite animator called Mr Lange, Mark Haynes just popularized it.)

This thing! … wait, what is this thing exactly called?

Let’s call this the Crosstar hit. The Crosstar hit was widely used after 2006 when this animation series had commenced. Many other flash animators would use it for their fight animations. My friend also says that Mark Haynes created a sort of fighting style with these sprite animations that inspired other people.

“It’s just an effect …”

Whatever! You can create things with it!

Imagine any fighting game you want. Imagine that the fighter you are using has a charged hit (much like in smash bros) but as it builds power, the effects of the crosstar hit could appear. When that flashes, your attack gains more strength and a special effect to it with inmense knockback.

The fact that I made a mechanic with the Crosstar hit for a game is kinda interesting… and in the end, ain’t this the purpouse of fan work in the end?

What about my own fanfic? Well, I don’t have plans to extract it’s core and remake it sadly. But it was my test shot to understand story (The original fanfic had many plot holes, bad character traits and a deus ex machina that felt empty.)

Nevertheless, it was a fun experience.

Even to this day I like doing fanwork, I’m running an Undertale askblog to experiment interactive storytelling. You can see the blog and follow it if you wish as well. Although I do advise to be careful of SPOILERS if you haven’t finished the game.

Here is the blog in question

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http://soulful-asriel.tumblr.com/

And to show an appretiation for fanwork in general, here is the page of fanart/commissions from other people of Starwarriors.

Check out all this awesome fanart!


Progress on the comic?

It’s going rather decently, I have all of Chapter one of the book thumbnailed out. No details really, more getting a feel of how the tale will be told… having a final revision to the script as I go.

I usually lay down at bed in night and draw there when my mind is starting to soften, if I can understand what’s happening in a sleepy state with a few simple thumbnails, I’m sure to understand it when I eventually go in and work on the pages.

At this rate, I’m sure to be able to thumbnail all the pages around the end of feburary, so expect a new update from me on the book!

I did hit a brick wall due to my work on an animatic of (yes I know) another story that I want to make, but this one is more aimed towards television.

You probably saw me draw these if you visit my art streams often…

I’m not sure that it’ll go anywhere, but I want to draw this out because I feel that a good tale is ahead of these characters. (And besides, I can always change medium if TV doesn’t quite pan out.)

For this animatic I have over 150 drawings, now I just have to compile it all together.


Gotta move!

Now for an entirely different announcement more on my real life things… I am moving! (again)

We can’t quite keep living in the same area we are staying, so we have to move and change our home situation things.

This means that around mid-Feburary I’ll be very inactive. Not to worry though! Starwarriors will continue to update on its regular schedule!

I can already feel the boxes invading… damn there are so many.

And the good news is, I’ll probably have a big space to finally focus 100% on my work. (It’s a bit hard to work on writing and such when you feel footsteps, it just breaks you.)

 

In any case, this has been the first blog post of the year! Let’s hope we go for a good 2016 filled with stars and hopes and wishes and dead foxes… umm, forget the last part.

Have a good day!

-Scott