• It reminds me a lot of Blade Runner – ~ Elseworlds Podcast

    Prisoner of the Mind is a graphic novel by Allan Linder, sixteen years in the making. The story is a neo-noir thriller set in the near future. A government agent discovers a seventy year old secret, revealing a past that the agency will kill for [...]

  • Prisoner of the Mind: Graphic novel released on Comixology

    “The most impressive indie graphic novel of the decade.” ~ Super Robot Mayhem [...]

  • Animated teaser trailer released

    The story is a neo-noir thriller set in the near future of New York, the unforgiving city. [...]

  • What makes us human? flesh, bone, circuitry... or something more.

    Will Cole discover who he’s chasing and who is chasing him? Will he re-unite with Jasmine his former lover to clear his name or remain a wanted man? [...]

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

MegeBots VS. Suidobashi. If you haven't been following along for the last two years, there are plenty of videos on youtube to catch up. It's USA VS. Japan in this Giant Mech challenge.

Above is a teaser of the event that will be streamed on Twitch, with commentary provided by Mike Goldberg of the UFC and robotics expert Saura Naderi. Tune in at Tuesday, October 17 at 7 p.m. PT for all the giant mech-on-mech action.

Here's a better look at the contenders.

If you missed it, here it is below. I wish it was more exciting, but it's no Transformers.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

When NASA’s InSight lander reaches Mars in November 2018, it will carry with it hundreds of thousands of names from members of the public. In 2015, nearly 827,000 people signed up to add their names to a silicon microchip on-board the robotic spacecraft. NASA is now adding another microchip, giving the public a second chance to send their names to Mars. 

Here's my pass on the first microchip.

Here's my pass on the second microchip.

“Mars continues to excite space enthusiasts of all ages,” said Bruce Banerdt, the InSight mission’s principal investigator at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. “This opportunity lets them become a part of the spacecraft that will study the inside of the Red Planet.”

An example of a “boarding pass” that members of the public can download by participating in NASA’s Frequent Fliers program. With each NASA mission that flies their names, individuals can accumulate “miles” on their boarding pass. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

New name submissions will be accepted through November 1, 2017, at this link.

Participants in the fly-your-name opportunity receive “frequent flier” points that reflect their participation in NASA’s exploration of Mars. Individuals who submitted their names during the earlier Insight opportunity in 2015 can download a “boarding pass” and see their “frequent flier” miles.

In 2014, a chip carrying the names 0f 1.38 million people flew aboard Exploration Flight Test-1 (EFT-1), the first flight of NASA’s Orion spacecraft. The next opportunity after InSight to earn frequent flier points will be NASA’s Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1), the first flight which will bring the Orion spacecraft together with the Space Launch System (SLS) rocket to travel thousands of miles beyond the Moon.

NASA’s InSight (Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport) lander will be the first mission to explore the deep interior of Mars. InSight will set down a seismometer to detect marsquakes and meteor strikes, using the seismic energy of these phenomena to study material far below the Martian surface. The lander will also deploy a self-hammering heat probe that will burrow deeper into the ground than any previous device on Mars.

InSight is scheduled to launch atop an Atlas V 401 booster from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, in May of 2018. MORE ...

Friday, October 13, 2017

10 Video Games to Play After Watching Blade Runner 2049 

If you, like me, left the theater after watching Blade Runner 2049 completely blown away by the modern return to Ridley Scott's sci-fi universe, then you're probably desperate to revisit K and Deckard's perilous cyberpunk world again. If that's the case, then there are a variety of video games that have taken inspiration from the original Blade Runner's setting that are available to play today. Here are our 10 favorites:

Satellite Reign

A spiritual successor to the '90s RTS Syndicate, Satellite Reign envisions a dystopian cyberpunk world in which an oppressive government keeps its citizens in check by any means necessary. Playing as a team of cyborg agents, you're tasked with guiding your ragtag group of highly trained androids throughout its neon-lit world, pulling off increasingly difficult heists in a sprawling city where more-or-less everything wants you dead.

Thankfully not as difficult as the Syndicate series, which was notoriously brutal even for its generation, Satellite Reign blends XCOM-esque cover-based tactics with Blade Runner's perennially rain-soaked visual direction, with its roguelike gameplay also making your android player-characters just as depressingly disposable as the Replicants. MORE...

Thursday, October 12, 2017

It's Inktober again and here are my art entries.

If you haven't heard of Inktober read on. This is an artist motivation site created by Jake Parker to get artists to ink a drawing everyday for one month. This is probably my third year doing this and I just realized that I haven't really posted my entries this year for this little game. The above graphic is from his website and he typically lays out a theme for each day. Some artists follow this and others don't. Below are my entries this year. I will update this list daily until October is no more. Newest art at the top. Come on back and check it out.

18. Filthy

18. Filthy in color

17. Graceful

16. Fat

15. Mysterious

14. Fierce

13. Teeming

12. Shattered

11. Run

10. Gigantic

10. Gigantic in color

9. Screech

9. Screech in color

8. Crooked

8. Crooked in color

7. Shy

6. Sword

5. Long

4. Underwater

3. Poison

2. Divided

1. Swift

Check back for more...

With the release of Blade Runner: 2049 and all of the beautiful artwork I have seen over the past few days, including New York Comic Con, I decided to re-post this article that I wrote 6 years ago while creating Prisoner of The Mind; a Graphic Novel.

Black and white ink drawings are a lot like ones and zeros in computer language. In combination, either they work or they don’t. If you are, an artist and you've ever had to ink your own drawings you know that too much black or not enough can make or break the mood of the drawing. It’s a process I am still learning after twenty-five years.

I am a big fan of film noir. Every time I watch one, I try to understand the light and shadow, the mood and emotion that a certain scene portrays. For my graphic novel, I tried to instill some of that in each panel. Although Blade Runner is not technically a film noir, it too has the same emotion and mood of many of those early films.

I have great respect for the film, and out of curiosity, I wanted to see comparisons between some of my panels, and the movie stills from Blade Runner. Whether I had intentional or subliminal visual symmetry I don't know, but here it is.

So, here are 43 Prisoner of the Mind panels compared with 43 Blade Runner stills from the original movie.

1. Setting the scene is important. Opening up your audience to your world vision really creates the atmosphere for the rest of the story.

2. From big view to close up or some type of skewed reflection sets the mood and shows extreme detail.

3. Smokey, hazy, low light or several different light sources cast strange shadows that create tonal contrast.

4. Heavy shadows in action help create a more intense experience.

5. I typically try to study facial expressions to convey emotion in my drawings.

6. You can see that the film stills are extremely dark. I use a lot of black ink in my work, but if I were to go as dark as the film, I would have to use a black & white scratch-board technique which would be like inking a negative.

7. The big cityscape reveals overpopulation and density of a scene, almost creating a claustrophobic feeling.

8. Heavy contrast, harsh lighting and highlighted detail work great in film noir.

9. Find your light source and go to town. Contrast, contrast, contrast.

10. I like to mix up my scenes with several different perspectives. Sometimes a birds-eye view works well, other times you need an eye level perspective.

11. Cold, dark, misty, smoky, hazy... do you see where i'm going with this, give it mystery.

12. Include closeups with big shots and you'll have some fun. With Wally Woods 22 panels that always work, you can't go wrong.

13. New York is busy, noisy, and sometimes claustrophobic. For me, busy street scenes are a daily occurrence. Creating a scene that feels real is the goal. Use your experience to create that feeling in your work.

14. Sometimes adding a man powered vehicle in a futuristic setting add's a sense of realism. Even if all of the cars in the world could fly, you will still have people of a certain socioeconomic standing that cannot afford a flying car.

15. Think about how humans build. Underground, above ground, use all the elements of public transportation to give your story diversity.

16. Contrast with alternative light sources can give a great deal of variety and add intrigue to any scene.

17. Shadows and reflection can play with your scene to make a strong statement.

18. Photo's, or some type of personal effect gives your characters emotion and feeling.

19. Advertisements are everywhere, think about it the next time you walk down the street and try to count how many logos and signs you see. You will be surprised.

20. Big silhouettes against a lighted background in comics and film have been used for many, many years.

21. We know that technology must be incorporated into a story somehow, somewhere. Be creative and see what you can do.

22. There is always a place for an extreme close up, the eyes tell the story.

23. I try not to use too many splash pages in my work, but when I do, I try to give it depth.

24. Contrast and shadow will help support your action pages.

25. Insert a moment of contemplation to show emotion, we are all human and we think. (well, most of us anyway) Yes, the anatomy is off, I started drawing this graphic novel a long time ago. I have greatly improved since those days, but I thought I would include it because the emotion is still there even if my skill wasn't.

26. Take a potentially boring action shot and give it some mystery. Smokey, hazy, dimly lit.

27. Humans do many mundane activities such as drinking, eating, sleeping, ordering food, making phone calls, etc... If they're part of your story, try to give them a sense of attitude.

28. Harsh features, dramatic contour, a sense of melancholy are all part of film noir.

29. Varying your panels to show a human quality will pull your audience into a more personal realm that they can associate with.

30. Pain, five o'clock shadow, water, hair, wrinkles... Just a few things we all have to deal with. These elements make drawings more real regardless of your style of drawing.

31. Bandages are great for storytelling. If you are drawing a black and white series, it's sometimes hard to show your hero getting beat up, bruised and bloody, but dirt and bandages help sell it.

32. Profile, figure, stance and contour can give your character personality just like the individuals that we are.

33. Mistakes and weakness give the impression of human qualities. If we were all invincible then we wouldn't be very interesting, hence the main reason I don't really do any superhero stuff.

34. Depth, tonal contrast and texture help bring the viewer into your world.

35. Awkward handling of objects when fumbling also project a sense of realness. We are not all surefooted or have a G.I. Joe grip. Then add dramatic lighting through a window that cast long eerie shadows and you have something more interesting.

36. Like looking down a hollow pit or a crater, you want to create a sense of depth and pick the best way to view your scene. From above or below, sometimes I draw a scene from different angles just to see how it will look in the end.

37. A transportation rear view sometimes create submersion in a scene, because your mind will want to make you walk around to the front to see what's going on. This creates a sense of conundrum.

38. Movement with out moving is what I call it. Rain, water ripples, leaves, and papers blowing in the wind, are all props that can give a static drawing a bit more intensity and a sense of perceived movement.

39. Sometimes I try to visualize humanity pitted against the unstoppable machine of modern progress. Someone in the wrong place at the right time, flesh and bone against concrete and steel. We may carry guns, and wear armor, but in the end bones break, and the human eggshell is feeble.

40. These elements of humanity can be in your face, or subtle like bandages covering a wound.

41. Unlike the close up of facial expressions that will convey a certain emotion, extreme technical close ups are sometimes needed for spatial reference, and medium.

42. Perceived slow motion is very hard to create, but it can be a really nice effect in static artwork. It creates a sense of intensity and detail that suck you in as a viewer.

43. Not all parts of your story can be told with a "this is this", and "this is that" attitude. Sometimes, you will need a subtle hint of something that can create a metaphor for more. This reveals your characters emotions outside of dialogue.A scene of higher elevation and emotional significance will set your work apart from the rest.

Thank you Bladezone.com for the video still archive, compiled by Richard Gunn
"Blade Runner" is a trademark of the Blade Runner partnership.
All film artwork & photography © Ladd Company 1982.