Welcome to Steambelle, the Official Blog for Emmeline Vanderhorn and her Airborne Adventures, a Serial Graphic Novel of the Steampunk Persuasion. Here can be found News, Sneak Peaks, and exclusive Production Artwork, as well as plenty of Behind-the-Scenes Self-Indulgent Raving by the Artist. Comments are Encouraged -- nay, Hankered For.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Presentation at Pauline Haass Library

So, this past Saturday, Jenny and I (heroically chauffeured by our friend Claire) visited Jenny's hometown library to take part in their 30th Anniversary Celebration -- specifically, to give an informal presentation, aimed at teens, about our graphic novel creation process. Other events taking place at the same time included face painting, marionette shows, and live piano music.

Armed with business cards, sketchbook, a snazzy PowerPoint, a pristine new copy of EVAA to autograph for a raffle winner, and our most charming smiles, we readied ourselves:

(By the way, EVAA [pronounced just like Wall-E pronounces his friend's name] is the snazzy new nickname for the series. I asked Jenny to deliver, and she delivered. So now you can show everyone what a hip insider you are by referring to the series thusly.)

Kids, teenagers, and their parents stopped by over the next few hours. The anniversary celebration wasn't quite as well-attended as we were hoping, but everybody who visited our table seemed very interested and enthusiastic.

One precocious young fellow flipped though the first few pages of the book, which are entirely devoid of speech bubbles, and said to Jenny, "Well, you didn't write very much, didja?" He said lots of other quotable things, too, but that was our favorite.

At the end of the day, we raffled off a copy, signed it, and I added a little doodle of Emmeline looking irritable and wearing her little feathered hat from the first half of Chapter 1. The winner wasn't around to accept the book in person, but I hope she enjoys it when she receives it!

Quite a few people took business cards, which hopefully means that my lovely new blog layout will have new eyes feasting on it soon. Oh, and maybe they'll also read the entries! This is terribly exciting.

One of the most common questions we got was "When is Chapter 2 coming out???" (Complete with all those desperate question marks, I think.) The answer is: Spring 2011.... tentatively. That will be my last semester of college, so I may be justifiably distracted. However, I am as eager to see Chapter 2 in print as all of you, so I'll do my best. It was really gratifying to know that people are excited and impatient. It's motivating in a way that grades and credits and academic deadlines just can't be. It puts the pressure on, in a good way!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

The New Face of Steambelle

As you can see, I've finally given the blog that long-overdue makeover. I must say, I'm very pleased with the results. It finally looks... Emmeline Vanderhorny. (Oh, dear. That didn't come out right. And I also can't believe that pun has NEVER occurred to me before now.)

I will probably continue to tweak it over the next few days. I want to make custom buttons and things. Blogger is surprisingly difficult to customize. I had to trawl through piles of code-heavy tutorials just to get the background to work. I know how to make pretty pictures, but I know depressingly little about web design. ;-; Ah, another thing to add to the to-do list.

EDIT: Oh, dear. I'm on the immense 27-inch iMacs in the computer art lab, and I've discovered that my precious blog background doesn't stretch all the way on these huge screens (if you have the window maximized). So for those of you who are exceptionally well-endowed in the display department, Steambelle may look a little wonky until I figure out how to fix it. Or until you resize your browser window to more reasonable dimensions, you crazy person.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

My (New) Trusty Steed

I have a new computer AT LAST! A 21.5-inch iMac with oodles of storage space and 4 gigs of RAM. Coming to this machine straight from my old franken-tower is like getting a pair of top-of-the line running shoes after walking barefoot with a ball-and-chain for years. Oh, the speed! Oh the liberation! Oh, the luminous gem-like screen display!

Anyway, gushing aside, what this means is that I FINALLY have the means to resume work on Chapter 2 of EV's AAs. (I really need to think of a snappier nickname for the series. No, wait, that's word wrangling. That's Jenny's job! Jenny, you have an assignment.)

Of course, school is in session, and this project is now personal rather than academic, so schoolwork is undoubtedly going to take precedence for a while. I won't be working at the same speed as before. However, I already have a nice head start on Chapter 2. Even if I work gradually and intermittently, I wouldn't be surprised if the next installment is available on Lulu by the beginning of next semester.

I'll be sure to post "teaser" images along the way.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

An addition to the library

Well, wouldja look at that. Emmeline's moving up in the world, one little step at a time.

(As tweeted by Jenny.)

A copy of EV's AAs now has a happy home on the shelves of Jenny's local library! Lookit, a barcode and everything. I was so pleased, I just had to share. <3

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Changing Gears

As you can see, I'm starting to make some changes to this blog. The semester's over, but the project goes on. Keeping some kind of a journal or log was a requirement for my independent-study project, but now both the project and the blog are freed from all academic tethers. So what now?

Well, I've decided to make this blog less of a personal ranting space for me, and more of an information & news site for Emmeline Vanderhorn and her Airborne Adventures. You can still expect plenty of informal rambling on my part, though.

You see, in my mind, I'm imagining that I'm very famous, and thousands of Rabid Fans want to know what I'm up to and when the next Emmeline Vanderhorn chapter will come out. So that's who I'm writing this blog for now. Also, it's a place where Prospective Fans can learn everything they need to become full-fledged Rabid Fans.

The first order of business, I believe, is to do away with these pre-made blogger backgrounds (as cute as they are) and design one myself, custom-tailored to suit the look & feel of the Emmeline Vanderhorn series. I am unfortunately computerless right now (don't get me started), but my boyfriend has a fine laptop with Photoshop, and I managed to salvage all my Emmeline Vanderhorn materials before my old computer went utterly senile, as opposed to just moderately senile, which was its normal state of functionality, so I'm hoping I can use Photoshop to cobble together a lovely layout with some of the files I already have. More of a re-assembly than a ground-up fabrication. And of course I need a decent title image, too. Can't wait to get to work on that!