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Duncan Eagleson
238 followers -
Writer, painter, sculptor, and digital artist
Writer, painter, sculptor, and digital artist

238 followers
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And just to balance out my previous venting rant, some things are going really well...

Last night, a random comment by Moira (criticizing a book she was reading) gave me an idea about how to solve a problem in my WiP, and I was able to get in another 5,000 words last night - with the current time constraints on my writing, that's some kind of record for me in a single session. I'm up to about 45K words on the zero draft now.
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Return of the Grumpy Curmudgeon: Pardon me while I vent for a moment. Right now I feel like killing me some Adobe engineers.

Suddenly this morning, Photoshop wouldn't play nice with my Wacom tablet - all pressure sensitivity was gone, which makes painting virtually impossible. Pressure sensitivity still works in other apps, so it's clearly a Photoshop issue. Most of today spent researching and trying to solve the problem, which is apparently not uncommon. Uninstalling and reinstalling Photoshop and Wacom drivers, hand tweaking a PS prefs file (which solved the problem last time), changing pen nibs (sounds stupid, but apparently worked for several people), and a half dozen other solutions, none of which work.

Then I stumble across a comment buried deep in a Photoshop forum which says that as of the newest update, Photoshop CC only recognizes pen pressure when you open it using the pen. If you open the program with a mouse click, pressure sensitivity is turned off. Boom, fixed.

WTF?? Burned almost my entire day on this, and it turns out it's not a bug, but supposedly a fucking FEATURE? What goddamned pseudo-genius decided it would be a good idea to implement this, and then NOT bother to alert unsuspecting CC subscribers to it? And that it should be something you can't turn off in preferences?

I'm not normally inclined to violence, but right now I'm feeling like I'd like to hunt this guy down (and considering the arrogant assumptions involved, it's almost certain to be a guy), and perform the Viking Blood Eagle Ritual on him. Grrrr.
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I previously posted so rarely here, that I'm sure no one was wondering at my vanishing completely from G+ for a year and a half (most probably didn't even notice). That's okay, I'll explain anyway. No, it wasn't me being inept at social media - or not just that anyway.

A little over a year ago, after freelancing for 40 years, I took the queen's shilling, and hired on as full time art director and lead illustrator for Evil Overlord Games, producing Susurrus: Season of Tides, an Urban Fantasy slash Horror slash Conspiracy RPG, free-to-play online - link below.

Now, anyone who has worked for a startup knows how that can swallow your life. The budget is tight, and the deadlines are killer - especially because everything in product development takes longer than you think it will. You can say goodbye to nights and weekends at least half the time. G+? Facebook? Writing? Forget that for a while, at least until our first release. If I'd written seldom on Fsocial media or my blog before, now for the first few months, I was constrained by an NDA, and once I was free of that, I no longer had the time to write about it.

With the game up and running now, time constraints are easing up, so much so that I've gone part time. I'm back to doing freelance work, and getting some writing done on the prequel to Darkwalker. And making an effort to start paying attention to G+ again.

So check out the game:

live.susurrusgame.com
Susurrus Landing Page
Susurrus Landing Page
live.susurrusgame.com
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I'll be here on the 10th, along with a bunch of other authors.
https://www.facebook.com/events/575205099350285/
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I wasn't actually Nano-ing in any formal sense, but I managed 30K words on the sequel to "Darkwalker," and between 10 and 20 on the weird western I'm collaborating on with Rev DiCerto, so I consider that a "win," (though I don't feel any need for a certificate).
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So, my partner decided that this month, instead of me interviewing one of our authors, she should interview me...
http://corviddesign.com/cover-stories-interview-duncan-eagleson/
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Inktober: Sir Malcom Murray (Timothy Dalton)

One final Inktober piece, done in a new painting program I've been experimenting with called Rebelle. It provides natural media style tools that rival those of Corel Painter. Still getting used to it, but I think it's going to be a very useful tool.

I've never been a fan of Timothy Dalton, but I thought his performance as Sir Malcom Murray was excellent. And this character is a fine example of the way series creator and main writer John Logan finds inventive ways to re-tool the elements of his Victorian source material. Rather than do the obvious thing, and haul in Professor Van Helsing as the leader of this misfit band who oppose these supernatural horrors, Logan turns to a character who naturally must have existed, but is never mentioned in Stoker's Dracula - that of the father of Mina Murray Harker, the heroine of the novel. His absence from the original story Logan explains by making him an explorer and adventurer, probably modeled loosely on Sir Richard Francis Burton.

http://eaglesondesign.com/Inktober/MalcomMurray.jpg
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Inktober:  Eva Green

Moving from the classic to the more contemporary:  I started watching Penny Dreadful with scant hope that it would be any good.  The premise of the show, bringing together the characters of the classic Victorian horror stories (Dracula, Frankenstein, the Wolf Man, Jekyll & Hyde, Dorian Grey) had been done several times before, from the Universal films of the 40s, to the abysmal Van Helsing of a few years back, and it's almost always been done badly.  Watching Penny Dreadful , I was pleasantly surprised.  Everything about it was top-notch, from the writing to the acting and production values.

I've always admired the work of Eva Green, and her turn as the protagonist of Penny Dreadful, the cursed psychic/witch Vanessa Ives, was outstanding.

Eva Green as Vanessa Ives in Penny Dreadful (2014-16):
http://eaglesondesign.com/Inktober/Ives_01.jpg
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Inktober: Sir Christopher Lee.

Later generations would come to know Sir Christopher Lee as Saruman the White in The Lord of the Rings, and Count Dooku in Star Wars. But Lee made his name originally playing Count Dracula.
Bela Lugosi established a standard for the interpretation of Dracula for the 30s and 40s, but at the end of the 1950s, Hammer Studios brought a new vision of Dracula to the public in the person of Christopher Lee with their groundbreaking version of Dracula  (called Horror of Dracula in America for copyright reasons). It was the first Dracula film to show blood (in Technicolor), fangs, and staking, and a Dracula who moved any faster than a snail on quaaludes. Lee’s approach to Dracula was far closer to the character as presented in Bram Stoker’s original novel than had ever been seen before.
Lee would go on to play Dracula for Hammer in seven more films through the 60s and 70s, and he grew to hate it more with every sequel. He had great affection for the original novel, and always wanted to play the part in an authentic and faithful version, but Hammer had other ideas. The studio wanted to update the Count for the “mod’ generation. People have wondered why in some of the later films, Dracula had no lines. Turns out he’d had lines in the original scripts, but the writing was so abysmally bad, Lee refused to say them, and instead went through the whole film without speaking. It says something about Lee’s popularity, how firmly he’d become identified with the part in the public’s mind, that the studio let him get away with this.

The picture here is from an indie production Lee did as a labor of love. 1978’s Count Dracula ( El Conde Dracula ) was intended to be a faithful rendition of the book, which was why Lee signed on. Good intentions went downhill fast, and though the opening scenes are taken from Stoker, after that, the film becomes an incoherent mess. But at least Lee got to do the appropriate costume and makeup, and play some of the film “right.”

As Karloff and Lugosi had dominated the horror films of the 30s and 40s, Lee, Peter Cushing (and arguably Vincent Price) would dominate the genre in the 60s and 70s. Lee and Cushing would appear together in 22 films, primarily from Hammer and Amicus, and if the quality of the scripts was not always sterling, their performances never fail to entertain.
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It's a two-fer today, since commercial deadlines meant I missed one over the weekend.

Inktober:  Carolyn Jones

Considering the impact Carolyn Jones as Morticia had on my young mind and libido, it's a wonder I never developed a Pavlovian response to French like Gomez had.  "Goth" style hadn't been named yet, but she had it in spades.  And her marriage to Gomez had to be one of the healthiest on 60s television - certainly it was the only one with any passion in it.

Carolyn Jones had quite a career both before and after The Addams Family.  She appeared many times on Dragnet, and had parts in both Invasion of the Body Snatchers (the original '56 version) and Hitchcock's The Man Who Knew Too Much.  She was the Queen of Diamonds on the 60s Batman series, and played Hippolyta, the mother of Wonder Woman, on the Lynda Carter 70s series.

Irony Department:  Jones' last gig was on a soap called Capitol, and when she was dying of cancer, she was subbed in the series by an actress named Marla Adams.  Only one "d," but still...

http://eaglesondesign.com/Inktober/Morticia.jpg
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