Reagan Lodge

RVA, Illustrator, VCU CommArts starting in Fall 2014
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Visited Dreamworks Studios today to catch up with some old friends (Tyler Philips and Rad Sechrist, look them up!) and tour the facilities. They had a collie as a life drawing model, so I did a quick brushpen sketch of her. Collie anatomy is so hard to figure out under all that massive fluff.

I’m currently visiting my homeland of California right now, around the LA/San Diego areas. I’ll be messing around Chinatown in LA tomorrow. Message me if you wanna coffee.

This has been a good trip but I really, really need to get back to my weightroom and lap swimming. 2 weeks without a consistent workout is cruel and unusual for me.

More notes from my Civil Affairs training.

Happy Hans here helps me study.

Pretty busy this month. Here, have some important notes on disaster response logistics. You’re all in good hands, I swear.

misplacedhash:

reaganlodge:

A longtime fan in Japan requested a drawing of Wyit, who some of you might remember from the two comics I did in volumes 3 and 5 of the Flight comics anthologies edited by Kazu Kibuishi.

This was drawn without consulting any of my old images/references of the character, so it was interesting to see how things changed since 2008-2009 when I last drew anything from that story.

I don’t know if or when I’ll release Wyit as a book or some other product, since that world/story was devised when I was at a very, VERY different place in life with very different values. But at some point I would like to do a graphic novel geared towards a young-adult audience, and Wyit might be the right thing for it.

Different values how?

Mostly in how I’d like to handle a story protagonist now. When I initially started shaping Wyit’s story, he took a very Bilbo Baggins kind of archetype where a Problem happens to him, and a mixture of random chance, blind luck, and a little bit of craftiness gets him out of it.

After having been away from the story for about 5 years, and having had a lot of life changes during that time, it’s kind of hard to feel as engaged by that archetype as I used to be. At the risk of sounding like a lunkhead Marine stereotype, I’m far more energized and inspired by impossibly heroic Leonidas, Hercules, Genghis Khan, or (my favorite) Conan of Cimmeria archetypes - not in any ironic sense either, but because those tales healthily shame me by reminding me how weak I am compared to them, and inspires me to sweat, rage, and challenge myself to strive for that kind of strength. Art, myth and history were what originally inspired me to join the Marines and take up weightlifting (though I make NO claim to be excellent at either!). It wasn’t enough to merely read, write and draw about danger and toil - I had to live it to become a part of my own art.

But I know that the humble everyman/Bilbo/Luke Skywalker archetype who survives incredible adventures and peril is something that speaks well to other people, hence that theme of the likeably common “clever fool” being constant throughout human fiction over the centuries. It’s just in a different category from the brutally strong heroic-barbarian archetype that I really dig.

I think with Wyit I need to figure out how I can tell that kind of story in a way that engages me as the creator, while not also making the character into something he isn’t. I know it can be done, there’s just a lot of remapping to do along the way.

A longtime fan in Japan requested a drawing of Wyit, who some of you might remember from the two comics I did in volumes 3 and 5 of the Flight comics anthologies edited by Kazu Kibuishi.

This was drawn without consulting any of my old images/references of the character, so it was interesting to see how things changed since 2008-2009 when I last drew anything from that story.

I don’t know if or when I’ll release Wyit as a book or some other product, since that world/story was devised when I was at a very, VERY different place in life with very different priorities/values. But at some point I would like to do a graphic novel geared towards a young-adult audience, and Wyit might be the right thing for it.

More militarized industrial-gonzo chaos.

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, I got a thrilling phone call from Sterling Hundley informing me of my acceptance to VCU’s Communication Arts program, which I will be attending this Fall. Pretty damn excited about this.

Kali Yuga Kontra.

"FUCK was that one of ours?!"

Beyond the Wall of Sleep.

Ernst Jünger - Writer, Anarch, Shock Trooper, Entomologist, and Psychonaut. How many other people can survive 12 combat injuries in the trenches of WW1, serve again in WW2 during the Occupation of France by chilling with Pablo Picasso and drinking wine on rooftops while watching British air raids, be one of the first people to take LSD with Albert Hoffman, have a giant bug collection and be on the Marine Corps Reading List?

Definitely one of my personal heroes. Guy’s life was a masterpiece.

Anonymous Asked:
Everytime I see you I want to punch you in the face! I can't stand the way you look.

And this is why I’m disabling anonymous comments. Seriously, just email me directly. Or fight me in person if you think you’re bad enough.

I never thought I’d be one to bubble in “Yes” for the post-deployment health assessment where they ask you “Do you have difficulty engaging in hobbies/favorite pastimes?”. A couple months ago I admitted to myself that my creative output since getting back from Afghanistan was lower than it’s been in my entire life, and it wasn’t getting any better.

A lot of previously engaging things have been completely bland since I getting back… Kind of like noticing your taste buds no longer register the flavor of your favorite dish, and then you just get angry as hell because you’re realizing how fake the world is and you’re stuck with it. Drawing used to be the most satisfying and thrilling thing in the world, now it wasn’t. What few sparks of enjoyment I could stir up from the cooling ashes were only possible after hours and hours of moving my hand with a pen in a purely mechanical chore.

My rackmate and partner for many convoys put it best, “We will never feel that alive again”. Unless you take up a life of banditry, nothing in the normal world can compare to the rush you can get over there. Giving visuals to stories in my head was what made me feel alive and gave me that little creative high, that rush of enjoyment. Not anymore.

And that’s a really, really fucking terrifying realization for someone who’s entire life has revolved around drawing since age 16.

I didn’t quite give up on drawing. You’ll notice I’ve been posting almost nothing but life drawing/observational sketches. That’s because it’s a purely mechanical process for me. I didn’t have to set myself up for disappointment by thinking creatively with those. I could just go through the motions and hope something would change for the better. Hope. And Waiting… But a slave is one who waits for someone else to free him.

Without going into specifics, the past few weeks have involved a lot of very intense personal rediscovery and relearning how to see beauty. Some of it was initiated by an encouraging conversation with Justin Cherry (aka Nivbed) who definitely deserves some credit, and Jennadelle for being incredibly supportive as a drawing collaborator throughout these disappointing months. Ultimately it required some risk and deep inner voyaging to catch a distant glimpse of that lost homeland. A direction to head in, I suppose. If this sounds all weird and mystical, it’s because it absolutely is.

Now I’ve actually been finding drawing and my mediocre piano playing to be very enjoyable and fulfilling and truly loving the learning process again, more than either have been in over a year or two. Key thing here being not just enjoying the image or final product, but enjoying the PROCESS, treating it like the journey it can be.

No idea if somebody out there might find encouragement in this, but there it is. I’ve been through the usual up & down periods of productivity shaped by everyday joys/stresses, but this was something far deeper and dangerous. I don’t think of these things as merely “art blocks” since I find the term misleading, but I’ll tag it as such in case this is of use to anyone affected by them.

In other news, I recently applied to Virginia Commonwealth University’s Communication Arts program (Illustration) for Fall 2014. I’m definitely excited to be getting back into the art school thing again, and really looking forward to that kind of immersive studio environment and hands-on learning.

Lamplighter RVA.

Another one of those people I see every time I go out in Richmond. Don’t know him, I just know he’s in a band, and has really cool boots and jackets.