With deadlines and such, stress can be pretty high around my studio. Luckily, I take at least an hour break away from it a day. Since working on this book, I try to get as much sketching done as I can. However, I try not to do a sketch for my book. I can fit that somewhere else into my day. No. What I'm talking about is just drawing a character I like and do it as spontaneously as I can. Not much fluff or major cleanup, just a spur of the moment drawing.
This drawing can be a lot of things. But it can't be finished. I like the rough look of it. And, this particular exercise has allowed me to loosen up on my own drawing style. I used to torture myself with endless criticism because I was so rigid in my construction. A true student of "How to Draw the Marvel Way," I would construct my work using those valuable lessons. But would sacrifice the energy of the fun of drawing to make sure I "did it right."
If anything comes out of the resurgence in my getting this book out, is that I've rediscovered my love of drawing because of this.
A lifelong comics fan, Mike W. Belcher is the writer/artist of MAN IN THE MASK. A story he's had with him for over 20 years.