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The Lara-Su Chronicles and Ken Penders topic - READ PAGE 164, POST 4096

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On 4/3/2020 at 10:16 AM, Zonic 2099 said:

Okay, the new eyestrain addition aside, Maybe it's because I didn't have the best nights sleep but is he really saying he wants to put this out physically?

Is it just me or does the guy on the top right kinda look like Will Smith.

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On 4/3/2020 at 7:16 AM, Zonic 2099 said:

Okay, the new eyestrain addition aside, Maybe it's because I didn't have the best nights sleep but is he really saying he wants to put this out physically?

Who is the toffee-colored echidna-looking thing next to the Anthony Mackie-clone? I don't recall ever seeing artwork of him before. 

 

And what is Ken's obsession with people having eye implants of some kind? 

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11 hours ago, horridus said:

The answer is at once complicated and simple. 

The complicated version is as follows- that character that utilizes Anthony Mackie's likeness is Commander Mykhal Taelor, a new character who is supposedly meant to provide a 'human' viewpoint to the series. One noteworthy trait of Taelor is that he has undergone SEVERAL design revisions, and this is the only time in which Penders has decided to stick with something-

TNimbUE.jpg

Almost looks like a timeline of drug addiction, doesn't it? For the record, yes, that Mackie-alike head was directly recycled and edited from an art piece Penders did earlier. In as much as tracing the IMDB picture of Anthony Mackie counts as 'art'. 

CN9TvK5UYAAZD0W.png

Now then, as to why MACKIE, specifically? The reason Penders gives is thus-

image

Yeah. Draw your own conclusions from that one. I'm just gonna say "Yikes". 

More to the point though? Penders is a major league fanboy of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and tends to gush about it, and the decision to have Taelor look like Mackie came about as a result of that. And since Penders cannot for the life of him leave his interests out of his work, even work that is meant to be utterly original, he decided that Taelor Shall Look Like Mackie. This is a guy who randomly decided to include Ersatz versions of Scully and Mulder in the Image Sonic Crossover and even thanks Chris Carter in that book, after all. 

Now, all that was the complicated version.

The simple version? Penders is a lazy hack with an incessant need to reference his interests, with a side order of having deeply unrealistic expectations. 

Sometimes I wonder if Penders is just bullshitting his way through and seeing how far he can get.

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2 hours ago, Big Panda said:

That’s Cobor iirc.

Yep, that is indeed the revised Cobar, though this picture is slightly different from the last image of the guy Penders released way back when.

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I guess he's 'bald' now, or whatever. 

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1 hour ago, UnknownByME said:

Sometimes I wonder if Penders is just bullshitting his way through and seeing how far he can get.

In Ken’s defence: modelling comic characters after actors and celebrities is nothing new 

 

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2 minutes ago, Leebo4 said:

In Ken’s defence: modelling comic characters after actors and celebrities is nothing new 

 

Literally tracing and stealing an IDMB image isn't just "modelling after a celebrity". It wasn't modelled after Anthony, it is him, because it's his image being traced. In which case, Anthony didn't give permission for his likeness to be used in such a way.

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3 minutes ago, Leebo4 said:

In Ken’s defence: modelling comic characters after actors and celebrities is nothing new 

 

True, but he's very blatant about it.

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29 minutes ago, ShadowSJG said:

How so?

They gave him the benefit of the doubt and he gave his side of the story. Of course, he makes himself sound like the hero. Was entertaining, at least. 

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13 minutes ago, Zippo said:

They gave him the benefit of the doubt and he gave his side of the story. Of course, he makes himself sound like the hero. Was entertaining, at least. 

I wonder if he was at all convincing to anyone who doesn't know him.

The only platform he should be given is one that has a trap door.

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On 4/3/2020 at 10:16 AM, Zonic 2099 said:

Okay, the new eyestrain addition aside, Maybe it's because I didn't have the best nights sleep but is he really saying he wants to put this out physically?

I just ... I don't even know where to begin with this piece. How can he even think this is worthy of a final design cover, or even a print? It's clustered, it's ugly, and it just can't decide what it wants to be. The characters in the foreground are shaded okay, and actually look decent. But I suppose that's because their designs were lifted from elsewhere and tweaked. But the background ... Oh good God the background. The eyes are all weird and strange and aren't shaded correctly. The characters themselves are shaded incorrectly and their proportions are all off. It just shows that he does not know how to use the software he has and shouldn't be using it until he learns. Some people just aren't good with computer art, inking, and coloring. 

I, for one, can admit that I'm a traditional artist and will not touch a drawing pad. Penders should do the same. 

I have no idea what tool he's using here, and someone can fill it in for me, but he's definitely using it too much. The characters look like over-worn barbie plastic toys and are in no way realistic. The cover is too cluttered and there is a saying that Less is More. Having a more simple cover does not constitute as lazy, but highlights what you want your piece to be about and not just shoehorn in characters just because you want them displayed. 

My advice, put down the digital pad, grab your pencil and paper, and just get rid of all this clutter. It's unneeded. Draw original pieces and stop relying heavily on old covers and tracing over an actors face. It's been almost 10 years and if this is all you have to show for it then it's a pitiful, sad, sight. How are you a comic artist? (Gah) ... I want to vomit at how bad this is, and that's not an exaggeration. Looking at this makes me ill. 

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23 minutes ago, OnyxCrimsonBlur said:

 

I have no idea what tool he's using here, and someone can fill it in for me, but he's definitely using it too much.

I have both Clip and Photoshop (Elements 8 to be clear). A lot of airbrushing is being used, which is great for soft shadows and lights. More sharper shadows, not so much. It looks like dodge and burn is being used which should never be used for shading.. Gradient tool, the crystal ball and ground only used the the gradient tool. Gradient tool should be used along with shading. I think the only time you can get away using just the gradient tool is for a clear blue sky. Smudge tool may also be used, I don't know.

Another mistake I can tell Penders is making is that he relies on the line art for painting, then removes the line art. I'm not sure how to explain this, but when ever I did a drawing, then colored and shade, then removed the line art it looks really off. It's better to paint above a sketch so you don't get this look.

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6 minutes ago, AlienBunny said:

I have both Clip and Photoshop (Elements 8 to be clear). A lot of airbrushing is being used, which is great for soft shadows and lights. More sharper shadows, not so much. It looks like dodge and burn is being used which should never be used for shading.. Gradient tool, the crystal ball and ground only used the the gradient tool. Gradient tool should be used along with shading. I think the only time you can get away using just the gradient tool is for a clear blue sky. Smudge tool may also be used, I don't know.

Another mistake I can tell Penders is making is that he relies on the line art for painting, then removes the line art. I'm not sure how to explain this, but when ever I did a drawing, then colored and shade, then removed the line art it looks really off. It's better to paint above a sketch so you don't get this look.

Thank you!

Yeah, he's definitely over-using tools for certain aspects. I think I know what you mean here. It's like in traditional art when you color in a sketch, but don't ink it, but then erase your pencil lines... the whole piece of art looks off. You need your inked lines in comic art to make it pop, but yeah he definitely erased his sketch lines and didn't do any inking or black-lining. 

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It definitely looks bad. I agree that he really should just drop it and move on. WHY would you do "Echy'dn'yas" as an alien race? It looks like some awful 90s Battlefield Earth comic book tie-in that people would've hated at the time and only aged worse (or was appreciated ironically). 

Why not just make these characters human?????? He can actually kinda draw humans! The humans can still be aliens if that's important to the story which it probably isn't. They can be a society called Echy'dnya's if you really want, all of the other lore you want to include, guardians whatever. When he's not tracing IMDb photos, Penders can draw humans pretty decently. That's his forte. He always inserted odd human anatomy into his Sonic and Knuckles characters obviously. Why, when freed of the constraints of being a SEGA licensed product, does he insist on keeping them alien furries? Common sense, his own preferences, should have told him that would be the first thing he'd drop. 

However I did listen/watch the youtube interview, and he's kind of an idiot, he's like the guy in Office Space with the red stapler but instead it's about Knuckles OCs with his name on it... but I was also in agreement with a lot of his thoughts, or at least sympathetic to them, for the most part. He was still a dick on a bunch of things in addition to being an idiot, but. I'm trying to be praiseful.

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3 hours ago, Moose the Cat said:

Why not just make these characters human?????? He can actually kinda draw humans! The humans can still be aliens if that's important to the story which it probably isn't. They can be a society called Echy'dnya's if you really want, all of the other lore you want to include, guardians whatever. When he's not tracing IMDb photos, Penders can draw humans pretty decently. That's his forte. He always inserted odd human anatomy into his Sonic and Knuckles characters obviously. Why, when freed of the constraints of being a SEGA licensed product, does he insist on keeping them alien furries? Common sense, his own preferences, should have told him that would be the first thing he'd drop. 

It's because regardless of what Penders likes to claim regarding the ability of his creations to stand without the Sonic connection, the truth of the matter is that he is all too aware of the fact that the only reason anyone ever cared about anything pertaining to Lara-Su is due to the fact it was part of the Sonic series, and its the only thing that has any chance of getting people's attention or drawing them in. It's why even though he claims they're aliens now they're still called 'Echyd'nya', and why despite this being (in his words) a 'Hard Science Fiction' story it takes place on a world called Mobius inhabited by anthropomorphic animal people and why the 'Princess of Acorn' and 'Warlord Kintobor' are a thing. 

He could easily do any of the things you mentioned, but the simple fact is that he needs that Sonic connection. Sonic is literally the only thing he's ever had going for him. His own attempt at an original series, The Lost Ones, fizzled and died after one stinking issue. He's counting on fans of his characters being so desperate to see them in ANY capacity that he's made it the lynchpin of his entire project, even as he tries to pretend otherwise. As such? The Sonic Influence is still visibly, painfully there, grotesque as it has been rendered. 

....that and he just kinda lacks common sense in general. This is a guy who has spent nearly ten years now doing work on an app with bells and whistles like voice actors and narrators and the like, when he doesn't have anything of anything else released, after all. 

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1 hour ago, horridus said:

It's because regardless of what Penders likes to claim regarding the ability of his creations to stand without the Sonic connection, the truth of the matter is that he is all too aware of the fact that the only reason anyone ever cared about anything pertaining to Lara-Su is due to the fact it was part of the Sonic series, and its the only thing that has any chance of getting people's attention or drawing them in. It's why even though he claims they're aliens now they're still called 'Echyd'nya', and why despite this being (in his words) a 'Hard Science Fiction' story it takes place on a world called Mobius inhabited by anthropomorphic animal people and why the 'Princess of Acorn' and 'Warlord Kintobor' are a thing. 

He could easily do any of the things you mentioned, but the simple fact is that he needs that Sonic connection. Sonic is literally the only thing he's ever had going for him. His own attempt at an original series, The Lost Ones, fizzled and died after one stinking issue. He's counting on fans of his characters being so desperate to see them in ANY capacity that he's made it the lynchpin of his entire project, even as he tries to pretend otherwise. 

....that and he just kinda lacks common sense in general. This is a guy who has spent nearly ten years now doing work on an app with bells and whistles like voice actors and narrators and the like, when he doesn't have anything of anything else released, after all. 

Yeah, you're right. 

It's just sad what a colossal waste of time and energy this has obviously turned out to be for him. Obviously he has no one to blame but himself and his unchecked narcissistic impulses. Quite literally nobody is forcing him to do the Lara-Su Chronicles except the absurd chip on his shoulder. 

I think he probably could've even retained whatever Sonic readers were interested in the project if he kept all the names the same as he wants, fine whatever, but just reinvented the whole basic setting so it was more uniquely his thing instead of a very amateurish looking knock off. Instead of looking like an artist whose vision was held back by doing a licensed franchise book (which is what he wants), he looks like a desperate old man clinging to the shred of imagined glory he once held in the 90s. It's like Bojack Horseman but much more depressing.

The way he's doing it is the absolute worst of both worlds. His Archie run and LSC obviously can't directly connect to each other. He can't collect the first part of this story for the reader. As it is now, there's no possible way for Lara Su Chronicles to stand on its own legs for new readers, unless, somehow, that hypothetical reader has absolutely no familiarity with Sonic and Knuckles (in which case I'd be curious to know how they found the book). What also sucks is that by trading on the Sonic connection, Penders is using the Sonic franchise both as shoulders to stand on, and also as a kind of shield. "Hey why is that stupid as shit?" "Well, originally it was less stupid but then there were rights issues and I had to make some changes and compromises." Great. Who wouldn't want the compromised, changed version of a Sonic fanfic comic that doesn't feature Sonic characters at all, but instead... their relatives!

Penders would've been far better served just doing Lara Su as human characters, or anything different from "Ech'y'd'n'y'auuuuughDUDEthisissobadicannot. He could keep teasing Sonic fans on twitter to market it. Saying that this is the purest version of the story he wanted to tell in Archie comics, and maybe he'll someday draw them closer to their original incarnations, whatever. So you'd want to buy the book because it shows you where Mobius 25 Years Later might've gone, and because it's just humans and funky aliens and robots, it might even look not half bad. And then he'd keep teasing it like, "oh on page 19, in Archie, that would've been Sonic fighting with Geoffrey about who took Sally's virginity, but in this book it's, uh, Johnny Lo'stone who takes the hero role, and Lara-Su loves him because he's so great, but actually it's his dad who's great." Or whatever, insert your Penders plot here. Point is it would've been at least the same amount of connection to the people already paying attention to him, but more potential to expand its audience to new readers, if by some impossibility, it was somehow good. 

But it doesn't even need to have been all of this stupid effort, either. He could've just released a script and some designs and had that be the end of it for now, and move onto a project that could be his breakout hit. He put out one issue of his magnum opus baby project, right, The Lost Ones, because he badgered his friends at Image to do it. So if he's going to be self publishing anyway... why not do that? 

I mean, I know the answer.  He can't see the forest for the trees, he's too wrapped up in his own self narrative on this... and unfortunately for Ken, a Penders narrative tends to be convoluted, meandering, and pointless, despite the occasional cool idea or insight. Honestly I don't really care, it's just maddening to see someone keep shooting themselves in the foot long after it's been amputated. 

...I guess I do care to the degree that it's a trainwreck, so it's darkly entertaining and also very sad and horrifying. I almost want someone at IDW to step in and be like "Ken, Ken, Ken.... Jesus, man, damn. Please. Stop this embarrassing shit. This is an intervention. Okay here's the deal. We'll give you a three issue miniseries. Use your characters, we'll pay your fee, just this once, to bury the hatchet. Here's your directive -- take your storyline and finish it, but Ian will be editing you on how to make your wacky story connect to the ongoing, whether it's an AU or what. This is your sendoff, so do it right." Already in this imagined scenario you can imagine Ken already storming out of this conversation. Edit me?! You can't edit me! I've been doing this since before you were born, I could be your father! ...father....father....fathhhe.r.... and then he passes out.

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Not Lara-Su Chronicles related but I don't know whats worse the fact that he actually used his "Floating Island productions" Logo or how this Blu-ray looks more like a Family photo than anything else..

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