浪漫菖蒲 / Roman shobu

An online sketch journal for the person who runs saicoink.

Long time no write!!!

It's been so long since I last updated this particular journal. Perhaps there are maybe one or two people who still subscribe or keep track of this blog, so I felt that I should make a post here...

Anyway, if you haven't already discerned by the lack of updates, I have moved my site to a Wordpress system. If you want to receive the latest news and updates, it is best to check the news section of my website and the sketch log for random sketches (though I admit I don't upload those as frequent as I would like...).

In 2011 I have already been involved in the release of two different zines-
the second issue of Arabesque zine is finally out!!!

This issue contained 19 contributors! I helped with the cover design and overall book design and layout. I also had time to do 2 collages. I wish I had more time to do more for the book though we had so much content! Check out the official site for more information and previews!.

Also, I created a collage and art zine that debut that this year's TCAF called The End Days of Our Youth.

It contains a short article about Guruguru Eigakan as well as a strong collection of collages using materials from old pre-WWII magazines and my own photographs. It was a fun experiment. :-)

You can order both these books at the new site's order page. FYI, I still accept non-PP payment like money orders and cash.

I may not update this blog very much any more, but I will keep it up for the sake of keeping the content online. Thank you for all your continued support!! m(_ _)m


Smackjeeves Nomination

I forgot to add that Open Spaces and Closed Places was nominated for best characters on Smackjeeves- a website I've been using to upload parts of the comic online. You can vote here.

I honestly don't think I have any chance of winning, but I thought it was really awesome that someone even thought to nominate me. I think, if anything, the strength of the comic lies in its characters. I wish my style and comic making was more established before I took on a project of this length and grandeur, but without it I wouldn't have been able to develop this much! I still have a long way to go!


2010/06/10 - Brush Inking

I bought a new brush pen based on my friend's suggestion called Kuretake. It is a cartridge-based brush pen, and I find it easier to control than a traditional brush (which I've tried out before for a set of gauche paintings I did ages ago). I want to try to ink the next issue of OSCP with brush to give the lines more dimension but I'm not sure if I have time or the skills to pull it off. I'm currently inking the comic digitally and that makes it easier for me to fix mistakes made in pencils and tighten the lines but the final product is not as soulful as I would like. I wonder if there is a way I can ink digitally and have varying line widths.

Inking by nib or brush is a lot quicker in someways compared to digital but it is harder to fix mistakes and I really have no confidence with the things I ink by hand. No matter what anyone says, it lacks accuracy and precision which annoys me.


Concept is a playoff from a panel from Suehiro Maruo's DDT or something. Even though the brush inking on the right is more feeling, the digital inking on the right is technically a lot better. I showed this to a couple of people and everyone liked the drawing on the left most even though it really annoys me. I wanted to cry after I inked it because I thought it was so bad.

Length of time brush inking: Around 5
Lenght of time digital inking: Around 6-7?

Maybe if I wanted to ink my comic in brush I would have to 'ink' loosely digitally first for precision and use that as the guideline for the brush inking. That would mean my inking would take twice as long though.

Not sure what I should do! It is these kind of mundane things I worry about when making comics. I know the digital inking isn't the best but am reluctant to change it for OSCP now since I started using digital in the first place.


OSCP4 Cover Printing Process

I finally moved my blog to a new address since Blogspot no longer offered the FTP uploading service I was using before. The new address is now journal.saicoink.com.

I haven't been able to update the blog since I've been traveling a lot the past few months and working on lots of comics. Here is what I've been up to the last couple of months.

Released fourth volume of original mini comic series Open Spaces and Closed Places back in February! You can get your copy here.

Here are some progress shots of the cover printed on Risograph and a photocopy machine. A Risograph is like a photocopier except it uses coloured soy-based inks and duplicates faster and cheaper per page at large volumes. The colours don't photograph very well. You have to see the covers in person to see the florescent hot pink and yellow (which appears lime green in some of the photos below).

The hot pink and yellow layered on top of one another produces a brilliant orange.

We're still trying to find a way to print that won't produce so much excess ink that never completely dries. Some of the covers were printed with Risograph all the way (three layers of yellow, process magenta or red, and black), but since the black created some streaking problems, for the final run of covers the black was replicated on a photocopy machine instead. Samples of Risograph printed flyers and books I have from Japan don't have this same problem - maybe if we used newsprint?

I did some heavy colour editing of one process photo to reflect the actual colour of the book cover, but there was no way to completely replicate the hot pink as seen by the naked eye on a computer screen:

Extra special thanks to Kris Mukai and the staff at the Pratt Institute print shop for making this a reality.

Final product bound with colour insert:

As you can see, we also produced a print variation with red ink instead of hot pink. In addition to web order, you can also pick up OSCP4 and other issues in person at The Beguiling (Toronto) and Rocketship (Brooklyn).

In addition to OSCP4 and producing another issue of Sunflower Club, I also contributed a page of fanart for the Lady Gaga fanzine Prison for Bitches and a short story for the anthology Expired Seafood. Both books were released at TCAF this year!

Currently working on the 2010 issue of Arabesque zine, OSCP5, and thinking about a zine about Eroguro Innocence that I'll get around to someday...

Anyway, I will be updating this blog much more often now that I'm finally home and have a more regular work schedule. The next post will be a brief report of TCAF and Anime North events I attended in May.



Just a quick note- I'm going to be exhibiting at Canzine this weekend on Sunday November 1st at the Gladstone Hotel from 1:00pm - 7:00pm. $5 gets you in the door and you get a copy of Broken Pencil magazine as well. I went last year and it is a really crowded event but lots of fun. I don't know a lot about the zine world so I really look forward to seeing what kinds of things people will have for sale. I actually have a lot more money this year so I hope to pick up lots of fun things since I have no minis for trading. ;A;

I will have copies of OSCP 1+2, OSCP3 with the new cover, Sunflower Club #1, and some mini prints. No new comics since I've been so busy with Arabesque which will also debut at Canzine as well. I handbound each and every book.

Arabesque is a really wonderful and varied book featuring contributions from around 16 different international contributors from all around the world (from Australia to Finland to Argentina!). I drew some illustrations and worked on the design and production of the zine. I'm so proud to have been a part of this wonderful project. Some highlights of the book include an article about pre-WWII Japanese girls magazines, fashion illustrations, an article about a famous cemetary in Buenos Aires with photos, photographs, and lots of other things.

To keep updated on Arabesque, please check out the blog we set up. In the future we will have posts from contributors to the zine featuring things that are related to the aesthetics side of the zine.


Arabesque Zine

Preorders for the otome (maiden) aesthetics zine Arabesque have started! I contributed a lot to this zine with the cover design, layout, and illustrations. There are lots of really interesting articles in it with fashion illustrations and photoshoots. There are even colour pages! We are being a little mysterious with the content right now but will probably reveal more as the book gets printed and assembled. :-) I am going to handle the handbinding for each copy. I hope that it does well so that we may produce another issue for summer 2010 that is even more gorgeous than this one. <3

We've been planning this since July last year and now I can't believe this is finally going to be a reality. It started out with some wishful thinking by my friend Rinna, and we decided to organize and get a zine done. For this zine we have 16 international contributors. :D

Please check it out. Thanks for your support! We will debut the book at Canzine in Toronto this November 1st.


2009/09/24 - Jirou

Yesterday I went out for lunch and didn't realize that the leaves were turning colour until that day. It was very beautiful. Autumn is already here upon us. Can you believe it? A year has passed since I decided to draw more comics.

A few days ago I finished the pencils for OSCP4. It is something like 95 pages. I wonder if how many pages I will have to throw away and whether what I have right now makes any sense at all or not. Comics take so long to do yet they are so easy to read quickly. What takes me several months to produce probably only takes an hour to read at most. How long will it take me to ink all this?! D:

I scanned in and started inking parts of the first page today. Here is a part of a panel. I'm kind of out of practice. Already I feel that the drawing is going to superior to OSCP3 in so many ways. I can't even look at OSCP3 without cringing or thinking about how I would draw a certain thing different. If I start a new comic project someday I want to try doing it in a different style.