Saturday, January 12, 2013

Zelda Anime: Interview

I have something special for everyone today. I figured since it was my birthday I would give a gift to everyone besides the awesome gift of me. I know, I know my birth was enough gift, but you are going to like this one.

I had the privilege of interviewing the creators of the greatest web comic out there. (Maybe that was a little over the top?)

Zelda Anime, and if you don't know what that is shame on you. I shall now extract your souls, and feed them to my basement like creature known as the Gremlin cat. Let me tell ya, she loves her souls. :)

Zelda Anime project, combines the 1980's Legend of Zelda cartoon (of which I own all of), and a mix of aspects from the games that end up in one carefully executed web comic.

The two reasonable for this mesh up of awesome are known as OniChild and Crazyfreak. And I am convinced they have super powers that rule over the comic world.

Alright I will stop talking, and for the person that complained in the back. Yeah you, I would stay away from those dark alleys for a few days.

Lets get the most obvious question out of the way first. What sparked the
idea behind Zelda Anime?

OniChild: (OC)

Well, you sort of answered your question there.

Before even I took up the project, Crazyfreak started this idea with Lady Juliet from North Castle in 2007; that idea was basically “what if the Zelda cartoon was revamped into a more modern, anime-styled form?” So Crazyfreak started doing these “snapshots” that had captions or subtitles of certain scenes from the show drawn in her own style.

I pitched the idea to get Zeldanime reborn back in August 2009 and it’s taken off since.

Crazyfreak: (CF)

I was inspired by North Castle, a well known Zelda fansite. Lady Juliet the webmaster of North Castle always had this love for the cartoons. I used to love the Zelda cartoons as well when I was 6 years old. So when I saw how much dedication and artwork Lady Juliet had for the Zelda cartoons, it kind of gave me the idea to revamp the cartoons in a more popular art style. I always saw some potential in the cartoons, especially their idea of the Triforce and the dynamic friendship Link and Zelda have in it.

If my memory has not completely vanished in the black hole of insanity. The
comic started out with just OniChild and CrazyFreak. How did this
partnership start?

OniChild: (OC)

Crazyfreak and I knew about each other through various Zelda fan-sites in the late 90’s, such as Zelda Power and her own old site, Zelda Love.  We knew about each other’s work and we always silently observed each other.  It wasn’t until 2002 or 2003 where we actually said something to each other for the first time, where Crazyfreak asked me to do an art trade with her.  I accepted, why not? We didn’t get to do that art trade until six years later in July 2009--I finished mine in August.  A week after that, I asked Crazyfreak to bring Zeldanime back to life.

Crazyfreak: (CF)
Basically what Onichild said, we finished an art trade and somehow Onichild told me he really loved my design of the cartoon Zelda. The design with her having short hair and looking a bit more like Sheik. So he asked me if we could revive the project and I said yes. I’m glad we started it, it always makes me happy when I see people admiring the comic.

I am sure many of my four readers( the half grew another appendage) can agree that sometimes you just get burned out on a project. Have you guys run into this at all? If so what gave you that jumpstart to get over that wall? Or maybe you just blew it up.

OniChild: (OC)

All the time! It’s kind of funny, though--because our project is a very long storyline, we have a bunch of things planned for it that we have no idea when we could ever get to, such as seeing Prince Facade or a zora, even.  So whenever we’re in a slump, I always talk things over with Crazyfreak to get us pumped up again for what we’re working on.  For example, throughout Chapter 2, the only thing I could possibly think of was working on the Dodongo fight scene.  Once I got there, I was already burned out by the fourth or fifth page.  I looked further--to Ganon’s encounter.  Now, I’m looking at the second scene in Chapter 4 and I’m still excited!

It also just requires taking a break from things once in a while.  Pick up a video game, go watch a movie or something.  For me at least, it’s about inspiration.  Something will spark up again, even if it isn’t for the current thing I’m working on.  If it’s for something that’s for sure coming, I’ll get pumped up enough to work on the current part just to reach that next one.

Crazyfreak: (CF)
I am surprised how much dedication Onichild has in drawing comics, the hardest part of drawing/coloring a comic is being motivated. So far Onichild has always motivated me into coloring all those pages. There was a period I couldn’t color anymore due to school. Sylphide did an excellent job at the coloring. I think having more people working on a comic works better than just doing it by yourself. I have much respect for the ones who draw and color their comic by themselves.

To better understand the environment that spawns this great web comic, tell
us about your work space. What type of music do you play if any? Or if you
are messed up as me, what over marketed paranormal show are you watching?

OniChild: (OC)

Ha, My workspace consists of my rather empty desk, my computer in front of my face either playing reruns of a TV show or a movie I’ve seen a thousand times before.  A horrible habit, actually.  I’ve switched to just listening to music.  My playlist is filled with a majority of soundtracks from video games and movies, like the Dark Knight trilogy, the 25th Anniversary Zelda Symphony, and I’ll have some other more contemporary band stuff in there, too.  But, for the most part, I have soundtracks.  Helps get a grasp on the mood when I work on something.

I also love Pogo.  He’s fantastic.

Crazyfreak: (CF)
Just like Onichild the computer is in front of my face and I color the pages with a Wacom Intuos 4 medium tablet. Sometimes I listen to music but most of the times I just kind of forget about music and chat with Onichild while coloring the pages. Most music I listen is Zelda music, it creates some atmosphere when I color the pages. (For example when coloring a scene with Zelda and Link I listen to Zelda’s lullaby)

What authors, artist, or anyone else that have inspired your work?

OniChild: (OC)

My personal teachers, Jo, Eric, and Christina Chen.  Jo and Christina are professional international comic artists and the three of them have helped me grow a lot--they’ve been teaching me since I was 8.  There’s a long list of other artists, but Metzen and Samwise of Blizzard help me out a lot, too, along with Yoshiyuki Sadamoto who did Evangelion.

As for authors...I shamefully do not read nearly as much as I should.

Crazyfreak: (CF)
Mostly the Nintendo artist of Zelda, furthermore Artgem, Kidchan but also a lot of Zelda fanartists such as Sylphide, Comiz-Inc and many more on Deviantart and on Pixiv.

When do you guys find you do your best work? Morning, noon, night,
graveyard shift?

OniChild: (OC)

I respect my bedtime of 12-1am.  Or I try to, anyway.  It’s hard to define when the best time to work is considering I’ll take any chance I have to work on Zeldanime.  I guess the most frequent time of day I work on that stuff would have to be the afternoon or evening.

Crazyfreak: (CF)
Usually all four of them. I’ve had days I would work from Morning till graveyard shifts to finish all the pages so we could update a scene. (6 pages) But usually now it’s evening and night. Around graveyard shift (since Onichild and I have time difference) I would get annoyed if Onichild would give me feedback on the placements of the speech bubbles. Haha luckily Onichild has a lot of patience on dealing with me.

For those people out there that are wondering why their skills get nowhere
fast, tell us how many hours do you spend drawing or sketching during an
average week?

OniChild: (OC)

No one gets their skills out of nowhere fast, unless you’re some sort of super-human prodigy that just “gets it.” I mentioned I started seriously learning how to draw when I was 8.  I started drawing when I was 3.  You never stop learning and you’re foolish to think you’ll ever stop learning.  Ever.

For those aspiring to be a good artist, keep an open mind.  I learned this the hard way.  Back in school, I gave the finger to fine art and said anime/manga was the way to go for me.  I was horribly, horribly wrong.  There’s a reason that that stuff is called “fundamentals” and if you want to be good, you better learn them.  Best way to learn and practice: draw from life.  It might be boring or stale, but draw still-lifes and figure studies.  And yes, always sketch and doodle.

As for doodling has slowed recently but I will have at least one or two doodles per class, which is kind of a shame.  Like I said, sketch constantly (or until you’re yelled at.) 

Crazyfreak: (CF)
I started when I was 11/12 and till my 18th I sketched a lot during an average week. Nowadays I don’t have much time to draw or I am less inspired. Always be critical to your own drawings and accept feedback from others. That’s the best way to improve your artwork I think.

Is anyone of you hoping to start a career as a starving artist?

OniChild: (OC)

Starving? I hope not! But yes, I am actually studying animation at the moment and I hope to become a storyboard or concept artist or illustrator.  Why not all of ‘em--I’ll take what I can find.

Crazyfreak: (CF)
Not for me! I’m trying to find a job in Real Estate. Which is pretty hard, especially because of the credit crunch. So currently I have a part-time job and try to make the best of it.

Now I love the fan contests you guys have held in the past. In fact I
managed honorable mentions in the dress contest (*evil laugh* honorable).
Will there be anymore fan contests in the future?

OniChild: (OC)

Oh yeah? Congrats!

We love having the fans involved, ever since the first one.  It’s more fun and it lets fans get their own touch in the project.

We definitely have more planned.  Timing is everything.

Crazyfreak: (CF)
Currently we are so busy with the donation gifts (thanks everyone!) so I don’t think we’ll plan another contest soon. Our first priorities are finishing those donation gifts and finish chapter 4!

For a final question no pressure or anything, but I am sure many of your
followers are dying to know the answer. However; you are not obligated to
answer. Just look out for the angry mob on your way out.

Will the Holy Grail of all kisses take place between Link and Zelda?

OniChild: (OC)

I don’t know, but I honestly want to say “no.” You can yell at me all you want; as much as I wanted it in the original cartoon, I actually don’t want it in this comic because I think it would distract from what  is happening.  But who knows, we need to get there first!

Crazyfreak: (CF)
As the webmaster of a previous huge Zelink website called Zelda Love I would want to say “yes”. But I have a feeling it won’t happen, just like in Skyward Sword. You know there’s something going on between the two of them but it never gets confirmed by Nintendo. So we like to focus on their friendship and maybe add some hints that there’s more between the two.

There you have it folks. A look into the minds of pure genius. I would also like to thank these two for putting their time and effort into this project. I know it always brightens my day when I see an update. I am sure my readers think the same when I update.

The links below are so you can see the genius for yourself. Also if you are a Zelda fan I would suggest you take a glance at North Castle, one of the largest collections of fan works.

I would like to thank OniChild and Crazyfreak for taking the time for this interview.

Oh and Happy Birthday to me!! ( I expect gifts!)