Thanks to everyone for contributing! The support has been amazing!
And now we passed the $4000 mark!
As promised, anyone donating at the $20.00 level and above will now receive an additional 8" x 10" print of their choice and a set of 4 portrait postcards. (Examples of work-in-progress versions of the portrait postcards can be found in the updates.)
Now, I think this next thing is a long shot, but what the heck: If we reach $5000 by the end of the kickstarter (Monday at 5:00 pm), I can make four additional portraits of four different characters. Everyone getting a package will then get 8 unique portraits with their prints/drawings/etc. on top of their pledge reward and the 8" x 10" print.
Welcome to Circus Saudade.
What is this thing?
Circus Saudade is a web comic. It follows a girl named Gracie who has run away to the circus only to find herself wrapped up in a world thick with magic, beauty, and danger.
It's a webcomic that is somewhat dark, occasionally humorous, hopefully beautiful, and probably a little creepy from time to time (my wife says so).
It can be found at www.circus-saudade.com
But if you'd like to start from the beginning, which always seems like a good place to start, here's a more direct link to that:
What is "Saudade"?
Saudade is a Portuguese word without a direct translation into English. In essence, it means a deep, nostalgic longing for someone or something, but with the melancholy understanding that that thing or person is likely lost forever.
Does that have relevance to themes of the comic? Yep. Will I tell you about all of those yet? Nope. Stick around, though.
A Brazilian friend tells me it's pronounced "Sauh-dah-gi". I tend to butcher it when I say it out loud, but fortunately we can assume the characters of the comic are better at it than me.
What is this Kickstarter funding?
Circus Saudade is a brand new webcomic with only a handful of pages published at its website. Funds from this kickstarter will help improve the website, get a printing aspect of the project started up, and help set up a small studio so the comic can be updated weekly. While the promise of this kickstarter is finishing the first chapter (about a year's worth of work) with weekly updates, you're also funding the beginning of what I hope is a journey for years to come.
Who is this Colin guy and how is he qualified?
I'm an illustrator, teacher, game developer, and probably a few other things. Primarily, I'm the Lead World Designer at Big Huge Games and the illustrator for the PBS series Time Team America. Additionally, I'm oftentimes found among the part-time illustration faculty at the MaryIand Institute College of Art. I also tend to travel and oil paint quite a bit.
What do I get for funding Circus Saudade?
As Circus Saudade is a digital web comic currently and I'm not yet at the point of making any printed books (though maybe one day, if all goes well), I've set up some rewards of prints and custom illustrations. Here's some basic info on that:
Some basic info on prints:
- All prints will be on 11" x 17", high quality artist's printing paper.
- All prints will be signed by me.
- You can select from several options for the prints, listed below. If we reach our funding goal, I'll be contacting each of you asking which prints you'd like.
- Please add a few dollars for international shipping. Five should do the trick.
Here are your options:
1. A print of any comic page from Circus Saudade you'd like.
You can choose with text or without.
And Without Text:
2. A print of "Circus Saudade", the painting that launched this whole idea showing Gracie standing in front of the Circus Saudade Big Top:
3. A print of "The Women of Circus Saudade". I created this for an exhibit of artists who each made a piece celebrating women and what was amazing about them:
4. A print of "Night", showing the hand-lettered text of Circus Saudade by the artist Mary Laurel Burt and a chalk portrait of Gracie's clown makeup:
A recurring theme of Circus Saudade will be one-off comics that tell the story of how individuals came to exist within the circus and perform certain roles.
If you select one of the Origin Story awards, I'll seek your input about what kind of circus role you or your loved one would enjoy, try to accommodate you as closely as a I can (some roles are already reserved for main characters) and then create your Origin story comic. Not only will it be published on the Circus Saudade website, I will also send you a signed print of your origin story.
Here are two example Origin Stories.
The first, about Nicolai Chistyakov, the one time Moscow Symphony Orchestra concert pianist turned Circus Saudade calliope player. (Yours doesn't have to be this creepy and sad unless... you know, you want it to be.)
And one about a pair of young lovers who end up as the Lion and Lion Tamer:
All of the rest of the info can be found to the right, but if you have any questions at all please don't hesitate to ask!
Thanks so much for coming by.
I would ask you for some specific photos from you of you or the person you would like to be the subject of the origin story. These would be photos of the person in profile, straight on, close ups, etc, so I would have enough reference to get his or her face as close as possible.
Those photos could still be candid, however, so if the origin story is a surprise gift for someone else you wouldn't blow your cover by having to ask for an impromptu modeling session.
Additionally, I'd ask you what were the most important characteristics to try and nail down throughout the comic, then hop into work.
It won't be universally silent, no. Gracie might not be much for talking sometimes, but there will be regular dialogue as we introduce more characters. So far, I haven't felt like it's fit the mood to have much dialogue.
If I want an Origin Story, do I have to let you publish it on the webcomic or can it just be something I have privately?
We can do either. Before I would publish it I would want to be sure you wanted it put online. If not, no worries.
Not at all. You can order two of one print, a combination of three, one comic and a print, etc. Anything you like.
I have the major plot figured out, yes. I know the major beats and all the major characters and even the ending.
I don't know how long it will take me to get there, however, and I'm not rushing it.
I love color, and it's a huge aspect of most of my work. For this, however, the black and white allows me to play with the lights and shadows of a circus in really fun ways. I think it suits the intended mood of Circus Saudade, too: Intimate, mysterious, and a little spooky.
That said, there's obviously color in the prints and I bet I'll do some special panels that are colored.
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