The Fix is In…!!!

…because I fixed it!

When I created the Kinara’s Children website last year it caused a problem that I couldn’t figure out how to fix. Posts going to subscribers through the RSS feed no longer showed the images. An email blast without the images is, quite frankly, LAME. Or maybe unprofessional. Or perhaps “mammy made.” I try to avoid that at all costs in my artwork and marketing materials. So because of that, and maybe other factors I might expound on in the future, I hadn’t been adding many posts to this web page. But the fix is in! Cause I fixed it! This post should hit your inbox in glorious KinaraColor. I’m posting a few images, some destined for my upcoming book, to mark the occasion.

Group shot. Cropped

When Dr. Karenga, in his wisdom, created Kwanzaa, he made it a seven-day holiday, with seven principles. That’s all good. But it meant that when I undertook the Kinara’s Children project I had to create seven characters, seven bios, seven personalities, seven outfits, and seven poses for each group shot. As any illustrator will tell you, a multi-person group is way more difficult and time-consuming than one or two main characters. My work’s been cut out for me from the start. Here’s a new group shot, fresh from the portrait studio at JC Penney. Wait… does JC Penney still exist? Well it does in Kinara world.


Group photo workflow


I’ve also been refining my look over the years. Above is a snapshot of the process. Pose in Blender3D, render layers in Freestyle for outlines and Cycles for lighting, combine and filter with Topaz Studio 2. I like this kinda cartoony look… today. Might try something else tomorrow. 

Stay tuned. 

Oh, and one more thing…

Working on my black and white game. Wondering if I can Photoshop my full color, full value images into a smooth toon gray. The jury’s still out on this one I think. I have color versions which I plan to use on T-Shirts. My test is online at Fine Art America. I ordered one, looks pretty good, but FAA doesn’t like to sell its T’s for some reason. I’m looking into a setting up a different vendor.

Nia B&W Stamp Umoja B&W Stamp


2 Replies to “The Fix is In…!!!”

  1. Immediately I flew back to Junior High School when you mentioned the multi-person group. I painted an acrylic poster of the Avengers back then. Kuumba’s top really reinforced it because those are the colors of Hank Pym as Yellowjacket.

    It was an effort that could only have been attempted because it was time. So too, this effort of yours manifested because it was time. As it has been said, “timing is everything.”

    It really looks like the time and effort you put into this image made it perfect.

    1. I’ve read that many illustrators charge more for a comic or picture book that features multiple heroes. But ya do what ya gotta do. Takes more time but there’s also a creative satisfaction in juggling and blending the various outfits, backstories, and personalities of each one. Didn’t notice the Yellowjacket vibe, even though I’m a big Marvel fan.

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