While looking through files on my website, I saw the background for my homepage and realized I'd never explained it to anyone. Back in the ancient times of 2018, Black Panther was a topic that was hard for me to escape in nerd spaces. At the end of the film, Michael B Jordan delivers his character's death rattle:
"Bury me in the ocean, with my ancestors that jumped from the ships, because they knew death was better than bondage."
In my part of the internet, filled with Black "free thinkers" and revolutionaries, that line started many debates I'm not interested in unearthing. After all, arguments are fruit for the soul, and I have had my fill. However, those discussions did inspire me to create an image of a water god, holding one of those precious souls tossed into the Atlantic. I impulsively used it for a background. I've left it because I find it symbolically pleasing. I've come to think of it as what Shabazz Arts stands for. So, now you know.
Shabazz Tribe Membership:
Things are coming together but at a slower than anticipated rhythm. I appreciate your patience. I don't have much "people power," so it will take months to set up this webspace. In the meantime, I will endeavor to make monthly updates in conjunction with updates as they develop. I only ask you not to interpret my silent periods as inactivity or abandonment. Also, if you would like to volunteer services or intern, please reach out to me.
Character Development from Cyber/Punk/Funk
I am in the character development stage. I write and draw so my process is different. There are a lot of great storytelling methods, I choose to first visualize a character's reaction based upon their role in the story. I also work out some guidelines for myself to revisit later so I can draw the face quickly. The outline I've written helps me visualize the positions the character may find themselves in so I focus on what their response might be.
I try to draw as many as 12 heads at various angles and distances. These images represent the first pass on two separate characters as I develop a relationship with them. Most of this work will never make it into the final project. Fortunately, once the Shabazz Arts Gallery is fully updated, tribe members will have access to these parts of the process as well as other tidbits.
Lastly, it's Black History Month so, I can't get out of here without bringing up Bearcat Wright, my grandfather. Unfortunately, there's not much to share at the moment. Still, I've begun assembling a team to tell the story of the first Black Pro Wrestling National Champion, Edward Bearcat Wright. This will be a multi-year campaign, and we're only the start. The first step will be a graphic novel chronicling the rise and fall of Bearcat. So, for anyone interested in creating a bit of Black history, get in touch!