October 1, 2006 Justin Chin

F&F James Chan

I’ve been building and tinkering around with various cars in SketchUp and showing them to Gary, and John for some time now. Each time they kept asking, “Do you have any characters yet?”

My response to this was always a cool, “No, I have some ideas. I know what they do, but I’m not sure who they are. Don’t worry, it’s all up here,” as I tap on my hairy skull, “I just have to pry them out.”

This story has been taking shape for a while now, but mostly in archetypal forms. I know there’s going to be a tow truck guy, an ape, plenty of wandering robots and the whole world is filled with hot rods of all types (see some of the first glimpses in this post). The world’s shape and origins are pretty clear in my head. The tone and the look is pretty embedded as well. When I decided on this project right after Comic Con I started building the hot rods because frankly, those where the most fun to toy with.

The fun’s gotta end sometime, and last weekend prying this guy out of my head. Luckily it wasn’t too painful.

The quick drawing I made. This is Jimmy Chan, tow trucker.

A picture of the sculpt – his face (the tip of his fu-manchu is singed from the sculpey baking process). I am by no means a sculpting genius. I should have made the hat a separate item, so I could really get into the face and polish it up. Now that it’s baked up, I can sand it smooth with some tiny files. I’ll probably remove the whiskers and make an entirely new set with wire support. Or just make the whiskers completely out of wire.

The sculpt – his back. The neck looks too long in the photo, but it looks fine in real life.

I’m definitely happier with the sculpt more than the drawing itself. That’s good news since I’ve got to build him in 3D. In the book he’ll be in a wife-beater, Dickie work pants, steel toed boots, and fully sleeved with tattoos. Now the question is, what does he drive? The guy’s a genius with a blow torch and a wrench, and a tow jockey. My next post will have a preview of his car.