Silly as it always it is I try to have a new goal of some kind each year. Not with the strict perimeters of a New Year’s Resolution weight goal, but a vague direction I can slowly steer towards. My big one this year was to stop doing art in a vacuum. Which is to say, work with other people and participate alongside other artists more often. I kinda locked my process into this very solitary thing, which shocking for a man who has spent years off and on living alone in the woods. Turns out it makes a very lonely pursuit where you just end up feeling like you are uploading pages to the ether. Hence my goal for 2023. Happy to say I’ve lined up some exciting collaborations for the year, but those are stories for another time. And those are work things! I also wanted to extend this goal to fun things! So here we are.

An artist I’ve been really digging in the last couple years is Alejandro Bruzzese. He captures a sort of ethereal physicality to all of his drawings. And his range of sci-fi art just really really appeals to me. So when he did a call for art trades I jumped on it.

We each gave each other the choice of three character to pick from. For my end I drew his creation of Neura!

Alejandro Bruzzese’s Neura

I immediately loved the character. The mix of the mythical and mundane are a favorite of mine. So adorning characters of a godlike nature and physique in modern sportswear is right up my alley. I always feel like it’s an immediate way to sneak familiarity into the heightened nature of sci-fi and fantasy worlds. So here’s my rendition.

My stab at Neura

For his portion he took on Android Etta. Gotta say I’m in love with it. From the pose to the colors to how puffy he made that jacket.

Alejandro’s view of Android Etta

I think art trades like this are really in a lot of ways an act of translation. What elements of your design are retained and which quirks of your style are replaced by someone else’s particular stylistic quirks? It’s a cool process, and like I noted in the previous blog post it really helps you see your own characters in a completely new way. This is not how I would draw Etta, but this is Etta through and through. I learn more about her when I see her through another artist’s hands.

So in summary, if you want to have some real fun and have the time do some art trades!

You can find Alejandro Bruzzese at his website and twitter. You should really dive into the Sunday section of his site. It will make you feel like an archeologist of the future and that’s a rad feeling.

My other 2023 goal is to try and make the blog a much more active part of the site, but this has been a goal for a few years now. So uh, good luck Gus.