Jason Badower/Past Experience
J.T. Krul gave Jason some very specific scene directions, including the first direction which was to begin with a closeup of Kimiko and end with a closeup of Hiro. Jason thought of the transition like a camera focusing on Kimiko's hands, zooming out and slowly shifting the focus to the right, and ending on a closeup of Hiro.
"I wanted to draw the pants off this piece. I can't imagine how much drawing one would have to do to get someone to take their pants off, but I'm guessing it's a lot." "C'mon, look at those flowers! That's a LOT of flowers! I also had great fun drawing all the characters, but especially enjoyed drawing George Takei. It was fun de-ageing him! Welcome to the magic of comics!"
Since the story is set during three main time periods, Jason decided to mimic the style of the flashbacks in Company Man for the flashbacks of Hiro reading about Kensei and Kimiko doing ikebani. Jason made sure to use blown out whites and deep blacks. This left him with whites that "were really white. Like white-white!" So Jason heavily airbrushed the page to achieve his desired effects.
During the creation process, Jason's new laptop began to misbehave, and Jason worried he wouldn't be able to get the comic done in time. He called his friend, Xander Black, who figured out what the problem was, and Jason was able to finish the comic on schedule. Hiro's shirt has a shout out to Xander.
To diminish the harsh white background, Jason added some faded arrows. He also added some subtle airbrushing and color mixing.
"JT, the writer suggested that the first panel should mirror the last panel of the last page. In fact, he had very clear directions for how he wanted the scene to run. I looked over them, and they were great. It was just a matter of designing the room and the placement of Kaito and Kimiko to make it work."
"I noticed I copped some flak from some posters on 9th Wonders who didn't like my George Takei. At this stage of the game I was ready to print panel 1 out on nice piece of photopaper and mail it to his agent I was so proud. Seriously, that's George Freakin' Takei! I was so happy with it at this stage. I'm still proud of the linewor. Little was I to know that all my efforts would be thwarted by my inability to colour him."
"I want you to marvel at the magnificence at which I have destroyed a perfectly good likeness of George Takei. What the hell was I thinking?! If another colourist had done this to my work I would have hunted them down, nail gunned them to a chair and fed them their toes. As it was, I plead insanity."
"I enjoyed these layouts. Simple, elegant and cinematic. I couldn't wait to draw Hiro!"
"I ended up doing a screen capture from Kaito's funeral from season 2 and moved people around, but it's largely the same frame. I do like my Hiro. I think I got reference from season 1 here. The trees were a bit experimental for panel four and I like the gothic noir feel it has. Those of you paying attention might have seen my geek Easter Egg and noticed that I used Hiro's boss, Mr Kin Egami as the executive who confronts Kimiko."
"It was actually [this page]...that really motivated me to get Annette back on board. While I'm reasonably happy with the way I colour figures, the way I colour backgrounds irritates the hell out of me. When I put heaps of effort in, it looks cheated and I don't like that. Working with Annette will give me the time to draw it properly and avoid the horrendous cheat that I used on page 5 panel 2. It was just supposed to be a placeholder, to remind me I need to draw a proper background, but computer issues [and] my deadline...forced [me] to leave the photo in."
"Two out of four backgrounds ain't so good. It's not my finest hour, but it definitely was my most desperate. Even panel 1 on page 5 annoys me. The texturing looks too realistic if you ask me. I should have gone for something more stylised. I actually get annoyed when my stuff looks too photo-like."
"I ended up leaving page 5 and moving onto page 6...I had more fun with page 6 as I actually got to draw some stuff. I like the lighting of the top panel. I was also trying to mirror [Kaito]'s body language from page 3 panel 2 here on panel 2 with Kimiko. I feel that she has already become her father's daughter in this panel."
Notes about Jason's drawings are taken from his weblog.