Pokémon Encyclopedia Update #4
Update for http://alamedyang.tejat.net/cards/

Been a while. I've recorded which Vending card comes from which sheet, but I haven't worked out a good way to display that information, so it might be a while. In the meantime, there's loads of new promos and updated scans....

Now Correct Color Profiles:
Japanese Neo 1
Japanese Premium File 1
Japanese Premium File 2
Japanese Premium File 3
Japanese Intropack Decks
Japanese Intropack*NEO Decks
Japanese Vending Sheets
Japanese Vending Quickstarter Decks
Japanese McDonalds Set 1
Like always, I'll post the new Japanese promos here:

click for new Japanese promo scansCollapse )Still in queue: Complete Vending breakdown

Pokémon Encyclopedia Update #3
Update for http://alamedyang.tejat.net/cards/

I just found out that the reason my scans have had really intense colors, despite my not changing any settings in the scanning process, is that PhotoShop's color management has been messed up. (0_0) This means that all the scans I've been doing -- and redoing -- have to be redone again! Hooray, because I like redoing things three times. (>_<) The following scans now have the correct color profiles:

Japanese Base Set
Japanese Jungle
Japanese Fossil
Japanese Rocket
Japanese VS (with new cards)
Japanese Web
English Base Set
English Jungle (now complete!)
English Fossil (now complete!)
English Rocket (now complete!)
English Gym Heroes
English Gym Challenge
English Neo Genesis (with new cards)
English Neo Discovery (with new cards)
English Neo Destiny (with new cards)
English Neo Revelations

Like before, I'll post the new Japanese promos here:

click for new Japanese promo scansCollapse )Next in queue: Complete Vending breakdown

Pokémon Encyclopedia Update #2
Update for http://alamedyang.tejat.net/cards/

Japanese Base Set (with new cards)
Japanese Fossil (with new cards)
Japanese Rocket (with new cards)
Japanese eCard Starter Deck (with new cards)
Japanese eCard Set 1 (with new cards)

New Scans:
Japanese Team Magma and Aqua Decks (page not laid out all nice)

There are also a number of new Japanese promos, all of which can be found on the site, but since I've integrated all the scans it's not easy to tell which ones are new, so I'll post them here:

Next in queue: English Neo sets

Pokémon Encyclopedia Update
Update for http://alamedyang.tejat.net/cards/

Hooray! The first card site update on LJ! Hopefully, this way, things will be a lot more organized.

The first scans I made were back in 1999. Since then, I've gradually improved the quality and consistency, and it's now much closer perfect. The oldest scans on the site, however, were looking really ratty compared to the newest ones, so I finally rescanned a lot of them:Click for list, plus new scans!Collapse )There's a few new promos in both languages, too.

Next in queue: Japanese Base Set, Japanese Fossil, Japanese Rocket

Is it Christmas?!?!
DeviantArt mirror:

This is two separate 4-koma comics, but with a similar theme, so they can fit on one page. (It's for a book, anyway, so they really will be on one page.)

This is making fun of me. I've lived in Utah for eight and a half years, yet I walk outside in the middle of January in naught but a summer clothes, then wonder why I'm freezing after a few minutes outside. When the weather turns cooler and it rains and gets all humid, I get in a Christmasy mood.

It's insane.

I grew up in the San Francisco bay area, where the coldest it gets is like 40ºF at night during the winter. There, you could live your whole life without putting on a jacket. I guess it's just ingrained in me or something, because I haven't changed my habits a bit since I've lived here.

As far as the comic is concerned, I'm unsatisfied with it, but I have to get over my perfectionism if I ever expect to become productive, so I just sent it off all ugly like this. I do like the second to last panel, though.

Anyway, the other person in the comic is my brother, Solra Bizna. He chibifies to become a stick because he's like the skinniest guy in the world. He asks me to explain that he is NOT holding a black MacBook, but a PowerBook G3... he tends to use 10 year old hardware and Linux.

On a production note, this comic was started with Manga Studio 3 and ended with Manga Studio 4. Oh, boy, quite a difference. I have yet to get used to it, but the speed improvement alone was worth the $20 upgrade. (It was running via Rosetta before.)

Manga Studio (Debut 3.0)
If you've ever been to my dA page, you'll notice that most of my latest entries were done in Manga Studio. While an excelent program, I can't help but be annoyed by certain problems the app has...


To edit text, you must go inside the text layer itself and type in a separate box, which does not reflect font, font style, or font size, meaning you have to constantly glance over at the page window to see how it will actually look, while you're doing all your editing in a tiny window. Sometimes, when editing a lot of text back and forth, the font defaults to the smallest size and the first alphabetical font, which you have to change manually back to what you wanted. Plus, at least on Manga Studio Debut Mac, sometimes what's displayed in the box and what's displayed on the page don't match up -- for instance, it might say "No ay!" on the page, but "No way!" in the text box, and you have to close it up and open it again for a fresh start, or otherwise figure out the discrepancy and work around it.

For someone who is used to PhotoShop, like me, this is crippling. (PhotoShop lets you set it up to 1000 undo states.) While not as nearly bad as it sounds because Manga Studio lets you set the time frame of an undo -- half a second, several seconds, etc. -- it's extremely annoying for someone like me who likes to backtrack if I'm unsatisfied with how it's going. If you try to compensate by setting the undo interval high, sometimes it'll undo more than you wanted it to, and have to fix it by hand, anyway.

When you import a new image to become a screentone, you can see JPG artifacts along sharp edges. And not subtle ones, either -- it's actually pretty bad. It might be fine for clouds or whatever, but if you want to import, say, an anime-shading figure or a black and white pattern, it's really ugly.

One big advantage PhotoShop has is that you can select portions of a layer and move them independently of the layer as a whole. In Manga Studio, if you want to move something over a few millimeters, you must make a selection and then apply a Transform -- making it pixelly/blurry and slightly off center -- before you can move it freely. When you're trying to move something to a new position, and the exact position is important (i.e. shortening someone's neck, and wanting the two sections to match up) this is no good at all. (Alternatively, you can copy and paste it into another layer and move the new layer freely.)

I'm on a nice, new MacBook Pro, state of the art (at least a year ago it was), and Manga Studio just lags a lot of the time. Not cool. Rosetta just doesn't like Manga Studio very much. T_T

Now, because I don't want to be too disparaging, Manga Studio has its perks. These are the primary reasons why I even bother with Manga Studio at all, and I dare say it was worth buying just for these.


When you're creating a new story, you can control the page size, bleed edges, etc. and the pages -- left to right or right to left, which side the first page is on, how many pages, etc. You edit each page manually, like a normal document, and can move them around the story at will. Naturally, you can add and remove pages. When you're done, hit print, and out it comes. No fuss, no printing different files sequentially, no tricks. Now that's something PhotoShop can't do.

You need to make a room interior, but are fussing about perspective. You can make a ruler layer and plan out the infrastructure before you draw a line -- and since they're ruler lines, they're marked with numbers, so you can accurately make perspective lines for a variety of purposes. Then, in your draw layers, you can draw straight onto the line with variable thickness, and the line locks to the ruler! In an example manga page, someone even made a bicycle with ruler layers before drawing it! I haven't had too much experience with this feature, since 4-koma / 8-koma comics don't usually have really detailed backgrounds, but when I start Doctor Foo or anything else I imagine this will be indispensable.

Panels are a cinch to do, just draw lines across a panel layer and the page will split. Tricky panels like full bleeds or transparent edges have to be done manually, but otherwise it's a smooth job. You can predetermine panel line thickness and spacing width in preferences before you render the panel layer.

This is something I wish PhotoShop could do: you can rotate and flip the canvas in any direction so you can draw lines with the natural curve of your hand, just like when you're drawing on paper. Moreover, this does not count towards an undo -- which are precious few -- like it would in PhotoShop if you were just flipping the canvas, which you'd have to do to have the same effect.

The best PhotoShop screentoning fakery has nothing on Manga Studio. You can control the dot spacing, dot type, and dot size on flat tones, in addition to the the repeat size, type and curve of gradient tones, and the brightness, contrast and size of image (background) tones. This, plus the amount of tones already designed (much more in the EX version) makes things fantastically easy to produce professional-looking toning on any type of page.

As I was preparing this post, I found out that Manga Studio 4.0 has been released, and I bought the upgrade immediately and am downloading it as I type this. Hopefully, some of the problems will have been fixed, and especially I hope that it's Intel native now. I'll post a follow up after I use it for a few days.

By the way, MERRY CHRISTMAS 2008!!

I finally did it.
 After years and years and years... I've joined the endless throng. I've succumbed to the masses. I've gone and made a LiveJournal account!!

I'm primarily stationed at http://alamedyang.deviantart.com/, but I don't do too much blogging there. (Usually, what I write is my own excuses for not posting art... and then only once a year or so.) We'll see what this turns into as time goes on...

By the way, HAPPY TURKEY DAY 2008!!


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