Tag Archives: graphite

"Short Cut" - Panel 1 (working title), from the graphic novella by Bryan Beus

Time for an update on “Short Cut.”

As a reminder, this is just a short story that I’m doing on my own. I started it just a few weeks ago and it should be finished by next Friday at the latest.

Originally I was going to make “Short Cut” the story of a mother finding her son. But as I worked out the story I felt it was more fun to make it a sister searching for her brother.

Here she is on the staircase! This is the first panel where she’s simply wandering up on her own.

I’m excited for you to read this little short story. Should be fun.

One thing I just gotta mention: it is so fun to finally bring all the different areas which I’ve studied together. Over the last four years I spent the majority of my time learning how to write creatively. It is much harder for me than drawing–by a long shot! And the majority of my art skills are in finished paintings–i.e. book covers. So, when I reach the end of creating the interiors we’ll get to give that part of the process a go. And right now I’m putting together comic panels and doing finished pencil drawings, a skill I’ve wanted to develop for years.


170-12-001-Short-Cut-Pages-Final - Copy


Really fun to see this all coming together for the first time. And it’s a good little warm up for the larger project I’m working on.

Anyway, check back later. “Short Cut” should be ready to go by the Salt Lake City Comic Con. Looking forward to seeing you all there.


The Tale of the Two Lovers – Part Three (The End)

The Tale of the Two Lovers – continued

(Click here for Part 1 of the Tale of the Two Lovers)

(Click here for Part 2 of the Tale of the Two Lovers)

The next day as the young man (who knew none of what had happened) worked in his field the mistress of the brothel came to him and asked how much money he had.

Confused and worried that his love was about to be sold to another city, the young man brought out his life savings and laid it before the mistress.

When the mistress saw how little it was she wiped her eyes and shook her head.

Desperate that he should not lose his sweetheart, the young man went to his cupboard and withdrew all the money he had for food, rent, clothing, and he offered to sell his farm if the mistress would take it.

Seeing that the young man truly had no more, and secretly knowing that the young woman was no longer beautiful enough to serve in the brothel, the mistress finally agreed to the sum—upon condition that he give it all at that very moment and would never speak to the mistress again of the matter.

Overjoyed at this news the young man gave it all away and hurried to bathe and clean before the arrival of his true love.

But when she arrived she came wailing and holding her face in her hands.

The young man sat her down and asked what was the matter.

After a long while, the young woman pulled away her hands to reveal the black scars, and she cried out her fear that now he would no longer love her.

Taking her in his arms, the young man scolded her gently for thinking that he could be so heartless, and said that he would love and serve her gladly all the days of his life.

No sooner had he said this than did the wealthy old man appear at the door.

(Story continues below image)

Lu Dong Bin

He smiled brightly at the two and laughed merrily.

Upon seeing the man who had hurt her, the young woman gasped and ran to the corner of the room, and told her lover who the old man was.

The young man, however, did not act angry at all. He saw that the old man carried a good spirit about him, whatever he had done, and so the young man thanked him for making possible their relationship.

The old man held up his hand, telling the two that he was not yet finished. From his robes he withdrew a long wand, the end of which bore a mane of peacock feathers, and waved it over the young woman.

Instantly she was transformed back into the healthy, beautiful young woman she was before.

The young man recognized the wise old man as Lu Dongbin, one of the eight immortal spirits of the ancient world, and the young man led his belle to bow in gratitude before him.

The old man smiled again, and then he vanished with a blessing that so long as their love remained true, happiness would follow them all the days of their life.

And so they did.


The End


(adapted from the film “Chiang Ming in The Eight Immortals” (1971)

The Tale of the Two Lovers – Part 2

The Tale of the Two Lovers, continued. (Click here for Part 1)


As the boy grew to be a man never did he forget the girl whom he loved.

Though he was not allowed to visit her, he saved every copper coin he could—sometimes going for food without days to manage—all in the hopes of one day buying his love’s freedom from slavery.

But anyone could see that with his mean income he would never manage to save enough though he lived a dozen lifetimes.



Meanwhile, the girl grew into a beautiful young woman—and her wicked mistress took notice. As the wiry dark woman saw the young woman’s grace blossom she placed her in the best room and at the highest price.

Every night the young woman begged the heavens to free her from the grip of the cruel mistress, but no help ever came. And one day her plight grew worse than ever.

A wealthy old client called upon the house and, seeing the young woman’s beauty, he asked to room with her for the night.

Once they were alone, however, the old man said something that surprised the young woman greatly: he offered to help her escape, but only if she would do a favor for him in return first.

At first the young woman did not believe the old man, seeing that he had no reason to let her go. But gradually he persuaded her, and soon, the young woman feeling hope and excitement for the first time in years, they were planning the adventure: a route by which they would travel, how she would find money, and where she would meet with her true love.

Finally, with the plans settled, the young woman leapt to her feet to pack her bags. The old man, however, did not stand up at all, but instead asked with surprise where she was going so soon. And when she did not understand, he reminded her that before they began she must first perform a favor.

This favor, he revealed, was she must sleep with him not just one night, nor two, but for three whole nights must they be together.

Realizing that the old man was trying to trick her into giving more than his pay would cover, her heart fell to the bottom of her soul. With hot tears streaming down her cheeks the young woman declared that he was worse than all the rest of her clients combined, as none had ever treated her so wickedly.

At this the old man jumped to his feet, shouted at her for refusing his ‘generosity,’ and then struck her on both cheeks as hard as ever he could.

The mistress heard the loud voices, rushed into the room, and immediately began apologizing to the old man for the young woman’s insolence. But, calling out a loud curse on the brothel, the rich old man stormed from the room, declaring that in the morning his lawyers would see to the closing of their business.

The sobbing mistress grabbed a cane with which to beat her disobedient slave, but before the mistress struck a blow she noticed something terrible: on the young woman’s cheeks there were black bruises, one for each cheek, and each in the shape of the old man’s hand.


(To be continued…)



Creepy Angel – Sketch




Tomorrow I’m meeting with my publisher, Deseret Book (Shadow Mountain). For the last two or three months they’ve been going over my illustrated graphic novel. I have no idea what they’ve been doing, but I will find out there.


After finishing the last of my commissions this afternoon I’m now sitting around doodling in my sketchbook, listening to my favorite movie, Baraka, in the background.


Just saying.

Creepy Angel - Sketch

As a Rock


Many people who know me know that when I talk about my future dream house, the key element it will contain is a rock, for meditating, over water.

So, on this wonderful Saturday night, I’m sharing my dream with you!

“To the mind that is still, the whole Universe surrenders.” – Lao Tzu

“Be still, and know that I am God.” – Psalms 46:10


Guinevere Goes A-Maying



Guinevere gets a moment alone in the wood while she and the knights of the table round are a-Maying.

What would it feel like to have the two most powerful members of the opposite sex vying for your attention day by day?

“So it befell in the month of May, Queen Guenever called unto her knights of the Table Round; and she gave them warning that early upon the morrow she would ride a-Maying into woods and fields besides Westminster. And I warn you tat there be none of you but that he be well horsed, and that ye all be clothed in green, outher in silk outher in cloth; and I shall bring with me ten ladies, and every knight shall have a lady behind him, and every knight shall have a squire and two yeomen; and I will that ye all be well horsed. So they made them ready in the freshest manner… And so upon the morn they took their horses with the queen, and rode a-Maying in woods and meadows as it pleased them, in great joy and delights; for the queen had cast to have been again with King Arthur at the furthest by ten of the clock, and so was that time her purpose.”

– Sir Thomas Malory, “Le Morte d’Arthur”