Saturday, May 31, 2014
Friday, May 30, 2014
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Sunday, May 25, 2014
The app store has a REALLY decent HTTYD2 app out right now! It's completely free (with some in app purchasing available). The gameplay is fun right now, and it looks like it will get even more exciting when the "battle mode" comes out. You pretty much build Berk, and Hiccup and Toothless go exploring to find new islands and dragons. It also actually has a lot of character dialogue, some stuff that feels very second movie (I've met Valka). So, if you didn't know about this game, I'd give it a try! I must warn you, it's pretty catchy, and you'll be checking your device constantly to ensure that all your dragons are working to collect the resources needed for training and building. This is by far the best HTTYD app to date. Oh, and as you can see from an above image, it can send you push notifications! And who doesn't like to see Hiccup and Toothless messages on their phone?
Thursday, May 22, 2014
So, I decided to shoot for another digital painting. The above image is NOT the complete picture, so if you want to view the full painting (including up close shots of the details in certain parts, please click the read more. Also, I suppose considering this image is kinda dark and macabre, expect a slight explanation and my reasoning behind it.
Sunday, May 18, 2014
As I have been spoiler dodging, I have honestly been reading absolutely no articles about HTTYD 2 and not watching any of the new videos that have been released. Because of that, the above news came as a bit of a shock, and came from someone else telling me. I'm, well, saddened by it, but I'm at least glad to know about it beforehand so that I am not just stunned silly when the film comes out. I plan to post my view about it here and now, and then possibly post about it after having seen the film when I know what actually gets said or done in the actual picture.
First off, I'm not as surprised as I could be. I already knew that the director stood, to a degree, proudly in the camp of folks who believe that homosexuality is completely legitimate. Also, in the series, a few of Gobber's lines and actions struck me as being suggestive. I didn't think that they would really go anywhere, but with the heightened playing field of the sequel, apparently they have.
Now, I must say, I am a Christian, and I firmly, firmly, firmly believe in the voracity of Scripture. Because of that, I will say here and now that I believe homosexuality is a sin and is wrong. It grieves me to see my favorite franchise promoting it, especially to children.
But I need to continue. I don't know who reads my blog, and apparently their are at least of few of you. I may or may not take some heat from the fandom when I stand up and say that this is a blight on the franchise, but that is a risk I am willing to take. But, to those of you who read this, I want you to also know that I am not homophobic. I am not terrified of those who claim to be gay. I am not incredibly disgusted by people who are tempted in that direction, and I cannot bring myself to hate people who fight for it when they believe what they are doing is right. Without a Biblical standpoint, the idea seems innocent, and it seems judgmental to deny homosexuals what they wish. But that is how it seems to the world, not how things are. I cannot stand over those who claim to have homosexual leanings and judge them because if it were not for the constant, consistent, persistent, and absolutely undeserved mercy of God in my life I would be no different. I might not indulge in that kind of mindset or lean in that direction, but knowing my own heart, I dread to think that I could be so self centered that I would destroy myself in other ways, maybe even ways that are far darker than homosexuality. Men without God are blind to what is right. It is only by His mercy that I can see this as wrong. Because of that, if you are reading this and believe that homosexuality is perfectly fine, I do want you to know that I disagree with you, but I am also grieved for you, and I cannot and will never be able to bring myself to hate or loath you. I wish you did not have that view, I wish the director of HTTYD2 did not, and I would be so, so happy to see my God mercifully stoop down and open the eyes of many people in the culture and show them that this lifestyle truly is wrong. Homosexuality is sin, but God has saved me from my own sinful, wicked heart, a heart that is every bit as black as the most flagrant gay, and I believe that he can and will save others from whatever sins they struggle with.
As far as the film goes, I still think I will enjoy it. I will be unhappy when I see this come out, but I do not think it will ruin the film as a whole. I enjoy Doctor Who and Sherlock, and both of those series have homosexuality throughout. Those two series really do just shove it in your face, and you can't really watch it and miss the theme. To be honest, after seeing those series, I imagine whatever Gobber does will be very, very mild feeling. I'm stuck here dreading the absolute worst, but I am sort of hopeful that it will not be as in-your-face and obvious as other things I have watched. I do believe that the main theme of this movie will be a very good one, even from a Christian standpoint. A lot of the plot seems to be focused around the real and deep love of a family, that family being Stoick, Valka, and Hiccup. It is a straight and traditional family, and judging by the trailers and news, I think (though I have been spoiler dodging) that the second film will have a very family centered heart. I could be wrong, and if I am, I will be sad, but I think that the major theme of familial love and loyalty will really overshadow whatever happens with Gobber and his coming out as gay. I think the director is actually a moral man who has, whether he notices or not, a grasp of many Christian ideals of right and wrong (including love, loyalty, courage, mercy and compassion). Though he disagrees with a Christian viewpoint when it comes to homosexuality, he still holds to story elements and themes that I fully agree with, and because of that I do think that the overarching message of the three films will be something I can heartily agree with and massively enjoy. When watching this film, I will probably just have to mentally block out a blight on my favorite film, but I should hopefully have quite a lot of good and wonderful thing to focus on throughout the film.
So, I will be seeing this film still. Really no question. If the film is as good as I still expect it to be, I plan to see it many times in theaters, and I think I will really enjoy it. I will just be sad that it promotes a sinful lifestyle as being fine. I do, I really do, feel bad for any of you who are parents or perhaps have younger siblings. Whether or not you take them to see the film because of this, that is a choice you will have to make. Obviously it will depend on how openly it is conveyed, but in the end it will come down to whether you feel comfortable letting younger kids be exposed to it. I personally would suggest that if you plan on still taking young kids, watch the film closely with them, and if the gay reference is obvious enough for them to understand, explain to them that that is wrong.
I, well, I expect to take a few jabs because of this. EVERYONE knows I love this franchise, and now something comes out in it for the first time that openly conflicts with my views as a Christian. I intend to handle it like I am now, explaining to people that I do not think it is right, I am very sad that it is in there, but that it will not ruin the film for me. Of course, I would understand if it ruined the film for others, and it will be up to your own conscience to dictate whether or not to see it with yourself or to take others. I hope you will be able to make wise decisions.
Again, I'm sad that this is in here. Really, really sad. But it does serve as a lesson. I put a lot of hopes into this film, and now it turns out that it will have something in it that will really make me unhappy. For the longest time I saw HTTYD as being blameless enough for me to enjoy without first having to explain that I don't agree with elements. Apparently those days are over. We still don't know the context of what will happen or how things will be stated, but whether they are subtle or not, they are still there, and I will still be sad when I see it. I do think I will still be able to really love the film, but I won't be able to ever recommend it again without first giving a disclaimer. This is what happens when I put so much hope and faith into something that, though good and beautiful, is from the world, and because it is worldly, it will inevitably conflict with my spiritual beliefs. Now it has, and I'm sad to say that HTTYD no longer remains innocent... and because of that its not quite as beautiful in my eyes as it used to be.
This was a very difficult post to right. If I have offended anyone I am sorry, but in some cases it may be necessary to offend someone for their own good. I am sad, to the point of tearing up while writing this, but I do think I can still enjoy the film, but I also think I need to make my standing on this issue here, and I need to express how genuinely sad I am to see the innocence of HTTYD that I loved so much rather stripped away.
Update: I've still not read the article, but by what I've heard the comment is VERY brief and very subliminal. I imagine you would have to be looking for it to catch it, but considering pro-gay ideas are popular in Hollywood right now, this is getting a lot of hype. I don't think this will actually be a big thing in the film at all. However, I have also been told that they may develop this further in the third film. If that is true, I really, really, really will be sad because at the very least it does look like this is all just Hollywood hype and that the actual bit in the film is very under-the-table and very brief. That is sort of what I expected. This does mean that if you are concerned about younger kids you might can watch the movie just to be sure that this wouldn't be a problem, but according to current descriptions of what gets said, it's so small and ridiculously unnoticeable that I think pretty much anyone who watches it will be fine. Now, we'll all notice it because the news and articles have brought it up, but if they hadn't this sentence would feel really unimportant. I'm at least glad to know that in the second film it won't be anything major... but I'm crossing my fingers for the third one. This is honestly what I really worried about, something coming up in the sequels that would actually make me enjoy the first one less. Hopefully it will remain a minor issue.
Wednesday, May 14, 2014
Well... my art book came in. IT IS LOVELY!! And I have only looked at the dust jacket. Seriously, I will not be looking into this book at ALL until I see the film, and that is just plain torture! I will note that it looks great alongside the first movie's book, and that it is slightly larger which is nice. But, I know all too well that there would be a significant degree of spoilers in here, so I'm keeping my distance for just a little longer.
This movie just can't come soon enough!
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
So... this post isn't technically HTTYD, and that means unless you read my Dsplash Chronicles it will probably not be that interesting. However, believe it or not, Dsplash is practically just my attempt at making an HTTYD fanfiction... it just gets wackier than most and covers a much larger playing field than the HTTYD universe. These creatures are a huge part of the story, a huge force in Hiccup's life, but not a force for good. Click the "read more" to see each of these concept images larger. Hope you enjoy! Keep in mind that this is concept stuff and I may change designs if I'm not completely satisfied.
Monday, May 12, 2014
Haha, I'm still trying to spoiler dodge, but I'm doing a terrible job of it! I expect that later today or tomorrow the HTTYD2 art book should come in, and when it does it will be a massively immense struggle for me to NOT take ANY peeks! But I will stand strong! That book only gets opened after I've seen the film on June 13! In the mean time, I did snag this beautiful Funko Pop Toothless, and I thought I might as well make a little review of it for those of you who might like to know whether you'd like to buy one of these for yourself. Click the "read more" to see more photos as well as a few notes on this nice little collectable.
Sunday, May 11, 2014
First things first. I apologize for the massive lack of new posts over the last few weeks. I do have reasons! One would be that I was studying for finals and finishing up my freshmen year of college. The other reason would be that I am spoiler dodging. That doesn't mean that I am not excited about the second film, far from it, but it does mean that most of the info that would be new and exciting to most of you is completely unknown to me! It's hard to speculate and analyze on stuff when you haven't seen it! But, I am now finished with school, and I am hopeful that I will be able to post more often now. I have somewhat finished my next Dsplash Chronicle, but it still needs some editing, and I haven't illustrated it.
But, now onto analysis!! This is the post I've been wanting to do for AGES. Well, at least ever since the final HTTYD2 trailer aired. It is just a small aspect of the second film that really excites me. What is this aspect? It's quite a easy thing to catch in the trailers. HTTYD2 looks like it will have a beautiful family orientation, and I for one an excited by that!
Now, this does not take away from the fact that I appreciated the first film displaying the hardships of a single father raising his teenage son. That was a great, great element worth pages of analysis. I wouldn't want the first movie changed for anything. Plus, one nice point to throw in is that even though the second film looks like it will focus on how wonderful a complete family is, none of the characters look like they will be without fault (ha, except for good ol' Toothless!). The fact that Stoick had to raise Hiccup alone puts a rather negative light on Valka's character, and then of course Hiccup and Stoick are still not always on the same page when it comes to what Hiccup must do and be. I think the flaws in each character will still be apparent and that they will not all become happy in a cliche way because a mother is suddenly present. BUT I just LOVE seeing how happy they ARE to actually be together. The fact that Stoick is so forgiving and that it is clear that Valka still loves him and even feels a strong draw towards Hiccup is really cool in my opinion. It is just neat to see all of them apparently pulling themselves high above the fog of problems that they each have caused and loving each other in beautiful, selfless ways. I look forward to seeing the scenes with the three of them together because I do think there will be a magic there that is unique amongst a family, but at the same time I imagine there will be a realism displayed in that none of them are perfect yet they still love each other.
Now, just to make a continued note, I think it is awesome to have Valka back! Ha, funny to be posting this on mother's day. I think she is able to bring out the best in all of the characters. She shows how loyal Stoick has been in his love for her, and we saw that in the gorgeous moment in the last trailer. Then, I think it is beautiful to see that she is a great mom for Hiccup, even though neither of them have ever really known each other. I love her line in the trailer where she tells Hiccup, "You have the heart of a chief and the soul of a dragon." It is a great description of Hiccup, but it also shows Valka's clear headed view of him. She understands how deep a bond with a dragon can be (because of Cloudjumper), but she also recognizes the power and courage of a chief (because of Stoick). I am happy to see that she will possibly be able to lend some clarity to Hiccup concerning what he will be in the future. But there is more! She is not only a great mom for Hiccup, she works great with Toothless as well! We see this quite obviously in the trailer, and she and he are so sweet together! I am just enamored by that to be honest. Hiccup and Toothless treat each other as equal, as best friends, practically as brothers. I don't think it is a stretch at all to say that Hiccup would consider Toothless to be family, and Valka of all people will respect that. Another thing to note is that she knew about Toothless's splitting back spines. How? Perhaps she has seen other Night Furies. But if she has... where are they? What happened to Toothless's family? Why is he so happy to be searching with Hiccup for his missing species? I just wonder what is in Toothless's past. I imagine (like most more intelligent animals) that many of Toothless's abilities would be taught to him while less would be instinctual (look up birds of prey. Many of them must learn to hunt and fly properly and are taught that by parents, but they still have some built in instinct). Maybe this means that if Toothless would have had parents, he would have learned this muscular function (which I imagine could aid maneuvering in flight). But, Toothless doesn't know about this. He's clueless. It's so CUTE to see him so excited by it, excited to have a "mom" who knows how he works and what will help him grow. I like that. Valka really does seem to be bringing out the best in Stoick, Hiccup, and Toothless!
So, what's the catch? I think the catch is this. The family getting back together will put Hiccup and Toothless on a peak of happiness, but from that peak comes an unbelievable threat. Drago Bludvist. If Hiccup and Toothless are suddenly fighting not just for Berk, not just for the dragons, but for their reunited family, the stakes become that much higher. We know all of them will be diving into deadly combat together... and I just have to worry. What if we lose one of them? How crushing that would be... I dearly hope it doesn't happen. All this to say, I think having the entire Haddock family back together will add a delightful amount of charm, character complexity, and drama to the next film.
And that's not even counting Stoick's "future daughter-in-law" ;)
Saturday, May 3, 2014
Supposed to be studying for finals... supposed to be studying for finals... supposed to be studying for finals... studying for fin-- fin. Fin. Fish have fins. Toothless eats fish. Toothless is in HTTYD2. HTTYD2 is in 40 days...
I NEED TO POST!!!
Studying can wait...
So, this is apparently the last HTTYD2 poster. Even though it is mostly stock images we've seen before, I really like it! It shows a lot of the quirky, fun personality of HTTYD! Everything from the scared sheep, to the quietly confident Hiccup, to those goofy terrible terrors photobombing! It's neat to see the whole group together, kinda reminds me of a shot in a college year book or something (maybe that's the whole looming exams thing... oops, I need to get back!). Really fun to see all the different personalities showing out her.