Resetting

I don't even know where to begin, so I'll start with another beautiful addition to our fan art page of Matty by the lovely Tahlla Taylor. Knowing the time and effort that went into that piece as a way of showing support is humbling. Thank you so much Tahlla! To enter for a chance to win the next podcast listener giveaway prize, simply Tweet us your own original piece based off any of the concept art session creations or our four main characters!

As Joey mentioned in the podcast last week, we will be implementing changes to our schedule that allow us to get back to the joy of continuing to create The Crew and writing. Tomorrow we will be doing another live stream concept art session at 7:30 CST where we'll share with you new ideas we have for the show and draw some of your own suggestions! Additionally, Sketchy Saturday and Joey's blog posts will happen when he can make time for them to allow his work to remain uninterrupted.

As for casting... WE'VE FOUND OUR MATTY AND DANE! Matty will be voiced by Becca Zabolio, who will be making her professional voice acting debut with The Crew! Next week she will be joining us on our podcast to tell us a little about herself, what got her interested in voice acting, and you'll get to hear a sample of the audition that landed her the role of Matty!

For the part of Dane, we've been fortunate enough to cast someone we've dreamt of filling this role since the beginning - Theo Von. To learn more about Theo, you can follow him on Twitter, watch his Netflix special entitled No Offense, or listen to his new comedy album 30lb Bag of Hamster Bones, available now on iTunes!

Finally, we would again like to thank everyone that has continued to support us and all those that have auditioned! Until next time....

March on the Horizon

There are only seven days left including today in the month of February; we feel each hour of those days! With cooler weather signaling Spring right around the corner, the Kickstarter we will launch is running up to meet us.

A rough early model of  The Crew's  house that will be in the Kickstarter preview this Spring.

A rough early model of The Crew's house that will be in the Kickstarter preview this Spring.

In March, we are planning on having our four principal characters locked and will begin casting for minor and reoccurring roles. As many of you already know, we have a podcast that comes out every Tuesday which gives you an opportunity to learn more about who we are at Arte Fact Production and to follow the progress of our animation, The Crew. As we announce cast members we will create profiles for them and we also plan on featuring them on the podcast. We are excited to have them as future guests and for our supporters to get to know what interested them in The Crew!

As we briefly touched on in our latest podcast, we will have another listener giveaway in the coming weeks and all it takes to be entered is a fan art submission. Once you tweet us your piece, we will feature it on our website's gallery. Aside from the main characters, your entry can be any of the new roles we create in our live stream concept art session. Have fun and enter for your chance to win!

Be sure to join us this Thursday again on YouTube at 7:30 CST to catch our hour long live stream concept art session and to get a glimpse of new characters you can expect to see on The Crew. To watch last week's stream click here and don't forget to subscribe and share with friends! Tune in a couple of minutes early and watch the new Mo Chibi drawing join Matty along the bottom of the wait screen.

 

The Crew - Assembling The Crew

Hello, and welcome to the continuation of last Friday's blog post, The Crew - Humble Beginnings.

Now, where did I leave off? Oh yeah! So, this is Myles...

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Myles and I have an interesting relationship. Ever since he knew what he wanted to be, he's said he wanted to be a filmmaker. Being the (much) older of the two, I used to take him to see movies, talk to him about cameras or VFX techniques, and at family get-togethers we'd hang out and discuss current theatrical releases. I once took him to a midnight screening of The Room, a movie neither of us had seen at the time, and it was an amazing experience I'll never forget. (SPOON!) As time progressed, Myles and I, for whatever reason, kind of drifted apart. We'd still talk about movies when we saw each other, but life had somewhat changed us as we'd grown up.

OldJoeyMyles.jpg

It was a bit disheartening when we first presented Myles with the idea for The Crew and he didn't immediately jump on board production, pledging unwavering loyalty for eternity. Myles was entering his last semester of college, and along with that he was moving across country to L.A. Catalina had decided to throw him a sort of going-away party with just the three of us, and during this party I let her know that we should try presenting the idea for The Crew to him. In my mind I knew that Myles was amazing at writing dialogue; we'd once entered a 48-hour film race, and watching him produce a script from just ideas was very impressive. We didn't win, and we didn't even get to have our video screened thanks to a rendering issue, but it really showed me where his strengths lied. The going-away party was really fun, but in the back of my mind I was trying to find the right time to broach the topic with him. Eventually a lull in festivities came, and when Catalina and I told him about the project, he laughed at the idea and story we'd presented, but didn't really have the desire to commit. Looking back on it now, there was simply too much on his plate to even consider working on the project. Nevertheless, he said he would take a look at the script and maybe work on it remotely.

A month or so passed, and Myles made his great trek across the U.S. During this time, I really had no direct communication with him. From what I understand, he had gone to L.A. and the program his college had placed him in really showed him what "the industry" was like. He became disillusioned with the prospect of spending more time there than he felt necessary, and came back earlier than expected. Continuing this series of life-altering events, shortly after arriving back in Texas, his long-term relationship ended; needless to say The Crew took a back seat during this time. Myles and Catalina spent quite a while working through things and really reframing the future he had set in stone. It was a very difficult time for Myles, and I don't presume to speak for him – I'm just glad he came home to be with family and with P-Dog (our dog Precious).

2016 was wrapping up, we were entering the holiday season, and to take all our collective minds off things we decided to present him once more with the idea for The Crew. He reluctantly agreed to help, at the promise of future riches. It was a cheap ploy on my part, but not a false one! I wholeheartedly believed then and now that The Crew will be a phenomenon – just wait and see! For a while, we would write and not a lot would get done. That's not to say that we weren't trying, but it was grueling work. Sometimes we would spend hours trying to write one or two lines. This was by no means a representation of our talents, but instead it was reflective of our or collective mental states. Thankfully, as time progressed, Myles became more comfortable with Catalina’s and my writing style (VERY improvisational) and one night it all came together! After a particularly productive evening I remember Myles texting Catalina and telling her that he had read over the script and he thought it was not just good, but he thought it was great! He said it was unlike anything he'd ever seen on TV! This was the moment I'd been waiting for – not just the confirmation that he saw what we had seen in The Crew, but that he was now a part of it! He was now responsible for helping us make something completely unique and transformative, and no one would be able to take that away from him.

I realize now that this is very Myles-centric, but it had to be; the things that came after this have really seemed like a whirlwind. Everything has moved so fast, changed so much, and we're still only at the beginning! Seeing these old photos of Myles and I make me glad that everything that has happened, has happened. I feel like we're becoming a family again, and to me, that's more important than any amount of money, fame, or notoriety.

Next week - Trouble in Paradise! Our first major fight and the completion of the script! While you're waiting for that, don't forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel! There you'll find our weekly Podcast and Live Streams! Also remember to follow us on Twitter and Instagram as we'll be having a new artist giveaway starting at the end of February! Finally, remember tomorrow I'll be uploading a new image for Sketchy Saturday, a weekly fan art drawing I do just for fun. If you have a suggestion on who/what I should draw, tweet us and let me know! #SketchyStaurday

-Joey

The Homestretch

It's hard to believe we are already in our fourth week of operation! Where did the time go? We each work 6 days a week on The Crew and still it seems like time is flying by. We hope to have our four principal characters cast by the end of February or very early March to meet our Kickstarter goal of April.

We are happy to announce the winner of our #CageFace listener giveaway prize is Arakachi! Thank you to all those that participated and in the coming weeks we will have another with a prize for those that love to draw!

Also in March, we aim to begin casting for some minor roles for our pilot episode and other reoccurring characters that will show up throughout the series. As we have previously stated in our podcasts, we will cast from the pool of applicants we already have to give everyone an opportunity to be a part of The Crew!

Our live stream concept art session went so well this past week! Be sure to tune in this Thursday at 7:30 CST on YouTube to get a sneak peek at new characters you'll see in The Crew along with suggestions from fans! Above is one such new hero by the name of Cosmic Eel.

Don't forget to tweet us your fan art so we can feature it on our website and check out the newest podcast available on both Soundcloud and YouTube now!

The Crew - Humble Beginnings

It’s hard to describe what this past year has meant to me. If 2017 is the year of building The Crew, 2016 was the year its foundation was laid. Unemployed, depressed, and directionless, I was looking for anything to occupy myself with. Working on my personal art projects felt tedious, as the work was beautiful but not fun. I wanted something different than I'd ever done before, something light and carefree to take my mind off my circumstances.

If memory serves, I had called my sister Catalina into my room and showed her this image. I remember saying something like “I have this idea about a group of scumbag heroes! What do you think?”

TheCrew_LineUp_Original.jpg

She told me then what she would continue to tell me throughout the year - “There’s something there, but it’s not there yet.

Don’t get me wrong – I can clearly see this is just a rough concept, but she was pointing to something deeper. I never really considered that this would be the beginning of our working relationship, let alone that she had just stated the mantra that we would continue to use when we would hit a brick wall. At the time I wanted The Crew to be a web comic I could quickly publish while I worked on more “serious” projects. Regardless of how I saw the project, I took her feedback, made some alterations, and about a month or so later I returned with an updated line up and new backstories for each character.

Again, it ended with a “There’s something there, but it’s not there yet.” And so it continued...

Days, or sometimes weeks, would pass before bringing the project up again. With every revision, the project and The Crew would come into clearer focus. While initially The Crew was just something we would joke about, it quickly became apparent that there was something of substance here. Every joke led to a scenario, and every scenario to a scene, until one day the world just came alive. By this point, it was obvious to me that the comic format of storytelling fell short of what our story demanded; to properly translate the idea of the The Crew it would need to be an animated show. This was only confirmed the day Catalina explained that this would be a show that she wanted to watch, and as the old adage goes, make something you'd want to see. We said farewell to the comic format and never looked back.

I enjoyed brainstorming with Catalina so much that I asked her to officially help me write on the project. While my strengths lie in story structure and visual arts, Catalina has a natural intuition about comedy and personality dynamics. Sometimes we may just be watching a commercial, but she is always keen to pull inspiration out of the most mundane, though characteristically human moments. Over the first three quarters of the 2016, we chipped away at this mountain of ideas until we’d eventually taken the project as far as it could go. We had written quite a bit, but really the work had been done establishing the world of The Crew. We had always worked with the idea that once we knew our characters inside and out, we'd be able to place them in any scenario and have them write themselves. While we could have moved into production at that point, the words we repeated so often now caused me to look for the flaws I didn't know the project had. "There's something there, but it's not there yet." I had began to listen to my intuition and my intuition was pointing me in one direction...

That's it for this week folks! I hope you enjoyed my first blog post, as we'll continue our behind the scenes look at the The Crew! If you haven't seen it yet, we hosted a live Concept Art session last night on Periscope and we'll continue holding them every Thursday at 7:30pm CST.

Remember to enter for a chance to win the Nicolas Cage mask from Alamo Draft House! Just tell us your useless super power on Twitter or on Instagram and don't forget to add #TheCrew #CageFace

-Joey

More Fan Art, #Cageface Contest, and Concept Art Livestream Tomorrow!

It's already Wednesday?! Time is flying by! We've gotten more great auditions this week and continue to receive support from those that are excited to see where The Crew is going and want to come along for the ride. We'd like to express our gratitude once more by thanking everyone! Being on this side of The Crew and getting to interact with people from all walks of life is proof that there are those that truly understand the desire to produce something great and creativity has no age limit.

If you haven't already heard this week's podcast, you may not know we are having a contest for our listeners to win a Nic Cage face that the Alamo Draft House was giving away to those that attended this year's C4GED event in Austin. Our own writer, Aidan Myles Green, has kindly offered this as our first listener giveaway prize! To win, all you need to do is tweet us your useless superpower and use the hashtags #cageface #TheCrew! Some have direct messaged us since we actively communicate with our supporters and which is fine too! If you don't have Twitter you can find us on Instagram and comment or message us your useless power there as well.

Today we will be adding a new gallery on our website which will feature fan art to highlight those that would like to give us their interpretation of our characters or draw scenes they've imagined. You can tweet us yours to have it featured on our site too! Here is this week's newest addition that quite accurately brings to life the colorful Mo!

This hilarious drawing is courtesy of  Seth Tyler Jackson  via Twitter

This hilarious drawing is courtesy of Seth Tyler Jackson via Twitter

Lastly, tomorrow at 7:30 PM CST we will be live streaming via Periscope a concept art session! We haven't decided what we will draw but want to give you an opportunity to engage in our process when creating the world of The Crew. Be sure to watch and participate by giving us your feedback! Join us every Thursday for this and be sure to follow us, subscribe, and share with your friends.

Updates! Auditions! Fan Art! Shoutouts!

Where do we begin?! The countless phenomenal auditions? The first piece of fan art? The support of a few Comic Book Men?!

WHEW! We made it through our first week with The Crew and it has been full of wonderful surprises and an outpouring of support that we didn't anticipate so soon. This week we will begin reaching out to a few individuals but by no means have we made any final decisions. Additionally, we would like to make clear to everyone that casting will continue throughout the entire series even for smaller/reoccurring roles and those that first auditioned for our principal characters will be used to give as many of our supporters an opportunity to be a part of The Crew.

On a different note, one of our wonderful early supporters @becca_zabolio tweeted us this beautiful drawing of Matty. Feel free to tweet us and share your drawings too! Who knows - we might just use them in an episode!

And finally, we would be remiss if we didn't say a big Thank You to Michael Zapcic, Ming Chen, and Kevin Smith for the likes and retweets in support of former SMODCO animator and now creator/animator of The Crew, Jose Briseno. 

Check out our new weekly podcast up today, and don't forget to follow, subscribe, and share!