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Part 1, The Next Three Years Of My Life:…

Part 2, Sell That Damn Book, Danny:…

Part 3, I Was Not Ready For This:…

Part 4:


I began working pretty heavily on LMS during the first quarter of 2009. I had now a handful of characters, a rough idea of the story, and a general scope of what I wanted the book to be. To get started, I felt every book should have a theme. Movies do, right?

Spider-Man: Great powers, great responsibility.

Batman: Be more than just a man, a symbol, and be remembered a legend.

Star Wars: The myth of a heroes destiny, and the truth that allows him to be set free.

Who was Gabriel? What type of character or archetype was he? What were his rises and downfalls?

I started with his History: Well, he's a super soldier created to help win an interstellar war and has been genetically created to be invincible. He wins the war, thus coming back to Earth and is celebrated as a hero. A new superman.  Then it goes further, he becomes a celebrity, an icon. Movies, toys, books, cereals, clothes, you name it, they made it.

Then his powers:  He's also incredibly intelligent, lethal, adaptable, and physically unbreakable.

I didn't want to give him regeneration, because that was Deadpool and Wolverine. But I wanted him to have the speed, strength and overall badass-ness that they had.

Could he fly? Hell no. Any supernatural forces? Well, not yet, but no.

Once I had his strengths, I then developed his weaknesses. The fun part.

How can an unbreakable man feel pain? Well, I came up with the idea that even though Gabriel is bullet proof, his friend's are not. So he was going to lose people around him, and I like a good character death, so future readers: No one is safe in LMS.

Then my father once told me something that really began to get me thinking. "The thing that's interesting about Gabriel, is that instead of a normal man becoming a superhero, it's a story about a superhero becoming normal."

And holy shit, he was right.

I then began exploring the theme of death. To kill a God would be something unimaginable, and to have that type of power...That strength.

And then...boom. Dante, Gabriel's nemesis, was born.

I started putting it all together in my head. Dante want's Gabriel done with, so how do you kill an unbreakable man?

Well, you know how pissed you get when you run out of batteries? That's what Gabriel's life was. He was a dying battery.

At first, incredibly charged, most powerful. But if you drain it over time, you lose that strength and that will. And how do you drain a God?

By putting Him in a prison, LEVEL-9, and torturing them physically and mentally for 9 years. Thus, draining the battery.

Piece by piece the story began framing in my head. Thoughts of Count of Monte Cristo, Oldboy, and other great revenge classics began inspiring in the back of my subconscious. And with that, Gabriel had to break out. He had to escape. So he does.

And then I thought, what do you do with a living icon, who's wrongfully shunned and betrayed, and shown to the world as a terrorist/murderer after he escapes?

You get revenge. And Gabriel, as prideful as he was, would want to make a book out of it. Prove to the world who he really was then and now before he finally was put down.

And that's where the theme of the book was truly born.

This was going to be Gabriel's Killbook of a Bounty Hunter.

(Cont. with Part 5:…)
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fantasynix Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013
Now @ the office I'm officially reading this.

tension is up part 5. O_~
BenMaier Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks for sharing this, Dan. It was a joy to read!
Shredguts Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
How incredibly informative. Thank you Dan.
OmriKoresh Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Professional General Artist
1. very very awesome.
2. i'll be waiting for the Pc/playstation game (:
KillerKahuna Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013
Thank you so much for taking the time to write these, can't wait for the re-print of the Killbook !!
TatsujinEdge Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013
This is an amazing read it always great to get that peak behind the curtain, to hear and see a creative force in action :nod:
legomaestro Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I can here an epic music score playing right now. It's so cool how you can glean information from what inspires you. Brilliant. I
pica-ae Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Professional Interface Designer
It is very inspiring to get such a wonderful insight into the process behind your works :la:
Kattperuk Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Really enjoyed reading this, thank you.
MisterRawgers Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is awesome, I'm glad you shared it with us. I still need to get my hands on that book!
rtrorbt Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
This is a great story to read. I have to say that you are one of the few artists that I follow not to just look at some great art, but for inspiration. I'm sure you hear this a lot, but for me I really have no artistic background at all. I'm a programmer, I write code and like to take on complex challenges, and when I started thinking about creating my own mobile game I remember I was on your DA page flipping through pictures and reading your comments and it finally clicked that everyone has to start somewhere and for me I needed to just stop thinking about the idea of a game and actually start working towards my goal. I'm still learning the basics of digital art, but the Kill Book on my bookshelf and some other books from other artists are my daily inspirations that I pull out and remind myself that I can achieve something I want if I try. Thanks for posting some of the background, it really helps.
AG-08 Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013   Digital Artist
Good read! Still an inspiring story. I still remember when you were creating LMS and blogging out your ideas in the journals. Still have the book I got from you at Comic-Con in 2010. Shit, can't believe it's been that long now. Looking forward to the next project you're working on. Best of luck as always!
Nowio Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
this universe was forged step by step, obstacle by obstacle. great to see that pointed out! :)
Jorda96 Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Those journals are amazing to read. Thank you for posting them. Can't wait to read more.
bratchny Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
I can't help but get excited, reading these entries. Like, horny.
But seriously, thanks a lot for sharing your journey thus far, it gives good insight into what steps you took, how you felt/thought, your creativity and how it's unleashed.
Man, LMS is gonna be epic. The epic to end all epics, epically. I'm gonna have to buy the Killbook reprint, since I missed out last time!
NikolaiMcFist Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Student General Artist
I'm imagining all of this in my head, and it is the most badass thing. I'm so pumped to read/watch LMS. I only wish I wasn't always so broke so I could afford the Killbook.
Mista-M Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Great read, very informative. I'm looking forward to more of your art and hopefully I'll get my hands on LMS one day.
Monkey-Brush Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Professional General Artist
As someone who has been stalking your journey here since you first made Alice, i want to say thank you. Thank you so much for sharing your amazing experiences which have inspired countless of us who have followed. You're living the dream my friend but god dammit you earned it, the countless hours and blood sweat and tears are paying off slowly but surely and you fucking earned it. To see you start from a couple of characters to a full fledged IP inspires such hope that anyone can make their mark in this world if they're willing to bleed for it.

Keep doing what you're doing and don't you ever stop, for all our sakes.
Latharion Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Student General Artist
So great!!! Wow. Go you!
Sors-the-luck-bot Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I love reading these, good refs for future stuff.
ARCrebs Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks for sharing, Dan. Very motivational and inspiring.
ThinusvanRooyen Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You know, I think I've said this before, but I really, really need to buy LMS...
Been following it for oh, four years or so now, so yeah, its time to buy the book.

Anyway, thanks for sharing !
Tyterth Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
Awesome, you're the best
Comoglio Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
I've really enjoyed reading these, honestly it's really inspiring to me. I've been wanting to make my own IP for years now and it's really inspiring to see how you tackled the challenges its presented you with, along with your thought and workflow behind characters and story. I wish you the best of luck in your endeavor!
DiamonEyes Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
:iconorgasmingplz: Very cool!!!!
julianx16 Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
awesome ---- so great know your history and i feel so great for following you all this years a true inspiration really. keep being awesome.
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