I can barely recall the last time I had been to my friend Ian’s home. I remember an apartment with a balcony, I think. I remember a lot of the boys huddled around the TV playing some console (but that’s pretty typical at any get-together of ours). I don’t remember the layout too well, nor even how many of us were there. What I do remember that his mom made us food. And it was very, very good. I am 110% sure I kept eating even after I was full to bursting, just because it tasted so good.
So I had always known Ian’s mom was a great cook. But today he put up a picture on Facebook of an ice cream cake his mother had made for the first time, from scratch. I was duly impressed by the creativity and presentation and I really wanted to share it:
I don’t know how she did it. Ian told me it was a homemade ice cream cake. The sliced strawberries and chocolate shavings would already have made it look better than a cake bought at a store. But what really makes the cake are the half-cones surrounding it – such a creative twist! It’s almost as if you can take a piece of cone and serve a slice of ice cream cake on top and eat it like a pie. Or maybe my imagination is just running away with me.
On to my own, less delicious creation:
I often used to draw pictures of manga or anime characters. I would have a picture for reference and blow it up and draw it in my sketchbook. I referenced this picture from a manga called Ranma 1/2.
Ranma 1/2 is about a 16-year-old boy named Ranma who fell into a pool in the Cursed Springs while training in the mountains of China. Each pool had a different curse and unfortunately for Ranma, his curse was that he would be turned into a girl whenever he was doused with cold water and back into a boy when he poured hot water on himself.
When Ranma and his father return to Japan, they stay with one of his father’s old friends, who has a daughter named Akane. The fathers want to arrange a marriage for Ranma and Akane, who refuse their engagement. Typical of comedic manga love stories, lots of girls want Ranma for their own while Akane is pursued by many boys. And also typically, both Ranma and Akane fall for each other but never admit it openly, nor even admit it to themselves. So the series follows the crazy antics of lovesick young hotheads falling for each other left and right, potential lovers consumed with jealousy in private, and ridiculous martial arts challenges between rivals.
This particular frame is where Ranma and Akane are participating in the school play, and as luck would have it, were playing Romeo and Juliet. Romeo was supposed to kiss Juliet, but both Ranma and Akane are stubbornly insisting they would do anything to not kiss the other. At this point, it was pretty clear they liked each other but they both refused to admit it.
Although Ranma secretly wanted to kiss Akane, he hurts Akane’s feelings by refusing to kiss her because she was a tomboy. She gets back at him when they kiss for the scene here – the next frame shows that she had taped his mouth behind her hands and he was grossly disappointed.
I had only read the few books that my friend had back then. It’s been almost 8 years, I wonder that I remember so much. Recounting the story makes me want to go and read it online right now!
When I had first drawn this, painstakingly inking in the picture with a black felt tip pen, one of my friends did not believe that I had done it by hand, even though he had been sitting in my class while I was doing it. He was convinced that I had printed it onto a page in my sketchbook somehow. It seems that it has faded quite a bit though – a patch of Ranma’s shirt is the true black it once was. Their eyes look unaffected as well. The tip of Ranma’s braid probably got wet or something – hence the bleeding. I considered retouching it, but I feel that would cover the efforts I had made back then. Maybe I’ll re-ink it with a new felt tip pen if it fades to the point where I risk losing the picture.
I miss the days when I could draw in class and still do well in school.