Saturday, November 7, 2009

Sharpening The Tools

Hey, sorry for the late reply...I'm working on some storyboards at the moment.

Anyway I wanted to talk about construction a bit.

Personally when I can't think of anything to draw, I basically just practice the basics such as construction and the ability to change the shape. I believe that the more I draw these shapes and practice changing them, the more likely I can draw them better and with better control (As you can see some of them ain't as solid as I'd like them to be).

You see when I was still at school, I had to make a choose between two different subjects (There were others but these were the two I wanted to try) which were Art and Graphics. Now my dad is pretty skilled at drawing goldie oldies so I felt he could teach me the art side of things and so I went with Graphics.

Unfortunately my dad didn't teach me much about Art and for years I felt that Graphics was the wrong choice for me and that I missed out on Art but now I'm starting to understand it because of the strong influence of construction, perpective and materials within the subject.

So if I was to recommend a subject to cartoonist that are still at a young age, I'd say Graphic is a good start.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Drawings 008

Wow, John's back.

Anyway I quickly drew up this after kelven emailed me a bunch of character drawings of the main character of a project we're working on.

I'll show and tell more about it when I make a new blog purely for that project.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

No more stuff from Ol' John

You may have heard or seen or witnessed it but John has locked off his blog to view only "invited readers".

Yip I'm locked out too. I'm pretty bad at writing anger letters (As you can see with my grammer and spelling) Period! so I decided to just draw out my emotions about the whole situation...It helped.
At the end of it as you can see by the random psycho expression at the bottom of the page that I had lost any energy or emotion behind how I felt about the situation and just started having fun.
Oh well John, it's been fun I've learnt a hell of a lot and I'm going to miss the lessons. Take care.

Anyway this blog is still open and kicking to the public, so viewers don't be afraid to have a look around.

Monday, October 19, 2009


Now to be honest with you, I hate vampires...but with this classic with Bela Lugosi in it I quite enjoyed.
His character had honor, charm and grace to him, I always liked these villians. I know there are people who believe that villains are meant to be hated but Dracula is also the main character (Well at least to me)...It's his name on the film, so he should be an enjoyable character.
He had these funny deadpan stares, I think they're awesome:
He was such a fun character that I decided to draw a few poses of him:
I hope you enjoyed it.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Dismemberment does exist in Cartoons

Now "Dismemberment" to me isn't a rule or a principle or even a habit but more of a simple reminder that you ain't restricted to reality with cartoons. This is a strong side of cartoons purely in general which is odd that we don't see it being used that much nowadays.

Here's a famous scene from one of Tex Avery's most famous cartoons (I think) "Red Hot Riding Hood". If you've seen "The Mask" then you've seen this scene.

Now in this scene you'll notice if you slow it down really slowly, you'll notice "Dismemberment" in action.

This is where is it kicks into action, it's only a quick anticipation part and part of him is off scene but it's there. The head is unnaturally pointing up while the body is merely slightly twisted. Now you may not think much about this but it's technically impossible for a "normal" person to twist into this pose.
I've tried it myself.
In reality, the human head can't stretch like that in a cartoon but that doesn't mean you can't still draw poses that defy reality.
But remember above this, the direction of the pose is more important. Don't throw it in without a purpose but remember that the option is still open when you need to.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Slap-Happy Lion 02

Ok, sorry about the late post...I don't always have a lot of time to hop on the COM-POOH-TUR but I try.

Here's some more from the model sheet "Slap-Happy Lion", I started drawing the mouse as well:
The second one of the lion is pretty stretched but the effect is still least I think...

And here is some random proof that I don't trace my drawings and I do do what I talk about (Printing out the model sheets first).

Ya all come back now, ya hear?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Slap-Happy Lion 01

Hey there

Taking the advice of John, I've been playing a model of a character I've always liked.

I can never remember the names of the characters in a lot of Tex Avery cartoons mainly because the names were barely mentioned...I just remember that this character was just called "The Lion".

As I've mentioned before, I don't really enjoy coping characters because I've got to trying and guess what was the motivation behind the character's action, what was the direction of it all?
I learnt a few factors of what John meant by Hiearchy, I noticed that to constructed the nose I had to work through 3 forms of structure to get a solid detail nose...or at least I think it's a solid nose.
...Did anyone say "Ears"?
Of course when I lined them up it's clear that the original and my attempt are different.
Half way through it I noticed the intension behind the drawing and knew it wasn't going to be correct, I remember this scene the lion is getting ready to oddly the drawing is leaning forward.
Here's my "Tin-foil hat" principle...Direction. It's shows how my point of Direction is so important, would you really buy a car with no steering wheel?
I tried doing that thing with photoshop by lining up both the layers...but the whole thing just gave me a headache...
I hate trying to view things like that on computers...I even print out the model sheets because it's easy to shift the paper around and get a better idea of it...
Imagine trying to use a computer or laptop like a piece of paper. I think I'll try and draw some of the character.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Drawings 007

Hey there

Here's some more stuff:

Once again I didn't design these characters (Although I did draw these), they were done by my friend Kelven but I did direct how the cat looks (I focused too much on the interesting details and now I'm living to regret it since I'm trying to learn how to draw them). Kelven could always draw them with such control...I've still got room to improve.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Clear Staging Vs. Logic

I personally believe that when you want to get a clear and "Direct" pose of a character, you face many factors that can or can't strength the pose in general.

Some are things like line of action and silhouette. But some are more typical things that we've been drilled into over the years that we have to unlearn...things like reality and logic...things that will restrict the pose from being the best it can be.

I read this book once called "The Animation's survival Kit" by Richard you'll notice if you read between the lines that all his tutors, teachers and mentors all told him that he was being too technical...and I agree with them...a lot of the examples in the book were too focused on proving a formula then successfully showing what they really trying to do.

Although I did find one thing I still think is important, unfortunately he did explain it too much in a technical way.

He calls it "Breaking the Joint"

I call it "Dismemberment" or "Disjointedness"

It's removes the expection of trying to force realism into a pose that could jeopardise the whole direction or intension of the pose and what it stands for.

I hope this example helps push the understanding of what I'm trying to say. This is a true fact, why is the chin pushed into an unusual way? Well mainly in cartoons you have a larger range then simply trying to copy reality. Sometimes you have to shift the character around to read more clearly.

Here's what happens when it restricts itself to reality: Doesn't it look weird? it's whole pose is messed up now.

Have a look at the two together: Ok, technically if we changed the head/cranium around on the second one it could still work but ultimately the message behind it has gone now...Reality has robbed it of it's direction and punch.

Here's the line of action: The line of action is all screwed-up on the second one, there goes a form of direction lost. Here's the rest of the direction out of it.

Because the head isn't leaning back, the kick has lost a lot of energy out of it... Here is one of the drawings I've posted earlier this week, to be lacks a lot of energy to it and the pose is scrambled.Logically you'd think a character would do this if they were going to take a swing and I must admit...It has some good factors about it risk throwing away part of his expression in the action, yes you see some of it is in the eyes but it's not clear. This pose I like best, you get more of a pull behind the pose, more direction but you don't throw away the expression, all your throwing away is how you'd do it logically which in truth no one really cares about to begin with.You know it needs to be a big swing because most of the line of action is in the bat and arms of the character
The direction is improved, the action is simple and don't need reality in interfere with entertainment.

"Focus on the result...Not the Formula"

A Half Decent Modern-Day Character


I'm a big fan of Team Fortress 2 (Or just TF2), I stopped playing after a while because of boredom and the fact that they ruined the best character of the game...


He was the first class I saw for the game and He's always been the most fun character personality wise.

He always had the best lines, best expressions, best voice, best everything...He was to me a "NATURALLY" appealling character.

His personality: He's a impulsively proud character...confident in his general size and strength (He refers everyone else as "Wee-lil Babies"). He's passive/aggressive character in that he is mainly quiet and serious when he is dealing with normal life things (Like the "Meet the class" interview) but he's back in the zone when he's fighting and killing in that he yells and screams his famous "Cry some morrrrreeeee!!". Everything he does he does it in a strong manner, it has a forcefulness to it. He has a thing for his minigun (The thing he has in his hands below) in which he calls "Sasha".

His voice: His voice is very distinct to any other russain impersonated voice I've heard, his voice is husky, deep and funny as hell to listen to.

I'd love to see Valve make a short animation cartoon about him, he's such a great character...

He's like the modern-day popeye to me, he's the character you really want to win, he loves getting into fights and he eats heath food...

Eat your sandvich, you want to be big and strong like the Heavy weapons guy, don't you?

Friday, October 9, 2009

Caricatures have direction as well

Hey, sorry about the late post.

I've found another example to explain this idealogy I had on this missing animation principle I call "Direction"

You see I read this book a while ago about caricatures by Alex Hughes called "Learn to Draw Caricatures" which I think is a decent start on caricatures.

I'm going to use a page I found as an example:

This is a good example of "Stretch" with no direction, as he explains in the book he's just stretching the face (Which explains that why just stretching the entire face isn't always the best soluation). Unfortunately a lot of cartoons nowadays have "Squash and Stretch" with no real purpose behind it (Without Direction), they're just relying the principles and formulas to animate.

These examples show that he isn't just stretching features, he's also holding some back as well. He's identifies which factors on the face need to do what, he's found the purpose his aiming for. Unfortunately he's final drawing is a little too focused on design gimmicks and things I guess he likes to add into his drawings out of habit (I'm a bit like that too).
Here's my pathetic attempt at it, originally I started just copying the form and general construction of the final drawing (Which is partly the reason why his head is leaning back).

I found that some of the features from the original were lost in the final (Maybe to force appeal into the drawing). I feel that drawings should never force focus appeal into them, I strongly believe that "Direction" or "Purpose" or "Clarity" or "Whatever you would like to call it" needs to be understood more then simply making the drawing look nice.
Appeal as a principle is some nasty joke of an idea of forcing something nature to work in a way that it shouldn't and that's why there is a lot of nice looking stuff out there nowadays but not a lot of it has a true driving force of what they are trying to accomplish or show.

Here is some of the factors I felt I did correctly with direction by understand what to push for. Please note I am not talking about exaggeration, exaggeration is the amount of direction you put into it.

Here's the factors I felt I missed in the drawing which I think makes it a successful example with both good points and bad points.