Monday, May 31, 2010
In the vein of Red Riding Hood, I tried out a few ideas for "the wolf" and my first attempt (the one on the left) was too cutesy and didn't really fit the weird style that I am slowly gravitating towards (a style of looser lines, weirder expressions, and more wobbly body parts) so I tried again and came up the guy on the right. This one is definitely more in the VIBE of my usual junk but it might be a bit weirder than I want/need. Another round may be in order.
P.S. now that I look at it again, the dude on the left looks like Mr. Peabody... yeesh.
As I'm still struggling with a hair-coloring method for my cartoons that feels correct to me, I decided to run the same doodle through a series of coloration experiments so that I could compare them side-by-side.
The stripe method is kinda fun as it adds an unexpected texture to the hair and I like that the casual, meandering line isn't particularly pretentious and keeps things loose and playful.
The blend method is a half-assed photoshop of blocking in color before a serious attempt to blend colors and it's alright but it seems a little over-busy unless that coloring method is carried over to the rest of the cartoon.
Muddy is an attempt to take the blend set-up and then smooth out the edges a bit and I'm not really all that thrilled with this one or the faux-airbrush of the dodge/burn approach.
Hard edge is an oversimplification of the shadow/highlights of the shape and might be TOO simple but damn, there's something about the sharp edge that really appeals to me. It might be possible to take this and then fuzz out the edges here and there when the mood calls for it.
Watercolor and acrylic are fresh out of Artrage and I've commented on both of these before. Watercolor isn't too bad at faking some of the fun texture that real watercolors deliver while giving a bit of a color punch that the real thing lacks. Acrylic is pretty fun. I think it's a nice step up from hard edge without going all the way into trying to PRETEND that I'm actually digitally painting.
Working out a composition with the Red Riding Hood character and wanted to document the first ideas. I'm undecided between a "young girl" version and a "little kid" version but I think that once I work out how I want to go with the WOLF then the choice will be more obvious. I'll probably work up a few quickie color concepts to go along with these shortly.
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Expanding the doodling to some texture sketches inspired by the heavy-lined style of Chuck Lukacs. Tried a little experiment of eyeballing a Lukacs creature and then drawing bits and pieces of what I remembered in a weird hybrid of his style and my own cartoony lines. As I've said earlier, at some point I am going to start taking these disparate pieces and constructing an actual piece of art. Whatever.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Saturday, May 15, 2010
This one took a little longer than expected as I simply could NOT get the hair to color the way that I wanted it to. I think that I need to spend a couple of days doing nothing but painting hair until I figure out a basic method that comes REMOTELY close to how I imagine it to look. Bleah.
On the bright side, at least I got to color in some classic HAMMER Films cleavage.
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Ripped from today's headlines! Yes, it's another moleskine page of truncated doodles presented in classic black and white-ish line art. At some point I might extract a doodle or two out of this mess and work it up into a full-color cartoon. Who knows?
I'm pretty lame when it comes to drawing buildings or landscapes or detailed backgrounds and I'm painfully aware that this is an area that I really need to work on. This doodle-sketch was an attempt at drawing a background from a photo but with a slight twist in that I did not allow myself to use a pencil to sketch out any guides and went straight in with the Pitt pen. This led to some hilariously weird bits of malformed perspective here and there but I wanted the lines to have a bit of hesitancy and looseness that I lose if I pencil sketch first and then ink over the pencil lines (my standard operating procedure - and it usually causes me to over-correct and lose some of the character and energy of my initial pencil lines).
At any rate, this is the first of a bunch of no-pencil backgrounds that I plan on doing to try and build up a halting visual vocabulary.
Monday, May 10, 2010
Sunday, May 9, 2010
Thursday, May 6, 2010
Here's half of a page of doodle faces with a bit of half-assed color treatment via Artrage (mostly fake watercolor and few fake acrylic). More color experimentation in Artrage. Trying out every angle of the basic watercolor brushes before I start devising my own custom jobs. Nothing to see here, move along.
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
One last look at this snails-watercolor experiment. I grabbed a slice from each of the versions and placed them left to right in the order of real water, digital gouache in Painter, and digital watercolor in Artrage for E-Z(tm) comparative viewing. Verdict to be rendered later.
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
Doing a little experiment here. This batch of snails was drawn on watercolor paper with a Pitt India ink pen and then colored with real, honest-to-goodness NON-digital watercolors (an awkward exercise for somebody who hasn't touched the things in about 20 years). Next up, I am going to do another set of the same snails and color them in the computer. The purpose of the exercise is for me to see whether the digital or the traditional medium works better (for me). Stay tuned.
Okay, so now here is a set done in Painter with a gouache brush (I started with digital watercolor but couldn't get a decent texture out of Painter no matter what paper type I used). I dig the crunchiness of the watercolor version but I'm not a fan of how pale and delicate those colors look. Especially against the outrageously rich colors that come from digital painting.
One thing that I should have tried is adding some NOISE to the color layer of the digital version... maybe I'll give that a try next time.
One more set! Can you dig it?
This next version was an attempt at fake watercolors using a couple of combo watercolor brushes in Artrage. This isn't too bad. It keeps some of the scruffiness of real watercolors but has the advantage of digital tweaking and a much more vibrant color palette. I'll have to mess about with this experiment a bit more before I call it a win.
So much for round 1.
I stumbled across some interesting Hindu stuff made of up vivid colors and interesting iconography and decided to try something with a bit more superfluous detail than I usually invest in a cartoon. It didn't come out as planned but I figured that I'd post the so-so results. Sadly, the jpg compression at this size is making the colors really muddy in places but short up uploading a 2 meg png, I'm not sure what else to do with it.
On another note, check out this close-up chunk, at 100% size you can actually see the faux brush strokes from Artrage. Neat.
Saturday, May 1, 2010
Here's a close-crop on part of the zombie cartoon painting in progress. It's very strange for me to be "coloring without lines" - not my normal, slap-dash style at all and I'm not entirely sure that I dig the change. We'll see how it works out.