Sunday, 3 February 2008

Productive weekend

Well, after spending the last week working on various odd jobs (see the projects post below, if you need help sleeping...), I decided to play catch up and trudged on through with some artwork and while not producing Jack Kirby-like amounts (well, Jack Kirby-like amounts NOW), I managed to get a few things done.

I managed to produce two pencilled pages of The Jock ready for inking, pencils for a cover for Rol and cracked two panels on two unfinished earlier pages. Comic pages are rarely easy to draw as each panel involves multiple variables but the challenge can be quite rewarding when a page is finally completed, even at just the pencilling stage.

Now the Jock pages I'm currently drawing are a bit tough: it's three people in a bandstand in a park at night. Surprisingly, the park proved quite hard: how do you make grass, trees, benches and lamposts interesting? Well, you don't but you can at least make them believable but do you think I could crack one wideshot? I'm still not satified with it but I managed to find my ref for the bandstand. Taking onboard advice from the Brum con, I'm still struggling to juggle the panel shots without resorting to a bunch of headshots, which I love drawing but are no fun for the reader. I'm still a bit rusty and the layouts are a few years old so I'm reworking things out in my head before setting pencil to page. Case in point, I had a headshot of Jagher, which I changed to a shot of him with a hand extended towards the reader and loosele sketched it in. I then reread the sketch and saw that Jagher was not supposed to react so I ultimately reverted to the headshot, presumably chosen just for that reason when I did the layouts years ago. However, on that same page, I again rethought a panel completely and it came out so easily it was unbelievable (detail here).

I'm still struggling with other panels though. I should have easily been able to start, if not complete, a third page of pencils but the number of times I've redrawn figures or panels this weekend because they were wrong was stupid. I still have a shot of Baby I need to work on and after unsuccessfully trying to find another answer to a problem I couldn't solve, I've just realised that I'm gonna have to admit defeat and redraw a Suzy head. I love her expression but I had to squeeze her arms into the panel and her head (always my starting point) is subsequently a little oversized. I'm hoping I'll be able to recapture the expression but typically, I bet I won't be able to.

On the flipside, I had to draw a shot of Johnny for another page and just could not get it right. Finally, I manged to nail it on my fourth complete attempt (as opposed to just correcting a specificc portion or element). It may not be perfect but it felt like bliss just getting it to the level of acceptable!


Rol Hirst said...

Being a perfectionist writer is SO much easier than being a perfectionist artist!

Nige Lowrey said...

Dunno about perfectionist (as I can never produce what my mind sees) but it has to be as "right" as possible. I find the best solution is to follow Tone's lead--previously I'd never leave a page unfinished but now I walk away from a problem, start another page and then return to the original page and hopefully the solution will present itself.

What's worse is not realising errors until after the finished page is done, hence why my lightbox will come in handy for correcting slight errors in Jock #1 that will result in much better work if slightly tweaked. : )