Archive | January, 2010

Live drawing on Ustream on January 30, 2010

31 Jan

Just wanted to let you know that on my other blog, Pencilcast, there is a post about a live drawing I did on Ustream. Click on the image to go there.

Exploring emotions

30 Jan

So Preston Blair told us to watch ourselves in the mirror to get accurate facial expressions. Maybe he’s right, but it doesn’t really work for me. I have to use it as a distant reference, and work through several iterations before I have something I can use.

Exploring emotions

1) My own face in a mirror (hand added later) – 2) A happy chicken, as I have drawn before – 3) attempt to “cartoonize” my face in the mirror – 4) An angry face as comparison – 5) random doodle for good measure – 6) That’s it, now apply it to a chicken – 7) A chicken isn’t as expressive as a human face (especially the lips), so body language has to compensate (hand is essential here).

I have to practice some more, because being able to draw emotions on your cartoon character is key to making your cartoon appealing and not boring.

Kermit sketch

30 Jan

I had never drawn Kermit the frog, so when I did that from memory, I got what you see on the left. After briefly studying some reference material from a Google image search, I got what you see on the right. It’s not good, but at least you can recognize him.

Kermit sketch

To me it demonstrates the importance of having reference material.

I like

26 Jan

If you can draw, but don’t know what to draw, might be what you’re looking for. You doodle something in a window, hit the search button, and you’ll get all kinds of clip-art the service has decided matches your drawing.

I like

Computers are bad at recognizing content and meaning. Normally that is a bad thing, but here it is a feature. Its “artificial intelligence” doesn’t think like humans, so it comes up with totally unexpected results. This is what you want, because, remember, your human brain couldn’t come up with something to draw. The computer “brain” obviously could.

Vastenavend 2010

25 Jan

Between February 13 and 16, 2010, here in my hometown Bergen op Zoom, in the Netherlands, something called Vastenavend will be in full force. It is the local tradition of carnival, where people pretend to be whoever they want (better stated: to be themselves instead of conforming to rules set by others), and most of all have fun.

Vastenavendkrant 2010

Above you see the upper half of the front page of the “Vastenavendkrant”, a publication used to promote the festivities that will be going on. It is written in a local Dutch dialect (Bergs).

Not that I’m a party animal, but I do like the fact local artists and illustrators contribute to this publication.

When the church still ruled people’s behavior, this festival was one of the only outlets they had to be themselves. Nowadays, in the secular society the Netherlands has become the outlet is mostly poking fun at events in the local news. The jokes are often not very subtle and based on wordplay.

People dress up, but not as elaborate as in the South-East part of the Netherlands. There are parades, but most people enjoy themselves at night in the local pubs, with loud music and lots of beer.