Tag Archives: sketching

Laughing Deer

laughing deer_edited-1

I don’t know if that deer is laughing at me or with me.

You know you’ve spent too much time on the Wacom tablet when you try to control-Z a piece of paper.

This is just a quick sketch I did before I went to Florida (I’m back now) based on a selfie I took the week before. Although I still have some Dragon Comics to finish, I’m also working more in pencil lately, trying to be less dependent on the tablet and Photoshop. Been working on a big project that might take the rest of the year, but still trying to update this blog semi-regularly. Seriously, I drew this picture just to remind myself that I could draw.

The original photo was taken at a place called Rooster Cogburn’s Ostrich Ranch, about 45 minutes north of Tucson. It’s a tourist attraction petting zoo where you can feed little deer, miniature donkeys, goats, sheep, bunnies, parakeets, lorikeets, ducks, and sting rays. I might be missing some creatures. Oh, yeah, the stupid ostriches, which I ignore, because the rest of the attraction is much more fun. You get a lot of joy for $10. The deer are my favorite, but the sting rays are pretty cool. And the bunnies are bunnies.

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Big Eyes

In my quest to develop a style that would allow me to draw a daily webcomic, I experimented with a more anime-inspired face. A lot of cartoonists create these kind of guidelines, so they can see how the characters typically looks in various positions, with various emotions on their faces.

This would be me as an anime girl, I guess

This would be me as an anime girl, I guess.

My problem, as it’s always seemed to me, is that it doesn’t feel as if it’s possible to draw the same character over and over. Does she even look like the same girl? Her face is shaped differently in different pictures. Some cartoonists deal with this issue by drawing every character sort of the same, and just differentiating them through clothing and hairstyles.

Darling Husband, in the same style. But what if I want another character with a full beard in a button-down shirt?

Darling Husband, in the same style. But what if I want another character with a full beard in a button-down shirt?

Ultimately, when I start the graphic novel, the kids will probably have to stand in as models. A certain degree of cartoonishness is acceptable to me, but only up to a point. The proportions of the bodies and the faces needs to be somewhat realistic.

Thinking about Seahorses

Seahorses have been on my mind for a while. Who doesn’t love seahorses?

Seahorses at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

Seahorses at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, taken June of last month.

They’re adorable, they’re soothing to watch, and they have the interesting characteristic of gender-swapping gestational duties.

Seahorse at Gumbo Limbo, a sea turtle rescue I visited last week in southern Florida.

Seahorse at Gumbo Limbo, a sea turtle rescue I visited last week in southern Florida.

The drawings I summon, whole cloth, from my head, don’t always come out the way I envision them. Sometimes I feel the muse is guiding me (as I did with Athena), but usually I end up with a cartoonish representation of a thing that I can describe better in words than in pictures.

This is what it looks like when I try to draw a seahorse from my own imagination with no referential images.

This is what it looks like when I try to draw a seahorse from my own imagination with no referential images.

A few weeks ago, I had a brilliant idea for a T-shirt, which I ran past my stepkids. They seemed to think it was a pretty amusing idea, and I’m very happy with the sketch I drew a few days ago. For this image, I looked at a bunch of photos of seahorses, but I also looked at the design of a popular cartoon I wanted to parody.

Can anyone guess the name of this noble lady?

Can anyone guess the name of this noble lady?

I’ll be working on the digital version of this image today, and hope to have a good design within the week (if you know what fandom I’m spoofing, you probably realize that her mane is flowing in the wrong direction, and besides which, I didn’t make her head big enough for her eyelashes), but first, I’ll be blogging a bit more. Now that I’m started to get page views and followers, I’m going to attempt to update 5 days a week!