Even though this theme is done and over, I still have more I want to do (like making a 3d model)… I had a lot of fun ideas brewing while working on this guy, so I really should do them justice.
This design is a hybrid of my favorite one (see previous post) and someone else’s favorite. I would have like to keep more of the deranged mad look from the latter in this version, but then, the character’s pose became more of an intrigue to me, and I started thinking about way the character would move all slinky and disorienting.
Ahh yeah, this month’s theme is Alice in Wonderland! In choosing which character to do, because you can only choose one, the first one I thought of after Alice was the Cheshire Cat. So I did a bit of research on good ol’ google to establish a few requirements. Then I started doodling. These are my second pass doodles. My first pass is on paper as always, and I don’t have a scanner or a camera.
According to this source, the Cheshire cat may have been inspired by grinning lions. Wouldn’t it be fun to design a mane on this character?? I was getting ready to try that, but I got distracted by another thought. If the cat’s gender isn’t specified, I can design it as a female. The book refers to the cat as an “it.” The only time I found it given a gender is when the Queen of Hearts says “Off with his head.” Darn, I was really hoping it would remain a mystery. But I could just dismiss the Queen’s dialogue as not accurate. If it’s not the narrators words, it’s not necessarily law of the storyland, right? I mean, maybe the Queen probably wasn’t paying attention. She didn’t know the cat.
I wasn’t being very careful and made the cat look like it was growling at first, so after tweaking the shape of the smile, I figured out how to distinguish the difference between drawing growling and grinning. It’s very subtle, but since different muscles around the mouth are engaged for different expressions, just figure out which muscles they are by doing it yourself. Grrrrr!!! and Heeeee!!!
Other characteristics I’ve ascertained about this cat: good-nature looking, long claws, many teeth (and hence respectable), lovely green eyes, and sitting on a horse chestnut tree. Other designs:
My favorite is this last one.
My 2017 Inktobers for the second half of the month:
Day 16 – Fat:
Day 21 – Furious:
Day 22 – Trail:
Day 23 – Juicy:
Day 24 – Blind:
Day 25 – Ship:
Day 26 – Squeak:
Day 30 – Found:
All of these drawings were at least started on the date of the actual prompt. The ones scrawled in the drawings are probably when I actually finished them. Except for the last one. That definitely took three work lunch breaks to complete.
Now on to No-ink November!
My 2017 Inktobers for the first half of the month:
Day 1 – Swift:
Day 2 – Divided:
Day 3 – Poison:
Day 4 and 5 combined because I missed day 4 – Underwater and Long:
Day 6 – Sword:Day 7-14 – FAIL! I didn’t draw anything… 😦 😦
Day 15 – Mysterious:
In my mind, I always liked the idea of doing 2d animation. Drawing each pose directly by hand… oh boy! Doesn’t that sound like fun?? To some people, most people, this sounds repetitive. And it totally is. I’m not sure why it sounds fun to me. I think I just like the idea of drawing a lot. But it’s a little difficult to work on a drawn animation without the right set up. Things have to align and stuff. Also, I’ve always wanted to try this page rolling technique that I’ve seen and read about.
I need an animation desk! With the pegs and the inclined rotating surface. I’ve never used one before, even though I really want to have one right here next to me. For now, I just rigged a quick set up by taking one of those standing clear plastic sign holders and sticking two binder clips on the edges to hold the papers in place.
Woohoo, now I have somewhat of an animation drawing table. To celebrate, I drew a sitting cat. Why a cat? Because they’re cute. And I was thinking about how they seem to move pose to pose when they’re pouncing or attacking something. Like this:
The clear plastic of my “drawing desk” allowed light to come through and illuminate the drawing beneath, like a lightbox. It was awesome. Then I got another idea to make the cat get up and start walking, and anticipate the action.
I didn’t use any video reference, even though I kept thinking to do so. I also realized I made it difficult by putting in a perspective. So I had a lot of cleaning up to do in photoshop. But yes, I did finally get to try the rolling page thingy, and it was awesome!
When I stumbled upon Shan Jiang’s Bicycle Coloring Bike at Buc ee’s one day, I didn’t think twice about buying it. It is a beautiful book, and not only does it make me want to color, but it makes me want to draw and animate too. In fact, with my love for bicycles and drawing and recent exploration of cats and China, I’m a little jealous that I’m not the one who made this book! But happy. Jealappy. And jealspired, you know, like jealous but inspired…
I intended to practice some value and shading with this book, but the more I flip through it, the more I’m afraid to taint it with my experimental coloring. The book’s binding doesn’t make it exactly scanner friendly either. Guess I’ll just have to buy another one! Or make my own?? I did attempted to emulate one of the drawings, fascinated by their fantastical yet detailed grandeur and quirkiness:
(Whoops, that’s a Terry bike now. Wheels in perspective is challenging! So is the geometric accuracy required to draw a bicycle convincingly.)
I suddenly remembered that I did start a series of illustrations shortly after I returned from China. I wanted to illustrate my discoveries and experiences of the bike culture from living there. This one was going to be a rather axonometric drawing of the daily bikescape:
Cats are fuuunnny creatures. I remember going through a cat phase when I was… 10 years old? By cat phase, I mean a time in my life when I drew something over and over again. As proof, here’s an embarrassing doodle from an early era of my life, recently discovered at the bottom of a desk drawer.
I did go through a horse and dog phase too, but the horse and dog that you see to the right are specifically characters from my first digital animation ever. Perhaps I’ll save that for a future post…
Well, I sort of went through a cat phase again this past winter which I spent with Snowball. I drew her tons. I wanted to capture her funny behavior:
Well, I thought I’d capture this spirit in my first animation assignment for AnimSquad. So what makes them so funny, especially when they get all excited? You know, like how they suddenly dart out, or get scared and jump up in a smooth arc? Sometimes I even see a flipping movement while watching scramble around a corner, and it always looked so strange to me. Luckily, there are youtube videos of cats jumping around in slow motion. Here’s some sketches of one that was just CONSTANTLY tumbling around:
Wow, I did NOT realize how much they flipped out!! Literally. It’s like their spine is made of rubber. You know how cats always land on their feet because they rotate half their body some 180 degrees? Well, they pretty much do that at any opportunity they’re airborne, even if it’s just for a split second. Can’t wait til I get a cat assignment to animate!