torsdag den 12. december 2013

Exercises in style

Last week we had Matt Madden, comic book artist and teacher, in a style workshop.

Monday we did a "template comic" with six panels from the simple script:

1. Student A working on comic in classroom
2. Enter student B
3. Student B sits down next to student A
4. Student A slides his/her comic to student B
5. Student A: "She's all yours"
6. Student A leaves, student B starts drawing

Here's my template comic, that I am not particularly proud of:

The rest of the week we redid the page with different constraints.

Monday. First constraint was genre, and I got adventure, and made a terribly ugly comic:

Tuesday. Next constraint was to redo the framing and point of view out from a certain principle. I chose to only use extreme close-ups and I added sound effects. My choice was pretty random and the easy way out, and my comic ended up pretty boring:

Wednesday. Third constraint was to choose the style of another artist and apply this to the template comic. I chose the style of amazing Lilli Carré ( who I have fallen completely in love with. This was the most successful product I did this week even though I didn't stay very close to the template. I learned a lot from copying her:
But the texting is pretty bad.
Thursday. We watched Jørgen Leths "The Perfect Human" and "The five Obstructions" and used the principle of the latter to do the last comic page. We had to make three to five obstructions for another student in the class, and then make our comic using the obstructions.
I got obstructions from Eydi, who gave me
1: Drawing style should be the one of Jeffrey Brown's "Every girl is the end of the world to me"
2: Backgrounds in perspective
3: Dynamic
4: Page should be 50 % black.
Very mean. But it ended up... acceptable:
It has been an amazing week with really interesting lectures about constrained writing and how to apply these principles to comics, although I have not had my best week in terms of successful products.
Luckily Matt is probably coming back next semester for a couple of weeks, to teach us together with his wife Jessica Abel, who is also a comic artist and teacher.
And today I made my very first GIF!!!
I am not proud. But it was fun.

søndag den 1. december 2013


This week was drawing with Lawrence Marvit. Before we move on with the second design class, we went through perspective drawing and rendering a full image.

First assignment was to design a weapon for Atlantis. We had a lecture about design and form, where we looked at cars, chairs, sofas, sculptures and toy guns. It made me think about design in a new way, namely designing three dimensionally, and also designing the (three dimensional) negative space. How can you make the negative space of a chair the most dynamic. This is really interesting.

Then we drew an epic view of Atlantis in perspective. Which turned out very ugly.

My drawing of an antique shop went better.

And last thing was to render the drawing.

I am not done with this drawing.

In this week we also had three third year students model for us in superhero costumes. With 3 minute poses we worked with construction of the body and drawing fabric and folders.

søndag den 24. november 2013

Manuscript and thumbnailing

The last two weeks we have been writing a manuscript for our 20 page comic and thumbnailing the pages. For the writing our guide was Henning Kure, who is one of the creators of the Danish Valhalla series. For the thumbnailing we had Palle Scmidt, writer and artist of the graphic novels Stiletto and The Devils Concubine.

The writing was very intense and demanding, and you could only do it in a certain pace.

With Palle we also did test pages, where we tried out different styles for the comic. We have two weeks to finish the 20 pages next semester, so we also had to find out which style would be easier for yourself to finish quickly. This is why I have chosen to do the comic in pencil/crayon with a more children book/illustration feel to it. The trick, Palle said, is to trick yourself into thinking that what you're doing is not important.

The comic will look something like this:

And these are the other tests I did:

For inspiration I have been looking at Tove Jannson, Arne Ungermann and Sven Nordqvist illustrations.

søndag den 10. november 2013

Story structure with Merlin!

Some time back we had the American screen writer Barbara Slade as a teacher in story structure and scriptwriting. Here we began working with stories, that we continued working on this week. This week we had the Danish Merlin P. Mann as a teacher (the co-creator of the Taynikma series), and his teaching was a continuation of what we did with Barbara: 3 act structure, the hero's journey, A-story/B-story and so on.

At the end of the week we had a product that consisted of the story outline, which is a bullet point description of the actions of the story, where you take out all flavor and mood out of the story. Like that you boil the story down to structure and you can focus on making the structure simple and working.

The comic story we're working individually on now will be a 20 pager, but we won't finish it until the beginning of next year.