Tuesday Tips - "Don't just stand there!"
A surprisingly simple yet challenging exercise. Try to draw as many standing poses of a simple character. Try not using props or things to lean on. It will make the exercise more fulfilling. Go through your first ideas quickly. Get those out so you can start thinking more specifically about how a character would behave or feel if he/she was cold, impatient, worried, late, hurt, angry, etc. We often forget that the whole body is engaged in expressing a feeling. Also, more technically, it forces you think of weight distribution (makes your poses more solid and believable). As always, stay loose and do it fast to surprise yourself with what you come up with. Norm
Tuesday Tips - Bridging The Gap
For many aspiring/professional artists, there's a gap between formal figure drawing and the more applied "cartoon" work. I felt this way for a long time until I decided to really apply the many "principles of animation" into my figure drawing sessions. Once in a while, I test out what I know by "superimposing" a character design on the pose of a live model. Of course, I have to modify and add details that are simply not there (hairstyle, clothing). But that's where your knowledge can be applied and tested. Body proportions are also challenging to "convert" from a live model into an existing character design, but that's an existing challenge. Overall, your understanding of the character will grow by leaps and bounds. Try it out! (You can also use photo references, but a live model is the best way to understand volumes and weight distribution.) -Norm