Tuesday 10 January 2012

Adam and dog: by Minkyu Lee

Happy New Year 2012! I know it's been quite a while since my last post. 2011 was a tough, busy year and it was quite a task to keep up with it all. I've heard many people relate similar stories and feelings about last year, so let's all hope that 2012 is a whole lot better.

One amazing project that I was fortunate enough to help out and work on a little bit during the past year was my friend Minkyu Lee's film "Adam and dog". A completely independent, hand drawn short film that I'm very happy to say has been nominated for the Best Animated Short Subject category in the 39th Annual Annie Awards.

Sketch of Adam by Minkyu Lee.

Still frame image of dog from the film.

Minkyu has recently put together a wonderful trailer for his film that has been making the rounds and gathering lots of buzz on the Internet that you can watch here:

He has also started a tumblr for the film where you can find out more information about it and get updates on future screenings here:

I hope that everyone gets a chance to see the film soon!

Tuesday 19 April 2011

Milt Kahl: Crocky

Few people can draw cartoon animals quite as well as Milt Kahl. Here is a model sheet of Crocky from "Bedknobs & Broomsticks".

Tuesday 1 February 2011

Chouinard Art Institute: Course Catalogs circa 1950

Happy 2011 New Year! It's hard to believe it's been almost two years since I wrote a post here about Chuck Jones and Chouinard where I mentioned that my Great Uncle had attended the school in the early 1950s. I had hoped to share a lot more about that story here by now, but better late than never.

My Great Uncle Dan, one of my Grandmother's brothers on my Mother's side of the family, enrolled in Chouinard after serving in the military during World War II. I believe his focus at the school was on Advertising Design and he went on to have a successful career as an Art Director in the advertising field here in Los Angeles. As I mentioned in my earlier post though, by the time I realized I'd really like to ask him some questions about his career and his schooling at Chouinard it was too late.

After he passed away in 2005, I was fortunate that his immediate family allowed me to have a few of the art books and other items from his studio space that I found interesting. Amongst these things were a couple of the Chouinard Course Catalogs from the time my Great Uncle attended the school.

I have to admit that it was pretty exciting to find these in his studio. Not only was I struck by the beautiful image of the drummer on the '51-'52 brochure, but when I looked at the class schedules and the instructors I saw more than a few important names I recognized. Names of legendary artists like T.Hee, Bob Winquist, Bill Moore, Donald Graham, and Marc Davis.

So I've finally gotten around to scanning them and would like to share the catalogs here:

Hopefully these scans will be of interest to some people, as well as acting to preserve a small aspect of Southern California's notable history in the modern arts.

Wednesday 24 November 2010

Disney Model Sheet: OWL

I was about to write yet another post about an observational sketching book, but then I thought maybe I should post something fun and cartoony before the Thanksgiving Holiday. Well here it is, a model sheet of the Owl teacher from the Walt Disney shorts "Toot Whistle Plunk and Boom" and "Adventures in Music: Melody". Enjoy and have a great holiday!

Thursday 4 November 2010

E.H. Shepard: The Man Who Drew Pooh

I briefly mentioned E.H. Shepard in a post I wrote about Hayao Miyazaki here in 2009. E.H. Shepard was an English artist and book illustrator who is probably best known for the illustrations he did for A.A. Milne's "Winnie the Pooh" series of books, which were published in the late 1920's. Shepard's drawings are charming, delicate, and exhibit an incredible facility in draftsmanship.

I recently purchased a book about him called "E.H. Shepard, The Man Who Drew Pooh" by Arthur R. Chandler. I haven't had the chance to read much of the book yet, but the text seems to be mostly focused on cataloguing the chronological events of E.H. Shepard's life and career. There might be a few gems of artistic knowledge or insightful quotes by Mr. Shepard in the book, but I haven't found them yet. However, one thing is for sure, the book is filled with quite a bit of his drawings which are definitely worth seeing for anyone who likes Shepard's work. I scanned in a few drawings from the book and would like to share them here.

This first drawing is titled Man with wheelbarrow, a pencil sketch done in 1924. It's a fantastic drawing, no analyzation needed really. It's well observed and beautifully drawn.

I apologize if the recent theme of my posts have been too centered around observational sketching/Life Drawing, which can seem like a boring subject, but it's a subject that I've been inspired by this year and I think it's something that we all could do a bit more of. Observation helps to inform our work and hopefully keeps us from being formulaic.

This next illustration is a Christmas card that Shepard made in 1943. There's a lot of great things going on in this illustration. The design and use of black space versus empty white space, and the patterns and textures he has used to create the "grey" areas, but I especially love the figure of the soldier holding the gun on Santa. It's a tremendous drawing.

Next I scanned a couple of rough sketches that Shepard did for The Secret Garden. It's nice to see some more pencil drawings, as opposed to the more common ink drawings, from him and to get an insight into his illustration process. The figures are beautiful, but I also admire how he indicated the backgrounds. There's a nice tree/grass vignette behind the girl in the first image, as well as another wonderfully rough and simple indication of the door and long gallery stretching beyond her in the second image.

Last but not least, here's a couple more charming observational drawings that Shepard sketched of a woman on a train. Again in pencil.

There's a lot more drawings than these in the book, but I wanted to present a few here that I thought were especially nice. I'll try to do another post later on Shepard and a few of his children's book illustrations from some of the less well known titles.

Maybe I have mentioned this before, but hopefully you might have noticed that I've been presenting the artwork on these posts in the 8 1/2" x 11" format where possible. So if you find something inspiring you can easily print it out. I am a little less busy at work now, so I expect I can do a few more posts on some other interesting books that I've picked up recently before the end of the year. Stay tuned.

Wednesday 27 October 2010

Robert Fawcett : Drawing the Nude 2

A few more quotes and images from the book "Drawing the Nude - The Figure Drawing Techniques of Noted American Illustrator Robert Fawcett" by Howard Munce.

"Memory drawing is a valid method, although I will neither advocate it nor analyze it in these pages. The danger of drawing by memory is that it can and does produce images which become a formula. Instead, I want you to concern yourself with looking carefully, and recording what you see at the moment."--Robert Fawcett

"The person who sits for your drawing can have any possible ethnic background, and this must be conveyed. It should be within your ability to record and convey personal physical characteristics to others. A model may be shy or brash, vain or modest, cooperative or lazy. Even these qualities are within your province, if you have taught yourself to observe and record."--Robert Fawcett

"We must also take it for granted that there are many approaches to the teaching of figure drawing--as many as there are artists with opinions on the subject. No single point of view can possibly be the last word."
--Robert Fawcett

Monday 16 August 2010

Robert Fawcett : Drawing the Nude

The following quotes and images are from the book "Drawing the Nude - The Figure Drawing Techniques of Noted American Illustrator Robert Fawcett" by Howard Munce.

"With practice, one comes to recognize what one is looking at as either primarily linear or tonal, and one comes also to know whether its structural characteristics are predominantly angular or rhythmic. It is upon this one bases the
statement, for that is what a drawing is - a simple, pictorial statement." --Robert Fawcett

"Bob Fawcett always simplified form in his drawings. He once said, "Economy in drawing is essentially the shorthand which develops in the excitement of the fleeting moment. It is the thing seen subjected to editorial exclusion." However, he tried to avoid slipping into superficiality: "One's study can be admired for it's beautiful line, but if that line is not expressing an understanding of the form itself it remains mildly interesting, but empty of content.""

" I am convinced that divisions of subject matter in drawing are arbitrary. Although largely devoted to the figure, my work has included subjects ranging from figures to still lifes to landscapes. Drawing is drawing. There is no such thing as figure drawing, per se. In writing this book, I seem to be engaged in a project which threatens to contradict that belief. Actually it will not. Although I am concerning myself here with the human figure, life drawing alone, in the background there remains my belief that an apple and a flower are equally difficult to draw, and a deer, perhaps only more difficult." --Robert Fawcett