Hey, all. This is a comic I started on 24 Hour Comic Day, but I only managed to complete 12 pages on that day. That makes it a technical failure, but I decided it was worth finishing regardless of that.
Truth! This stuff is hard, but doable!
This is one of the best 24 hour comic projects I’ve seen! :D Thank you so so much for sharing your wisdom!
Anonymous asked: So, apparently there was a lot of arabian and overall middle-eastern based fantasy going on after the success of Arabian Nights and I would love write someting like that but I can’t seem to find some guidelines or some of those works for…
“I’m not racist I just am not attracted to black men” says the white woman
Go fuck yourself people have preferences why do you expect people to be attracted to everyone that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard please leave
finally someone fucking said it
that’s like calling a gay man sexist
and here we see a really gross racist post confusing sexual preference with racism because if you really think a black person can’t be attractive you are either saying
a) all black people look the same (hint: that’s racist) b) no matter how attractive a man is, if his skin is black it means i won’t ever be attracted by him (hint: that’s also racist)
also no that’s not like calling a gay man sexist don’t be ridiculous im not even going to go there because it’s just a gross reasoning calling out an oppressed group of people’s sexual orientation to prove your flawed racist logic aka black skin=unattractive
and the whole “finally someone said it”
like it’s an unpopular opinion???? as if poc don’t have enough issues in today’s society finding representation and now you tell me their skin colour is a GOOD ENOUGH REASON to call them UNATTRACTIVE and “finally someone fucking said it”???????????
nobody said you have to be “attracted to everyone” what’s your problem nobody said that???? just UNDERSTAND that you are reasoning in a racist way and maybe you don’t even fucking mean to do it but it’s there, there in your brain
if i were to put you in front of 20 men, 10 black and 10 white, all of them completely different from eachother, it would be fair for you to choose either of them because of your personal taste and a different series of things you like/dislike in a man but if you were to start from the “im gonna skip all the black men because those are not attractive to me ever” mindset, that would be racist
it’s THAT simple
when you think “black people are unattractive” ask to yourself: WHY do i think that? it’s because i am prejudiced against them, because i think they all look the same, because black skin is gross? maybe you just phrased “i prefer fair skin” wrong but i don’t think you did and i just think you are having a racist reasoning and you must stop saying like it’s something to be proud of because you are NOT the oppressed group here jesus christ
Those of you who talk to me on a regular basis will know that I have a horrible habit of reading BL/yaoi manga. Which in itself, isn’t a problem. What is a problem is that more often than not, I find terrible ones rather than good ones —And I keep reading.
So yeah, if you ever want someone to rec horrible BL manga (or even good ones) hit me up. I can show you enough yaoi hands, cheesy storylines, and questionable anatomy to last you for a year.
“Life is like reading an EKG, you have ups and downs. When you flatline, you’re dead. So look for the ups and downs in your life, that’s when you know you’re living.”—Advice from a Senior Medic (via findingzahri)
Andrea, you are an inspiration to us all. (What are the rules of CP style anyway? I'm curious.)
Well, there are a LOT of them, covered off in these two books:
(My hair is really static-y here.)
Basically, it’s a standardization for how to spell words with commonly accepted variations — sovereigntist (not sovereignist), to use a VERY Canadian example. Also, when to capitalize various terms, how to write numbers (commas in 1,000 but not 100; $1 million not $1,000,000), how to deal with acronyms, etc.
I think the numbers thing, and the fact that I spell it ‘per cent’ are the two most common CP weirdnesses you’ll see in my copy. It’s really just about making things standardized and improving readability in copy that should not take more than half a cup of coffee to get through.
if you are looking for any music that you’d like just type a name of a band or a musican on the top-right search. then click on the black circle and choose “expand”. viola! now, you can continue doing this and find lots of music artists in your taste. thank you for the attention, and i hope you’ll find this post useful.
Hello again! Um, I do have a question that has been bothering me. I am great with description, it's the best thing about my writing style I think, but I do not know how to describe buildings. I want more than a simple description. I want a two paragraph or page long piece of writing dedicated to the scenery, but I lack the knowledge and vocabulary to do so. Therefore, my question to you is: Where or how do I find examples of how to write like that?
Not so long ago I wrote a little article thing to help people think about how to describe buildings. It’s not a magical formula or anything like that, but the idea was to present some questions/concepts that might get you thinking about different ways to describe buildings.
In general, writing super long paragraphs about the scenery isn’t the best way to show setting. I’m not saying it’s impossible to do or that you absolutely shouldn’t do it, but I would suggest trying to balance your description with dialogue segments or little bits of telling to avoid information dumps.
However, expanding your vocabulary and practising your craft by writing the scenes you want to write is never a bad thing and I don’t want to discourage you from trying out this idea you have.
When you’re describing something, it helps if you understand what each part is called. Description can get very dull, very quickly if you’re re-using the same words. The main parts of a building that come straight to mind are: the bricks, the windows and the door but there are so many other components and details.
Here are some references that could be a good starting point to get you thinking about those things:
You don’t need to know all of these words and terms, but they can be good reference points to avoid description disasters.
Focusing on Detail
9/10 people reading your story will already know what a standard house or high-rise looks like, so you need to show them what is so important about the structure you’re describing, i.e. what makes it different.
The best place to get this kind of inspiration from is the world around you! Whether it’s looking at the different houses/structures in your own town, or using the internet to get some interesting photographs, you’ll soon see what kind of details you need to focus on when describing your own buildings to give your description more of an edge.
In the article I mentioned at the beginning, I put a whole bunch of links to inspiration blogs at the very bottom which you’re welcome to skip to and check out. Anyway this answer is starting to look like a shameless, flashing neon arrow at one of my dumb articles and that’s really not my intention, I’m just way too lazy to repeat myself.
Character design and drawing are tome-sized topics and even if I had all the answers (I don’t - I have a lot to learn), I’m not sure I could communicate them effectively. I’ve gathered some thoughts and ideas here, though, in case they’re helpful.
First, some general things:
- Relax and let some of that anxiety go. This isn’t a hard science. There’s no wrong way, no rigid process you must adhere to, no shoulds or shouldn’ts except those you designate for yourself. This is one of the fun parts of being an artist, really - have a heddy good time with it.
- Be patient. A design is something gradually arrived at. It takes time and iteration and revision. You’ll throw a lot of stuff away, and you’ll inevitably get frustrated, but bear in mind the process is both inductive and deductive. Drawing the wrong things is part of the path toward drawing the right thing.
- Learn to draw. It might seem perfunctory to say, but I’m not sure everyone’s on the same page about what this means. Learning to draw isn’t a sort of rote memorization process in which, one by one, you learn a recipe for humans, horses, pokemon, cars, etc. It’s much more about learning to think like an artist, to develop the sort of spacial intelligence that lets you observe and effectively translate to paper, whatever the subject matter. When you’re really learning to draw, you’re learning to draw anything and everything. Observing and sketching trains you to understand dimension, form, gesture, mood, how anatomy works, economy of line; all of the foundational stuff you will also rely on to draw characters from your imagination. Spend some time honing your drawing ability. Hone it with observational sketching. Hone it good.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone do this sort of thing better than Claire Wendling. In fact, character designs emerge almost seamlessly from her gestural sketches. It’d be worth looking her up.
- Gather Inspiration like a crazed magpie. What will ultimately be your trademark style and technique is a sort of snowball accumulation of the various things you expose yourself to, learn and draw influence from. To that effect, Google images, tumblr, pinterest and stock photo sites are your friends. When something tingles your artsy senses - a style, a shape, a texture, an appealing palette, a composition, a pose, a cool looking animal, a unique piece of apparel, whatever - grab it. Looking at a lot of material through a creative lens will make you a better artist the same way reading a lot of material makes a better writer. It’ll also devour your hard drive and you will try and fail many times to organize it, but more importantly, it’ll give you a lovely library of ideas and motivational shinies to peruse as you’re conjuring characters.
- Imitation is a powerful learning tool. Probably for many of us, drawing popular cartoon characters was the gateway habit that lured us into the depraved world of character design to begin with. I wouldn’t suggest limiting yourself to one style or neglecting your own inventions to do this, but it’s an effective way to limber up, to get comfortable drawing characters in general, and to glean something from the thought processes of other artists.
- Use references. Don’t leave it all up to guessing. Whether you’re trying to design something with realistic anatomy or something rather profoundly abstracted from reality, it’s helpful in a multitude of ways to look at pictures. When designing characters, you can infer a lot personality from photos, too.
And despite what you might have heard, having eyeballs and using them to look at things doesn’t constitute cheating. There’s no shame in reference material. There’s at least a little shame in unintentional abstractions, though.
Concepts and Approach:
- Break it down. Sometimes you have the look of a character fleshed out in your mind before putting it to paper, but usually not. That doesn’t mean you have to blow your cortical fuses trying conceive multiple diverse designs all at the same time, though. You don’t even have to design the body shape, poses, face, and expressions of a single character all at once. Tackle it a little at a time.
The cartoony, googly eyed style was pre-established for this simple mobile game character, but I still broke it into phases. Start with concepts, filter out what you like until you arrive at a look, experiment with colors, gestures and expressions.
- Start with the general and work toward the specific. Scribbling out scads of little thumbnails and silhouettes to capture an overall character shape is an effective way begin - it’s like jotting down visual notes. When you’re working at a small scale without agonizing over precision and details, there’s no risk of having to toss out a bunch of hard work, so go nuts with it. Give yourself a lot of options.
Here’s are some sample silhouettes from an old cancelled project in which I was tasked with designing some kind of cyber monkey death bot. I scratched out some solid black shapes then refined some of them a step or two further.
- Shapes are language. They come preloaded with all sorts of biological, cultural and personal connotations. They evoke certain things from us too. If you’ve ever stuck about where to go with your design, employ a sort of anthroposcopy along these lines - make a visual free association game out of it. It’ll not only tend to result in a distinguished design, but a design that communicates something about the nature of the character.
Think about what you infer from different shapes. What do they remind you of? What personalities or attitudes come to mind? How does the mood of a soft curve differ from that of a sharp angle? With those attributes attached, how could they be used or incorporated into a body or facial feature shape? What happens when you combine shapes in complementary or contrasting ways? How does changing the weight distribution among a set of shapes affect look and feel? Experiment until a concept starts to resonate with the character you have in mind or until you stumble on something you like.
If you don’t have intent, take the opposite approach - draw some shapes and see where they go. (It’s stupid fun.)
- Cohesion and Style. As you move from thumbnails to more detailed drawings, you can start extrapolating details from the general form. Look for defining shapes, emergent themes or patterns and tease them out further, repeat them, mirror them, alternate them. Make the character entirely out of boxy shapes, incorporate multiple elements of an architectural style, use rhythmically varying line weights - there are a million ways to do this
Here’s some of the simple shape repetition I’ve used for Lackadaisy characters.
- Expressions - let them emerge from your design. If your various characters have distinguishing features, the expressions they make with those features will distinguish them further. Allow personality to influence expressions too, or vice versa. Often, a bit of both happens as you continue drawing - physiognomy and personality converge somewhere in the middle.
For instance, Viktor’s head is proportioned a little like a big cat. Befitting his personality, his design lets him make rather bestial expressions. Rocky, with his flair for drama, has a bit more cartoon about him. His expressions are more elastic, his cheeks squish and deform and his big eyebrows push the boundaries of his forehead. Mitzi is gentler all around with altogether fewer lines on her face. The combination of her large sleepy eyes and pencil line brow looked a little sad and a little condescending to me when I began working out her design - ultimately those aspects became incorporated into her personality.
I discuss expression drawing in more detail here (click the image for the link):
- Pose rendering is another one of those things for which observational/gesture drawing comes in handy. Even if you’re essentially scribbling stick figures, you can get a handle on natural looking, communicative poses this way. Stick figure poses make excellent guidelines for plotting out full fledged character drawings too.
Look for the line of action. It’ll be easiest to identify in poses with motions, gestures and moods that are immediately decipherable. When you’ve learned to spot it, you can start reverse engineering your own poses around it.
- Additional resources - here are some related things about drawing poses and constructing characters (click the images for the links).
- Tortured rumination about lack of ability/style/progress is a near universal state of creative affairs. Every artist I have known and worked with falls somewhere on a spectrum between frustration in perpetuity and a shade of fierce contrition Arthur Dimmesdale would be proud of. So, next time you find yourself constructing a scourge out of all those crusty acrylic brushes you failed to clean properly, you loathsome, deluded hack, you, at least remember you’re not alone in feeling that way. When it’s not crushing the will to live out of you, the device does have its uses - it keeps you self-critical and locked in working to improve mode. If we were all quite satisfied with our output, I suppose we’d be out of reasons to try harder next time.
When you need some reassurance, compare old work to new. Evolution is gradual and difficult to perceive if you’re narrowed in on the nearest data point, but if you’ve been steadily working on characters for a few months or a year, you’ll likely see a favorable difference between points A and B.
Most of all, don’t dwell on achieving some sort of endgame in which you’re finally there as a character artist. There’s no such place - wherever you are, there is somewhere else. It’s a moving goal post. Your energy will be better spent just enjoying the process…and that much will show in the results.