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Posts Tagged ‘art’

Yet another jumble of notions for the month.

Comics

I’ve been burning my way through past episodes of The TradeWaiters, a podcast where a group of Canadian web comic artists get together to comic books. The hosts really get into the more technical aspects of draftsmanship, paneling, page and character design, colouring, and lettering, which have all helped deepen my appreciation for the mechanics of visual storytelling. I just don’t linger on the art when I’m reading comics, something I always feel is a bit of a disservice to the time and effort that goes into producing these works, since I can get through something that took years to create in a matter of hours. My thoughts on that are starting to change—the strength of comics is imparting a huge amount of narrative information in a small amount of space, and getting so much meaning at a glance is exactly what makes the medium uniquely powerful for storytelling when in the right hands. (more…)

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Conquest of the Marsh

Conquest of the Marsh

A man, his dog, and the wilderness.

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I’m fresh dry on ideas for blog posts (as you might notice from my increasingly erratic posting schedule), so some scattered thoughts for February, the cruelest month, instead:

  • The most rote feature of any writer’s blog is posts on writer’s block. I’ve had a really long spell of sitting in front of my computer and words not coming out, and none of the strategies I’ve tried to far have really worked. That being said, there are a few anthology calls that would be a real shame to miss since they fall right in my wheelhouse. I now have a small notebook I carry around to jot down ideas.One thing I noticed is that the last two stories I did manage to finish came right out of drawings and paintings I’d done, and maybe I’m onto something there.

 

  • On that note, probably the best thing I’ve done for improving my artwork was buying a cheap, 500-sheet pad of newsprint from the local office supply store. I have had a weird relationship with sketchbooks where I was adamant on only including “good” work in books most people wouldn’t see. For newsprint, over the past few months I’ve filled it every day with small sketches and concepts, almost all out of my imagination, and that freedom to just dump out any idea no matter how rough has really helped improve my ability to pose figures, make compositions and create diverse people and landscapes. Experimenting and just moving onto the next iteration when you fail because you don’t perceive the sketchbook as a place for “quality” work is really helpful, and if I’m out of ideas for finished pieces I can always go back and flip through my thumbnails until I find something that catches my eye.

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