http://spitandahalf.blogspot.com/
Go buy some unique comics from John Porcellino at Spit and a Half!  It’s beautiful.

http://spitandahalf.blogspot.com/

Go buy some unique comics from John Porcellino at Spit and a Half!  It’s beautiful.

(Source: johnporcellino)

Go read the Gremlins Movie Incident on my website:
http://www.badgigi.com/read-gremlin-movie-incident/

Go read the Gremlins Movie Incident on my website:

http://www.badgigi.com/read-gremlin-movie-incident/

New Blog Post: Guest List for LEXICON and future plans.
corinnemucha:

Secret Acres sent me a few advance copies of “Get Over It!” this weekend!  Hooray!  I am very excited to finally see these pages in print.  
This sweet little book is debuting at TCAF, May 10th.  It is available for preorder HERE.  



I have no doubt that this new book by Corinne Mucha will delight me.

corinnemucha:

Secret Acres sent me a few advance copies of “Get Over It!” this weekend!  Hooray!  I am very excited to finally see these pages in print.  

This sweet little book is debuting at TCAF, May 10th.  It is available for preorder HERE.  

I have no doubt that this new book by Corinne Mucha will delight me.
tonybreed:

beatonna:

Here is a sketch comic I made called Ducks, in five parts.
Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four
Part Five
Ducks is about part of my time working at a mining site in Fort McMurray, the events are from 2008.  It is a complicated place, it is not the same for all, and these are only my own experiences there.  It is a sketch because I want to test how I would tell these stories, and how I feel about sharing them.  A larger work gets talked about from time to time.  It is not a place I could describe in one or two stories.  Ducks is about a lot of things, and among these, it is about environmental destruction in an environment that includes humans.  Thank you for taking the time to read it.
-Kate

I’ve been reading these amazing comics and Kate Beaton drew and posted them. (Conveniently, they read really well on a phone, so I would stop wherever I was and just read the latest installment.)
These are the most subtle and nuanced comics I’ve read in a while, and I wanted to take a moment to analyze and learn from them.
There’s a danger that in analyzing something, you can ruin it, but I think it’s valuable. Still, you should read the comics before you read my post.
Here are my thoughts:
They are a perfect example of “show, don’t tell”. Beaton has points she wants to convey, but there’s no lecturing; there’s no character standing in for the opinions of the writer. It’s an easy trap to fall into—explaining yourself with words when the medium is pictures-and-words. Instead, Beaton tells the stories, and structures it so the repeated weight of what happens (deaths, rashes, freaked out hookers) draws you to her conclusion. (I think, in fact, the epilogue could have been skipped, though that last picture of the duck is so powerful, and the perfect punctuation to the story.)
The sketch as medium is a very immediate, emotive style. The simple style allows the reader to project him or herself into the characters much more than with very detailed, carefully rendered art. Beaton is particularly skilled with it—her face when she says “you worry too much, mom” is so evocative, and there are countless other examples in this piece.
The pacing is perfect. It is slow and ruminant, told in episodes that are each punctuated with a simple picture. It reads like chapters. Some episodes are very intense (the hooker, for example) and some are just portraits of the people who are there; they are balanced. Each episode serves a function is the greater thrust of the story, but most of them are subtle; the function isn’t obvious. (You never find yourself saying, “now here Kate Beaton wants me to think X…”)
The arc holds it all together. Not every episode is about the ducks, but Beaton keeps returning to it through the end. In the process, we get a nice parallel of the how much the company cares about ducks and how much they care about humans (not to mention the outside focus on the ducks but not the humans).
Ambiguity. As Beaton says, she has a lot of feelings. There’s human misery, but people are making money. Cedric sends money back home to his kids, and they have things he never had—but he never gets to see them.
Economy of words—Beaton uses as few words as possible to get the point across. At the same time, she liberally adds panels–silent panels, all in a row.
Reading and analyzing these comics makes me revisit my own work—which is very different, but there’s always something to learn. I could introduce a lot more subtlety.

tonybreed:

beatonna:

Here is a sketch comic I made called Ducks, in five parts.

Part One

Part Two

Part Three

Part Four

Part Five

Ducks is about part of my time working at a mining site in Fort McMurray, the events are from 2008.  It is a complicated place, it is not the same for all, and these are only my own experiences there.  It is a sketch because I want to test how I would tell these stories, and how I feel about sharing them.  A larger work gets talked about from time to time.  It is not a place I could describe in one or two stories.  Ducks is about a lot of things, and among these, it is about environmental destruction in an environment that includes humans.  Thank you for taking the time to read it.

-Kate

I’ve been reading these amazing comics and Kate Beaton drew and posted them. (Conveniently, they read really well on a phone, so I would stop wherever I was and just read the latest installment.)

These are the most subtle and nuanced comics I’ve read in a while, and I wanted to take a moment to analyze and learn from them.

There’s a danger that in analyzing something, you can ruin it, but I think it’s valuable. Still, you should read the comics before you read my post.

Here are my thoughts:

  • They are a perfect example of “show, don’t tell”. Beaton has points she wants to convey, but there’s no lecturing; there’s no character standing in for the opinions of the writer. It’s an easy trap to fall into—explaining yourself with words when the medium is pictures-and-words. Instead, Beaton tells the stories, and structures it so the repeated weight of what happens (deaths, rashes, freaked out hookers) draws you to her conclusion. (I think, in fact, the epilogue could have been skipped, though that last picture of the duck is so powerful, and the perfect punctuation to the story.)
  • The sketch as medium is a very immediate, emotive style. The simple style allows the reader to project him or herself into the characters much more than with very detailed, carefully rendered art. Beaton is particularly skilled with it—her face when she says “you worry too much, mom” is so evocative, and there are countless other examples in this piece.
  • The pacing is perfect. It is slow and ruminant, told in episodes that are each punctuated with a simple picture. It reads like chapters. Some episodes are very intense (the hooker, for example) and some are just portraits of the people who are there; they are balanced. Each episode serves a function is the greater thrust of the story, but most of them are subtle; the function isn’t obvious. (You never find yourself saying, “now here Kate Beaton wants me to think X…”)
  • The arc holds it all together. Not every episode is about the ducks, but Beaton keeps returning to it through the end. In the process, we get a nice parallel of the how much the company cares about ducks and how much they care about humans (not to mention the outside focus on the ducks but not the humans).
  • Ambiguity. As Beaton says, she has a lot of feelings. There’s human misery, but people are making money. Cedric sends money back home to his kids, and they have things he never had—but he never gets to see them.
  • Economy of words—Beaton uses as few words as possible to get the point across. At the same time, she liberally adds panels–silent panels, all in a row.

Reading and analyzing these comics makes me revisit my own work—which is very different, but there’s always something to learn. I could introduce a lot more subtlety.

whimsicalnobodycomics:

ninthartpress:

Time for another tantalizing peek at one of the stories from the upcoming SubCultures anthology: this time by the great Cara Bean (another brilliant cartoonist from the - ahem - Boston area).  Cara has crafted a comic to remind us that we humans are not the only species with culture — and subcultures!

Hell yes.


Behold my lampoon monkeys.  (I’m excited to be a part of this Subculture Anthology.)

whimsicalnobodycomics:

ninthartpress:

Time for another tantalizing peek at one of the stories from the upcoming SubCultures anthology: this time by the great Cara Bean (another brilliant cartoonist from the - ahem - Boston area).  Cara has crafted a comic to remind us that we humans are not the only species with culture — and subcultures!

Hell yes.

Behold my lampoon monkeys. (I’m excited to be a part of this Subculture Anthology.)

as-warm-as-choco:

Tekkon Kinkreet (鉄コン筋クリート) Background Art by Shinji Kimura

Art Director : Blue Exorcist (movie), Tekkonkinkreet, Steamboy
Background Art : My Neighbor Totoro, AKIRA, Urusei Yatsura

(via spx)

Here is a panel from my 6 page story that will be part of the Subcultures Anthology by Whit Taylor and Dan Mazur. I drew these angry monkeys while proctoring for a MCAS exam today. I have just a few more pages to ink. Many monkeys are crammed into this comic.
Next I will be getting to work on a comic for another anthology by Rob Kirby called “Pratfall” and it is inspired by a true story about my fall from a ski lift in the seventh grade.
Sincerely, Drawer Drawington Bean

Here is a panel from my 6 page story that will be part of the Subcultures Anthology by Whit Taylor and Dan Mazur. I drew these angry monkeys while proctoring for a MCAS exam today. I have just a few more pages to ink. Many monkeys are crammed into this comic.

Next I will be getting to work on a comic for another anthology by Rob Kirby called “Pratfall” and it is inspired by a true story about my fall from a ski lift in the seventh grade.

Sincerely,
Drawer Drawington Bean

whimsicalnobodycomics:

A list of our fab contributors for Subcultures: A Comics Anthology (Ninth Art Press),which I am editing! 
*Oh, and as Box points out this is NOT the cover…that’s TBA!

I am inking my 6 page story for this tonight and it contains lots and lots of monkeys!

whimsicalnobodycomics:

A list of our fab contributors for Subcultures: A Comics Anthology (Ninth Art Press),which I am editing! 

*Oh, and as Box points out this is NOT the cover…that’s TBA!

I am inking my 6 page story for this tonight and it contains lots and lots of monkeys!

nanoproksee asked: Hi Lucy, I don’t know if you answer this kind of questions, but here I go. I've been drawing for a long time now, but I have this problem that has me stuck. Every time I try a to draw a page without reference, I tend to simplify and stylize the drawings, and generally I get things that I kinda like, but then I panic about getting stuck with a style that I don’t like and without knowing how to draw in any other way and then I just get back to just sketching. Anyway, thanks for your time.

lucybellwood:

Hm, this is a little hard to answer without seeing an example of your work (I couldn’t spot any on your blog — do you post it online anywhere?), but I can take a stab:

Anxiety about “style” is a common problem, but something you really shouldn’t sweat too much. One of my earliest mentors did me a huge favor by taking a look at my 11-year-old doodles (largely anime-influenced) and gentling telling me that I was good at what I was doing, but that maybe what I was doing could expand to be something more. I didn’t “abandon” my style, but I spent a long time learning how to draw from life and expanding my visual vocabulary.

Of course we always default to what we’re comfortable with when drawing without reference, and there is definitely a period where drawing from reference only results in stilted approximations of form and drawing without reference feels like you’re just skating by on second-hand habits and copied visual shorthand. But FEAR NOT! The solution to this problem is really, really simple:

Keep drawing. Keep drawing from life especially. The more you draw the more you’ll come to realize that style isn’t something you get “stuck” with — it’s an ever-evolving reflection of your artistic influences and interests. Making comics is a process of essentialization.

The key is to communicate clearly, so a certain amount of simplification is necessary, but you’ll never know what to simplify if you don’t draw from life and understand the foundational principles of whatever you’re trying to draw.

If life drawing gets the better of you and you hit a wall, try breaking down one of your favorite artist’s pages. How do they approach body language? Eyes? Hands? Panel composition? Study a different artist every day — and by study I mean draw from. Make marks. Get messy. Don’t get precious.

If you’re feeling stuck, get yourself unstuck. Draw more. The end.

You can do it!

Great advice Lucy! I hope some of my students read this.