Shape of the Week: Return of the Gnome

I haven’t done much drawing for the past few days since I was bent on finishing reading Perdido Street Station by China Mieville. It’s a great read with imaginative, inspiring characters in it — like, for instance, industrial remade chimeras, sapient talking birdmen, and human-like women with chitinous heads. But yesterday it came to me that, arguably, the greatest of all characters is New Crobuzon, the city in which the story takes place. I say ‘arguably’ but it seems pretty clear to me that Mieville spent more time fleshing out its background, history, politics, demography, etc., than detailing or explaining the characters — bar one exception, perhaps. So the city becomes more than just a backdrop, it becomes an active agent in the story… Anyway, why am I telling you all this? Well, here’s the thing, I was thinking of ‘cartoonifying’ some of the book’s characters. I thought of how to draw machinery, feathers, and city scapes. And then I went on thinking… and thinking… And during all that time, the (digital) canvas remained empty. Which brings me to the point of this post.

Today I decided to ‘kickstart’ myself, again. But instead of going through my usual routine — participating in a design contest, always against my better judgment — I decided to partake in a challenge set by Mallory Carlson at the Nickelodeon Artist Program. Let me tell you, it has been a fun experience. Not only did it get me drawing again, it’s also been really inspiring to see what fellow-artists came up with!

Gnome, dwarf, concept art, character design, cartoon, illustration, whatmaldraws, nickelodeon artist program

 

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Mixed media

Daar ging mijn voornemen om op z’n minst elke week iets te posten. Maar goed. Ik ben met wel met nieuwe dingen bezig geweest de afgelopen weken, dingen die tijd nodig hebben…

Zo heb ik bijvoorbeeld, voor het eerst sinds de middelbare school, weer ouderwets geschilderd, met acrylverf en Oost-Indische inkt. Daar is toen het volgende uitgekomen — na enige digitale bewerking :

Alien; cartoon; Iosua; Gerrit Rijken

Ik vind het wel wat hebben. Het heeft het spontane van een handgetekende tekening en de ‘polish’ van een digitale tekening.

Toch, ik weet niet of analoog schilderen echt iets voor mij is. Maar er is maar één manier om daarachter te komen…