Thursday 16 July 2015

Flat Perspective

Well, this worked out well. 

I had bigger ideas for this drawing. I wanted more people around the table, but I knew more people would obscure Doug (the caveman in the middle) eating. I wanted to put other people in the background reacting to him and I still could, but too many people might again pull the viewer's eye from the main action. Recently I've been adding background things and people in a grey tone which pushes them back but still makes them sufficiently present. Technical tip - I draw them in black like everything else, but then drop the opacity down on that layer and voila! They recede into the background.

I think the "breakthrough" in this one came about as I was struggled with the roundness of the table. I thought about other drawings in this series and remembered the the flatness of the perspective and thought I should try that sort of perspective in this one. 

And there (on the right) you have it. Kurt (on the left) looks sufficiently amused, the composition is nice and tight. Brian (on the right) could have been leaning further away as if more disgusted. I I was concerned about how to not draw Doug's... er... well... unmentionables, and so the lighting helped in this case. There are some fine lines which are the original pencil lines which really help define the forms. Kurt could have used a few more on his legs and knee areas to enhance the foreshortening and Doug's knees are also kind of formless, but I'll know that for next time.


  1. Looks very good. The flat on composition is perfect -- makes it very up front and simple and somehow underlines the simplicity of the joke.


    Okay, I see a few.

    First off, I think you should have somehow blurred Doug's hands. Not digitally but with your lines or lightness of tone or something, to make his multliple hands look more like they're moving really fast. We get the idea, but it's not perfect.

    Also, I thought Brian was a woman! Everything about that face and body and posture looks female to me. Plus, those grey brush strokes under the ear look a lot like an earring. Too bad, this character was my favourite part of the drawing. Simple lines that make a very distinct and well-formed person.

    Finally, I think you could have slightly tweaked your composition. There's waaaay too much of the panel given to the area under the table. It makes that area seem somehow important and takes away from the really important stuff, above the table.

    Anyway... I'm being picky. This is a funny and VERY well drawn cartoon (but Brian is definitely a girl!).

  2. I'm going to tell Brian you said that. On the other hand, perhaps I'll fix him up so he's not got earrings etc.

    I see what you mean about there being too much under the table in the composition. I wanted to keep the panel square (yeah, I know you hate this!) and to that end my hand was forced. I guess I could put more space above the table and expand sound effects and word bubble out a bit.

  3. The beauty about Brian's gender is that his name is never mentioned in the panel and so we readers can interpret him/her in any way we want.

    Long live Brianita!

  4. Yeaah... that's true. But really, for the story, Brian should be male. Sorry Brianita or Brianna, whatever your name might have been.

  5. HAS to be male? Why? Because a woman wouldn't say "dude"?

    Oh... you mean that this is a panel from a bigger story... oooooh... tell us more!

  6. I wish I could tell you more, but... I can't spoil it... assuming I ever get the thing done!

  7. Soooo mysterious...

    Soooo interesting...

  8. Well then -- get to work! We all wanna see that thing!!!!

  9. By "we all", you mean you and... and me, right? Not sure anybody else reads this blog!!

  10. I'm sure it's not just us. I mean... I think I hear crickets...


Thanks for your input!