Lesson 9 * Appeal and cuteness

Took me a while to get through this one.

The lesson is here: http://johnkstuff.blogspot.ca/2007/01/animation-school-lesson-9-_116873606139658339.html

Not all the copies I did are perfect but I can see and feel an improvement.

I can really feel it if I miss a day or two in between drawing sessions.

My goal at the end of taking the courses John has online is to become a functional artist.

Reading John’s blog I have found out that means the capability of drawing full situations with characters that make sense visually and are appealing.

Getting there might take some time, but that is ok.  I’d like to be able to draw my own stories in comic form that I have written.

I will start doing a pay as you go life drawing class soon as well as continuing the Preston Blair course John has.



Lesson 9 *Clear silhouettes, using negative shapes

Here I am continuing lesson 9.

I found that rolling the kneaded eraser into a point is good.  You get one blunt end that you can use on big areas and one skinny end for detailed erasing.

Here is the lesson:


I realized that I drew Bugs’ head wrong so I attempted to redraw it with some success.  The second attempt is better anyway.

Here are my drawings:

Lesson 9: Model sheets * Fluid Poses

Here are another set from lesson 9.  This time the focus is on fluid poses.

Towards the end I was experimenting by holding the pencil in a different way to not go into pressing down so hard at first.  It was working for me, things felt more fluid that way.

I also got a kneaded eraser.  I never really liked kneaded erasers but at least there are no crumbs to clean up.   Also with it I can wipe the whole drawing and retain some faint lines to build back up on after.  Preston Blair mentions doing that it in his book.

Also, I was looking at some other people’s blogs who John has referenced on his site.  They are great:

Geneva : http://unlearningartschool.blogspot.ca/

Rex: http://www.rex-h.blogspot.ca/

Mitch: http://mitchoo.blogspot.ca/

Here is John’s lesson link:


Here are my drawings for this lesson:


Lesson 9: Model sheets * Line Of Action

Here in lesson 9 the various principles of what makes a good cartoon are stressed.  In this post I am working on the action lines.

You can see the original lesson here:


Here are my drawings:


Lesson 9: Model sheets *construction

I think I am going to split my posts for this lesson into 3 since it seems like a long one to get through.

In this lesson we are drawing from model sheets trying to understand for ourselves the finer points of cartooning which are:

Line Of Action
Fluid Poses
Clear silhouettes
Appeal and cuteness

I am going to post my copies of the model sheets John provides that highly emphasize each point starting with construction and continuing in that order

Here is the lesson: http://johnkstuff.blogspot.ca/2007/01/animation-school-lesson-9-_116873606139658339.html

Here are my drawings:


Lesson 8 – Proportions affect design-Contrasts

The 8th lesson can be found here: http://johnkstuff.blogspot.ca/2006/06/animation-school-8-proportions-affect.html

In this lesson John talks about one thing that makes cartoons cartoony- their exaggerated proportions.

He gives an example of a generic cartoon and explains that it is less cartoony than something with unevenness built into it.

The cartoony example he gives stretches the proportions of the animal so that the shapes that are important in identifying it as what it is are caricatured and extreme.

In the more cartoony example he gives, the basic construction is similar to the less cartoony drawing but the looks of the characters are very different.

John thinks the cartoons that are more exaggerated are funnier looking.

The proportions that affect design contrast that John lists are:




When several new variations are created based off of a generic design you get particular designs.  Particular designs are rare to find.

Lesson 7- Combining Construction With Clear Silhouettes

Here is the lesson: http://johnkstuff.blogspot.ca/2006/06/animation-school-7-when-generic-is.html
In this lesson we learned that it is important to not only use construction but to also include the idea of the silhouette into our drawings for clarity.  That is, we should be able to figure out what the character is doing if it were a silhouette.

I struggled with the placement of the limbs in two of the poses wondering where best to place them.  Ultimately I thought back to the line of action lesson and based the placement on that.

I think the poses in the examples John K put up by Geneva are perhaps a little more daring than my own.  They are really good and show a fair bit of squash and stretch which would ultimately make for good animation I think.

I think I will work on this and try and get more action happening in my poses.

Anyway here are my drawings:

Now on to the next lesson!