I recently borrowed my pal Jeanette’s digital camera to take some much needed pictures of artwork for the blog (I really hate scanning, and I hate buying cameras even more) so I can finally post some non digital stuff on here. So to kick off the non digital artwork posts off right, here are some pictures of my work “zone”. That’s right; I have an entire zone to myself, so try not to be too jealous. I’ll also show you the process I’m using on this cartoon.
Alright let’s start off simple. This is my desk. That circle thing on top of my desk is my animator’s desk. And if I had an even smaller desk (for what I’m not sure) then I would put it on top of that one. I like to keep my “zone” pretty dark. It makes feel like I’m up to no good.
This is the wall to my left, and it’s where I keep all my background comps. Why do I print out all my background comps you ask?
It’s so I can rough out my “animation” directly on top of it. I like to draw out all the movements right on top of one another at first. I should say that it helps me figure out all the arcs of the motion, but I just don’t feel like it.
Here it is off the animator’s desk. So after I get done with a couple of scenes like this, I will ink these drawing on another piece of paper breaking all the bits apart even further then they are. So do you wanna know what I ink the drawing with? C’mon just play along…
… Ink and a Brush! Now that I look at this pic I realize that It’s not a very good picture of my brush or the ink, but it is a very good picture of my 3 favorite co workers, Coffee, Beer and water. I ink with a Raphael #2 water color brush. They are by far and away my most favorite brush. I know most cartoonists use the Windsor Newton 7 series, but I hate those things. They cost to much and don’t last nearly as long. Plus they’re too fat.
After I get done inking a few pages worth of disjointed arms, legs, eyelids, and little tail balls. I go ahead and scan them into illustrator and spend quite a while coloring and grouping the individual pieces. This is the longest and most boring part of the entire process. Holy crap I wish there was a faster way to do this, but I also wish I could just video tape my thoughts and then I wouldn’t have to mess with any of this crap, but I guess we all have wishes huh?
So after all that Illustrator noise, I start importing all the objects into flash and making symbols out of them. This part is also pretty tedious, but very important. If you don’t organize these things carefully then you will never find them again. I learned this after spending a few hours looking for a missing beard in my bee gees cartoon. After that I just sit in a chair and stare at something like the picture above for about a million hours. Then at some point all those drawings, sounds, and hours of computer work turn into a cartoon! How it happens I have no idea. All I know is you can’t even enjoy it until weeks later, because every time you watch it all you see are all the things you screwed up.
Don’t worry though, it’s totally worth it.