Thursday, October 16, 2008

How practice makes. . .pretty good.

You'd think after designing characters professionally for years, things would start to come naturally, right? Well, you're. . .probably right, actually. But I'm too thick-headed to learn that fast.

I started with this great mental image of a warty-necked (pronounced nekk-ed) witch. I always expect that when I have a good mental picture, drawing it will be easy. Unfortunately, there's a disconnect between the picture my imagination thinks is cool and the drawing that my eyes have to reluctantly accept as the best I can do. I drew this character about 12 times before she started to look okay, at best.

A few positive lessons I learned, though:

- Drawing the same character over and over seems to always help

- I've created a brush that allows me to procrastinate design decisions until the image is nearly finished. There's nothing like reinforcing bad habits.

- Chicken scratch drawings can be forgiven if nobody ever knows they existed. Oh, whoops.

- Witch hats look stupid if they are blowing the opposite way of travel (maybe that's why my son drew his witch flying backward?) Apparently my kids already have a better grasp of physics than I do.


  1. ...Wow...a magic Halloween brush that allows you to procrastinate and still get the job done! there any way for me to get one of those?

  2. Good Job! Thanks for the post.

  3. That's a good bunny.

  4. drawing the same character again and again does help. But when is the time to stop redoing it?

  5. Dennis: It's pretty simple actually, just a Round Tip Pen in painter with the minimum size taken all the way to zero. Just a warning though---it only allows procrastination in that it's really easy to redo things---it's not going to make the process take less time.

    joonasjoonas: Ideally, when it's finally great. In my case, when you get tired of it.

  6. I love posts that open up the brain of the artist a little bit (like this one). Thanks for sharing your process!
    P.S. Are you teaching your digital painting class next semester?

  7. rabidmilkman: I hope so, but don't know yet.

  8. Definitely can't argue with the final product. That's a damn fine witch.

  9. Glad to know I'm not the only one who suffers from that frustration..thanks!


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