Sunday, February 24, 2013

Frosty Hugs

Class assignment.
We were supposed to play with scale, flat shapes and anthropomorphism.

What a Week!

This has been an incredible week.
I was able to hang out with the amazing artists at Disney's Avalanche Studios, went to a lecture and all-day workshop with Creature Designer Terryl Whitlatch and attended the SCBWI conference featuring Martha Rago, Art Director for HarperCollins publishing.

At Avalanche, the artists were so incredibly nice and gave me some great advice.
This advice can be summed up in a quote I found from an interview with David Colman on the Character Design blog:

"On a more specific level as you apply for design jobs be sure to include several designs that show a wide range of styles, versatility is key. Also, maybe a page or so of one character drawn in many different poses, showing the key story points of the character, who the character is.
It really communicates your strengths in trying to figure out the character and developing the design. Many people can draw a really cool design from one angle but only the best can draw that character in every angle, numerous poses, and story sketch ideas. Be sure to show some cleaned up characters, maybe some in color too but if you are not strong in color don’t do it, it will hurt you. Also, have model sheets in your portfolio. A really good turn goes a long way. Add your figure drawings and life studies in the back becauseit is important but should never be the focus of your portfolio. If you are strong in life drawing it will show in your designs."

The people I met were so genuine and willing to give me feedback. I loved being in that kind of environment with such talented artists who are so excited and passionate about what they do and at the same time are so willing to share their knowledge.

When it comes to creature design, though it has never been a a big interest of mine, no one could have gone to Terryl Whitlatch's workshop without gaining an incredible appreciation for what kind of work goes into it and the importance of knowing the science behind art.
Terryl has designed for many movies, books and more such as, "Star Wars", "Brother Bear", "John Carter" and "Brave".
She really pushed the importance of drawing realism well.
Understanding anatomy of humans and animals is a HUGE benefit in being able to create good art.
Being at her workshop made me crave to have the knowledge she possessed.
She is incredibly poised, talented and a charming person.I am SO grateful to have been involved in her workshop.

Then there was the SCBWI conference.
The highlight of the for me was Martha Rago.
She has a vast understanding of what good art is and how it should be presented in a children's book from cover to cover.
The advice I took away from her presentation:

-When creating art for a children's books you need to think about the setting, details, composition, point of view, rhythm or pacing and choice of medium.
-When creating a character you need to think about making them likeable, their consistency in expression, gestures, attitudes and context and overall appearance
-When you are focusing on the narrative, think about staging and sequence, voice or style.
-And always strive to strengthen your level of skill, emotional impact and universality.

When she saw my sketches for the assignment (posted earlier), she had told me to push my character some more and here are a few sketches I did to do that:

This week was full of incredible opportunities and experiences.
I feel motivated and want to continue pushing myself to become a better artist!