So! This last week has been a big one! Out of the office and bringing in the dough, working with a lot of new faces around me. It's been refreshing to get outside the studio a bit, since I work from this one little room for most of the time. Travel broadens the mind they say, even if it's only 20 mins into town.
This week I wanted to talk some more about gesture drawing and the teachings of Walt Stanchfield. Walt was an american animator, writer and teacher working for the Disney animation studios and
training the young animators who came in there. He was a teacher to the greats of the current age, like Brad Bird, Glen Keane, John Lasseter and others. And while I've never met the man, he died
in 2000, he has had the single greatest influence on my drawing and art as a whole. His class notes and handouts were compiled into 2 volumes in 2009 in the book series, Drawn to life. When I
discovered them in 2011, they quickly become my art bible, and pushed my art from stilted, childish works that I had dabbled with all my life, into the images you see today, full of life, story
and interest. I urge every artist, or any creative person to pick them up, as not only does Walt spew forth with artistic revelations that will open up your mind, but he sets out tips for the
fulfillment of a creative life; staying energised, finding the passion in drawing, seeing the world a new each time you pick up your pen.
In recent weeks, I've been revisiting Walt and his lessons, trying to get back to simple and elegant gesture drawing that conveys a story and some energy. The image above is made up of just a few of the drawings I've done over the last few days. Each one only took me a few seconds, seeking to find a strong line of action within the pose, finding the strongest angles within the figure and finding the simplest way of conveying the story. With these, we concentrate on the pose rather than the anotomy of a figure, we imagine the sum of all the parts as being a whole, a story, rather than a group of legs, arms and torsos, correctly drawn to their anatomical perfection.
Obviously, I'm not anywhere near where I need to be with this, but I am finally starting to feel as though I have a grasp on it. And it's so much fun! Try it out and see what you think.
That's it for today. Thanks for dropping in.