Tag Archives: practice

Some Background Info

Not too long ago, I said I was going to practice backgrounds more, and I did.  A tiny bit.  As in just a couple of quick ones.  And that’s all.  I’m naughty.  They weren’t very good, so I didn’t keep them, but I can at least tell you guys about my efforts.

            The first one I had high expectations for.  I wanted to draw a jungle with cliffs and waterfalls and lots of plants.  It looked awesome in my head, and it started out okay.  I colored the sky, added some big, puffy clouds.  Then, there was a bunch of green on the far cliff and I even colored a decent waterfall falling far down where you couldn’t see the bottom, with misty-ness coming up.  But, I just couldn’t get the color right for the cliff side.  I tried browns, grays, added some plants, but none of it looked right.

            By then, I was disappointed and did some quick trees, green, and a river in the foreground going off another cliff.  It was all pretty meh.  I did draw a few red and yellow birds that were pretty, though.  One was on a branch, and two were flying away.  No doubt trying to fly out of that dreadful picture.

            My later pictures were even quicker.  Some towns from my novel, a room from the comic.  I’m already bad at backgrounds, but I’m even worse at buildings and rooms, so they didn’t turn out great.  I’ve never been creative with buildings.  Gar!  I must get better; I don’t want my comic filled with square buildings with triangle roofs!  That simply wouldn’t do.  Likewise, the room I drew didn’t look great, either.  I also keep forgetting that walls can have color.  I always make them white or off-white.  It’s silly.

            Anyway, my next picture is going to have a simple background, but since it’s just nature, I think it will turn out better.  You guys will see it in the near future….

Not a Background Duck

A Manga Book

Not to be confused with mango, and I’m pretty sure I’m saying it wrong either way (is it really mon-guh?), before the 100 Theme Challenge, I drew things from “The Monster Book of Manga”, edited by Estudio Joso.  Sometimes I just copied the pictures for practice, and sometimes I drew the poses, but the people I drew were characters from video games, mainly Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts.  And two from Zelda and one from Jak and Daxter.  Gah, I was so lazy back then!  Still a lack of original characters!  I also skipped some, like the devils and the pictures with more nakedness.  Not doing that.

          And I’m looking back at what I drew right now, and they are quite bad.  They range from the end of January 2008 to near the end of June of the same year, over two years ago.  But, I guess the good thing about the badness is that it shows me how much I’ve improved.  I can do much better now.  Much, much better!  Compared to that lugubrious state of incompetence two years ago, I now am pretty darn awesome.  Though, not really.

            Anyway, specifically, one thing I liked was for “Knight”, I drew Link (from Zelda) as the knight and Volvagio as the dragon, and the dragon doesn’t look that bad.  Aren’t I impressive?  No.  But anyway, I copied the “Worm”, “Witch”, and “Wanderer” and did a decent job (Do I just have good luck with things that start with “W”?).  And I copied the hands of many characters all right.  Other than that, largely meh.  Book-wise, I liked the “Ghost” a lot.  I didn’t copy it well, but I think the original looks cool.

            I thought it was funny in the book how they drew on underwear and such before adding the actual clothing.  It’s not gonna show, so I didn’t see the point in drawing it.  Just don’t put any detail…there.  To this day, I have never drawn undies.

            Very useful book, though.  And it has information on Photoshop and making comics at the end.  At the time, I had no intention on making comics, but now that I do, it’s even niftier.  And yes, I pronounce it main-ga.  Problem?

The Manga Duck

100 Challenges

Anyone ever heard of the 100 theme challenge?  It can be for writing or art (maybe anything, really), and there are 100 words or phrases that you use for inspiration.  I did it for art a little over two years ago, before I started making pictures on Photoshop.  It was fun, but I did all fan art and started to hurry through it.  Very silly thing to do.  But, if done properly, methinks it could really help someone with creative ideas.  Open some metaphorical doors in the mind.

          Perhaps I should try it again.  I was considering using it to inspire some little stories, and maybe those stories could turn into bigger things.  Maybe it’ll even help with the novel I currently have occasionally simmering in my mind.  Don’t know yet, but I am at least pretty sure this challenge can help me come up with ideas I might never have thought of otherwise.  Hooray for inspiration!

            Anyway, I don’t really like most of the pictures I did, but there were a few decent things that came from the challenge:

For #8. Innocence, I drew Meta Knight threatening Kirby, while clueless Kirby offers him a flower.  Cute, I guess.

For #12. Insanity, I drew ZiM in his old man costume screaming at the sight of the Madness Dog.

For #27. Foreign, I drew ZiM on the street holding a sign that says, “I sure am a foreign kid who loves Earth!”  (It would make sense if you saw the show.  Because ZiM’s an alien…  Never mind.)

And #64. Mutitasking, ZiM is stealing a classmate’s brain while taking a test.  (Again, you have to see the show.  Specifically the episode where he steals classmates’ organs.  “Dark Harvest”, I think.)

          Wow, a lot of Invader ZiM stuff.  Mostly, there was Invader ZiM, Zelda, Donkey Kong, Kirby, Rayman, Banjo-Kazooie, and Kingdom Hearts.  Like I said, all fan art.  And they sound really lame when I explain them.  I really need to do better next time, if there is a next time.  …I wonder if someone could use the themes for creative snacks.  It’s the #58. Kick in the Head snack!  Now it’s the #97. Safety First snack!

The Duck Times 100

On Second Thought

Change of plans, methinks.  I’ve been trying to work on my art, comic script, and the second draft of my novel, and I’m realizing…that is too much to do at once.  So I decided, the novel can wait.  I’ll get back to it once the comic script is done.  Also, I am currently working on pictures of my comic characters (though, I won’t show you guys all of them because I don’t want to spoil anything), and I think I should start practicing backgrounds, though I don’t know if I will.  That’s something I’ve also been lacking on, which is why I don’t like drawing them.

            I have submitted my poems to seven publishers now.  My first reply is expected by mid-November or maybe even earlier.  I’m excited!  I would love for my stuff to be published!

            Blog-wise, I know the posts have been a little slow lately, but I’m trying to hurry it up.  And I’m adding more art to the other pages, so I’d appreciate it if you guys would take a look every once in a while.

The Duck with a New Plan

A Little Art History

I’ve worked sporadically (that’s right, I said sporadically) on drawing my whole life, but never as much as I do now.  I remember it as if it was a while ago.  Apparently I even drew things when I was very young, but what I’ve seen from my babyhood are horrific, nightmarish things.  What was going through my pea-sized mind?  Who knows, because I don’t remember that far back.

            The earliest I do remember right now was drawing all these silly Donkey Kong and Banjo-Kazooie characters because it’s what I liked at the time (and still do) and because I saw fan art of the characters on the Internet.  I wanted to draw things like the fan art, but I eventually gave up when they kept turning out unsatisfactory.  What sort of quality can you expect from a child, but I had high expectations.  And so I gave up.  I know, silly thing to do, and I wish I hadn’t.

            But anyway, that’s not the end to my un-inspirational tale.  No, as I said before, I realized, gosh, golly oh crap (forgive my swearing), but I really wanted to learn how to draw.  Like, really.  So, like I mentioned before, I started just copying pictures.  I copied concept art and some screenshots from games, mainly from Jak and Daxter and Kingdom Hearts.  It didn’t start off great, but I improved.  A lot.  My copies were becoming near perfect to the originals.  And I tried my hand at colored pencils, too.  Started looking rather good after a bit of practice.  I was quite proud of myself.

            So one day, a few months shy of four years ago, I decided enough copying!  I wanted to draw my own things!  I started drawing humans (Kingdom Hearts characters, mostly) sometimes in my notebook.  Terrible things.  But, when I started drawing in my new little sketch pad, it felt official, so I started drawing more and more often.  The drawings still weren’t good yet, but I finally improved as far as I could for the time being and went on to draw a whole variety of things.  And then about a year and a half ago, I realized once again I wasn’t getting anywhere anymore, so I started making pictures to draw on Photoshop.  I started sketching with an actual purpose in mind.  And now, I can finally draw decent people, and I’m working on getting better.  The hard work certainly paid off, and I just recently figured out how to draw a whole bunch more expressions, too.

     So I guess it’s never too late to start something you care about.  And I got this photo reference book recently, so watch out world!  The duck doesn’t need to do poses in front of the mirror much anymore!  Some of those poses were hard to hold.  And draw at the same time.  Ow!

     Oh, and I’m on sketch pad #12 now.  In case you were wondering.  And I added a picture to the top today.  It’s the Ducky!  Yay!

 The Duck that Draws, Indeed