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Thursday, March 24, 2011

News Flash: Serial Doodler At It Again!

I am again honored to have one of my cartoons selected for the latest issue of The Newtowner
As an unpaid endorsement I have to stress that this is a high quality publication that really has no equal in Connecticut. The creators are local folks who have turned their passion for writing and found a way to enhance local art and literature, which benefits everyone  - a noble achievement.  I could go on, but instead I will defer to the post I created in December after my first cartoon was published. Visit their site and submit, subscribe, or find out how to purchase an issue.

I will briefly show you how one of my cartoons is born. First; purely stream of conscious, I put Sharpie to drawing pad and draw a "Little Guy" (as my daughter calls them). I am always looking to practice body position and proper perspective (size to length), because I am often generous to a fault with arm length, or shoe size. Only an art therapist or psychiatrist might know why.  I don't. The little guy, now with arms outstretched and just floating in white space, I need to "land" him somewhere.

On a whim, noticing that I have given him this expressive look and open arms, I think "What if he's in the mouth of a whale?"  Drawing is an exercise in possibilities. If you practice enough, and can stand to make mistakes (preferably in pencil), then anything you can think up... you can draw up. At this point I am done. The creative steam is fading and I like what I've done, so I start to think, "Why don't I quit while I'm ahead?"

There it will sit on my desk, or tucked in the pages of a drawing pad until I think I am ready to tackle a background and some color. I scan the image and then import it into a paint program that allows me to digitally "ink" in the lines  and add  a background, some action, color, and finally the caption. All this is time consuming but a little less nerve-racking thanks to a simple command called "undo."  Because most artists are never satisfied with their work, the deadline of a magazine like The Newtowner leaves me no choice but to stop tweaking and let it go.

There you have it. Am I happy with the result? At the time I was, but the great thing about any hobby is, the more you do it the better you get. So, I can look at this and think "Hmmm, maybe in my next project I'll try to make him look a little less raccoon-like."  Speaking of nocturnal creatures, it's time to crawl off to bed. Thanks for taking the tour.

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