Friday, November 30, 2012

A Study in Style

(Or: What I Did Over Did Over Thanksgiving Break)

I've been thinking a lot about personal style lately.

Whenever I practice draw (i.e. Not for a finished piece), I always prefer to draw from real life (or more often, photographs) rather than copy another person's work. There are a lot of artist I respect, but I don't want to have their style, I want my own style. I assumed that if I just keep drawing what I see, eventually, my personal style will just magically form (Like Venus from ocean foam).

I'm starting to rethink this ridged method and came up with a little drawing exercise (I'm can't be the first person to think of this). I drew a page from a published comic, but I tried to emulate another artist's style.

Two of my favorite artists are Sergio Aragones and Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira, at least), so I decided to do Akira in the style of Sergio Aragones.

I picked a page out of Akira at random (I just googled image searched "Akira pages" and picked out one of the first ones that came up).

Here's the original:

And here is mine:

I did this while traveling to St. Louis, so I didn't have much in the way of Sergio reference material. I think it ended up looking more like something by Roberta Gregory (which isn't a bad thing) or maybe Jim Davis (which is bad).
Also, the perspective in panel #3 is way fucked up.
I'm not sure what I learned about my style. I was a fun exercise. I enjoyed it. I stretched my drawing muscles in ways I never had before. I think I'll do it again but different artists. Why not?
Last Minute Edit: I just remembered I did something like this before.
Speaking of St, Louis, I dropped off some mini-comics at Star Clipper. If you live in St. Louis and want a copy of King Crow Comics #1 (for only $1!), head down there.