My struggle with the application continues, this time tackling a Squire White drawing. The drawing is orignally an unfinished, monochrome sketch I’ve done in colored pencil. Some of you may easily recognize the character’s pose – it’s a humorous tribute to Jhonen Vasquez’s Johnny the Homicidal Maniac (cover of Issue #1, in particular). For a while I’ve entertained the idea of drawing a Squires parody of the cover. But which squire could fit the bill? The squire obviously had to be holding an object 100 times less threatening than a knife and he had to look really ridiculous doing it. What better choice than Squire White casting a threatening glare with an ice cream cone?
While I’m not exactly a huge fan of the individual he’s loosely based on, I have a lot of fun drawing Squire White. Maybe it’s the look of idiotic bliss or the dopey bottom lip – but his “signature” look has to be the blank stare he gives the viewer in times of confusion. Over the time I’ve drawn him and his fellow squires he’s developed into the typical “lovable goof” character. Sometimes I think he’s my version of Charlie Brown – a lovable loser, but definitely a thousand times uglier than Charlie Brown could ever be.
But anyway, what I am happy with is how I’m familiarizing myself more around the application – the layers, tools, understanding the anchors of the pen tool in particular. One thing I really love about Illustrator is how forgiving it is when it comes to the undo command. I’m still a bit of a retard when it comes to the history window in Photoshop and it seems the undo command will only undo the last action -not the last thirteen or so. As for the drawing itself, I think I’ve improved slightly when it comes to controlling curves with the pen tool. This was quite helpful when it came to drawing in Squire White’s eyes as his are half-ovalish instead of uniformly round. Otherwise, the piece is still rather rough-edged. My list of what I could improve would probably fill up this entire page but one of them includes the use of color to suggest shadow. I could have played around with it in this piece but the threat of carpal and laziness urged me to tackle that later.
On an unrelated note – I hope some of you consider trying the instruction piece in the previous entry. Remember – instruction art is all up to chance. The steps need not to be followed strictly. Maybe the food can be of the dessert type. Maybe a new cocktail can be invented. Or maybe even re-invent the instruction piece altogether.