Today‘s blog entry is split up into two parts. I had some more thoughts about yesterday, that I‘ll put in the front. Then I‘ll show you today‘s work.
Picture description: Cheeky mascot for my friend Pan, a Final Fantasy kupo in a Smite skin and further symbols for the recipient. I loved working on it as it was a great way to finish yesterday and practise everything I learned that day.
Further thoughts about the master study
That study yesterday really moved me.
I realized the whole piece was too complex in itself to study or draw it in one setting would I have tried to focus on everything. That‘s the reason why those lush, complicated paintings don‘t happen in a day. It is too much to focus on in one sitting. Preliminary studies and sketches are necessary to establish all the elements. I would have needed a different session on a different day to study still life elements such as the flowers and lantern on the ground. The lady‘s skin would need a day of it‘s own, too. I would only be fast with creating all of this, if I had routine in all of these. And I had routine if I had built up a big mileage in each field that I need. I‘m starting to see why artists would work in teams with one calling the shots while everyone else doing their best work in their respective field. The same applies to comics.
But that doesn‘t mean that you cannot work alone. Most of the time you have to work alone.
The secret to still making it is to adjust your expectations for yourself according to the ressources you really have and consequently the scope of your projects. I‘m in the process of finding out how much I can take. I am very happy and grateful for every day I‘m doing the 100 days of making comics and all the new insights that offers. I‘m doing my best to not feel disappointed with me when I seem to make progress like a slug. I seem to need all that flailing around and soul searching and then be it so. I need that all done and past me to sensibly work on comics or any client work. I need to have all the foundations laid out and learned already, then I can be quick and good. Yes, I‘m gradually realizing what those words mean. Not by abstract knowledge but by working on Corvus every day.
I am really grateful for this challenge and my blogging about it. That is one of the things that helped me most so far.
What I did for my comic today
I started out with two environment studies. I added the characters myself to test how well my construction methods work. It is okay. It would definitely work in a comic when you don‘t look too close. In the first one I wasn‘t fully there yet and didn‘t really know what I was doing (that‘s why warming up is so important), in the second one I remembered my own process and followed it accordingly.
And then, as promised, I continued my costume explorations for good mage robes. My goal is to design a set of academy robes. I need apprentices, full fledged mages, lecturers and a chancellor. Most relevant for the comic are the first two tiers, but I have to know how that stuff looks, I really do. As I haven‘t worked that much with costumes in the past, I stayed close to the refs today again. In order to have good ideas to invent new things I must have materials to combine them, I must know what I‘m doing and a rough idea within which parameters I‘m working in. I‘d say the top row of designs looks more like mage robes than the second one, more the direction I want to go. But would you believe me that this was not clear to me when I drew the bottom row? Nobody sets out to waste their time deliberately I think. It was still great exploring those, too, and helped me to disregard other potential refs I had open in other tabs.
Setting more limitations
I think a good next task is to define for myself what kind of robes I want to have and what I want them to look like. The more limitations I have the better. So far I know that I want my apprentice robes grey and all other robes red, the higher tiers maybe darker red and the chancellor in a majestic purple. I also already know that Magister Grimm, the rebellious antagonist of the comics, deliberately defies these standards and more or less dresses as he wishes to. Also Corvus spends most of the comic outside of his academy garb. Only Asmund, Corvus‘s best friend, is left with the full impact of the robes. He is someone that follows rules and appreciates order. Also him wearing red vs Grimm in black and Corvus in (mostly) grey would be a great contrast.
Okay. So that means the robes shouldn‘t really take forever to design because they aren’t a core thing for all characters. Maybe next time I should set more limitations first. I will soon put that into practise when I‘m designing the clothes for Corvus. But one thing at a time. I think that I might be through with the mage robes in …five days. But I absolutely have no data to estimate how much time it really will take me and that is okay. I will learn. One costume after another.
See you tomorrow for this week‘s summary!