Monday, 5 August 2013

De-Crumbing Myself


In a different post, a different David kindly offered some cartooning tips to this David. The main suggestion was that I should try to reduce the detail in my cartoons and make them less like illustrations. Armed with this good advice, I hit the drawing desk this afternoon and produced two of the worst cartoons I’ve ever drawn. However, the third seemed a bit better and I’m posting the very rough and ready version here. To be honest, reducing my style felt much more difficult than the previous way I was working. More is less, as they say, but less certainly takes far more effort.

I guess the same is true of written prose. I forget which writer once opened a letter apologising to the recipient by admitting that they hadn’t had enough time to write less. I definitely find that my longer blog posts are certainly indicative of my having worked less to reduce the word count.

Will this new style work for me? I feel like it’s the first step of a new challenge. The way I originally taught myself to draw was to study the work of Robert Crumb. It accounts for my love of crosshatching, even if I haven't got any part of that mastered. Perhaps David is right. Perhaps the Crumb style doesn't work with gag cartoons. I was looking at the work of Tony Husband, whose style is about as reductive as you can get. It is deceptively difficult to draw less but keep the same gag. I hope my next efforts are better...

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