Cartoon Course

I came across The Professional Step-by-Step Guide to Cartooning by Ivan Hissey and Curits Tappenden a couple of weeks ago and after the final push of getting my walks booklet into print, I thought that I deserved a bit of a change, so I’m going to have a few days off to go through some of the practice exercises in the book.

My main thing, of course, is drawing from nature, so why should I be interested in cartooning? This book is a practical introduction to drawing as a way of telling a story or communicating an idea, which is what I try to do in my publications. If drawing from nature was my sole concern, I could just as well present my drawings in isolation – framed on a gallery wall, for example – but invariably I present them as a sequence, along with varying amounts of text.

I’m hoping this book will make me rethink the way that I tell stories and communicate ideas in my publications.

Opposing Black and White

This first exercise calls for fineliner pen (I used a Pilot drawing pen) and black Indian ink applied with a number 3 round brush. Starting it in pencil, I’ve closely followed Ivan Hissey’s step-by-step but I’ve gone for a geological context rather than the darkened room of the original. I like the woodcut style, where you aim to balance the black and white portions of the image, but to get the sharp gouged line of a woodcut calls for some confidence and forward planning when you ink in with the brush. In the places where you can still see my drawing pen line it comes over as too soft and tentative for this style of cartoon.

I look foward to getting a bit more practice . . .