Sunday, September 23, 2007

Toy Drawing 2: Top Cat Studies


Draw it, then check it for accuracy. This will train your eye and your head.http://mitchoo.blogspot.com/2007/09/new-top-cat.html


http://callum-barker.blogspot.com/



http://mattworldnews.blogspot.com/2007/09/top-cat-construction-study.html

http://pupick.blogspot.com/2007/09/hooneymooners-and-top-cat.html

21 comments:

Mitch said...

Wow, cool to be in a post. I get allot of hits on my blog.

I like that I get allot of views, but I hope I will get some feedback or some tips.

So tell me what you think, I could use anykind of feedback.

Thanks.

Ben Forbes said...

Heres my very first attempt. It stinks, but oh well.
Very first post on:

http://benfoblog.blogspot.com/

Charlie J. said...

hey John,
I did it too!

http://hjfhjk.blogspot.com/

Pete Emslie said...

I think that in order to get the full benefit of this exercise, it would be better for all you struggling artists to get some simple cartoon toy of your own that you can actually study from different views. Nothing beats drawing from something that you are actually experiencing firsthand in 3D. Ideally, instead of just drawing outlines, you should be getting the feeling that you are "sculpting" the form with your pencil. This is best achieved when your model is right there in front of you, rather than just working from photographs.

PCUnfunny said...

I posted attempt number deux.

Joolie said...

Some of the attempts look really good! A lot of good tips about doing studies in the previous entry.

JohnK said...

Hey Pete

I agree that it's good to have your own toys, but it is also a really good stepping stone to draw from photos, precisely because it solves some of the problems for you.

Most young artists today are just hearing about construction for the first time and have never seen it in cartoons growing up.They hardly show any old cartoons anywhere anymore. We are surrounded by flat unstructured media.

You can see that evidence in the cartoons being made today.

Drawing real things is hard, especially with nobody around to help guide the process. The next best thing is to have help from someone willing to give it and make it as clear as possible.

JohnK said...

Hey Pete

I agree that it's good to have your own toys, but it is also a really good stepping stone to draw from photos, precisely because it solves some of the problems for you.

Most young artists today are just hearing about construction for the first time and have never seen it in cartoons growing up.They hardly show any old cartoons anywhere anymore. We are surrounded by flat unstructured media.

You can see that evidence in the cartoons being made today.

Drawing real things is hard, especially with nobody around to help guide the process. The next best thing is to have help from someone willing to give it and make it as clear as possible.

Ben Forbes said...

I was wondering if you could post a photo of the profile of the toy?

Am I going down the right path with the construction?

Paul B said...

HI JOHN!

I DID MINE WITH MY TOY OF BARNEY RUBBLE

HERE IT IS!

http://paulbadilla.blogspot.com/2007/09/barney-o-pablo-marmolturnaround-atencin.html

CHECK IT OUT!

Mitch K said...

I think this is a good idea. I wasn't too sure of it at first -- I don't know why.

(PS: I loved The Littlest Hobo when I was a kid!! I can sing the song)

Mitch said...

Im going to try more of this sort of excercises. First trying to get that Top cat better and use eggs and toillet rolls to understand that tilt better (if any one knows some other objects name it) and in the meanwhile I will search for a nice constructed character to practise in real.

"Drawing real things is hard, especially with nobody around to help guide the process. The next best thing is to have help from someone willing to give it and make it as clear as possible."

Thats the main problem I counter here. I am now for 2 years trying to learn the basics of good cartoon drawing but I can't find that much help here, I can't even find a school! All I learn comes from the internet and my last internship where I worked with illustrators (thanks to that internship I found this site).

Callum said...

I drew what i could from memory this morning, it's on my blog. How do i pverlay the one I drew over the photo, so i can check it?

q.j.p. said...

Hey Pete -

Not bad advice, but where the heck can one find well-constructed toys these days that don't command a collector's price?

Pete Emslie said...

q.j.p. said: "Not bad advice, but where the heck can one find well-constructed toys these days that don't command a collector's price?"

Though I haven't formally given this particular drawing exercise using a cartoon figurine to my own 2nd Year Character Design class, when I used to teach 1st Year I did start them off with something similar. In order to get a good feel for portaying solid structure, I had my students draw a coffee mug (cylindrical form plus handle), a milk carton (cubic form plus rooflike structure at top), and an apple (irregular spherical form.) Just as in John's exercise here, the students had to draw each of these items in 3 different views each, so that they'd get a good idea of how to show basic geometric forms turning in space.

My point is, it doesn't necessarily have to be a cartoon toy you're working from in order to develop a "sculpted" approach with your drawing, but obviously the cartoon toy is more interesting and has a stronger relationship to what you'll actually be drawing when animating. The Top Cat vinyl is a nice example because the underlying forms are simple (a sphere for the head and a long bean shape for the body) with simple constructed forms attached for minimal surface detail. When you're just starting out learning to portray solid structure, keeping it simple is the key.

If you're budget minded, I'll bet there are simple figural pieces to be found at any dollar store or in the toy department at Wal*Mart that won't cost much to purchase. Working from the various views in these photos will solve some of the problems as John says, but I maintain that working from something tangible you can hold in your non-drawing hand and tilt into all angles will be more beneficial for analyzing form and transfering that knowledge to paper.

Roberto said...

I've started to check some of my Top Cat copies. I've only checked three using Photoshop thus far. Look at them here.

http://cartoonysketches.blogspot.com/2007/09/checking-my-top-cat-copies.html

Jeremy said...

i'll have to scan in my stuff when i get off work in the morning. stuff like this is such a huge change for someone who hasn't been practicing "art" that way. it makes me feel really ashamed about my technical skills sometimes.

ah well, that's practice i suppose.

PCUnfunny said...

This is OT but I need to tell something John . I was on anotehr forum and a debate rised about south park being good or not. I argued that it's not even a cartoon because it follows none of the basic principles of animation, it has no life or activity. You know what the other idiots said ? They said that it was just my opinion and even worse,they said that all the basic principles was the opinion of the golden age animators ! THERE OPINION !!!!!!!!!!!! Jesus John, was I angry. I also want to take this time to thank you John. I was like them at one point and I loved all that flat garbage but you showed me the light. Because if you, I am now trying to reach my full potential as a cartoony cartoonist. God bless you man. ;)

JohnK said...

Hi PC

I would stay out of debates like that. If people like it, they just like it for its own reasons. I've seen a few episodes and laughed at the odd thing.

Spend your time learning to draw the way you like your cartoons to be!

PCUnfunny said...

I actually had far less of a problem over them liking it. But one person said South Park was as much animation as the Looney Tunes and another said the basic principles was just an "opinion". Now that I just find absurd. Anway, I'll take your advice and just bite my tongue next time.

Robert said...

I don't have a TopCat model but I have a Goofy phone, so I did drawings of that.

http://2dwannabe.blogspot.com/2007/09/some-goofy-angles.html