Saturday, September 12, 2009

Cute Response

A couple people in yesterday's comments noticed that Kaspar was slowly changing- evolving or devolving, depending on how you look at it.
I think change can be good and bad, depending on what changes. Old characters, like Bugs Bunny changed all the time.
He changed for the good for a few years, and then kind of devolved into becoming an inactive logo.
I think you should let things change naturally, as you add shades to your characters, but it's god to go back every once in awhile and check to see if the core has changed too much-what made the character appealing and unique in the first place.
So I went back and looked at my presentation drawings and ate a bunch of bacon (which helps me think) as I drew the original things I noticed that had changed. His arms had gotten longer, and his face bigger, and his ears gravitated to the middle of his head. I don't think those elements are essential to the core of Kaspar, but it's fun to try different things. If you purposely try not to ever change anything, then the characters quickly become flat and stale.

http://johnkpitch.blogspot.com/2007/11/kaspar-unfriendly-bear.html

I believe in drawing by feel, rather than slavishly following model sheets. When you are working with another person's characters though, you should be very analytic of the drawings he or she gives you and get it accurate for awhile, until you yourself understand the core, and then you can start letting your own feel and style peep through to help shade the personalities and design. Well, if the director lets you, that is.

19 comments:

Benjamin Anders said...

Love seeing these rough doodles. I really like the bigger look of Kaspar more than the one in the previous post. Both look good but there is something about this one that just makes me want to find out more about him.

Also love the bullet sticking out of him in this presentation drawing.

thomas said...

The boorish Kaspar is exciting. You have a history of creating bears with split personalities, or at least ones that have an episode.
Like another person commented, he was starting to resemble the Tasmanian Devil. I think it had something to do with the lower jaw, and the protruding snaggle tooth.

I think you were letting Kaspar blow off a little steam.

Among other things, lots of great trees in these drawings.

Isaac said...

I like the more recent Kaspar, especially this one. He looks very expressive, while the older ones are too intimidating for me.

HemlockMan said...

The newer, meaner looking Kaspar is better, I think. I mean...the old version is a bit disarming at first glance, which is good if you want to stun your audience more. But I like the one in yesterday's doodles.

Niki said...

I admit, I didn't notice it much, I usually don't pay attention to the goofy drawings posts unless they're a pitch. Do you have any episode ideas for Kasper? I'd like to read up on some.

Carmine said...

These are really cool, and I love the original color pitch. But where's the parasite inside the rangers? He was really cool. And Goodie 3 Shoes is great. I wish this would get on TV, or how about DTV DVDs? Thanks for sharing these, and thanks for this generous and invaluable blog.

Rick Roberts said...

I must admit I like Kaspar when he appears a bit more three dimensional.

JohnK said...

I will use all dimensions of him, since you can't please everybody with just one take on something.

Stephen said...

Have you thought about doing your variety show idea as a comic, if the animated route isn't forthcoming? All of the characters on your pitch blog, plus your George Liquor stories posted in the past few months, demand stories. Could you go back to the old Spumco comic idea - surely a publisher like Drawn and Quarterly or Fantagraphics would publish any of your work? I'd love to see a modern equivalent of Harvey Comics with each title devoted to a couple of your characters.

ThomasHjorthaab said...

Hey John
Could you please do a construction drawing of Kaspar? That would really help me...

Cheers
- Thomas

Trevor Thompson said...

Well, if the director lets you, that is.

There are a lot of first timers out there who are just starting to work in typical animation jobs. It would be nice if you could dedicate a post to what we should expect to encounter.

We all know how swell it would be to work for Spumco, and that you do make cartoons the way they ought to be made, but what if you read this blog all the time and then get a job working as a storyboard revisionist on Dora The Explorer.

I dunno, maybe a post telling people what to expect as opposed to how things should be? Just a thought.

- trevor.

A.M.Bush said...

I like a cuter dumber Kaspar. I think it's funnier to see a character do bad things out of pure ignorance rather than out of 1st degree maliciousness(reason #1 i only like old dennis the menaces).

Shawn Dickinson said...

I like the drawings in both posts.

But I think it's funnier if when he looks cute while he's being mean to people.

mr paal said...

Man, i love the feel of these...got great flow & those lines are brimming with freedom & energy! Gorgeous trees too.

Chris said...

I like this version better. He's "unfriendly" because he's just an arrogant a-hole. The (de)evolution version looks masocistic. Maybe he has a Jeckyl/Hyde thing going?

The last new drawing looks like he eats tubs of ice-cream and washes it down with buttermilk. Woof!

JohnK said...

None of the drawings are different "versions"

they are just different expressions and poses, depending on what's happening

Chris said...

Sorry, my mistake.

thomas said...

Just for the record; I posted " drawings are evolving, but the bear is devolving" as pretty much a turn of phrase.
The drawings just seemed a bit more developed and denser than the previous ones, and the bear's behavior more brutish.
There wasn't any criticism, implicit or otherwise.

A bear fun fact, that I just saw on tv; bears steal squirrels nuts (and acorns). The squirrels are noisy when they're hiding them, so the bears figure out where they are.

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