Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Howie Post Trees, Cottages and Outdoor Scenes

Howie's details - like the leaves and bark on the trees are swell, but they are subservient to the larger shapes in the composition. Post makes sure he arranges the biggest shapes in relationship to each other first: Tree, sky house, character, ground - all these balance really nicely against each other. Once he has that balance, he wraps the details around the larger shapes.In that big fat solid tree, you can see how the main shaft of the tree is made up of crawling, writhing lesser tubes.
He draws great little compact cartoon cottages too. - made up of 2 major sub-forms: a stone block topped with a thatched roof. Then the windows, doors, bricks, wood frames and such follow the positions of the major forms.







BREAKDOWNS OF HOW HOWIE ARRANGES HIS COMPOSITIONS

19 comments:

Elana Pritchard said...

He uses a lot of different patterns and shapes for his details. I will study this because I always end up using the same ones.

Cali-4nia said...

These are great, simple examples... I always have trouble trying to come up with good BGs. Thanks.

JohnK said...

Elana: good observation, but I would suggest getting the big shapes to work first, before worrying about your details.

Roberto Severino said...

And I thought the stuff from yesterday was enough to keep me drawing. Now I have these to look at and study from too.

Already from analyzing and copying from a few of Post's drawings very very slowly, I'm learning firsthand that he never wasted his time figuring out the details. That's why I worked out the major shapes and negative spaces first before drawing any details. Once you have those worked out, then the details will fit in place snugly. Maybe I'll post a few of these on my blog, but I'm a little bit hesitant about it. Maybe I drew them too fast or something...

Guy Cx said...

Howie Post is truly the king of composition. I remember an older post in this blog that would show Post's trees on Hot Stuff's comics and your analysis of Post's composition and using of negative space; maybe you could link these useful older posts to the recent ones so the blog's newcomers won't miss a thing.

Elana Pritchard said...

Yes john.

JohnK said...

I didn't mean you specifically, Elana. I meant artists in general. No offense meant!

J C Roberts said...

This is definitely the way to compose a comic panel, since putting a finished character down first then filling in a background behind them is just asking for trouble and clutter.

In terms of animation, though, it may require a few phases of layouts. If you need to move a character through the scene you'd probably want to work out at least the start and ending positions. Not to mention creating backgrounds that span the whole distance but also have portions that that fill the screen as well as these panels do. It's still the same prinicple, but you might want to have two points that frame the character.

Elana Pritchard said...

None taken. I was treating you like an army general. I should have written "YES JOHN!"

Tony W. said...

Also notice that the ground is never just flat. It's always full of curves and lumps or is slanted in some way.

Roberto González said...

My only problem with these is that I will have to print everything cause my computer is in a different room than my drawing table.

But I guess I should sacrifice some printer ink. These studies could help me a lot with my own comics.

Roberto González said...

Also, did Howie make any urban comics? I find it more difficult to make curves when drawing town buildings.

Roberto González said...

Nevermind, I just realized there is actually some urban scenes in the previous posts.

RooniMan said...

Such great compostition.

Paul B said...

John, can you explain me what do you mean by "balance" when you talk about getting the major shapes first in the picture?

Could it be like getting the right side of the image have more or less the same elements as the left? Something like that?

JohnK said...

Paul

balance means to get the gig shapes in the picture to look nice next to the other big shapes and the spaces in between them, before worrying about the details

like in all the Howie Post examples above

Paul B said...

mmm... I see.
It seems to be a matter of taste.

JohnK said...

I'm not sure how it's a matter of taste

it's a matter of balance

not to have everything cluttered and awkward

Paul B said...

Ok, I'm gonna do some studies and next I'm gonna try my own composition to see if I understand what you mean. Thanks!