Wednesday, May 07, 2008

COMPOSITION 1 - For Layout and BG artists - part 1 - Framing

Mary Blair is not only great at color, she is great at composition. A lot of young (and old) artists who say they love Mary Blair's work think they like it because it is simple and stylized. They miss what's really important in her work-fantastic art principles-like composition, the way she arranges the parts of her pictures into a clear and beautiful, functional statement.
Her art is completely logical.

So should ours be.

I see many so-called "stylized" cartoons today -the flat ones- that are cluttered with wonky flat shapes tossed onto the screen in no coherent order, as if they just fell onto the page and where they landed, there they stayed.

Composition is another lost principle of modern cartoons.
This is a big manual all about how to arrange images
within your scenes so that they are easy to read
and aesthetically pleasing to look at.

I made a series of manuals to help service studios
understand the Layout drawings we would send them for The Ripping Friends
because we found they would throw out all of
Jim Smith's, John Dorman's and my drawings and
redraw them in a cluttered, stiff, evenly spaced
wonky style.

The manuals didn't work because they were never opened,
but maybe you can find some use for the principles within.
If you ever want to do layouts or BGs for me, please learn this stuff first.