Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Milt Gross Crowds

Most cartoonists I know fear drawing crowds.

Crowds are hard to draw in these areas:

It's hard to compose a lot of characters together.
It takes more time for more characters.
It's hard to make each character have a different pose.
It's hard to design lots of different character designs. Most comic artists, even great ones like Jack Kirby tend to draw the same character over and over again in a crowd.Here's a dandy crowd of 'tudes with all the faces the same.

Milt Gross has none of these problems!
He draws crowds filled with different characters and with each one having their own faces, body shapes, and body attitudes.
Look how each of these top hatted fellows have a similar angle-but not exactly parallel. They are a group and individuals all at the same time.
This whole group has a single silhouette. They together make a single fun shape. Yet each character is an individual and s on a slightly different angle.

HIERARCHY OF FORMS- The specific details obey the general idea

Gross is a master of hierarchy. His individuals contribute to a group form.
Just like details on a face follow the construction of a cartoon face.

The specific parts obey the general idea.

All these snooty folks have a haughty demeanor, yet none are exactly the same. A variety of individuals that fit a type.

Hierarchy, rather than anarchy!

He has lots of different designs for women too.

Milt Gross is the opposite of today's rubber stamp comic strip artists. The ones that use the same stiff poses and expressions over and over again.
Look at the bustle of life.
The lines of action of all the high society folks here all work together to create an organic group flow.

I can't believe how many funny head shapes Gross concocts.