Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Alexandria Jones

Over at Let's Play Math, Denise has begun publishing a series of adventures she wrote about a girl named Alexandria Jones. I joked that I'd love to do some pictures for Denise and she took me up on the offer. I'm shooting for 3 or 4 different scenes Denise can use.

I realized that I have a rather snobby frame of mind when it comes to drawing comic book characters as opposed to those who have a more cartoony, animation-style look. The latter was what I wanted for Alexandria. Bigger eyes, simpler features and less detail...The kinds of stuff that really appealed to me when I was younger. And I thought that would somehow be easier then a comic book style or drawing from real life. Ha!

I had a really tough time working on the proportions of a child's body and the shape of a child's face. I had a horrible time coming up with something distinctive. I somehow thought a cartoonier style didn't need to reference real images and hours passed before I finally picked up a National Geographic, found a child's face I thought would work and got the right shape for the face. Lesson learned.

Finally I had a half-decent sketch. Of course when Denise saw it she immediately saw a fault I hadn't. The glasses can look like bags under Alexandria's eyes.


It seems that sometimes the more you work on an image, the less you see of the faults. It's a blessing to have fresh eyes look it over so the obvious can be pointed out to me.

After that I took the sketch over to Drawingboard.org. I wasn't quite sure how to handle the glasses. There, Brianl took it and did a quick reworking. He fixed the glasses (changed the style as well) and suggested some finishing stuff I hadn't bothered with yet. I love the people at drawingboard.org.



The glasses could still go but they are a sort of universal symbol for a healthy intellect which is a quality of the character's. That and my daughter was thrilled to see that the character had glasses. She has to wear them and she's commented before on how so few TV and book characters seem to have them.

So now I think I'll work on some figure sketches and start planning out a few scenes. I also have to work on Rammy, Alexandria's dog.

4 comments:

Denise said...

Looking great!

ImPerceptible said...

I like it. I also like you giving her glasses. Most drawing of children with glasses make the kids look silly. Big glasses with tape in the middle. They're always nerdy. It's good for kids to see more realistic drawings.

Dawn said...

I did like the first design for the glasses better but they don't work well. The oval rims frame her eyes and there's no ambiguity about what they might be.

Denise said...

Since it's been a year, and I guess you aren't going to get back to these sketches, could I use them as they are?

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