Freitag, 15. Juni 2012

I've been meaning to...

... but I just haven't had the time. Sorry. due to personal circumstances it's been rough to keep up. The Anatomy-blogposts will continue and I apologise that it's a rather.. eh.. whatchcallit... random and not well-thought-out post so far. I wrote that on a whim - a strong one, yes, but I think I could've done better. I probably should rewrite parts of it once I'm done with the series. As it is right now, I am unable to continue in a timely manner, but I want to let you know that I don't plan on cutting corners, I'll write the remaining articles.

It's been a very exhausting day. My head spins and I am glad I can go home now. Not to make anyone worry or something, the reason why I'm so exhausted is positive even if it's a rather painful phase at the moment. I'm working to get the motor running again and I need to fix some rotten and rusty parts, that's all.

In the meanwhile I'm drowing myself with work, but it's enjoyable, I have a very cute mug-design in the works:

So love it :D. Can't wait to see that in print! Besides that I'm working on a lot of other stuff, commissions, more stuff for later - because convention-season is upon us! Yikes! And getting my internal motor fixed is helping with that as well. It's been a long time since I had a clear head like that, so I'm really looking forward to the next months and actually finishing work. Can I have a "HELL YEAH!"?

Mittwoch, 6. Juni 2012

Anatomy ressources

A while back I made the resolution to study more and while I don't have much to show, I'm actually following my own advice. I've picked up studies again in perspective and anatomy. Now I probably should focus more on perspective as I have not much training in that area, but that doesn't mean I can neglect anatomy. Having said that, I have to admit that I have trouble with anatomy, even if some people don't think I do. I've focused more on proportion and form than on muscle-studies and while this is a valid approach, it's also a bit limiting, especially if you want to come up with poses and characters that are a bit muscular or rather thin - as in bone-thin.

What ressources have I used in the past?

1. Books
2. Internet
3. Photos
4. my own anatomy
5. Videos
6. Tutorial found online
7. Skeletons
8. live drawing

I'd like to share my thoughts on those methods. Most people when starting to learn anatomy will probably start with books or reference photos, so let's start with that as well.

These are some of the books I own or that I have used in the past:

  • Gottfried Bammes
  • Burne Hogarth
  • Anatomy for Artists by Jenö Barcsay
  • Anatomy for the Artist by Sarah Simblet
  • How to draw the Human Figure by Louise Gordon
  • Medical Anatomy
I have lot's more, simply because I enjoy those books, but these I have used and read, thse are also the books I use in my recent studies. So let's take a closer look at them.

Gottfried Bammes was a german professor for the arts and his books are considered to be essential. Much like Burne Hogarth  - who lived around the same time as he did - he focused on proportion and form.  I've read two of his books: "Der nackte Mensch" und "Wir zeichnen den Menschen". None of these books are cheap, if you can, rent them or save some money. You can't fault the man for not being thorough, you really need to read those books to understand them and he doesn't go easy on his readers as his speech is very dry, stilted and academic. Do I recommend his works? yes and no. Bammes is for serious studies, these books aren't for quick studies and consulting. A lot of pages are devoted to life-drawings, but these are "merely" sketches, beautiful to look at, but.. eh.. let's say I consider those a bit "ego-stroking" on Bammes part. Sure, they are beautiful to look at, but when I read an anatomy book, then I want to learn about anatomy and don't look at what my instructor can achieve in 20 seconds after having studied anatomy for decades, if you get what I mean.

Burne Hogarth is sort of the american pendant to Bammes, but his approach to anatomy is even more stylized to the point where his drawings almost look like sketches for sculptures. He doesn't waste much time with words either. Unlike Bammes books, Hogarths's are cheap, so that's a plus. Deconstructing the body into easily understandable forms is a good way to learn about proportions and work on general understanding of the human body. BUT! I don't consider this to be an efficient way to learn realistic anatomy, so be careful. Hogarth's style is also so... stylized that it can distract from actual anatomy. There is one book that I can recommend and it's "Dawing dynamic Hands". Here Hogarth's technical approach actually works as he explains form and function of the human hands and as his books are easily available and cheap, it's a great buy.

Jenö Barcsay drew/wrote several books and these are my personal favorites. You would not guess from his drawings that he actually lived during Bammes and Hogarths time. Unlike Bammes and Hogarth Barcsay focusses on ACTUAL anatomy, his books don't rely on teaching via words, they are more like catalogues. Bones and muscles are beautifully rendered in a clean and neutral style. Unfortunately some of the detail in his drawings is lost due to the scanning. If you want to learn anatomy, don't want to be confused by walls of text and just want to have a quick look at what anatomy looks like - then buy his books! They aren't expensive either, so that's another plus.

Sarah Simblet is the youngest of the artists on the list who wrote about anatomy and it reflects both in her art and her way of teaching. Anatomy of the artist starts with an overview of anatomy in history and offers lectures based on photos of photomodels, dancers and athletes. It's really beautiful. Her style reminds me of Jenö Barcsay. If you're new to anatomy-studies this could be a great start, it's easy to read, but somehow it's not specific enough for me. I read the book and somehow I wanted more when I was done - maybe it's just me ;). Anatomy for the Artist is not a cheap book, but Amazon offers a free preview.
Louise Gordon drew several books about drawing and one of her books was the very first anatomy-book I ever got, so that makes me a bit nostalgic. Her drawings are clean and easy to understand, she offers tipps and in general her books are quick reads. She may be a little misunderstood, at least I get the impression that her books are marketed for the hobby-artist. That's unfair, but good for the beginner - her books are reallyreally cheap! some of them go for as little as 3 Euros.

Medical Anatomy is the oddball on the list, but medical anatomy is no different from artistic anatomy, so it makes sense to include it. For example: or "Atlas of human Anatomy" by Bourgery.

Of course this is just a fraction of what is available today and I haven't  included books that are popular like Loomis because I never used his books. Since this is a rather lengthy post I'll split it and continue another day.
Atlas of Human Anatomy and Surgery
Atlas of Human Anatomy and Surgery by Bourgery.

Montag, 14. Mai 2012

Busy Bee

Finished the painting, that I really wanted to complete. Or stopped working on it ^^, I don't think that I could improve it with my current skill-set so continueing is a bit pointless and a time-wasting. This sounds off-putting, but it's not. I'm really happy with it.

Now it's back to comissions and stuff. After that I'll draw the remaining character-files for the comic and start working on page-layout + other important stuff.

Diablo 3 will be released today, yay!

Samstag, 5. Mai 2012

What a niiight!

Friday was my last day of my vacation, boooooo! I needed a vacation and it was awesome. Well, awesome on my very own personal scale. Others may book a trip to the Southpole and do something really mindnumbing awesum... me, I'm happy that I got stuff done. And that I finally got to see the Hippos in the Berlin Zoo.

Aren't they cute? So big, so... bootiful!. Lew was a perfect tourguide.

Some other animals:

An endangered Poitou-Donkey. 

One of many nutrias.

Also, I met Gab, her husband and his colleague by chance when I went to see The Avengers today. The movie was really good and we spent some time at a fancy bar afterwards.

And I was busy drawing stuff. You can check out about 3 hours of pixel-pushing on my Livestream account. This is just a preview. Klick me

It's scary, I think, I'm developing something resembling a social-life. You have to squint real hard and use a big magnifying glass, but it's there. Shhhh! Don't scare it away! :P

More updates when I actually finish stuff I'm working on.

Dienstag, 1. Mai 2012

I've decided

I've been trying to improve my art in forever, but over the years I got stuck. I thought, my steampunk comic could solve my problems if I take one step at a time. The comic touches all aspects that I can't draw. Architecture, cars, technical stuff, lively characters... It makes you wonder why I burden myself with such a project, right? All these things - houses, cars etc. are topics that I personally like. Put me in a museum with historical cars and I'd be just as happy as when I go to a zoo (except if said zoo has a hippo-pond). Subject and topic of my steampunk project are not the problem. It's my attidude. I know that I can't improve in 2 weeks, it's a step by step business and yet, I still burden myself too much and force too much. Just started a random portrait and even if I struggle a little, it's still so much better than any of the stuff I've worked on lately. Because I could just relax and paint. I know how to paint faces and that's just the truth behind my problem.

I need to train and draw more. And that's why I'm putting away all colors for now and I'll work with pencils. Still need to finish the character sheets, but those will be the last colorworks for my steampunk project for a while. Need to go zen, haha :D and once I'm more comfortable with what I do, then I can worry about color again.

The goal is still a full color comic ready for print! But the road doesn't have to be that frustrating and rocky.

Speaking of zoo - I'll be visting the Berlin Zoo for the first time since I moved here in 2007. Maybe I'll post some photos  - I just hope the hippos aren't camera-shy!

Montag, 23. April 2012

Work in Progress

It's been too long since I worked on a full-blown illustration, but what can you do? Whenever I tried to work in that amazing idea i always smashed headon into a brick-wall that said: "Meh". Not: this sucks, just meh. Rather irritating! I feel, I can finish this one, I haven't run into the brick-wall - yet. Just grazed it a bit, but i recovered. It's a diablo 3 fanart of the female Demonhunter. I got to play the beta and it was awesome. Very fastpaced and fun.

Samstag, 21. April 2012


Blizzard oppened beta for their two news games, Mist of Pandaria and Diablo 3 and what can I say? Both are awesome! Ok, the new Warcraft expansion would feel more awesome if players weren't... retarded. Seriously, I felt I was dealing with mindless zombies. Instead of listineing to tipps, people kept on spamming and clogging quest-NPCs, quest-items. BAH! The artwork created for the new expansion looks really nice, very colorful, but it fits. Diablo 3 is the complete opposite, very dark and moody. Texture and art are mindblowing. I've been playing Demonhunter with a friend who gave Monk a try and we both loved it. Will test the game later today as I have work to do. Something like that:

I've been meaning to pick up colorstudies for years, but never got around to really get into it. Now I mean to start kicking my ass and do it. I'm not forgetting the concepts for my comic-project - rather studying and working on that go hand in hand. If the comic is supposed to be in full color, then I can't have my coloring look like total crap, now can I...