Yesterday, Iris asked me for a Marlin drawing for the cover of the catalog for our show next year. I didn’t want to do yet another version of Marlin grilling; I wanted to do something new.
I thought about it a little bit, and, because the big theme this year is the outdoor barbecue dinner on Saturday night. So, I got the idea to do a sort of 1950’s-style guy eating at a table laden with barbecued meat, holding up a knife and fork with a napkin ties around his neck-
This is Marlin with the table of meat I found; it’s from an early 60’s Andy Griffith’s BBQ Sauce ad. I modified it in Photoshop and I may do more with it. Marlin’s feet won’t be in the final drawing; it will cut off at the bottom edge of the table, but I wanted to draw a complete Marlin in case I want to use some of the layers in another project later on. I also have a really fun idea of something to put on the bib. Stay tuned.
Here’s the video of my preliminary sketches in Procreate; click on the image to watch it in a new tab on Flickr.
Last weekend, we watched an amazing movie called Isle of Dogs. It’s a Wes Anderson film, which I find rather hit-or-miss, but I did like his first stop-motion animated feature, Fantastic Mr. Fox, and it looked intriguing, so we gave it a shot. And, oh, was it worth it!
For a movie with the word “dog” in the title, it was actually, surprisingly, quite focused on cats. It’s an interesting Japanese pastiche in which the cat-loving Mayor Kobayashi has banished all dogs to Trash Island. In the introduction to the film this is all explained with some beautiful illustrations and scenes. My favourite, which is only seen for a minute or so, is the incredibly elaborate Cat Temple (seriously, look at that link; they did an incredible amount of work to create something that’s basically only one scene)! Of course, I instantly noticed the five cat statues to the right of the temple doors…one large, one tiny, two medium-sized and one small. I had to pause it and point out how the five cats matched our own five!
And then…I had to draw it. This is the sketch…
And here’s the ink. Covid aftereffects have really been kicking my butt this week, so it took me a while. I know where I want to go with this, and how I want the colouring to look, but it’s taking me longer to actually do it than I planned.
If you want to see the time lapse video of the work in progress, click the image to open it in another window.
I have been working on the drawing of Kiipi and her kitten.
This is the ink outline with the base colour filled in.
Without the ink, the colour alone has a rather neat “paint by numbers” effect.
And here is the ink, colour and shadows. I just need to add the fut texture and background, and this one is finished!
Do you remember back almost two years ago, when I envisioned our five cats as The Incredibles? Well, I finally got around to finishing it.
It’s not entirely finished, though. I still need to do the fur texture and a little touch-up. But it’s a lot closer than it was!
I have done a bunch of new ideas, but now it’s time to finish old projects. This sketch and ink from 2018 really needs to be finished. I started today, and here is the base colour. Then my iPad needed charging…stay tuned.
Okay. Now, I know these aren’t cartoons. But I have been working on colouring Dashiell Hamilton every day. I want to get the green of his suit just right, and it’s taking a lot longer than I thought…and I haven’t even started on colouring Dash himself! I am trying to do as much as I can in Procreate…but yesterday I got a new Paperlike screen protector, and let me tell you, it is a game changer! It really feels like I’m drawing on real paper, and it is so much better than drawing on glass. Even though it’s digital, it still feels organic. I’ve also ordered a set of Pen Tips, which should also improve the drawing experience. While Paperlike and Pen Tips ship worldwide, they are based in Germany and the Netherlands respectfully, so I don’t have to pay any import taxes!
Since Dash-Ham isn’t finished enough to post an update, I’m sharing some Christmas cards I’ve received. The above card arrived today from my Sverak club AbSolut Kattklubb. That is one lovely blue Somali.
This card came a couple of days ago from my friend Donna in Massachussetts. I think these Birmans are adorable. At least, I think they’re Birmans…hard to tell when you can’t see their feet!
This cute little Siamese postcard came today, also from Donna. I love that she keeps sending me postcards…it’s nice to have physical notes from friends sometimes, especially during a pandemic.
I finally got the ink layer done on my Dashiell Hamilton drawing.
But, since I wanted a thin ink line, it’s not very visible, so in Photoshop, I added a stroke to the lines to make it more visible. Now it’s time for colours and textures!
I had an idea today that I just had to sketch out. I was musing that I draw a lot of cartoons witch feature Lorelai and Izaak (especially Zak), but not so many starring Alfred. And I had a lightbulb go off in my head. I started out with the above sketch and a sneaky walk animation sequence I found online.
This is my final sketch. Freddy the cat burglar! He’s got keys and a crowbar because his specialty is breaking and entering.
Because Procreate has a recording feature, and I did all this work on my iPad (unlike some other drawings that go back and forth between Procreate and Photoshop), I also have a video of the drawing developing. Click on the image to watch it in a new tab/window on Flickr.