I love the execution of your work. Really interesting.
I am well aware that generating ideas etc is the lionshare of the work, but I am interested in your specific methods of production – e.g. software/pens/space etc…
Also – I started reading a few of the back-postings and felt sad that various excellent artists have default pages (eg the times site) whereas Bell has a specific location that stays on after a few weeks of updates.
Thanks tataboule, that’s very kind of you.
I’d like to return the compliment after looking at saamvisual.com. Excellent stuff.
I agree it’s a shame with the default pages. The solution that the Guardian has got with Steve Bell and Martin Rowson’s work, is very good – although they have limited the archive somewhat compared what it used to be. They could however be better at publishing online what other cartoonists do, when Steve and Martin both are away. The Times and the Indie do this when their regular contributors aren’t drawing.
Methods of production. Well.
I have a studio at home, so my journey across the landing to work takes about 7 seconds – or 23 min if you include making coffee and going to the newsagent.
The idea generation is, as you say, the main part of the job. I read a couple of papers, than supplement that with online newspapers and blogs, before doing some sketches and ideas in a little black book.
All my published work at the moment is done in the old traditional way of pen and ink. I do a quick pencil rough on Canson 300g/m2 watercolour paper. I then use a Mitchell Mapping pen with Daler Rowney acrylic ink to do the final drawing. After painting it with the same ink, I scan it onto my lovely G5 and send it off.
My digital/animated work is done in the 2D animation software Toon Boom Studio. Again, I do all my drawings on paper first, then import them into Toon Boom for tracing. Despite investing in a Wacom Intuos3 A4 tablet, I still haven’t cracked drawing creatively on screen…
Thanks for responding. I agree on the hand drawn/digital front. I have yet to make a significant step in either digital OR ‘analogue’ colour, although fairly soon after trying to make vectors work I ditched it for the joys of thick hand drawn lines.
As far as replicating textured/brush strokes, artrage is the best thing I have found – painter isn’t quick enough on a quick-ish G4 powerbook, and even photoshop is tedious when it drags and slows so often.
I think that there is a hugely vain bubble out there where loads of wannabe artists (myself included) are paying hardware and software companies too much cash in the hope that we can live the digital dream. The next thing will probably be one of those ‘drawing-on-the-screen’ jobs, but fortunately I don’t make enough cash to justify it, so hey! Hand drawn rules.
Please don’t worry about any stalking tendencies, but I really enjoy the blog.
As with pens, inks and rubbers, the computer is just a tool. Some use Painter and Photoshop very well, but personally I have a very awkward relationship with the idea of trying to recreate brush strokes, paper quality, water colours etc. digitally. I find that it’ll never be as good as the real thing, so why use an inferior tool..? I’ll use programs like that for ‘repairs’, but rarely for drawing.
I like the accidents of paper and paint. The little spills and smudges. The unpredictability of a dip pen.
I used to not clean my scanner, so that the dust and dried bits of ink on it would become part of the new image.
At the end of the day though, I guess it all comes down to style…
(By the way. One good argumet for doing it all on screen – the undo button)