Friday, June 7, 2013

Dwarves and Their Shenanigans...

Dwarves are perhaps my favourite fantasy creature. They are (in most instances) stubborn and earthy, gruff and cantankerous. However, at their best they are admirers and creators of great beauty. They are easily juxtaposed against massive, towering environments, which further accentuates how very small they are and adds to the feeling of 'smallness' that I find essential in the recipe for creating sublime experiences.

On my mind lately has been not the smallness or largeness of a dwarf's creations, but the bumbling nature of the earth dweller in contrast with a task that requires great stealth and quiet. The top image is the one I started with, but it wasn't working for me. I explored the idea somewhat because I liked the feeling of the image, but, in the end, it went nowhere (at least for now). The second image captured more of the feeling that I wanted. It wasn't too serious, though you could tell the kind of danger the dwarves were in. I laid down some basic values to show what I might consider for a final value structure.

One thing that should be made clear about my sketchbook. It is a notepad. I explore ideas in it. I figure out problems. I don't care how pretty things are. As long as I can read the notes to make paintings at a later date, then I am happy. Some people use sketchbooks as an art form. That is not me. In fact, sometimes I like to shock people and erase whole drawings that I laboured over for a half hour to a couple of hours. I feel like if I am unwilling to destroy what I have made, then I am not really in control of it. I should be able to recreate what I have done (or make it better than it had been. Which is usually the case). This practice helps me let go when I draw so I can look at drawings as a whole rather than as a collection of small parts. This, in the end, frees me up to see things I would not have noticed if I were stuck noodling for hours. details are a final step. For example, the chest the dwarves in the first image are carrying will have a strange face as a lock.

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