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  • Writer's pictureRobert Martel


Updated: Aug 24, 2021

Three on a Tree Stump Chair: ink cartoon drawing
Three on a Tree Stump Chair: ink cartoon drawing

I've been playing at developing a so called cartoon style but have been stymied by the inconsistency of my style from one illustration to the next. I think I may need a stronger understanding of proportions before I can begin exaggerating them while keeping the subject matter recognizable. Above is a drawing I did using a photo reference. I took a medium point black marker and attempted to create a simple rendering of children.

For the most part I like the result but when I tried to duplicate my efforts just a couple of days later the product was vastly different. See illustration below:

Family on Couch: ink cartoon drawing
Family on Couch: ink cartoon drawing

I much prefer the style of the first illustration especially since this second drawing took two or three times as long to create. In addition to the extra time spent on this second drawing, I also used a fine point drawing pen and lost the simplistic effect that the bold lines of a medium point marker lent to the first drawing.

I'm still convinced I need greater practice rendering accurate proportions before I can exaggerate them successfully. It's a lot like having a firm grounding in the fundamentals of a musical instrument before being able to improvise successfully. When I look at the work of Charles Schulz and Bill Watterson I see that proficiency behind the deceptively simple lines in their art.

#cartoons #marker #simple #style #consistency

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