On the York University campus, about to speak at the Archives of Ontario about my research process for TWO GENERALS to an audience of educators and librarians. Primary sources are the shiz, yo. (at York University Research Tower)
Man, am I ever the wrong guy to ask about that. Like many artists, I find drawing horses particularly difficult, and am rarely satisfied with the results, particularly if I’m looking at older work (like the panel that you mention, which was drawn in 2008). Convincing horses are even harder to draw than convincing people, and you generally get a lot less practice at it. There are a lot of working parts, and getting any one of them wrong can make it perfectly clear that the artist just doesn’t know what they’re doing when it comes to depicting our equine friends.
My only advice would be the same I would give for drawing anything else: plenty of practice, based on real-life observation. As I’ve noted elsewhere, I used to want to draw sort of stylized, “Disney” horses. But then I came to understand that the classic Disney style is rooted in GOOD DRAWING, which is always based on careful observation. So if you have access to real horses (maybe you live in the country, or know someone who owns a farm) pack a sketchbook and go spend some time doing studies. Short of that, Google images of real horses (not drawings of horses) and do your sketching from those. THEN figure out how you’re going to simplify/stylize your horses. If you’re going to abstract something, you need to know what you’re leaving out, and why.
The photographic reference I would most suggest are Eadward Muyrbridge's famous sequences of walking, trotting, and galloping horses. There are several books available, but the images are also freely available online (Muybridge has been dead for well over a century, so his photographs are in the public domain.) They give you a nice feel for how horses move, in enough detail that you’ll never have to repeat the same pose.
I know that doesn’t really answer your question, but I’ve learned that “tricks” are no match for just rolling up your sleeves and learning to really draw the things in earnest. Good luck!
The free, online version of Tower of Treasure is winding down over at Saturday Morning Webtoons; I’ll be posting the last handful of pages over the next few weeks. But now is the perfect time to read the whole story before The Sign of the Black Rock starts up in its place.
The Corus Building’s 3-storey indoor slide. Sadly, didn’t get to go down it this trip.
Filming a promo video for THE KING’S DRAGON on YTV soundstage.
Behind the scenes in the YTV studio.
At the Corus Entertainment Building in Toronto, home to some of your favourite media brands (including my publisher, Kids Can Press).
My favourite page of Pirates of the Silver Coast so far (page 36, if you’re keeping score at home.) Pro tip: for interesting colour palettes, just set every scene at sunset.
"Painting" shadows into this panel from Pirates of the Silver Coast.
My pals over at Kill Shakespeare have already successfully funded a board game based on their hit comic book series, but you can still help out and pre-order one for yourself by heading over to their Kickstarter page. Eleven days left!
SCOTT CHANTLER is coming to TCAF!
"Scott Chantler is the acclaimed cartoonist of the graphic novels TWO GENERALS (which was long-listed for CBC’s CANADA READS: TRUE STORIES, named one of Chapters-Indigo’s Best Books of 2010, and selected for BEST AMERICAN COMICS 2012), NORTHWEST PASSAGE (which was nominated for Eisner, Harvey, Shuster, and Doug Wright Awards), and the THREE THIEVES series…" - Full Bio at TCAF site
TCAF is The Toronto Comic Arts Festival, taking place May 9-11, 2014, in Toronto, Canada. More at http://torontocomics.com/
It’s all true.
It’s Citizen Kane night in my class at Toronto’s Max the Mutt Animation School. I screen the film for my students every year to underscore the important synergy between story and camera. So much to learn about visual storytelling in every shot.
I saw an interview once with Harold Ramis where he was asked if he was the class clown. He answered, “No, but I wrote for the class clown.” Which pretty much sums it up. Ramis was the unsung hero of ’80s comedy. Take a look at his screenwriting credits and you’ll see what I mean. Animal House, Meatballs, Caddyshack, Ghostbusters. The Generation X male’s sense of humour was pretty well shaped by the words of Harold Ramis coming out of the mouth of Bill Murray.
But even if he’d done nothing else, Ramis would still be a giant for co-writing and directing Groundhog Day, as perfect and poetic a gem of a movie as there’s ever been.
Rest in peace.
Portland, OR (February 21, 2014) – It is with a heavy heart that Oni Press announces the medical retirement of longtime editor Jill Beaton. Since starting with the company in 2007, Beaton has been an integral part of the Oni Press team. Beaton oversaw a body of work that includes acclaimed…
One of Jill’s earliest gigs at Oni was as Assistant Editor on the collected edition of my graphic novel NORTHWEST PASSAGE. She’s a good egg, and I wish her the best.