Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Ronald Searle interview

Here is an interview with Ronald Searle that is definitely worth watching. Ok, so he isn't exactly in the category of 'Children's' Picture books, but he IS in the category of Picture books for grownups and Comics and so as you know the connection in terms of process and artistry is obvious.
My favorite bit he says in the interview, regarding his work: ' The moment it's successful- kill it! Because it can only get worse from there.' That strategy towards your work really shows artistic integrity and is sooooo very very sadly hardly existing anymore in our current age of making a series out of everything in order to sell the sticker book, stuffed animal and mug to go along with your book.
Also, noteworthy other than the fact that Searle appears to be drunk at all times, is his desk of which you get a really good long view during the interview. Notice the color-coded planner and the many small timers hanging up. Timing yourself for drawings can be a really great and effective way to work! But yeah, this man totally rocks! Check out his stuff if you're not familiar with it because he is one of the great masters of visual slapstick and comedy! Yup. So good!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Homework Assignment #6:

Image by Quentin Blake from his book Words and Pictures

Based on the in class sketching and brainstorming exercise on different ways to combine illustration with text (look at your handouts for reference!) make 4 sketches for the story of little red riding hood from last homework, BUT using all of the illustrations techniques other than the obvious to reiterate/slightly embellish one!
That means you can choose from:
1) Subtract/diminish from the text, 2)change the text by contradicting it ie. create a whole new/or slightly different visual story, 3)add subplots, 4)utelize the freezing a moment in time idea to make the viewer fill in the gap (the veiled menace)..., etc...

Also, you don't have to, but it might be fun for those of you who did the first little red riding hood assignment to also try a totally different medium or style than you did last time.

Summary: 4 sketches and 2 final illustrations to bring to class.
Dimensions are up to you.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Homework Assignment #5:

Image: Sebastian Bremer

Homework: Using the character you’ve developed in class make at least 1 finished SREAD or 2 finished illustrations etc.. depending on how you split up the images and the text. Also bring and show your sketches for them.

The illustrations you will make will be size: height: 12 in, width: 10.5 in per page, or if you want to work on the spread on one page: height: 12 in, width: 21 in. Use the versatile Stonehenge paper I gave you at beginning of class if you still have some!

Remember to employ light and dark, composition, and your fully refined character for this. Please look at the work of at least one of your favorite artists so far for this for inspiration! Bring the hard copy to class. (if you're making them on the computer just print them out smaller on 11x17 paper)

Here is the text for you to illustrate:

Title: I Don't Want to Travel

by Emmanuelle Houdart

I don't want to travel

Except in the hand of a giant

Except on a broomstick

Except in the jaws of a wolf

Except in a bottle of raspberry syrup

Except on the back of a tortoise

Except with my Catfish

Except by the light of the Moon

Except under the sea

Except with my favorite book.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Jian Ghomeshi on the eminent extinction of the independent bookstore

Have a listen to Jian Ghomeshi's opening lines for his CBC show Q. The topic: our independent bookstores and what's left of them. If you scroll down that webpage there are also some good comments from listeners posted.
Thanks Jian, couldn't agree more!

While on this topic:
Here are four really great indie bookstores I love that are currently operating in Vancouver that have Not gone out of business yet and should you not have been there I highly recommend going there.

1. Humpty Dumpty Books and Music
1496 Cartwright St
(604) 683-7009
( located inside the Kidsmarket on Granville Island)
They offer a great selection of classics especially and have a lot of softcover books which means that they will be more affordable. Also featured is a French and Spanish selection. It's a very small space crammed full of amazing books! Next time your on Granville Island go and check it out!

2. Lucky's Comics
3972 Main Street
(604) 875-9858
Lucky's has a great and quircky selection of comics, some especially for children, graphic novels, novelty books, picture books, novels and zines. Also there is a gallery in the back so you can check out some local talent at the same time. Great place to get lost in for a bit while you're on Main Street.

3. Oscars Art Books
1533 West Broadway (Granville & Broadway)
(604) 731-0553
Oscars is a fantastic bookstore full of art books. They book shelves just on drawing, just on typography, just on painting techniques, paper making, illustration, photography, etc... Also they have tons of books on artists as well as a great selection of moleskin sketchbooks, calendars, and always a big table in the back with books on sale! Go there!

4. Mc Clouds Books
455 Pender Street
(604) 681-7654
This is my favorite bookstore in Vancouver in terms of atmosphere. You go in there and the first thing you'll probably see is just stacks of books not even on shelves, just stacked on top of each other. It really smells like books in there if you know what I mean. Mc Clouds specializes in antique books and if you really want to tease yourself go peek in their glass cabinets filled with antique Children's picture books. Absolutely amazing!