Monday, 4 November 2013


Since most of you are working in monchrome I think it is important that you spend some time thinking about light and shade contrasts and negative space. I see so many really nice drawings rendered flat due to the artist  either not understanding or failing to apply the basic priciples of light .
Frank Miller is a master of working in black and white and  Sin City is ample proof of this
Frank Miller - Sin City

I highly recommend you spend some time studying the work of....
Mike Mignola - Creepy. Just a simple cloud of mist in the background frames the trio and makes them clearly visible and the main point of interest.

Alex Toth - The Shadow

Frank Frazetta - The Lioness
Notice how  just a small use of light on the back of the lioness gives the viewer enough information to know which way she is sat . The tree frames the cat and the cabin in the background. So simple.

Bernie Wrightson - Frankenstein
You will learn a lot from studying the work of these artists. Wrightson's work above may look more complex , with its fine line work but it it's layout  and application of light is the same as Mignola's.
Frazetta's , The Lioness, pictured above and Miller's Sin City work was definately being chanelled into my observational sketches during a recent trip to France.

All you have to remember is is. If you want something in the foreground to stand out from the back ground make sure you leave enough contrast  surrounding the subject in the forground. If your foreground is dark, make your background light and vise versa. It's not rocket science. Notic ethe car in the pic above. The car in in shadow  and stood against a black background but I have left enough highlight on the car to make it visible. What is the first thing you see when you look at the sketch?

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