Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Drawing Backgrounds

To drawing convincing background scenery, perspective and construction are critical. Even with stylized and flat 2d design construction gives the scene a solid look and is evident in many old classic cartoons from Disney to Looney Tunes. Look for this quality next time you are watching a favorite cartoon.
These examples above are from a basic geometry textbook and has the technical terms for all the points and names for planes, etc. I enjoy learning about them but in storyboarding it is good to use shortcuts only after learning the fundamentals from a book or school.


Trevour said...

Those are some great textbook drawings.

I think a lot of cartoons today are stylized for the sake of being stylized - I wouldn't be surprised if production crews today include artists who don't even know the fundamentals of perspective!

Jim Smith said...

Trevour, Yes it's a revolting situation. The creators and designers are imitating people who are imitating people who know people that used to draw. Surprisingly few artists walk outside and observe the world in its glory and 3 dimensions which is why most cartoons (and movies) feel unconvincing. Ed Benedict, Mary Blair, Mel Crawford, Gene Hazelton (sp) and others were trained in the fundamentals. when they applied their style to it magic happened!

Jim Smith said...


384Sprites said...

First off, just started following your work. Wow! Second... interesting what you said about animators not being officially "schooled" in perspective. I was hoping you'd recommend some books on perspective. Greatly appreciated.