When I was in the 2nd grade, I got scolded for drawing cartoons in class. Now that I’m in the 30th grade, I take classes in which I’m supposed to draw cartoons. Yeah! Suck it, probably-dead-of-old-age teachers of my youth!
Anyway, I started two classes this week. One is my usual Naked Ladies in Artsy Poses Saturday morning class. My Wednesday night class, entitled “Figure Drawing for Cartoonists,” also includes drawing from life, but provides a nice complement to the Saturday class. First, there’s only a live model every other class. The other nights, such as tonight, the professor lectures on anatomy in a way that’s especially useful to cartoonists. What that means is concentrating on the skeletal and muscular features that go into creating a believable character. Some of it’s obvious (like the neck is attached to the back of the skull–important for not making people look like lollipops!), and some of it I hadn’t really thought of before (like that the knee joint is angled such that it’s higher on the outside of the leg).
After a short bit of lecture, the prof then encourages us to fill a few pages with whatever we were talking about, such as the heads above.
The Saturday class, surprisingly, focuses very little on anatomy. It’s more about gesture, and training your eye to see accurately. And I could never get away with being so cartoony! But I like that the classes are so distinct–seeing as I paid for them with distinctly different dollars.