Back in June I attended a figure drawing session organised by The Artist Guild. This session featured Lucid Belle cosplaying as Cammy (Street Fighter 6), a nice change from all the nude models! I never came around scanning the drawings, here they are at last!
Back in December, Manouk reached out to me if I was interested in starting a collaborative project. She wanted to inprove her writing portfolio and thought by teaming up with me, she could show she able to write more than plain fiction. We knew each other from our studies at the WdKA but we had never worked together before. After meeting over a coffee, we decided to create a small narrative game!
Creating a game together would be a good opportuntiy to test both my coding and art direction skills, as I always enjoy designing everything during game jams – characters, environment, UI, everything visual. I knew that this would be quite a challenge I would both be responsible for the code and all art on this project. Up to now, I had only finished small coding exercises from Unity Learn, no complete game yet from start to finish. The only way to figure out if I would be up the task, though, is to try! And hopefully by chronicling my learning experiences on this blog, I can later look back and enjoy the journey. Even if we pull the plug halfway.
To keep things easy, we decided to let our game take place in one single interior: that would minimise the amount of environment art needed. We settled on a train compartment, a space we were both familiar with and offered plenty of storytelling opportunities.
With that decided, Manouk wrote a short introduction about a frog prince on his way to his crowning. Due some malfunctions in the last compartment of the train, normal citizens were allowed in the royal coupe. The train then stops for unknown reasons, and the prince has to persuade the people to help him open the door to the conductor, to find out why the train has stopped.
This was enough for me to start brainstorming how the compartment of the frog prince might look like. If frogs govern this world, they would use frog-friendly materials, wouldn’t they? And there would probably be a lot of water around!
I also looked at other text-heavy games, seeing how they handled many words on-screen. I rediscovered Disco Elysium, a game I had heard about before but never knew exactly what it was about: now I really want to play it! I think this game is going to be a big inspiration in its layout of an isometric world combined with a large UI for dialogue!
I think the biggest challenge is going to be to prioritize, as I will have to divide my time between coding and art all the time. We’ll see how that goes!
I tried drawing digitally on my Ipad this time, inspired by my friend Frank. Unlike I thought initially, it isn’t really faster than drawing on paper: if you’ve got 5 minutes to draw a pose, a lot of seconds are lost by switching between tools. With longer poses, I try to be mindful of not adding too much detail to the drawing, they’re usually better with less.
A new year, new figure drawings! I continued experimenting with oil pastel like I did in November, but I needed some time to get back into it. That’s why most drawings are in the same line as last year.
I feel the most interesting drawings of this session where the ones where I used the strokes of the oil pastel to suggest form. I think I could go much further in layering different colours, but the model is only standing still for five or ten minutes. Maybe I need a model that doesn’t move at all to try that?
As I feel more and more comfortable drawing in graphite, I’m looking for new techniques and materials to use in these figure drawings. I couldn’t find any tips or suggestions online, so I brought a material I hadn’t used in a long time: oil pastels.
At first I used them the same way I use my graphite stick: lightly blocking out the forms and gradually adding lines, forms and details pressing harder to get more contrast. Things got more interesting when I used multiple colours layered over each other, something I’d like to try more next time!
I completely forgot to photograph and post October’s figure drawings, here they are! I tried my hand at charcoal again, a material I have a love-hate relationship with. I love the soft shades you can create with it, but I find it quite difficult to work with.