Sunday, 31 August 2008

What I've been doing...Part 2

What have I been watching....
Gotham Knights, The Dark Knight and Hellboy 2.

All of these films have been visual highlights of my summer. Although I still love illustration I am still pinning for active work in animation and moving image...because it captures me as much as illustration does. Gotham knights is a series of animated shorts telling batman's backstory by the same folks who did the Animatrix and is a must for Batman fans and those interested in animation and to a degree storytelling. It left me desperately wanting more...why can't these guys do a whole series for gods sake and stop teasing us!

The Dark Knight was easily one of, if not the best film that came out this summer...It rattled around in my brain for weeks after I'd seen it and Heath Ledger was legendary as the Joker...and yes yes its tragic he's dead...but only because I wanted him in the next one. The dark knight is also one of the comics Paul Gravett says you must read before you die.

Hellboy 2: The Golden Army was another beautiful film. Typically Guillermo del Toro in style the creatures are amazing, the scenes involving anything not human are immense and I adored the tooth fairies...I want one! Admittedly the story was not on parr with Dark Knight but I didn't really expect it to be...the visuals and mysticism of it was enough to leave me wishing I'd been its concept artist XP

What I've been doing....

Work wise I've been focused on entering the Anansi Figures Futur competition and although I'm intending to send something...I'm not entirely happy with what I'll be sending. Anyway!

What I've been reading...

I discovered that Hartlepool library has a rather huge selection of obscure art books and a whole graphic novel section. Most of the books have not been taken out for 2 years...this does not surprise me.

One of the best i found was Graphic Novels- Stories to change your life by Paul Gravett

Its a really interesting look at the entire history of the modern day comic which also includes Gravett's top recommendations, from Art Spiegelman's Maus to Daniel Clowes' Ghost World, from Jim Woodring's Frank Book to David B.s obscure Epileptic. Its really made me want to explore graphic novels more and to read every one of his list.

I also borrowed a beautiful graphic novel version of Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis, Adapted by Peter Kuper which can be seen here...
in a very intersting flash adaption. Beautiful artwork...moving story. Thumbs up!

I've also been studying books about things such as storyboarding (one notable one The art of the storyboard by John Hart). I really want to come back to university with a degree of advanced knowledge...I want to have cards in my hand to play that other's won't.

Magic Pencil was another good book, in order to do some comparitive study and look at how other's work and their reasons for being illustrators as well as the techniques they use. Illustrators range from the well known Quentin Blake (who was the collecter of the names) and Sara Farnelli to the likes of Angela Barrett who does some really beautiful ink work and Posy Simmonds who generally is more associated with the adult world. It also has an interesting essay at the beginning by Joanna Carey on what makes illustration so important.