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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A FEW THINGS I LEARNED FROM DRAWING ONE PAGE OF TATSUMI

I recently drew page 181 from Yoshihiro Tatsumi's The Push Man and Other Stories.  I know a lot of cartoonists grow up doing this sort of thing, but I never really have, until recently.  It's kind of amazing the details and insights you can pick up from the practice.

Here's my version of the page:


And the original:


Things I learned:

-- At first glance, the page appears to be split into two equal panels, but actually the top panel is a few millimeters taller than the bottom, and the margin between them is drawn at a slightly sloping angle.

-- Look at all that "Tatsumi Crackle" in panel one!  (The round, ambiguous white shapes that serve only to modify the composition/relate visually to the expressionistic depiction of the moon/sun.)

-- Of course the telephone pole is leaning (as almost all of them do in real life), but this is something that only an astute observer would remember to draw.

-- Sometimes one point perspective is a very nice thing (panel two).  Compare this tighter, more realistic perspective to the wild perspective of panel one, where the buildings are claustrophobically falling in on the street.

-- Love the way the handlebars of the scooter are tilted to the side. (Of course I forgot to draw them this way...)

--  Haha-- that first guy from the left in panel one-- I barely had to alter things to draw him in my own style!


6 comments:

  1. brilliant! I should try this too sometime.

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  2. Thats a neat exercise! you should do more of these, it's interesting hearing the different stuff you spot out

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  3. That's weird, I've had Abandon the Old in Tokyo open on my drawing table the whole time I've been working on these Andre the Giant comics. I love the way he has really simplistic characters juxtaposed with super-rendered backgrounds. I know this is common in manga but it reminds me of Dave Sim/Gerhard a little. Anyway, cool!

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  4. oh oh, also the layouts are amazing in these comics. They're never boring.

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  5. I think maybe the right-tilted telephone pole in the bottom panel is meant to balance out the left-tilted thin row of lights on the W building in the top panel and sort of unify the two panels.

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  6. This is a great excersice! My copy of a drifting life should be arriving in the mail soon, so i should try doing something like this.

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