Thursday, March 20, 2008

Here's some food for thought

While working on Janes colouring exercise yesterday my friends decided to point out that I'm very messy when I colour on the computer (which i already knew) and mentioned that i do too much computer drawings and should go back to doing hand drawn stuff on paper.

This sparked a thought in me (WHOAH!)
If i use my wacom to do my stuff on teh computer, should that still be considered hand drawn artwork?
I believe it should be. Even though it's going onto the computer, the actual drawing is being done by my hands. I still have to sit down and physically hold my pen and make my hands move in order to draw my artwork, the only difference is that it comes up on a computer screen instead of on a piece of paper. I personally have nothing against traditional artists or working on paper, in fact I enjoy doing full scale tonal drawings with my pencils. It's just that if I had the choice between digital and traditional, I'd choose digital because it just works for me.

What does my fellow animators think? Is a digital artwork that has been done with a wacom hand drawn or is it just plain digital?


Ian said...

Of course its still hand drawn. Charcoal had a different feel and properties to drawing with a felt pen, but we don't call one Charcoaling and the other Felt Penning. Even drawing with the mouse is still hand drawn as far as I'm concerned, you start with a blank space and fill it up with stuff straight out of your head. This is where the hand crafted bit comes in, as aposed to 3D or manipulating geomitry in flash, where you start with a predefined shape and stear it towards what you want, big difference.

This is why we start with drawing at Southbank (digital or otherwise), I say that if you havn't ever used drawing to create animation you are more likely to accept what the computer gives you, instead of starting with that blank space in your mind and deciding what you want to put in it. :)

Mitch said...

Most definitly hand drawn. You're just the evolved, artistic product of the new age. It's not our fault that computers help us make things pretty. It's just like when people started using acrylics instead of oil based paints. Anyone who thinks differently is just naive.

viva la technology!

Dana said...

viva la technology indeed!!

Thanks for comments, I like hearing what people think about this sort of stuff ^___^

And is it me, or are Mitch and 1 the only one's who seem to reply to Ian's stuff? (from the 1st years of course)

frank said...

Hi Dana

Grade 2 student Frank, here.

Wacom and pen is hand drawn for sure. But really, what is it drawing on?

There's a lot to be said for drawing one's eyes away from a computer screen.

Dragging fingers through paint, leaving the sterility of technology for some finger dirtying fun.

Jane will try to get through to all of us students that their is limitless media with which to create marks with. And it really does feel good to have some 'texture', 'sound' (as you draw), 'smell', and for really hungry students, 'taste' to work with.

There could be an opinion out there that computer handrawing lacks sensuality. It's a bit sterile. Like any mass produced take-away pizza, until you try baking your own in a wood fired oven with the best ingredients. Computer draftpersonship only works with 'sight' but may lack 'vision'.

I do so much prefer the feel of a 4B pencil over cartridge paper, or an acrylic laden brush leaving a trail over primed canvas.

That slidey Wacom pencil thing on a slippery plastic surface seems to be empty of that contact with the texture of drawing. Does that lack of contact then carry through to the work?

I whip that pen tool around with ink brush and tilt turned on but the Ctrl+Z ability removes any responsibility for the line.

Give me a dip pen nib and a thirsty paper, that draws the animation out of a person much better than electronic devices, methinks.

If you need some powerful inspiration for considering experimenting with oil paint in animation, for example, search Aleksander Petrov on the ARC blog, or if ink brush and wash takes your fancy, have a look at Michael dudok de Wit's "Monk and a Fish".

If you get too comfortable with that Wacom, then you should get agitated because deep down you will know you are missing out on something more.

I suggest exploration and bring back what you learn to the computer.

Dana said...

I get where your coming from Frank and I think you make some very good points. What's bugging me right now is that there is a thought in my brain that makes a lot of sense to me but when i try to type it, it sounds like crap.

One thing I do know is that I was blessed with a wonderful art teacher who was experienced, knew what she was talking about and could actually teach. Every lesson that she taught me about composition and colour has stuck with me and use these when I make my art on the computer. I think that if you remember the rules about composition then you can make an artwork on the computer that is equally as beautiful as one that has been painted traditionaly.

A true digital artist would never let their artwork look empty because of the lack of texture. Or at least that's what i think.

As for the getting messy part, that's always plus when it comes to using traditional mediums. Like when you use your fingers to blend paints together :p

thanks for the input Frank ^___^