Friday, August 26, 2011

Struggling with commissions

I haven't been the most professional artist of late, and that kills me. I've abused the kindness of some clients who gave me no deadlines for work, and the weeks have flown by with little progress due to business stuff, illnesses and general burnout. Mix in some temperamental artist antics and you've got a recipe for disaster.

Over the next few weeks, my goal is to wrap up all the loose ends I have so I can finally move on to new projects. Up first: A commission that's been driving me batty.

The theme here is to expand on the newscaster from strip #822 and show the kids invading his studio. I couldn't for the life of me figure out how to compose that image, and it sat around in its early stages for far too long. So I'm throwing it out and starting over!

This sketch was based off the old idea, where the newscaster was freaking out at his desk as the world around him erupted into chaos. In this attempt, I threw all the kids at the news desk, with the regular anchors bound and gagged in the background. It's rather static and boring, so I tried to think of ways to increase the action.

The new idea was to have the guy dragged away from his news desk. I like this dynamic a lot more, but now I'm struggling to figure out what exactly goes on in the background. In this sketch, I'm still clinging to the idea of Autumn taking over as the anchor. It amuses me. Not shown is an idea to have Tiffany take over as weather girl. I like both ideas, but there's only so much background space to go around... and me zooming out would both minimize the characters and double my work as I'd spend all my time drawing difficult background elements that would add nothing to the piece.

The easy solution would be expand to a larger paper size, but that's not the piece that was paid for, and it would cause a lot more pain in shipping to the UK. Plus, a larger piece would extend the client's wait even longer.

I need to make myself use space better instead. If I want Autumn at the desk, I have to fight perspective to make it look right, or fudge it a bit. In the above sketch, the news desk is curved in the wrong direction. It's one of those odd situations where wrong looks more right than right, since the incorrect curve helps move the eye around the piece. I'll likely face similar issues with the backdrop to the news desk if I keep this perspective. I could always turn the desk and the background more towards the viewer, but that would confuse the direction of the kids dragging off anchorman. Ugh. Why can I not lay this out properly? And this is all without factoring in Tiffany's location! With what I have now, I only see two viable options: Have her climbing the sets in the background or her have atop a camera rig.

So, yeah, back to the drawing board for me. I hate hate that time keeps ticking by with this, but I want to make sure I get it right!

1 comment:

Iron Ed said...

Tiffany could be standing at the left and looking (concerned?) towards some smoke coming from off-panel?