Saturday, November 14, 2009

BEFORE and AFTER: "Aardvark"

Here's the second post in a new series. I'm starting with the "after" first. This was a fun exercise to update a really bad drawing I did when I was a teenager.

Below is the "before" image...did it over 35 years ago! I can't remember much about it...recently found it in the attic. I do think it was intended to be a parody of super heroes...there are obvious influences of Captain America, Superman, and The Flash. Why I chose an Aardvark...can't say...other than I was just a weird kid.

I began with a bunch of rough sketches to start working out the basic proportions. Some of them are shown below...did even more than I'm showing. I thought about staying with the "Captain" title...then moved on to "Major Aardvark". But I decided to just start over and not be influenced too much by the old drawing. So I shortened the name to "The Vark". Seemed cooler somehow. I tried using the cape with the costume...but it was soon left behind.
I finally settled on a short, muscular figure. Let's face aardvark doesn't have the best physique for a tough guy. But I liked the idea of big claws (aardvarks love digging for ants and termites). Below are the last stages...I blocked him in with simple flat shapes...then went for a more painterly style. Lastly, I put in the environment and color you see at the top of the page.
I must say this was more challenging than I anticipated...I really admire the pros who make comic books all day long for a living!

I've still got gobs of old drawings in the attic...who knows what I'll find next!


Anonymous said...

You went through an ardvark "period". Isn't that what they call times when you stick with a subject or style? You even did an aardvark
clock at some time in that period.

We have a section in our newspaper called Then and Now....This new section is before what and after what? Mom

Warren said...

Funny...I ran across that clock just yesterday, digging through the attic. Actually, the numbers were made from armadillos (a different period).

As for "before what and after what?"...I guess the first version is "before the after" and the newer version is "after the before".
Now I'm confused.

Mike Adair said...

Awesome exercise, Warren. Very fun idea with great results! I would sleep better with this guy roaming about.

Kerry Callen said...

Love it!

winna said...

fascinating to read and see..loved seeing all the planning and sketches and the story it self...reminds me that at tender age I made up a super hero called The Whip...I guess the whip he carried was magic ...and he had a mustache for some reason or other..the aardvark idea was terrific and I'll bet the only one around.