OGRE ALE III from Scott Story’s Drawing Board
OGRE ALE III
Greetings again, my friends! I am Scott Story, Midwestern author, and artist, best known for my work on Johnny Saturn If you would like to check out my superhero prose writing, I can strongly suggest Story Studios Changing of the Guard. But, that’s not why you’re here, is it? Good, because it’s time to pick back up on Ogre Ale!
Costume design is a crucial skill in the concept artist’s arsenal, so this is my opportunity to make Mr. Ogre stand out. So many superhero artists are not good at drawing clothes, with little or no understanding of how clothing fits, bends and wrinkles in the cloth as the character moves and more. If your art centers solely on superheroes wearing skin-tight, painted on clothing, then you are missing an entire world of design possibilities.
It’s not a lot of work to dream up appropriate clothing for this guy. I’m thinking tree-trunk club, a necklace of skulls strung together, and lots of piercings. This is fantasy, so let your imagination out to play! This character lives in a medieval setting, and that helped drive the creative choices. It would have been interesting to see him in a Steampunk world, or even a space opera, but medieval it is.
When I drew the skull necklace, scarf, and belt pouches, I made them jostling around wildly. Dynamics is the word, and anything I can do to amp up the apparent movement, and action is my friends. In this case, it’s crazy swinging peripherals, but it could have been hair, ponytails, tattered strands of clothing, chains, or the like.
PENCIL LINE WORK
This is the stage in the process where I get to nuts on detail and draw in all the cloth folds, warts, fur, textures, whatever! Different artists go for varying levels of detail in their work. Most comic artists try to simplify their characters, mostly because the artist is on a tight schedule, and he is going to have to draw his characters again and again, from every conceivable angle. If you have to check references continually then, that’s going to slow you down.
I love detail. To me, it makes the art come to life. There is a moment in every picture, or at least there should be, where the drawing comes to life for you, becomes a person, not a collection of lines. So, when I draw more intricate elements, like the jewelry, broken fingernails, hairy knuckles, and bulging veins, it adds a whole level of verisimilitude (that means “truth”) to the illustration. After all, I’m inviting viewers to suspend belief and join in with me and see the subject matter (Mr. Ogre!) the way I intended.
I’ve also got the ogre kicking up dirt as he runs, furthering the overall illusion, and letting him interact with his environment.
NEXT TIME: INKING!
Scott describes himself as an author, artist, medievalist, mentor, musician, publisher, introvert, and historian, not necessarily in that order. So far he has published dozens of comics, multiple graphic novels, and prose novels, and he has contributed art to scores of comic publishers and and multiple prose anthologies.