Now that I had a couple characters to build on, things seemed to be getting a little easier. I still had no idea what kind of personalities these guys would have, so I decided to be the kind of artist who lets his creations speak for themselves. In other words, I kept drawing with no fixed goal in mind, hoping something would happen.
My favorite thing about drawing so far is that, after a few minutes, you sometimes go on auto-pilot. Alan Watts would call this your Floodlight Consciousness taking over - the mental state you're in when you're, say, driving a car for miles and miles without consciously doing anything. Sporty types would call this The Zone; it's where you want to be when you need to sink a 30-foot putt. I remember reading an interview with Lynda Barry, an amazing artist and human being, who says she draws monkeys every day as a kind of meditation. I kind of get that now.
Point is, when I finish a page of sketches and start looking it over, I'm usually kind of surprised by what I've drawn because I don't remember doing half of the stuff, particularly the good stuff. I really like the look of the long-necked little dude in the upper-right part of the page, but I don't remember what made me draw him that way. I've been thinking about a part for him in the comic, but I'm having a hell of a time drawing him again correctly. Now that I've drawn him, I need to teach myself how to do it again, and that's going to take some time.
Our homework assignment for the second week of class was to draw our characters in action - moving, gesturing, and generally doing things other than standing around.
Apparently, these guys spend their time jamming, fighting, and resting up for future jamming and fighting. Not a bad way to roll, I s'pose.
Here's one more, a full-page drawing we did in class. We had to make a dozen "string drawings" (essentially, wavy stick figures) to illustrate the way a body's parts are positioned while performing certain actions. Then we had to pick our favorite and make a full-page drawing of one of our characters in that pose. I chose one from the "comic distortion" set: