I went to art school a long time ago and was once very comfortable drawing. I was never great – and couldn’t draw a person’s portrait to save my life – but drawing always felt very natural to me.
When I was very young (maybe 9), a neighbor gave me a book about the Peanuts newspaper comic strip. I read it continuously. Eventually, I had become so attached to those little drawings that I had to try drawing them myself. My efforts were pretty bad – and I soon resorted to tracing (ahh – admitting that hurts)
It’s been about 10 years since I last drew (not traced) regularly – and now that I’m beginning to draw again, I’m noticing that not only does it take a lot of time and patience to teach myself how to draw all over again – but that I never knew how to draw comic strip type images. Though my paintings did have a narrative and told stories in one image, I’ve never done sequential art. I’ve thought about it many times over the years – and have dreamed of sequences and characters… but produced nothing.
So now I know that I have to re-learn how to draw. I also have to learn how to draw comics. In art school, we drew from life (trees, buildings, people, fruit). That does teach you a lot. I think the most important thing is that it teaches you how to look. So with that in mind, I plan on doing a lot of looking at the great newspaper comic strips that I love. I’ll be posting my drawings of them along side the originals — just for fun.
I’ll try to post them in some basic order…
I’ve only read a precious few strips of Mutt and Jeff by H.C. “Bud” Fisher – but they’re already near the top of my list of favorites.