Be Creative: Social Network Drawing

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I am a lot on Facebook. Maybe I am a bit addicted, but on the other hand there are so many great links and activities from my friends that generate a constant flow of (mostly) interesting stuff. As I find it really hard to squeeze in focused time for drawing in my script consulting job schedule, I started doodling the pictures from my Facebook and Twitter streams for a few minutes.

Social Network Drawing, © Ines Häufler

Social Network Drawing, © Ines Häufler

I am really not satisfied with the outcome at all, but on the other hand it is better than nothing, right? And it has Amanda Palmer in it who says that she loves me. Which is not bad, either.

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InesBe Creative: Social Network Drawing

Be Creative 2014: Inspiration by The New Yorker

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Some years ago I subscribed to The New Yorker. In recent months I have sometimes thought about canceling it, because I have hardly time to read anything. But when I lose myself in one of the long, well written articles every few weeks, I cannot but extend the subscription again – for me this is simply one of the best magazines out there.

Now that my interest in editorial illustration grows, The New Yorker has become a wonderful source of inspiration. So I sifted through some of the unread magazines from the last months, and here are a few examples I found:

The New Yorker illustrations, © photo: Ines Häufler

The New Yorker illustrations, © photo: Ines Häufler

On the top left you see an illustration by Victo Ngai, who I introduced to you here. You can read some details about the piece on her Tumblr.

The one on the top in the middle is not an illustration commissioned by the magazine, but an ad for the tv series Mad Men. The Mad Men team did not copy the style from a 1960ies ad, but they asked the illustrator Brian Sanders, now 75, who worked during that period and had exactly the style they were aiming for. Here is an article with more details. And here is an interview with Sanders on the official Mad Men blog, including some images of the process. I really like the mad Men’s team love for details and that they opted for the original style, and not for a (computer generated) “fake”.

On the top right you see the cover of The New Yorker from June 28th 2013 by Jack Hunter. It shows Ernie and Bert happy in front of the tv as the Supreme Court had allowed legal gay marriage. I like the serene atmosphere and minimalistic composition in combination with a strong pop cultural reference. Read a bit more about it here.

On the bottom row there is an illustration for a fiction piece, done by Jeffrey Decoster. I like simple linedrawings like this one a lot. And also how the red and blue lines indicate the distance and closeness between the man and the woman. There are many more on his website.

The bird in the middle is by Marco Mazzoni. He draws with coloured pencils. As you might have seen by now, I like illustrations that are not completely done in the computer. I like it if you can still see and feel the artistic skills like drawing. I guess I am a bit old school regarding that. Marco Mazzoni gives a lot of insight in his process on his Tumblr.

And the smaller piece on the bottom right is by Martin Ansin. The style of the image reminds me a bit of asian wood block prints. Though I can feel a lot of computer work in many of his pieces (but that is just a matter of taste, as I said I am a bit old school), there are a lot of very interesting poster designs for new and old movies in his portfolio. Check out this poster for Taxi Driver.

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InesBe Creative 2014: Inspiration by The New Yorker

Be Creative 2014: Work Life Balance

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Today was the first real working day after my two weeks holiday break. I am working as a script consultant in the tv and film industry for 10 years now, and I still love my job. But finding the balance between work and my creative life is not always easy, also in terms of energy.

I managed to squeeze in some practice though – I am drawing faces. It is still quite hard for me, but it is getting better. It reminds me of learning how to play the piano: When I started to practice every day for just half an hour, I saw massive improvements. And to be honest – there is always room for half an hour of practice, for everything. (And if I will stop playing Candy Crush Saga, I’ll have even more time on my hands…)

Be Creative 2014: Faces, © Ines Häufler

Be Creative 2014: Faces, © Ines Häufler

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Be Creative 2014: Inspiration by Victo Ngai

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I love the internet, because I am finding tons of inspiration and can study the work of the most talented artists. Losing myself in the creative worlds of others is also part of my project. So every now and then I am going to share images and websites that inspire me.

I am starting with Victo Ngai, an illustrator from Hong Kong, based in New York.

© Victo Ngai

Her works sometimes breathe the atmosphere of old Asian wood cuts, even if they depict modern subjects. I like her style a lot. She has a great Tumblr, where she sometimes also posts the sketches for her work. You can also find her on Facebook and Twitter.

This is one of my favourite pieces:

© Victo Ngai

And then I discovered this touching story about vanishing memories:

© Victo Ngai

So get inspired by Victo Ngai’s work, it is just some clicks away!

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InesBe Creative 2014: Inspiration by Victo Ngai

Be Creative 2014: Portfolio and Practice

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I finally uploaded my first work on my Behance portfolio. You can now meet the Talking Cookies there, and more will follow. I am just beginning to explore the Behance network – there is some excellent work to be found, and lots of inspiration!

My portfolio on Behance

My portfolio on Behance

I also started sketching. I want to revisit a linocut I did in 2012. I was never satisfied with the outcome, so I want to draw it this time and see where it takes me. But I have to practice a lot, because I still suck at drawing people, though I see that I got a bit better since I went to a life drawing course last fall. Now off to the drawing board. If I do not practice, I will suck forever. (So there is nothing to lose, I cannot get worse, only better, which is kind of great, don’t you think?)

Be Creative 2014: Creepy Girl, © Ines Häufler

Be Creative 2014: Creepy Girl, © Ines Häufler

P.S.: Yes, the girl is supposed to look a bit creepy, thank you for asking.

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Be Creative 2014: Portfolio!

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Today I started to prepare the first project for my portfolio on Behance. It will be my Talking Cookies book, but as it is written in German, I have to write English subtitles. Tomorrow I will upload it to my Behance site.

Talking Cookies Portfolio, © Ines Häufler, 2014

Talking Cookies Portfolio, © Ines Häufler, 2014

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Be Creative 2014: More Foxes

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Today I went to a new huge art supply store. It is in walking distance from my flat, so I do not have to go to the other end of the city by underground to buy some paint. Yay!

Be Creative 2014: Brushes

I bought a brick of Super Sculpey and made another fox.

Be Creative 2014: Meet the Super Sculpey Fox! © Ines Häufler, 2014

Be Creative 2014: Meet the Super Sculpey Fox! © Ines Häufler, 2014

Super Sculpey is by far the best material I worked with. It is soft like plasticine, and hardens without losing the details when you bake it in the oven.

Then I tried a new printing block I also bought at the store. It is called Easy Print and is made of 3mm sponge rubber plates, glued to a cardboard. Used to lino cutting, it was quite difficult for me to cut the rubber. Carving big patterns works well, as you can just peel off the material you do not need, but I could hardly manage to cut fine lines.

But I have been thinking about the idea of  deconstructing the shape of animals to geometrical patterns for some time now, so this was a good exercise.

Be Creative 2014: Meet the Easy Print Fox! © Ines Häufler, 2014

Be Creative 2014: Meet the Easy Print Fox! © Ines Häufler, 2014

As the Easy Print Fox was losing his limbs when I tried to wash off the paint, I decided to make a traditional linocut of the deconstructed blue fox. I think he turned out nice, and he will have some deconstructed animal friends soon.

Be Creative 2014: Meet the Linocut Fox! © Ines Häufler, 2014

Be Creative 2014: Meet the Linocut Fox! © Ines Häufler, 2014

Be Creative 2014: Meet the Blue Fox! © Ines Häufler, 2014

Be Creative 2014: Meet the Blue Fox! © Ines Häufler, 2014

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InesBe Creative 2014: More Foxes

Be Creative 2014: Two foxes

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I decided to start with making small foxes and experiment with materials a bit.

I like foxes. Especially since I saw one about two months ago while I was running through the gardens of Schönbrunn. Normally I don’t see a lot of animals in the city. But there he was, early in the morning, crossing my path from the left and disappearing behind the trees again.

The fox is also for Anke Tröder. We never met in real life, but she supports my creative ambitions for years via the internet, and I know that she likes foxes, too.

20140102_Foxes

So here are two foxes for a start. They are not anatomically correct yet, as this is more about experimenting with materials. One is made from Keramiplast, a material I find quite hard to work with, especially for tiny figurines. This is why the fox on the left looks very weird. Maybe I have to use more water or prepare the material, though it says you can use it out of the box. I don’t know. The right one is made from plasticine. I love working with it, but it stays soft all the time, which is not ideal.

Here they are in the making.

20140102_foxes_wip

Someone told me to try Super Sculpey. I will buy some tomorrow and make another little fox. And I must have some Fimo left, I will try that as well.

Both foxes have a “skeleton” made from thin wire and tinfoil. When I looked at this one, I thought I could maybe become a dragon or a dinosaur as well. Maybe next time!

Be Creative 2014: Foxes. Skeletons. @Ines Häufler

I am still in the phase of testing materials, but once that is done, I will make other animals as well. And then I am going to re-enact the video of WHAT DOES THE FOX SAY. (Don’t laugh, I am very serious about this!)

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InesBe Creative 2014: Two foxes

What is a scene?

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One of my script consulting teachers, Don Bohlinger, professor at the USC film department, taught me this:

“Each scene is either a chase or an escape.”

It is not only true for scenes with actual chases in action movies, but for basically every scene with more than one characters in it, and it is even true for scenes with a single character who has an inner conflict.

Today I found this quote by screenwriter and director Mike Nichols:

“Every scene is either a fight, a seduction, or a negotiation.” (source)

This also seems to be a good way to look at the scenes you write or analyze, especially if you check your draft before doing a major rewrite or prepare notes for a script meeting.

Questions you might want to ask:

  • Does each scene have a conflict?
  • What is this conflict about?
  • If it is more than one person: Who has a high status, who has the low status?
  • Who is chasing/seducing/fighting whom and why?
  • Who is trying to escape and why?
  • And do the characters switch status during the scene( which I personally always find interesting)?

 

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InesWhat is a scene?