Black and White again

Not Stuck

I’ve had a small break from studying this course simply due to working 60+ hours a week for a while. Christmas provides a chance to regain momentum and I’m going to tackle the Black and White exercise as a way to get back into it.

However, I’m not going to do it they way the brief is written exactly. I’m using illustrator instead of a photocopier to create a line drawing which I’ll then divide up into black and white areas to create a hard lighting effect. This will be quite dramatic so I’m going for a graphic novel (comic) effect – a story of expressive characters and/or places.

Cow Boys

First Character:


A straightforward line drawing of… looks like a cowboy. Nice hat.

B-Face-1-with-hatAfter filling all of the shapes in black (and adding a dark grey background to allow them to be seen) I start painting in highlights assuming a harsh light source from the top right and behinds the subject.


This guy now looks lovely and sinister. The shadow of he brim of his hat can be traced across the front of the face and there is the impression (although unintentional) of his left eye (right as you look at him) being directed to his left… like he’s slyly looking that way… the way a sly cowboy might.


Tying this with a black background… there’s enough light areas now that the face is still effective. This gives the impression that the hat is lower with a bigger turn up rather than there being a shadow on the face from the brim. Makes the face look fatter too. Perhaps in my original line drawing I didn’t do the proportions well.

Given the idea that his one looks like he’s looking over his left shoulder lets put something in the background to look at. Maybe there’s another cowboy with a gun in the distance.




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