How did it all start?
People have often asked me how I started drawing my cartoons. Well, it all
started years ago when I was a kid. I grew up reading comics like
"Richie Rich" and "Casper The Friendly Ghost". I loved the stories and the
drawings so much that I decided I wanted to draw my own comic strips.
I was 10 years old at the time and so my artistic talents were almost non-existent.
I started off with little stick men and women like
in the cartoon to the left. I figured that the best way to distinguish between my
various characters would be to draw some of them with different props like a
bowler hat, top hat, walking stick, and so on. My female characters
were lucky - at least they had hair!
Then I started drawing circles and squares for bodies and I added noses
to the faces. The stick figures now had more shape to them and I began to
draw more prominent hands (well, stick fingers at least) and feet.
As I got older, I began to add more definition to my cartoons. The next step was
to add clothes to my characters. Some elements of the original stick figures
remained, and the faces were very plain.
Eventually, I could draw very basic cartoon characters which actually resembled the
comics I had loved so much as a child. My cartoon faces were still very simple
however. The eyes, nose, ears and hair were all present but I still had trouble
distinguishing between my different characters.
With patience and a lot of practice over the years, I began to develop my own cartooning
style. Now I can use different styles to represent different characters.
Notice how subtle changes in the way I've drawn the characters' eyes reflect different moods?
Note the positioning of the noses and the way I've drawn the feet.
The final hurdle to overcome was the use of colour. But this has become easier over the years, with
the introduction of so many software applications for the PC where it's a simple matter to "click and paint".
Sometimes it can be quite frustrating when my cartoons don't come out exactly
how I envisaged them, but the secret is to keep on trying. It is so worth it in the end!