Friday, January 13, 2012

HIP HOP ELF Cartoon by Elgin Subwaysurfer Bolling

I was in a playful character creating mood today, so I decided to draw my version of an Elf. As a kid, the Elves I remember were all happy little critters, and some were a little mischievous. I decided to up this mischievous level a couple of notches, turning my Elf into a doo rag wearing, gold teeth and ear ring sporting, sneaker wearing, hip hop graffiti tagged Elf complete with spray can.


I drew this simply using a very thin line, knowing I was going to digitally paint it in art studio. I imported the initial sketch(not shown) into the art studio app, by first taking a photo of it ane emailing it to myself. I then meticulously traced the sketch until everything was in place exactly the way I wanted.


Know lay down the basic colors that I'm going to shade in later to give the picture a more three dimensional feel.if I was doing basic animation, where I had to draw this hundreds f times, this would generally be the end. Thankfully, I'm not done yet!


The shading stage is where I especially start to get excited. I always enjoy seeing the fat colored picture start to pop as I begin to add highlights and shading. Often times at this stage, I get new ideas for the sketch that I hadn't thought of previously. Initially I thought it would just be comical to give my youthful Elf Boy big bucked teeth, but once I decided to make one tooth gold, it enhanced that whole hip hop vibe I was going for.


In the final stage I pay close attention to the eyes adding more shadow to make them slightly more menacing. I also purposely add more white highlights which for me, is reminiscent on how Grafetti artists used to color their pieces. Believe it r not, a lot of my color inspiration comes from observing and copying the way artists color the crazy characters you see inhabiting your breakfast cereal boxes! Have you looked at the way Captain Crunch is colored lately? It's absolutely breath taking!
To complete the pic, I've added yellow spray mist to the spray can,and f course it would be complete with showing how hes tagged the two mushrooms in the background.

What I love about this character is that he can easily be turned into a comic char act that I can build a story around. Now if I can only think of a name?...