cartoons, creative process, drawing

Comic Faces

This is the group of comic faces that I made following an exercise by Lynda Barry in her book Making Comics. The faces were all made very quickly with each element drawn separately. So, first all nine head shapes, then all nine eyes or ears or hair–I forget the exact order. And each element was done in a few seconds. Again, I adapted this to solo work but I adhered to the time limitations to encourage surprises. In her classes Barry has students all pass the sheets of paper to one another, so they all end up drawing different elements on the paper and having composite characters appear.

These faces were surprising to me which was great. Though I often draw from my imagination, by doing the work quickly and separating the different elements as I went along, faces I didn’t control or anticipate appeared. Barry’s further instruction was to add some patterns, areas of black and to use colour to differentiate the faces from the background. These elements were done over a longer period.

Comic faces exercise, Lily S. May, 2021

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