Or, how I learned to stop worrying and completely lose respect for proponents of Intelligent Design theory.
I found this disgusting little monster stuffed and safely caged behind class at the charmingly out-of-date Horniman Museum the other day. I tried my best to draw it accurately because I thought it was so weird. It is called a tenrec, and it is an ACTUAL ANIMAL that EXISTS on PLANET EARTH! Ugh!
In the Wikipedia entry, the tenrec isn’t so bad looking. It’s actually kind of cute, in a pitifully ugly kind of way. But the real thing that I beheld at the Horniman (which actually may have been a different species) was utterly demonic. Why oh why would God – whoop, I mean why would an intelligent designer ever think to make something so hideous?! There are two explanations:
- The creator of all life on earth is cruel, disturbed, and/or artistically impaired.
- There is no creator of all life on earth.
Take your pick!
Just in case some of you were not totally conviced that I am a gigantic dweeb, let me tell you my idea for a video game: a job-based RPG in which skills are learned based on majors at a university. In the above illustration, we see an American Studies major weilding a baseball bat and a Colt .45, an East Asian Studies major citing “Amaterasu,” and a Zoology major using the skill “Falconry.”
This is an Art major and a Psychology major. Character details, including skills, weaponry, knowledge, plot points, stats, and clothes are determined by their major.
Here we see the Central Quadrangle, an important section of campus where many violent debates take place.
Finally, here is an American Studies major brandishing a Cherokee spear and citing “Benjamin Franklin,” who attacks a Level-2 Football Player with a lighting-charged kite.
Moving on, I did some storyboards for my friend Angeline Gragasin, whose creative output is akin to a volcano, or a bottle of champagne opened with a saber. She’s working on an abstract dance video of neo-animistic feminist satire (or some such thing) called “Skinemax.”
I, for one, am looking forward to the finished product.
It was a productive spring, art-wise. I have been working on some cleanup animation for a London studio, I did some storyboarding for a friend (to be featured in my next post), and I also made some concept art for an idea for a video game that originally came to me five and a half years ago. On top of all of this, the swanky and stylish Shoreditch bar Beach Blanket Babylon has been hosting life drawing sessions every Tuesday… for FREE! For an out-of-work amateur illustrator like myself, this is fantastic. It’s quite professional, too – the crowd isn’t just a bunch of yuppies sipping mojitos, gabbing loudly and attempting the occasional doodle (as I feared it would be). Nope, it’s just like a proper art class, with all the earnest, brow-furrowing geeks that entails. It just happens to be in a bar.
The models have been great, too. So far three sessions have featured three very different body types – and the instructor said that next week it will be a pregnant woman! Crazy!
Another awesome way to practice drawing is to take advantage of London’s many free museums. Here are a couple sketches from the Wellcome Collection, a fascinating museum of art and artifacts related to medicine:
This glass flask struck me as very cartoonish.
And these wax busts display unusual folding of the flesh at the back of the head; apparently, this was one way that psychiatrists diagnosed people with learning disabilities back in the day. Neat, huh?