Sunday, August 24, 2008

New Retro Style Cartoons



I picked up a copy of Christopher Hart's Cartoon Cool: How to Draw New Retro-Style Cartoons a couple of weeks ago. The style is based on cartoons from the 1950s and 190s, but has a more modern flair.

If you've seen any of the Erin Esurance commercials, you'll recognize the style. But, the style really reminds me of Betty Boop. The Betty Boop films ran from 1932-1932 and were produced my Max Fleischer and released by Paramount Pictures.

Betty was an overtly sexy character for three years, but restrictions placed on the motion picture industry regarding sexuality caused Betty Boop to be toned down.

However, she was the first and most famous animated sex symbol and still remains popular today.

I really like this style because it's fun to draw. But also because one of the mainstays of this style is that it is centered around a family or group of people that are self-centered, irreverent and dysfunctional. In that way it reminds me a lot of South Park.

All that aside, I'm still learning to draw the style. I've been following along with the examples and practicing. The scan from my sketchbook is some of the practice. I'm beginning to understand how this style is drawn. I'm planning to start developing my own characters soon for a comic strip entitled "Life as a Wallbanger." It's about a dysfunctional family "somewhere in America."

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