Wednesday, March 17, 2010

117. A Very Scary Spring Break Special

The influence of Penny Arcade is again, very apparent in my work. The third panel is almost an exact copy of a panel created by those two web comic sages.  Obviously the characters are different but, while the drawing is original, the use of a rear-view mirror, the pink clouds and lens flare, and even the the reason for the panel itself (i.e. stalking) is so immersed in the tradition of Penny Arcade that I'm almost ashamed to write about it.  Almost.
In art, attempting to emulate someone else's work, or even copy it, isn't the same as copying someone's answer to a math problem.  It's about learning why and how the people who are better than you do the things they do. I reiterate: not what they do, but how and why.  That's how we get better.
Imagine a "how to draw" book.  What is that encouraging but copying?  I learned to draw manga characters by copying Dragonball Z cards in third grade.  Can you imagine a "how to solve this specific equation" book? That'd just be plagiarism.  Art, either visual, musical or other, is an extremely different field from other humanities and especially from fields outside Arts and Sciences.  It is the study of others: their techniques, their methodology, their subject material.  So I say to Jerry and Mike; thanks for all the great jokes and amazing art - I've learned a lot from you guys.

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