Saturday, July 30, 2016

Ape Scientist

Another character which popped into my head one night, but without the coloring. It took me a while to figure out how to draw his head how I wanted, but I think I've got it. He doesn't look particularly villainous to me, just angry at the moment. But who knows?

It was good to have this prepared. I just got home from a short trip and I've got a lot I have (and want) to do. God had this ready for me when I got here. His mercy is truly without limits, even the smallest things He's got covered if we trust in Him.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Sketch Book Page 1

I probably should have put this image up sooner. These are drawings from the very first page of my sketch book. Looking at the many lines and eraser marks around the faces- it amazes me how far I've come since then. At least I can draw circles much better now. But it's all experimentation.

This isn't actually the first page I've put on this blog of my sketch book. The cartoon characters from earlier and a lot of other drawings are from my sketchbook.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016


It's finally done! My first animatic ever. It took me about nine hours over three days (which were split up). I decided to start with something like this because it seemed like a good way to begin animation itself- particularly storyboarding- my favorite field. This is a storyboard version of one of my favorite scenes from the first season of Gravity Falls. Obviously I didn't write/produce/design any of the original show. The characters, story, and lines belong to Gravity Falls. One of the big reasons I like this scene is because it's one of the most humorously realistic portrayals of two people's reactions to switching bodies that I've seen. As you can probably tell, I did all the voices and sound effects in this animatic myself (with a webcam microphone). There are a total of 39 frames hand-drawn by me in this animatic. If I was doing this professionally I probably wouldn't put as much time into the background for each frame, but I needed there to be some context. Anyone watching this side-by-side with the real version or with a good eye can see I didn't get each frame exactly right. I obviously need to work on my proportions, but that's what practice is for. This was so much fun to do, and I'm looking forward to doing more original, similar animatics in the future.

Update 4/29/18: I should have mentioned this a lot sooner. You may have noticed there's a line Dipper says in this that's not in the original. In my life I've often had trouble bending the truth or adding to it (read: lying) because I thought it would be more interesting. I try to not do that anymore, and I'm mostly successful. The only place I still feel comfortable doing it is with stories. Stories are meant to change and evolve. We try different things and experiment with them to see if it makes the story better. The only story that needs the reverse, where we try to get as close to the original as possible, is the Bible, because it's the perfect story. And also it's the only historically accurate story ever, so there's a bit more importance in telling it correctly.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016


An overly-quick, cartoonish portrait I once did of my sister that looks absolutely nothing like her. Then I drew stick figures all around her. I can only imagine what her reaction would be if this really happened. Anyway I'm posting this because I'm not going to finish what I've been planning till tomorrow. I was looking for something lighthearted to post tonight and this jumped out at me. Even when she's not doing hardly anything, my sister's the funnest drawing subject I know. God bless you and keep you safe sister. Get home soon.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Christian Cartoon

A cartoon I did a few years ago after reading Matthew 7 with my youth group. It's actually one of the pieces of artwork I have that's already out on the web. As my dad pointed out, this parable especially lends itself to cartooning. I think illustrating it gives an added ridiculousness to the hypocrisy of humans. Also, I believe this passage applies to everyone, no matter how big your neighbor's problem is. Some of you may recognize Munchkins artwork as references for the characters.

As before I'll rewrite the words here.

Matthew 7:3-5 Why do you see the speck in your neighbor's eye, but do not notice the log in your own eye? Or how can you say to your neighbor, "Let me take the speck out of your eye," while the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Happy Birthday to Us!

Today's a big day! This is the last day I'm 16 years old. In a couple hours, I'll be an aspiring animator at 17. This is the plan/draft I made for the card I'm giving my twin sister (yes, God's blessed me with a great twin sister). She doesn't like Gravity Falls quite as much as I do, but honestly who could? For the sake of her privacy, I won't name the other show she enjoys mentioned on the inside of the card (but other crazy fans of the show might be able to figure it out from the pictures).

I just know today's gonna be great. Happy Birthday, Sis! God bless you today and always!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Clipboard Animation

I know this blog is called "Aspiring Animator" not "Aspiring Illustrator". So here's a picture of me animating. Nothing advanced or fancy. I just used regular paper, a straight cutter, clear plastic clipboard, and a flashlight held between my knees to trace what I need of each previous drawing. I know, very improvisational, but that's the point. To any artists out there who read this, you don't need digital drawing tablets or lots of computer software to do great animation. And don't listen to anyone who says tracing skills are not as cool or necessary as drawing skills, because tracing is half of what I'm doing right here.

And this wasn't hard! It was the easiest, quickest thing in the world. I should have this particular animation finished by the end of the week (if God helps me as much as he did today)!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Toad and Alien

A couple of cartoon characters from my sketch book. The left one was inspired by a pattern on the floor (and science fiction I'd been reading, not to mention people's posture). The one on the right drew from other frog-like characters I had been drawing (and also possibly the antagonists in Thumbelina, but that was a long time ago) as well as PIXAR's Underminer. Obviously he has some sort of visor over his eyes. However, he was just an image in my brain, so I don't know exactly where it came from. I've been picturing him as a space character.

God eases my fears about putting my artwork into the world like this. It's like putting pieces of myself on display. I'm an animator. I like to act- but through someone else I can perfect ahead of time. I've had stage fright my whole life, but God has blessed me to be able to do even this.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

A Comic

This is one of the comics I've imagined and felt the need to draw. This particular one is how I feel when I tell people I don't drink caffeine. I don't remember what year it's from. As I said, this is one of a couple comics I've come up with, but I'm still happy with how it turned out. Especially the first and third panels. The body language is pretty spot on in those, as are the proportions I wanted. The subjects of these kinds of comics are always people I can identify with and either can see myself becoming or admire. For example the main character here is a software developer, as is his caffeinated friend. The symbol on the coffee cup is another coffee cup. It's all easier to see zoomed in.

The dialogue is a bit hard to puzzle out so I'll rewrite it here.
Panel 1: Geez, you look awful. Panel 2: Here, you need this. Panel 3: No thanks. I don't take coffee. Panel 4: Look at yourself! Seriously are you in pain? Panel 5: Pain doesn't necessarily need to be suppressed. It lets you know you're alive in a world where that's not a given.

Saturday, July 16, 2016


Then for reference, these are the sort of eyes I can draw nowadays. I used to be terrible at faces and expression so it's an important field for me. Also when I started drawing the mouths at the top I realized they made faces all by themselves. I've experimented with perspective a little more since then.

For example the 3nd face down from the top on the left, which can be seen as a smiling face pressing against something or a frowning face with a nose (or something else I haven't considered).

First Post

Aspiring Animator at 16.

Finally getting some art off the page and into the world.

This drawing's just one of my first sketches with a serious intent to improve my drawing and without a reference. It may or may not be obvious from the style that I love the animated show Gravity Falls. It's actually on Alex Hirsch's advice (as well as many other animators and artists I respect) that I'm putting this on the internet.

May God bless this post!