Double Wattled Cassowary Greaser…

Week 8 was all about animal caricatures. We could pick from dogs (and I guess cats, cause some students did cats, though they weren’t on the list), aquatic animals (of any kind apparently), flying animals, small rodents, and reptiles. I have drawn and sculpted the Double Wattled Cassowary several times, so I fell back on familiar territory. (As evidenced by many of the sketches and sculpture you see sprinkled to the left and right of this However, on the first version, I got in a bit of a common trap, of just trying to squeeze the details of any animal into a human scenario.


























It never works out, and though I had some good references, the pose isn’t readable enough, and the personality isn’t clear enough. There’s not enough caricature, and I didn’t put the time and effort into figuring things out. I just crapped out the drawing. The teacher said as much of course, and though some of the students saw what I was attempting, I have to agree with the teacher’s general assessment.

So I did this other version, and I picked some specific things I wanted to caricature, and I really pushed the pose and action line, and really tried to amp up the personality. It took me a while to get the silhouette just right, and I had to abandon some of my previous ideas and goals, but that’s what the sketching process does. It clarifies things for you.




















It was much better received. I got a B+ on the revision, which is exactly what I was hoping for. She did do a draw over, and though I appreciated her final critique, her changes really alter what I was trying to do with both style and humor. She makes a great point about trying to incorporate the third toe on both feet, so it’s clear that the bird has three toes, but some of her other changes just aren’t for me. That’s okay, she gets to give me a B+, and I get to decide that though her input was incredibly valuable, and I couldn’t have gotten from the shitty drawing to the one I liked without it, I don’t have to agree with every design decision she suggests either. That’s going to happen in every student / teacher, work environment like relationship.






Hi John,

I agree with Luke’s comments above. It’s a much clearer pose the second time around, though there are still some areas that don’t read right away. As he mentioned, where the hands meet the jacket (it would also be nice if the fingers looked like feathers), and the pants are very tight around the knees. Cassowary birds have hugely thick, knobby knees, so it would be good to emphasize those. It would also help to have an indication of the third toes on each foot. The eyes that you’ve given him seem to be a nod to pulp underground comics of the 1960’s and 70’s. It’s a fun idea, but again, they don’t read right away (see draw over). Also, his wattle is looking more like testicles than the flat flaps of skin that they are, so that may need a bit of altering as well. It’s a great color palette and a strong presentation. Nice job!

© Copyright John Hill, All rights Reserved. Written For: Awesometania
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