Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Renault 4 'life drawing' sketches by way of Juno...


Odd one this post. I finally got to see the film Juno a few days ago, really enjoyed it, a fantastic script and performances. I was really taken by the production design, especially feel of the title sequence. It's nice to see that they carried through that loose naive sketch style through the film and into the promo materials and DVD / CD packaging, more often the case with an indie film than your standard hollywood fare don't you think...?

Although it doesn't tally with how I tend to go about my illustration I've always liked strong line based images, especially when balanced with bold flat graphics. Egon Schiele, Klee, Miro, Picasso... I think it was Paul Klee that talked about 'taking a line for a walk' when you sketch, and when I usually try and eliminate any 'excess lines' in my work I think it sometimes also loses a sprightliness. By way of nothing I was looking for something to warm up doodle and, for no real reason, I thought back to the quirky Renault 4 car my family drove when I was a kid. At the time you wanted to drive in the same cars everyone else did but, in retrospect, I really love the little things that made the Renault stand out from the crowd (a car outsider just like Juno in the film...? I shouldn't over analyse myself...). I remember the puzzling 'umbrella handle' gear stick that stuck out from the dashboard and the weird front bumper loops that I always thought were handles to pull the car by if it broke down! I'd usually construct my drawings with basic geometric volumes first in order to get all the relationships between elements fixed and then add line over the top but, in keeping with the Juno images bouncing around in my brain I just went at it, life drawing style, and to hell with the results. A lot of fun to loosen up and not over plan things.

8 comments:

Philip Morgan said...

I LOVE these. It's great to see you do something that deviates from your normal style (not that your style isn't brilliant in itself, i'm sure your many blog-followers are in full agreement with me there), but it's nice to see that you're a whizz with line as well as shape.

Jon Davis said...

Really great sketches, very lively.
I find it can be easy to make cars and things a bit rigid and wooden compared to people, but these are really nice.
And we had a Renault 4 too. It was very light sky blue.

Rico said...

Great drawings! It seems that usually only older cars have inherent "character" that make them fun to draw... like the Klee "taking the line for a walk" quote.

Abz said...

Does your middle name begin with a J?

michael robertson said...

wonderful drawings, matt. I love the way you added the headlight eyes, making it a bit more you! btw, I just ordered your book from amazon and I'll be counting the days till it's arrival- can't wait.

Kev Levell said...

Matt, this is a fantastic variation on your normal work...
I can really see this working if expanded upon - create a group of illustrations with this as the 'template' for style.

I challenge you to do this with at least something aeronautical.

Personally, I can honestly see a set of greetings cards (blank for your own message) of this illustration, a Vespre (or similar), a Spitfire (or similar) and I hesitate to mention something nautical, although submarines are pretty cool!

I can also see, Star Wars vehicles in this style... SnowSpeeder, AT-AT, Tie Fighter etc. and would love you to do them.

Great stuff.

Jon Davis said...

Ken's idea is great. I think you should definitely do that :)

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