I’m really enjoying my manga drawing class in small part due to the exercises being rather fun and in large part because our teacher is so adorable!
We still haven’t found out his name. I wanted to ask but was too shy. But I will do it this Sunday. Hopefully. Heh. So I’ll call him Manga Sensei until I find out his name.
LAST SUNDAY WE DREW NARUTO!!! =D
Well, okay, I feel a bit of a cheat to say I drew Naruto. We didn’t really draw him on our own strength. We merely added pencil strokes around a provided frame.
I wonder how long artists have to practise before they can draw stuff without using circles and lines. Even with the guidelines, I found it hard. It took me five minutes just to draw the hair to my grudging satisfaction.
Manga Sensei also drew Naruto. On the whiteboard. Without those circle and line things.
Oh, this time, he came to class more prepared. He had, I think, rather painstakingly gone through his dictionary to cobble together many sentences of English instructions.
He would write down the words on the board and then read them to us in a halting manner.
It wasn’t always clear what he meant to say, though.
The words shown above: “Paint the picture tips. See the entire balance. Finary draw A fine plase.”
And then he wrote “about” beside Naruto’s head. I have no idea what that is supposed to mean.
I managed to speak more Japanese with him! It’s cool being able to practise with a native speaker. We had a bit of chat about our favourite manga and the music that he was playing in class.
He also showed us a very elaborate Gundam drawing he did which took him 13 hours just for the pencil sketch alone.
So, after Naruto, we received this worksheet which looked easy at first glance but ended up not being as easy.
There were given 16 faces with different facial expressions printed out in very faint lines and we were supposed to trace over them. Some of the lines, especially the hair, were so faint as to be hard to make out.
Here’s the result of my labour:
Now, don’t say I draw well, because I didn’t actually draw these on my own. I was tracing faint lines. And, in fact, my faces aren’t as handsome as the original ones, somehow! Sigh.
Our next exercise was different. We had to write a comic strip! Oh dear.
We were given a comic strip and told to fill in words to fit the drawing. This is really hard. I can never think of good jokes.
It didn’t help that the two examples we were given DID NOT MAKE SENSE AT ALL.
Like, totally HUH? right?
Anyway, I didn’t want to spend too much time on this (cos I’m always the slowest in completing all the exercises), so I did this lame excuse for a joke:
So engrossed was I in trying to figure out what the example strips meant that I totally didn’t notice the instructions telling us which speech bubble came first.
I mean, being a manga reader, I should have known that the Japanese read from left to right. But I just forgot about it at the moment and stuck to the English style of right to left.
Minou also. Haha.
When we were done with this, Manga Sensei walked over with a blank piece of paper and started saying something about “homework” and “his turn”. We eventually figured out that he meant that he was going to give himself homework!
He started copying down the words of our comic strips, saying that he was going to go home and look up the words in his dictionary.
We had to use a mix of Japanese, English and sign language to communicate, as usual.
Anyway, when he copied my comic, I noticed he was writing it in the wrong order, from left to right, instead of the way I meant it to be. And I wondered why… until he was copying my other friend’s work. SHE had it the correct way.
So, Minou and I had to number our speech bubbles to tell Manga Sensei that we had gotten our order wrong and for him to take note of that on his “homework” sheet.
Once we were done with that, he showed us what he wanted us to do next, via English writing on a piece of paper. But no matter how we tried, we couldn’t figure out what he meant!
I can’t remember his exact words but it was something like, “If you have time, please post … (something). Favourite picture.”
Totally incomprehensible. Heh.
He finally gave up and gave us another task, which was this following worksheet.
It’s the hardest of all! We had to draw bodies in all kinds of poses. Of course, we had faint drawings to trace, like the faces one, but this one was even more faint and in many cases indecipherable.
After tracing all the bodies, we had to pick four of our favourites and draw them in boxes below!
I only managed to draw three before class ended. This is VERY VERY difficult. My bodies suck.
The worksheets are getting scary, increasing in difficulty at a crazy breakneck pace!
I guess I will have to spend a lot of time at home practicising if I ever want to improve. But… how to find time? Japanese test next Monday and I’m still lost in some of the lessons!