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shermcohen's avatar

Tutorial 6 Squidward Acting

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#6 in a series of 12 tutorial sheets created for the SpongeBob crew in 2005 (4th season) --More on Line of Action

I first encountered the notion of the "line of action" in the classic animation book by Preston Blair. He was an animator for Disney and MGM, and he popularized the concepts that were developed and being used every day by the masters of Golden Age animation.

The good news is that this book is available for free online, and the specific page you'll want to look at is about a third of the way down on this page>>>[link]<<<

Check out lots of free video tutorials on my blog at >> [link] << See you there!

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adam-ant2's avatar
My Storyboarding teacher showed me these exact sheets.
They were quite helpful in drawing character actions.
hunlin's avatar
Squidward's acting has fascinated me to no end. His movements are this great combination of graceful yet belligerent. 
Nat000Frog's avatar
hunlin's avatar
I LOVE THIIIIS... HE'S MY FAVOURITE CHARACTEEEEEEEEERRRRR!!!!!! <3
shermcohen's avatar
thanks...so glad you enjoy this one :)
hunlin's avatar
No problem. 

I did an essay partially on him last term explaining how he's so solidly drawn and appealing!
hunlin's avatar
This guy. Only sympathetic character on the show, for most part.
SuperMaster10's avatar
So,this is what i've been doing wrong with my pictures,Poses were too boring.Man,i need some practice time.Thank you for posting this,its really helpful :)
MaryHalley's avatar
Wonderful work as always Sherm! Love it.
katheb's avatar
Doodles on a page teach so much. Thank you.
GreenLandchrin's avatar
thanks really help alot
Rocky-O's avatar
Ahh, such a simple idea.. but it really conveys a lot!! Thanks for sharing Squidward's acting!!
ThePavi's avatar
ooooh i adore you <D
TrexMwix's avatar
I never realized how important the line of action was until now. Thank you and keep up the great work :)
shermcohen's avatar
Thanks! I'm super-glad you found it helpful :) The importance of a strong line of action can't be overestimated.
PantheraCorax's avatar
I've always read about the 'line of action' but I never really understood it until now.
For that, I thank you.

I will have to keep all of your tutorials in mind when I get into Ai for media arts <:
shermcohen's avatar
Thanks so much for telling me about your "breakthrough." I really appreciate hearing that -- makes me want to make more tutorials ^_^
shermcohen's avatar
My pleasure ^_^
1me0's avatar
Thank you so much for these tutorials! Until I saw this tutorial, I always used the line of action because I felt obligated to, without really knowing how to use it to make my drawings look more logical yet cartoony. After seeing this, I realized that the line of action should pose the character in a communicative way that helps to tell the story more simply and effectively. My drawing has improved a bit since (none of my new ones are on deviantART yet).

Besides the Preston Blair book, are there any other art/animation instructional guides that you'd recommend?
shermcohen's avatar
WOW! Thanks for that very insightful comment about line-of-action. You really described it better than most! I'm glad to hear that the tutorial has been a help...please let me know when you've posted those new drawings!

Regarding other art/animation instructional guides that I recommend, I just posted a whole list on my deviantART Journal: [link]
NatalieTheAntihero's avatar
I couldn't refuse to giggle at the stiff Squidward for some reason. :giggle:

But I can agree with many other deviants: It's very useful to know how to make poses more lively. :D I really should be careful not to draw too stiff poses. ^^;
Plus Squidward is my favourite character from Spongebob Squarepants, because his character is more believable. :XD: :+fav:
shermcohen's avatar
Hi Lazy...and thanks! I've learned from watching classic cartoons that characters act a lot more with their bodies than I had ever previously thought! The best place to see this in action is in silent films from Chaplin and Keaton and Laurel&Hardy...they had to use their bodies because that's all they had to communicate with ^_^ PS..I LOVE drawing squidward...especially when I'm feeling crabby :)
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