Sunday, December 11, 2005

Simon's Sketchbook Sunday: Ed Emberley


Several years ago I found this great book on cartooning at a yard sale: Ed Emberley's Drawing Book of Faces. Its been handy in so many ways... I've used it as a teaching aid when I volunteer to teach cartooning at my kids' school. I've used it myself as a source of inspiration when designing characters.



But best of all, Simon has spent hours pouring through it and filled pages with characters either taken from the book or created based on the principles Emberley describes.


Here are just a few done on two sides of a single sheet.

I can see why Si glommed onto this book. Emberley's style is immediately appealing and the process he developed to create hundreds of variations using basic shapes is incredibly clever - yet impossibly simple! Any kid can create tons of fun character faces in minutes and I realized from looking back on these drawings that Si still keeps the principles he learned from this book in the back of his mind when he does his crazy creatures and freaky friends. We could all learn a lot from good ol' Ed Emberley!

A conversation over at The Retro Kid reminded me of Ed Emberley and one of the contributors over there kindly included this link to Emberley's website.

11 comments:

Ward Jenkins said...

This is so great, Leif! I've always wanted to know how kids would take to Ed's stylings and concepts in his many books. Si's got a great start here -- can't wait to see where he takes his talent!

Go Si!

Holly said...

Ed Emberley is one of my faves. I believe he got me hooked on the whole illustration thing as a kid. Plus they were great to use on rainy days. I've got a whole collection. bookcloseouts.com from St. Catherines usually has some at decent prices. Cheers!

Doug said...

Ed Emberley rocks! I have always liked the way he breaks things down to basic shapes. Thanks for reminding me of him again... and for the link to his website.

Oh... I tried a kawaii painting... check it out over at my place.

steve said...

Thanks for exposing me to something new (or old for that matter) Leif. I've probably seen Ed's work before but never really took the time to familiarize myself with it more. That's great to see you passing his legacy on to another generation.

Alina Chau said...

Realllly coooool!

Alina Chau said...

These are AWESOME sketchbook drawings!

Alina Chau said...

YOu always have very coool postings!! Very inspirational!

Alina Chau said...

YOu always have very coool postings!! Very inspirational!

Peter Chen said...

Thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog Blogger for Dummies. Looking forward to your visits again. Just to let you know Blogger for Dummies may not be updated but all new posts for the time being will go to Blogger Tips and Tricks while I ponder what to do. This is because of trademark issues.

BTW would you be able to do a cartoon for Enviroman for his environmental blog Enviroman Says?

kevin said...

I just found your site Leif, from a link on animation nation, and find it great. Never saw that Emberley book before either. Great stuff. I too have a son that draws everyday, he's 11 and we've filled 14 three ring binders full of drawings. He brings his clipboard and pen everywhere we go, restaurants, driving, etc. I will be posting more of his stuff. He won't start a blog yet.

leif said...

Hey Kevin; 14 binders!? Yow! The kid's even more prolific than my guy is! Well, that's great... I look forward to seeing whatever you post. Thanks for commenting. :-)