Sunday, March 01, 2009

Reed Gunther

A couple weeks ago Chris Houghton asked me if I'd be interested in doing a pin-up for his soon to be released comic named "Reed Gunther and the Steak Snacking Snake!" He recently posted some layouts on his blog. Simply put, its a story about a bear-riding cowboy named Reed Gunther. Chris sent me a bunch of amazing samples to work from, including these handy character sheets:

The task was to figure out how to put my own personal spin on the characters. I really like Chris's designs, so at first I didn't know how far I should go, or how much to deconstruct them. I figured I should start by making them a hair more cartoony, only slightly changing the proportions.

Then I really toyed with the proportions. Their heads got considerably bigger, and there are hints of the ole noodle arms sneaking into Reed's design.

So, I emailed these pencils to Chris, and while he liked them a lot, he pointed out that they weren't really in my "trademark" style (if there is such a thing). Especially the first one. So, he encouraged me to have even more fun with them—giving me the license to make them as cartoony as I wanted.

Moving forward, I took the latest round and punched up the cartoony factor even more, channeling the old-fashioned 20s and 30s cartoons I hold dear. Starla was the trickier one to work out. I landed on a bow-legged solution for her legs that makes for a fun pose—though admittedly less feminine—with a splash of Olive Oyl.

I decided to ink in Flash so I could make changes and tweak as needed.

It was amusing trying to translate a set of characters into my style. And an interesting process. From here I'll be adding a simple desert background and some typography for the finishing touches. Be sure to look for "Reed Gunther" come May!


David DeGrand said...

This was really cool to see how these characters evolved from the original style to your "trademark" style (which you do have by the way, I could spot a Bob Flynn drawing a mile away). I can definitely see the Fleischer influence on the final designs, love those rubber hoses!

Honolulu Dogfight said...

Great post man!

Chris Houghton said...

I have to say it again- GREAT pin-up man! Like David said, the Bob Flynn style is unmistakable. =D

Thanks again for helping a schmuck like me out on the project!

Bob Flynn said...

Thanks, guys! Again, tons of fun...thanks for the opportunity, Chris! Keep inking away.

Unknown said...

FUN FUN drawings!

Slash Brow said...

Heehee spaghetti legs! It's always fun to see your "bob"ifying process :)