Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Gez Fry vs. Chris Gall

I picked Gez Fry and Chris Gall from the Illustration Now book to compare. What I thought was interesting about these two artists is that they both have a comic book style of illustrating, but from two different cultures. Gez Fry's illustrations are greatly influenced by his native country, Japan, and has that manga style of drawing. Chris Gall, on the other hand, approaches his illustrations in a more Western way.

What makes Japanese comic work different from Western works is that they are more realistically detailed with several small intricate lines; almost like a contour drawing. The shadows used are blocked off in a more painterly and realistic way. There is also emphasis on the accuracy of the human form in Gez Fry's manga style. Western comic figures and shadows feel a bit more abstract. The shadows are expressed with colored lines and color blocking instead of the Japanese painterly gradients. Human forms are also more simplified in Western comics. Instead of accentuating the human form and looking closely at the anatomy Chris Gall just outlines the form very simply to give the viewer the emotion without an overload of information.

Another difference between the two styles is the content. Chris Gall, and Western comics, tend to convey political messages in very blunt ways. For example, his illustration “Out of Control Media” depicts a news reporter as a blue demon bursting out of a television. I don't doubt that Japanese art have political messages, but the majority of their comics are based more around whimsy and fantasy. Gez Fry uses his color and his settings to illustrate the mood of his work. Japanese illustrators like to juxtapose the past and the present together to make fantastical art. For example in Gez Fry's “Sumera” he includes feudal buildings and characters with a modern boy holding up a shoe for an ad.  

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