Saturday, September 29, 2007

La Ligne Claire

My friend Stefan in France alerted me to the concept of the "La ligne claire" (The clear line) style, something I was not familiar with at all - but now makes a lot of sense to me.

The main focus of this style is to achieve clean, neat line drawings, with few or no shadows and images are distilled to include only the essential elements needed to communicate the idea efficiently. Hergé, Tintin's father, is considered the master and somehow the creator of the ligne claire style. His work inspired many illustrators, designers and comics book artists. This style is also considered uniquely North-European only - France, Belgium (the mother nation of comics) and the Netherlands.

Sometimes the search for clarity and precision in my work urges me to redraw each piece 5 or more times before the image becomes acceptable. Individual lines are also changed several times before I am happy with the line quality.

I am sure this urge is not unique to my work. It is a time consuming and often paralyzing way of drawing for me, but now I understand the frustration that often happens more clearly. In fact, many drawings are abandoned and very few make it to the final stage.

Read more:
La ligne claire on Wikipedia

1 comment:

Ad said...

I lost this message, maybe it got sent already, maybe not, so sorry if you receive this double. Anyway,
Hi from Delft NL
I wanted to add 2 Dutch examples of the "heldere lijn" both were splash pages at delftboys:
both are by Theo van den Boogaard the last one in an ultraclear pgn file (no jpg compression distortion at all)
another Dutch hero in this field:
You being south african, you might be able to read Dutch, in that case I could send you a few more cartoons by van den Boogaard. do let me know through my gmail adress