Saturday, 10 January 2015

Gargoyles a go go

A Gargoyle spokesperson yesterday.  (Wikipedia commons)
A little while back I hit on the idea of gargoyles as a perfect Impspace design, as an image they’re almost ready made.  A strange medieval monster hanging from the side of a building, and the design lends itself to being doubled over.  Wonderful.

 Well, I gave it a try, and I was mildly surprised that I couldn't get it to work to my satisfaction.  Below was one of the feeble results, and as you can see, it never got to the stage of being coloured, or of even being finished.  I must have sensed early on that this was going nowhere fast and abandoned it.

You had your chance - dammed whiny gargoyle.

I left this idea lying on my hard-drive for a while and began to work on other designs, but eventually came back to it and took another look.

I needed a more comic feel; that grimacing mouth might have been accurate but failed to lighten the mood.  After all, what's wrong with a smile?  Just because you've sat on a Cathedral for seven hundred years frightening away evil spirits (not to mention channeling away rain water) that's no reason not to have a bright happy and carefree attitude.

I began to doodle with the basic image, trying to make it funnier, worked on the jaw and mouth so it was less human and more dog like, changed the body shape and began to think of the building it would be sitting on.  I'd always intended it to be leaning out from a plinth or wall, with some gothic like architecture somewhere in the design.

Some sketch ideas for the new gargoyle.  I like the one on the right, he seems almost ecstatically happy
A lot of my designs are doubled over.  I mean the image is mirrored with slight changes made (sometimes) to vary the effect.  I just like symmetry in designs, and so I knew from the start that the finished image would be a mirrored image.  It was a tight squeeze getting both of them into the picture along with some architectural detail as well.  I needed a Cathedral feel for the finishing touch and wanted flying buttresses and fancy carved detail, but I soon realised that wasn't going to happen as everything was too cramped.  Here's the first image I finished.

Gargoyles - they really know how to have a good time!
And as you can see, everything has tended to go upwards in a kind of block of masonery, when I had originally wanted great arches and 'thin' details.  Not to worry, I still like the finished image.

I still wanted some spires though, you can't have gargoyles without Cathedral's and you can't have Cathedral's without spires.  So I had another bash at it, keeping those spires in mind and came up at last with this.
At last, I have those spires!
It's a different effect, because of the mainly white background, but they're consistant, and I'm glad they're in a different kind of position which helps the two images in comparison.  I like them, my only problem is they're a little drab because - well they're made of stone.