Friday, January 14, 2011

Tools Of The Trade: Drawing Paper and Size Refs

In addition to "The Art Of" series of artists whose work I find inspiring, I'm also going to start a series of blog posts on tools of the trade, those things I use day-to-day to keep the ball rolling around here.

First up is my standard drawing paper, a background that most of my clients are familiar with seeing.

Think of it as Waldo (my 3D reference figure, as shown in the Destroid posts) in 2D, with a 1/100th scale running along the left hand side of the paper.

Image compression and whatnot will probably make the image not the same size as the physical paper I work on, but there are guidelines farther down for making your own.

I've also included markings for the scale heights in feet, as well as inches. In 1/100th scale, 1 inch equals 8.333 scale feet. 10 scale feet equals 1.2 inches. The above illustration should help give an idea of what I'm talking about.

The sizes may not be exact, as this was a whipped-together graphic for a client I made years ago (the honorable Mike Hardy and I were going to do ground warfare for Cold Navy, but it fell through), but the math should be right in the scaling.

For those of you who are contemplating getting into the 1/100th scale design realm, it's quite easy to do. For a reference figure, just draw a little guy who is just a shade under 3/4 inches tall, or .72 inches tall (around 18mm for you metric types).

That will give you a frame of reference for a 6 foot tall man. Make a similar height scale like the one I made in the first drawing, and maybe even an identical length gauge if you're feeling fancy, and you're good to go.

If drawing on graph paper is your thing, go to an office supply or art supply store. If you can find it, there is usually 5x5 grid-per-inch graph paper there. 10x10 grid-per-inch is also good. 1.2 inches (10 scale feet) is easier to mark on this than conventional 4x4 graph paper.

Metric graph paper works much easier, if you're used to meters, but it's harder to find in the States.

Well, that's a starter post for this new ongoing series. Stay tuned.

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