Tracing and EmulationAfter reading through the comments in my previous journal, I feel the need to clarify a couple of things.Tracing and Emulation by jollyjack
First: Tracing. Does. Not. Help. You. Improve. Your. Art.
Never has, never will and you’re kidding yourself if you think otherwise.
Second: Emulation is not tracing. People seem to be having trouble telling the difference.
Tracing does not teach you anything because all you’re doing is copying the line work of an existing image. All the real work has already been done. You’re not learning how the image is constructed or discovering for yourself how to use your drawing tools to create the desired effect. You’d be better off just outright copy/pasting the base image and saving yourself the time.
Emulation on the other hand, be it simply trying to recreate an existing image by eye or (even better) going all out and trying to adopt an existing style, does improve your method. By “reverse engineering&
Tracing gets you nowhere.I remember when I was a kid, I'd record Saturday morning cartoons, play them back, pause the image, put a piece of paper over the screen and trace my favourite characters.Tracing gets you nowhere. by jollyjack
Now this was really hard in the VHS era, because a paused image on a VHS is usually either broken up or shakes so much that you’ll have some kind of fit if you look at it too long, it depended on how cheap and sh*tty your machine was.
But I worked really hard at it, man. I spent ages getting the linework just right, I was so careful, and when I peeled the page from the static cling of the bulbous, cathode ray tube screen, the character looked exactly right on the page. And you wanna know what I took away from that endeavour? What all that effort taught me?
Jack f**king sh*t.
You don’t pick up or develop any skills by tracing. You don’t devise and perfect your own methods by tracing. You do not progress as an artist by tracing. All you get is a loss of credibility, especially in this day and age, bec