The original prompt from my drawing teacher (as I understood it) was that we were to take some old illustration from a Wizard of Oz book and distort them: ie: draw a measurable grid over the photocopied image, then draw various grids with distorted dimensions and then use those new distortions as guidelines for distorting the image. More confused? Well, you are not alone. Only 3 out of 20 of my classmates understood the desired outcomes, but none got the directives.

Imagine you have a grid drawn over your chosen image measuring 10 cm x 10 cm. On a separate sheet of paper draw another grid of 10 cm x 20 cm. Now redraw the portions from the original 10×10 grid into the 10×20 grid, including the lengthened lines where the new proportions might go. This will reveal a new distorted image. Get it? If not, don’t worry. I will try to demonstrate examples over the next little while.

But first, I needed to rediscover a reason to enjoy this class, as I was spiralling into frustration at the unclear directives mixed with the workload from my other classes. I was overwhelmed and feeling dramatic, folks! There you have it! So, I decided to do like I’ve done in yoga classes and make this class my own practice. It started by discarding the uninspiring illustrations the teacher handed out, then research and copy ones I liked more. (He didn’t seem to mind.)

I found some really fun illustrations of Wizard of Oz characters on Pinterest and gravitated mainly to the Scarecrow and Tin Man. The Scarecrow because so many silly drawings were available and they all showed the personality I remembered from the movie. However, I really got hooked by the Tin Man. So many Steampunk renditions mixed with stylings of classic Saturday morning cartoons from the 40’s and 50’s. I’ve drawn a few that you see in my sample collage and will try to do more. I also found some similar inspirations in Alice in Wonderland characters that I hope to make time to do as well. When I fall upon the ones I like the most, I may try the teacher’s distortion directive. But first, to be fair to him for bringing me what may turn out far more enjoyable than I originally though, I copied (in my own way, of course) some of the illustrations he handed out: You will see the copied Scarecrow & Tin Man on the same page. The rest were from my own research.

Again, I will not claim original creation with these drawings, and I’m not sure I will give my personal perspective of the influences I assume the artists may or may not have copied themselves… I simply wish to share some of the amusement these drawings brought me.

Enjoy and stay tuned…

Ps: I’m not sure how this connects to the Building An Idea theme, and I’ve decided to simply go with it and look to connecting factors at the end of the semester.

Distorted Ozs Project 1
Distorted Ozs Project 2
Distorted Ozs Project 3
Distorted Ozs Project 4

2 thoughts on “Building An Idea – Distorted Ozs Project

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