I am seriously happy at the hit rate that my last article about Ian Kennedy’s Masterclass managed to achieve. But as I did the article, I was deliberately concentrating on the picture that Ian was kind enough to paint for us and you have got to admit that it turned out beautifully.
But as the masterclass was progressing, we were hesitant in asking questions. Not because Ian was unapproachable, but because we, as an audience, did not want to interrupt a master at work. One question was answered by Ian as he was happy to tell us that he did not always keep his work with an upright orientation as sometimes he would turn the picture to make it easier to paint. He also pointed out that as he used acrylic washes, he would use gravity to help the flow of the wash so that it helped the gradiation of his colouring to look more natural.
In fact, you can see the wash slowly moving down the page to darken the bottom right of this picture. For me to watch this was so cool! We also had Ian speak about how he was preparing a few Judge Dredd and Strontium Dog pieces of art. When he said this, my comic geekery radar went into overdrive but it turns out that Ian is just getting some sketches in readiness for his next appearance at a convention and Carlos Ezquerra had kindly put up some thumbnails for guidance to one and all.
And Ian had, well I can let you read the next bit by yourself.
The only problem with this is that I now want to see what an Ian Kennedy Major Eazy looks like!
However, one question did stand out and that was asked by one of the younger members of the audience. Before you ask, for me, that is anyone under the age of 30! And the young lady asked if Ian had trouble with consistency when dealing with recurring character and Ian said that with any recurring character, it took a while to get used to them, but once you did, you could manage them fairly easily.
The additional benefit to this question was that Ian expanded on his few short years with D C Thomson. Ian said that part of his learning his craft was that when he had little or nothing to do, he would be sent to the end of the room and dig out some of the art in the chest that he liked and then he was set to task to copying the artwork that he had selected. What was interesting was that Ian had brought some examples of the work he would be copying and this is one example.
Ian was also asked who had been an influence on his work and he said that many people had been influential on his work. But as I had heard Ian speak on this subject before, I was waiting with bated breath for him to mention one name and that was George Ramsbottom, an artist that hailed from Salford and seems to have been a major influence on Ian in his younger days. George was still creating art in the 1970s and he created one that I still remember fondly from the 1977 Victor Annual which was The Barrside Thunderbolt.
I hope that this has been as enjoyable for you folk to read as it was for me to sit through.