drawing in flash

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Octopus drawing. When lithography was invented, there was a radical change in design artforms brought about by characteristics of the medium. For the first time, designers could draw freely on a textured surface without worrying about etched lines, gouged wood or any of the other methods of production that, too, each had defining characteristics of their own. If you picture any of the great Lautrec posters for the Follies, they're characterized by a looseness and organic texture that wouldn't have been possible with older commercial mediums. The works captured the nature of the medium, and the works that captured the medium best- pieces that took advantage of the medium's nature- were the pieces that, I think, were the most successful.

Scorpion drawing. Recently I've taken to drawing directly in Flash. It feels like a medium that captures one of the many essences of digital design; there's a correctness to it that would have been difficult to fabricate. Or, at least, not as easily. After minimal experimentation, it's easy to see where some of the trends in current design are coming from; the default "city" based headers for MoveableType are a great example. Clean. Sharp. Simple. Fast. So I'm digging it.

Rooster drawing. One of the benefits of working in Flash is the vector output. The files are small, and very scalable. They could be embedded in webpages, but with little patience currently available, I couldn't get the SWF files to appear in the blog- though they can be embedded in external pages. The three images here are 4 bit PNG files, each with 16 colors. The octopus is 5142 bytes; not huge, but compared to the 3944 byte SWF version of the same image, the PNG is a hog. The rooster and scorpion have about the same stats. All images are linked to their SWF versions, and are coded to display at 100%- so they'll scale with your browser.

What could be better? A medium that captures the style of the times in a format that takes advantage of web idiosyncracies. And its effective. And it's fun. Win, win, win. Try it.


dave said:

I have a few other creatures done in this same simple style; including a lizard, a dinosaur, a fish, and a butterfly.

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