Archive for September, 2010

Secrets of effective cartooning

Sunday, September 26th, 2010

In a comment to a microblog post by cartoonist B. Kuang (atop the image at right, he notes, “Thirty years of thought and a morning of drawing. I need a title. Thanks”), another microblogger asks:

请问楼主:一个15岁的孩子以前没有专门学过任何绘画,想今后能画漫画的话,都应该学绘画方面的那些东西?先学啥后学啥?望能赐教,谢谢
Let me ask the OP: What aspects of drawing should a fifteen-year-old girl who has never studied drawing before but wants to be able to draw comics in the future study? What first? And what next? I await your instruction. Thanks.

Kuang replies:

第一,基础素描少不了,避免眼高手低,为什么国内有很多漫画的画面写满了文字注解,就是绘画的表达能力不够所至,第二个要博览群书,增加生活阅历,提高思想意识,没有深度的生活积累,作品只能是肤浅的。

First, you’ve got to have a grounding in sketching so your skills will match your ambition. So many cartoons in this country covered in textual notes because the expressiveness of the drawing is insufficient. Second, read widely, increase your life experience and heighten your consciousness, for without a deep experience of life, your work will only be superficial.

and continues:

还有就是开微博,这里是知识的海洋,上来接受百家“教育”和熏陶,公民意识加强了,作品就有生命力了。君不见,很多真实的历史是我们的教科书里没有的。我在这里受益菲浅,感恩中……

And then start a microblog. This is an ocean of knowledge, so go on and receive “education” and edification from all corners, and strengthen your citizenship, and then your work will have life. Don’t you realize that many truths of history are not contained in our textbooks? I have gained much here, and I am grateful…

Kuang’s work is immediately recognizable when it is published in the print media or reposted online. His drawings are detailed, but they also contain bold, easily understood elements which, per his instructions, don’t require much captioning at all.

Translation vs. copyright

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

There’s been an interesting series of conversations on Sina’s microblog service this week about works of classic literature translated in the 1980s — before China signed on to international copyright conventions.

Some examples:

Janson Yao writes:

今天看到台湾的黄罗谈短篇侦探小说译介之事的文章,感觉台湾和大陆方面相差无多。早期不重视版权,作品随便译;到了九十年代,受版权之制约,译介变少了。黄罗注意到,近些年又出版了一些短篇侦探小说集。似乎多数是一个人作品的anthology,而收入多人作品的选集,版权要一篇篇购买,成本大,很费时。

Today I read an article by Huang Luo about the translation of short detective fiction in Taiwan, and it looks like the situation in Taiwan and the mainland is pretty much the same. Early on, copyright wasn’t observed, and works were translated at will. By the nineties, under copyright restrictions, translations declined. Huang noticed that there have been some mystery anthologies published in recent years, but it seems like most of them are anthologies from an individual author. In collections of works by multiple authors, rights must be obtained separately for each piece. The cost is high, and it takes time.

Wu Yan comments:

我也看到翻译《桃园二村》的译者说,他带着最初的版本找斯金纳签字译本的时候,由于没版权只好盖住,不让原作者看到书是什么。

I read that the translator of Walden Two said that when he took the very first edition to get Skinner’s autograph, he had to cover it up because he didn’t have the rights, lest the author see what book it was.