Kolorful Palette: From the shadows [Shine or Go Crazy]
Enough of the lovey-dovey stuff, it’s time for some action! Well…at least for this week. It’s probably only a matter of days before some drama couple supplies me with something adorable to draw. In the meantime, the conniving and scheming of Shine or Go Crazy has finally come to a head, and I smell blood. It seemed like the perfect time to draw Wang So with his game face on, and I always think that Jang Hyuk is at his best when he’s in the thick of things.
For some reason I’ve been watching this show with the impression that it’s only 20 episodes, so I was feeling a little panicked by the end of Episode 18 since there’s still so much more story to tell. I’m sure I’ll still feel that way at the end of Episode 24 but that’s only because there’s always so much more great history (not to mention fake history) to be told. Usually this is the point where dramas start to drag, but thankfully Shine or Go Crazy got any dragging out of its system early on and every new episode seems to kick things up a notch. Every major character is ready to strike and it feels like anything could happen (especially if you don’t know much about the actual history, and lucky for me I don’t!).
This drawing is from Wang So’s run-in with Wook when he infiltrates Shin-ryuk’s evil lair to steal pieces of the incriminating bronze mirror. There’s nothing particularly meaningful about this scene (although I suppose it does mark a key turning point in the plot) but I’ve been wanting to draw Wang So in badass mode since this drama started, and this shot fit the bill. I’m always tempted to keep waiting for something unbelievably epic, but waiting usually doesn’t pan out, and I’m actually pretty happy with how this turned out.
I used charcoal and conte as my mediums, and although I’ve used charcoal before, there are many types of charcoal in Corel Painter and I particularly enjoyed how this one felt to use (Hard Charcoal Stick for anyone who’s wondering). I’m still striving to be looser with my style, and I think it’s finally starting to work. I find it’s been helpful to approach each shot from the perspective of what I want to change, instead of what I want to duplicate. In this case I didn’t think it was important to define every outline of Wang So’s body since blending in with the darkness is a big part of what makes the whole masked ninja thing so appealing (not that he’s an actual ninja of course, but you know what I mean!). Originally I planned to make the entire drawing black and white but it was too bland and felt a bit too much like a screenshot from a Kurosawa film, so I busted out the conte but only added color to his skin. Usually I regret at least some of my artistic choices, but this is a rare occurrence where I’m genuinely pretty pleased with my decisions.
A big part of why I like Jang Hyuk is because of his action scenes. I’ve finally gotten used to his ridiculous laugh and actually find it somewhat infectious at times, but I still wouldn’t call it his selling point. Martial arts though? There aren’t a ton of actors out there who can compare (although he and Lee Jun-ki should pair up at some point). He’s intimately familiar with Taekwondo and Wing Chun, but I think what really makes him shine is over a decade of training in Jeet Kune Do (not to mention his ability to emote while fighting). Jeet Kune Do is basically Bruce Lee’s martial art, and it focuses on combat effectiveness instead of flowery or showy movements. Of course Jang Hyuk still performs all the flowery stuff for the sake of drama, but his movements always seems a little more deliberate and deadly than we’re used to seeing, and I think that comes from his training. I don’t feel like this particular drama is showcasing his skill as well as it could, and the super-duper wobbly swords can be pretty distracting, but I get hyped up anyways. Hopefully they’re saving the best choreography for the end.
Overall, there is a lot to look forward to and even just waiting to see who plays their hand first has me feeling antsy for next week. And then when the drama does come to a close we have Hwajeong to enjoy. I admit that a 50-episode length has always been a deal-breaker for me in the past, but that cast! How could I resist such a cast all dressed up in sageuk clothing? All the modern day dramas are going to have to work hard to get my attention.
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- Im Joo-hwan, Ryu Seung-soo for fantasy historical drama
- Jang Hyuk and Oh Yeon-seo consider MBC historical fantasy