I grew up on science fiction. My dad was a big sci-fi fan, so when we’d go to the video store (yes, I understand that’s an ancient concept these days), he’d choose anything so long as the cover had space, spaceships, or aliens on it.
I remember seeing Star Wars when I was younger, and collecting figurines and spaceships. Alongside the wooden playhouse my mom designed for us in the backyard of our little house in Oklahoma, my dad built what was meant to be the head of AT-AT.
I remember staying at home with a sitter while my parents saw what they thought was a grownup movie about aliens, only to take my sister and I out the very next night when they realized how good (and kid-appropriate) E.T. was.
I remember one of the very first “grown up” movies I saw was Blade Runner. I was blown away.
So I think it’s fair to say that me & sci-fi go way back. Which is why of COURSE I loved Guardians of the Galaxy. I’m not going to review it, or go into in-depth conversations about how it relates to the comics (which I have not read, and don’t really intend to), but it was a fun little movie, and I enjoyed watching it.
What makes a sci-fi movie “real” for me is the characters. I love them, humor, flaws and all. GotG had some great ones, and nearly ALL of them interesting-looking enough to draw (which is why my IG feed has been flooded with all sorts of amazing character sketches from various artists). For me, GotG has a similar campy feel as Fifth Element did, with a sense of humor, and a lot of colorful characters.
So, of course, I couldn’t help but draw a few of ’em, too….
(Don’t worry, I don’t think I’ve got any spoilers here…)
I tend to start off on the beaten path, so one of my favorite characters was Drax the Destroyer, played by WCW’s Dave Bautista (who was so good I forgot he was an athlete-turned-actor). Drax is extremely literal (as am I). I could totally relate to him, as a lifetime of literal misunderstandings have made my own life a bit confusing. He has one of my favorite lines in the movie, saying “Nothing goes over my head. My reflexes are too fast. I would catch it.” I had to get my blue & red ballpoints out and sketch him.
Later, I sketched the character named Yondu (played by Walking Dead’s Michael Rooker) who controls a deadly arrow with his whistles. This one I sketched in ballpoints, and highlighted with acrylics, and I’d just like to say that it was QUITE hard to draw a person whistling. Just sayin’.
I have a couple of characters I’d still like to draw if I don’t run out of steam…like Gamora (Zoe Saldana) and everyone’s beloved Groot. I’m trying not to get overwhelmed by the plethora of inspirational imagery in that movie, so I think a couple more drawings and I’ll be okay.
Guardians of the Galaxy is rated PG-13, so I know a lot of kids went to see it, but aside from the fact that Myla is only five, heavy action understandably frightens her. Sometimes that can be a little challenging, trying to find kid’s shows that have no “bad guys,” and where no one gets hurt and there’s no conflict whatsoever, but I’m also quite okay with her enjoying the simpler things.
So when there are shows that come out where the marketing and products are EVERYWHERE, or other kids are talking about it, I like to tell her the simplified version. Instead of telling her the entire story of GotG, I tell her about the characters, so she still knows what everyone’s talking about, but doesn’t have to actually see the “scary show” herself. And in my doing so, she has developed a love for characters she’d never otherwise see: like Khaleesi, Daleks, and in this case, Rocket and Groot–as has most of the sci-fi world. I show her little video clips of the characters on YouTube sometimes, she asks me questions, and she loves ’em.
So the next time she asked to draw on some heads (as we do), she immediately turned one into Groot, complete with a little leaf on his shoulder.
And seeing Rocket in stores out & about, she asked lots of questions about this little raccoon character. She thought it’d be funny if he had bubbles coming from his gun instead of bullets…
So there ya go. Nothing like a little sci-fi influence for your day!