Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Behind the Curtain!

So here's a basic behind the scenes of how I approach a page. The first Image is my thumbnail for page 2 of John Doe. When doing a thumbnail I'm never concerned about getting a tight drawing. In fact it would be the exact opposite. I just try to lay down a basic composition and pick shots that best tell the story. That's it. Simple. When I get to the actual page is when I start to think about the drawing, where to lay blacks, and especially the acting.

With the second image you can see that in the beginning I'm more focused on getting a solid drawing and less preoccupied with what the final drawing will look like. As in this panel I often draw on a separate piece of typing paper so I can be as loose and messy as I want. Then I'll quickly trace it over in marker for easy viewing through the bristol on my light table. THEN when I trace the basics onto the actual page I go straight to inks. I rarely do this but on this panel I was playing with maybe blacking out the buildings totally for that dark alleyway feel and you can see some quick sketches of that under the panel. .

Here's where the fun starts and most of my time is probably spent. I really don't have any rules I follow (I used to but as I've gotten better at inking my own stuff they went out the window) except to make it look good. I use anything from a brush or brushpen to a quill pen or marker. A whiteout pen is invaluable since I seem to always be making mistakes. It also works for some effects like the light from the flashlight (which is a bit of smeared whiteout).
The first few pages are a kind of intro to the series so I kept that four tier layout with the three panels in the box. I think it worked so far and I'm pretty happy with them. I'm really trying to make each work better then the last. So that's a glimpse into my working process and I'll see if I can do it again. Maybe on a more complicated page so you can see the fun of storytelling problem solving.


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