The King on his Throne (WIP)

king on his throne wip 72

I like to see ‘work in progress’ from other people so try to remember to post some of my own. This is about 1/2 done, what you see so far was drawn with a fine tip ‘sharpie’ magic marker on a large (11×14) sketchbook. The paper of the sketchbook is a little too thin for my taste but maybe I just need to get used to it. I haven’t decided if this big guy is made of vines or wood or veins or some other substance — this is just one of those ‘figure it out as I go along’ drawings. Unfortunately, as I was scanning this, my scanner made a horrible noise and I had to unplug it. Hopefully when I plug it back in, the scanner will decide that it is OK and go back to working.

Mustek A3 1200 USB Scanner

I ordered a new Mustek A3 1200 scanner a while ago and it just recently arrived.

There was nothing wrong with my Canon brand scanner other than it’s platen (scanning surface) was too small for most artwork, and, as a result, I had to scan things in pieces and then ‘sew’ them together in Photoshop… which is a time consuming pain.  The problem of scanning in pieces is compounded by the fact that you have to keep everything straight… if one of the parts you have scanned is a little off kilter, getting it to match up right is so hard that I discovered it is actually easier to scan the whole thing over again.

The Mustek A3 1200 cost me about $160.00 (I ordered mine from Amazon where the price has also recently gone up (but is still cheaper than Mustek Direct)).  The platen is large enough to accommodate a single sheet of ~17×11 inch paper (the size I have been using for my Shaver Comic book). Although the Mustek has a maximum 300 dpi resolution (much lower than the Canon Scanner I had been using), I usually end up reducing to ~63% of original size for reproduction, so the lower dpi of the Mustek becomes irrelevant since, after interpolation down to reproduction size, the Mustek’s scan is still more dpi than I need.  For higher resolution scans of photographs and similar items, I’ll still have the Canon, anyway.

Looking at the cost of scanners that can accommodate an a3 size artwork, the Mustek is a bargain.  Since it would normally take me at least a half hour to scan and piece together a single page of comic book art using the Canon (and 1/2 and hour assumes nothing goes wrong — other art always takes longer to scan), the Mustek will save me a huge amount of time when you multiply that by many pages.  Tests for color and sharpness look fine so far.

This was my x-mas present.

New artwork in progress

Here is a private commission ‘in process.’  I thought it might be interesting for some to see my current method for doing a painting like this one.  Sorry in advance for the quality of the pictures… I just periodically snapped a quick pic to show progress:

The first picture shows the original sketch that I sent to the client plus the drawing transferred to the painting surface via pencil sketch.

The second shows me having basically ‘blocked in’ the environment in greys and blacks.  I learned the hard way that it is much easier to paint what goes behind something first (which seems bleedingly obvious now that I know it).  I also added some indications of shadows.

In the third picture, I have blocked in the ‘local color’ of things.  I.e.: if the warrior’s tunic is yellow, I paint it yellow.  It has a little shape from the blocking in background stage (where I added some shadow detail — which was me skipping ahead but it doesn’t really matter now)

In the fourth picture, I am adding some shadows and details.  I still have a ways to go, but one can see it starting to take shape.  I hope the client likes it!

Attack of the slugbats and snake-man

OK; here is where I call this one ‘finished.’ I could keep working on it ad infinatum, but I think I made some mistakes early on (particularly in layout/positioning of the figures but also in rushing through the initial sketch — the figures look particularly wooden and stiff) so I’m going to move forward and see what lessons I can draw from this while forging ahead.
I definitely need to work on my patience and try to find more ‘source material’ to use for the positions of hands, muscles, etc. Both of these figures look like scare-crows or robots and the slugbats look like flying green bananas. I think the blue snake-man looks wierd the way he is wrapped around the pillar (it does not look 3d to me) and I wish I had made his body skinnier.
I like the cave but need to work on making the rocks appear more textural. I also think the cave should be much darker and rougher-looking.
I look forward to trying this again!