Practice interiors for kids' books. Inking tips and crit appreciated! Updated.
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Thread: Practice interiors for kids' books. Inking tips and crit appreciated! Updated.

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    Practice interiors for kids' books. Inking tips and crit appreciated! Updated.

    NEWEST WORK LAST POST.

    I want to get a few nice inked insides in my portfolio but I'm really rusty. I'm trying to find a balance between comic book inking styles and chicken scratch.. Somthing pretty but quick enough to be feasible when theres 150 to be done.

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    So I'm planning to do 5 of these in the next week or so - crits on technique would really be appreciated! I won't edit this one but your crit will go into tommorrows drawing.

    Last edited by Tintreas; October 20th, 2011 at 12:11 AM.
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    I like the texture in your grays. It's unexpected and adds a nice depth.

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    Beautiful drawing, but I'm not sure that stippling a bunch of basically-flat areas is the best use of your time. If you want to move past simple outlines, I'd suggest rendering textures that will actually describe specific volumes and materials: the girl's hair, the folds and textures of the clothing, the wood grain, the rope.

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    Is there a reason all three boys have exactly the same hair? I also note that the hair doesn't come off the skull much at all, looking more like a "hair helmet", a personal peeve of mine. Hair is a great way to break the silhouette and make the character stand out, give it a bit more volume than a sheet of paper!

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    Pnw: Thank you!


    Giacomo I'll give that a try on this next one! I did the flat areas here partially to break up the composition, partially as its just mask & splatter with a little stipple over it.. Trying it out to see if I could use it instead of blacks as shadow.

    Nezumi: They're supposed to be triplets! I still havn't managed to draw their ages consistently at all. I gave them bowl cuts at the start of the story so the hair could grow out as they became less stuck up and more adventurous.. pretty basic visual metaphor I know, but it is kid's books.

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    The kid in the back seems to have really long arms and not much in the way of a torso.

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    Quote Originally Posted by vineris View Post
    The kid in the back seems to have really long arms and not much in the way of a torso.
    Yeah... thats a f*ckup. Seems the age inconsistencies have merged horribly...

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    I figured they must be intended to be identical. Keep an eye on it though, too much similarity gets boring for a viewer/reader (I've got an instructor who hammers that one home ALL THE TIME). Try to make the boys distinctive as early as you can, even Donald Duck's nephews had a way to tell them apart.

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    Nezumi: Will do Ma'm! I have a game plan/design for one of the three but not the other two yet. Conflict and drama! They need better outfits then dungarees too.. But I need to produce finals for the next week so clothes might have to wait.

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    The mirror/plate/ship window on the left side of the image seems to be in a different perspective that the stairs/wall and I have to say that the texture on the... "big thing" makes it look completely flat. I'm guessing that it's supposed to be a cabinet or a shelf and the girl is picking up stuff from it, but the texture makes it look so flat that it looks like she's just pointing the objects towards a wall with some weird wallpaper on it. In the same way I'm not sure if the textured areas under the stairs are supposed to be shadows, or part of the actual stairs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tintreas View Post
    I did the flat areas here partially to break up the composition, partially as its just mask & splatter with a little stipple over it.. Trying it out to see if I could use it instead of blacks as shadow.
    That's fine--it's often a good idea to add some kind of texture to otherwise-blank areas--but, this being 2011, the best way to do it is to scan an entire page of "splatter" texture and, in Photoshop, selectively paste it in where you want it.

    I'm not sure if that's what you did here; if so, you could fine-tune it quite a bit more than what you're doing now.

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    Tinybird: Point taken! Do you think it would be clearer that splatter was shadows if consistently the entire picture were splatter shadows? Or do you prefer the line/ fill shading on the right under the shelf?


    Giacomo: I did a little of both; I worry that digital sits oddly with the outlines but its better then how long traditional takes to do properly. I'll create come textures today and experiment.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tintreas View Post
    Tinybird: Point taken! Do you think it would be clearer that splatter was shadows if consistently the entire picture were splatter shadows? Or do you prefer the line/ fill shading on the right under the shelf?
    I think it would be more clearer, also it would be good to have the splattershadow act more like a shadow over the objects and not just one big random mass. Like, have lighter splatter in more light areas and darker/thicker splatter in more darker areas, and of course have the objects be partially in light.
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    You might want to try using white ink or masking fluid to achieve that.

    As for the line shading I think it might work fine if the splatters was used only in textures and not as shadows. Like, texture splatters-line shading or no textures-splatter shading, or something like that. Try different things to see what you'd personally like. In this image you're kinda using the splatters both as a texture and as a shading, which ends up being pretty confusing.

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    Tinybird: I'll give it an edit! You're right, it makes much more sense with more contrast.

    here is today's experiment, digital textures:

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    I just made four ink splatter gradients to play around with.. I'm not sure how much I like it.. its much easier to work solids, pattern and stippling in together on the page; not so easy to premeditate what it would look like onscreen.

    This one from ages ago probably works better: (Its just a doodle, don't be hard on it!)


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    I would imagine you'd apply a digital spatter gradient the way screen tone was back in the day. Some artists got rather good at it, but I expect there's a trick to it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tintreas View Post
    I just made four ink splatter gradients to play around with.. I'm not sure how much I like it.. its much easier to work solids, pattern and stippling in together on the page; not so easy to premeditate what it would look like onscreen.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nezumi Works View Post
    I would imagine you'd apply a digital spatter gradient the way screen tone was back in the day. Some artists got rather good at it, but I expect there's a trick to it.
    From a professional-practice standpoint, it makes a lot more sense to get rather good at doing it digitally, since it's a lot faster, you have more control, and you can edit the final result.

    That said, when I said "use line to define specific volumes and materials," I meant using line to define specific volumes and materials, not laying in large areas of tone. Right now the forms feel pretty flat, and just adding more flat tones isn't really helping. Attached below are a really half-assed paintover by me and three examples from artists far better than myself.









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    Very true. I've managed it before to a degree, but never with screentones!





    I'll try again tonight, I've looked up a few mangaka video tutorials and I suppose its a bit like the opposite of the above.. learning when to take away rather then add. It dosn't look all that much quicker, seems dot takes longer to take carefully out then to add.. but the results can be very pretty judging from youtube finals

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    Those look very nice...did you do the stippling with a pen or did you use a Photoshop brush set on "scatter?" (JPEG below.) Seriously, there is NO reason to stipple by hand in 2011.



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    I don't know if I believe that. I can certainly agree for screentones, but stippling is more drawing based then anything else, and most people still prefer drawing by hand at some stage. Not everyone, I'll grant, but most people suggest using a pencil at some point.

    As for stippling I'd say doing it by hand is far more controlled for one thing. I havn't seen any digitally stippled works that compare to traditional. (mind you I have trouble finding screentone works that compare too, but I suspect they're out there.)

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