Sunday Sketchbook #24 – Marker coloring process

I decided to try my hand at coloring with Promarkers again. I drew the lineart of this character a while ago, and then I forgot about it until I recently found it in a pile of half finished stuff. I try to keep my work area organized and tidy, but sometimes unfinished drawings just end up in the WIP stack and stays there for a long while…

Anyway, I took some photos along the way, thinking that I might as well share how I tend to go through the coloring process. Keep in mind that I’m a total newbie. I’m not saying that this is the way to do it, as I’m just documenting my own learning process here.

Step 1: Skin color

I begin with the palest skin color. Here I went with Vanilla for the base color, and added Soft Peach for her cheeks, elbows, knee-area and ears. I used Putty for some of the darker shadows on her neck and below the skirt.

Step 2: Hair color and skirt

I went with a rather cold color for her hair to compliment the warmth of the skin color. Her hair is a made up with a combo of Tea Green, Cool Aqua and a hint of Denim Blue. I also used Tea Green on the shadow part on the inside hem of her skirt. The skirt is colored with Pear Green and Marsh Green.

Step 3: Leaf, Eyes and green shadows

This step is pretty straightforward. I used the pale green named Meadow Green to indicate folds and shadows on her top. I also layered Meadow Green in combination with Lime Green and Leaf Green for the leaf (duh!). The eyes are colored with Amethyst.

Step 4: Details, schmetails

Not much new in this step, just some final touches. I added highlights in her eyes and on the cheeks with a white gel-pen. The eye highlights are almost compulsory in anime-style illustrations, but I’ve also seen some artists use highlights on several parts of the face and body, so I thought I’d try it out. I used Sunflower and Lemon on the various accessories, and added some more shadows with Ice Grey 1 on the “faux” leafy part of the clothes.

And here it is, the finalized version. Well, finalized as in that I’ve taken a photo, boosted the colors and removed the bakground color. As always, colored drawings like this looks best on paper (and I can just forget about scanning it with my sad excuse of a scanner). Any comments and tips would be most appreciated.

Sunday Sketchbook #23 – Illustrating for print

Due to some traveling last weekend (and partly because of my own laziness), I didn’t get around to updating the blog last Sunday. However, I feel that I’ve made up for it a little by being a lot more productive this week.

For those of you who don’t know, I work part-time at a newspaper company, doing layout, photo editing and the like. On Monday I was approached by one of the journalists with a suggestion that I could make an illustration for a feature article. He had seen this blog, and decided to give me a chance at making something for print. I started working on a few sketches on the same day, and on Tuesday I finalized the illustration during the evening hours. It looks something like this, and goes together with an article about how grandparents are a great help for their kids and grandchildren:

As I’ve previously mentioned, my scanner sucks at it’s job, but I’ve tried to tweak the colors to the best of my abilities. Updated: I swapped the image with the one scanned it at work. I’ll update this post when I get the chance to take a picture of the final product, i.e. the double page spread of the newspaper article.

Sunday Sketchbook #22 – Dual styles

Here are two inked portraits from my sketchbook, and also some quick pencil sketches of a few different expressions (though barely visible). It’s funny how I enjoy drawing in both styles; the manga-esque to the left and the slightly more detailed style one to the right. Speaking of the latter, I tend to draw the more realistic faces with more or less the same facial expression. Note to self: try drawing realistic people that are laughing, showing anger or are annoyed etc. Below is a version where I’ve “indicated” (Mark Crilley, anyone?) some shading with grey Promarkers. The inking was done with my Platinum Carbon Pen.

On a side note, I’ve had some trouble coming up with something to show every time I update because a) I’ve not kept practicing as much as I would like, and b) when I do update, it’s with a drawing/sketch I’ve deliberately worked on with Sunday Sketchbook in mind.

Especially when I spend all Sunday procrastinating, and only start working on an update late in the evening (like I’ve done today), I feel that I haven’t drawn anything useful and that I could’ve done better. I guess thoughts like that are just me wanting to become more effective. Got any tips for keeping up with practice and staying productive? Leave a comment, I’ll definitely reply and thank you for your feedback =)