Monday, February 18, 2013

Well under way

Okay, okay...I'm not going to show off too many of the new illustrations before the book is published but since I've started with this one, I thought I'd continue to follow its progress.

"This girl is under my protection"
Pen & ink - partially completed
At this point the piece is about 60% completed. The contrast still has quite a ways to go before it's correctly balanced, but the scene is now coming into focus. One of the nice things about the modern day is that if you can't find your opaque white (or if it's dried up from long disuse as mine has) you can always make corrections in Photoshop.

I'm using a variety of pens in this piece including a micron for the initial outlines (it doesn't smudge) and fountain pens (three different ones - Namiki Falcon, Noodler's Nib Creaper flex, and Noodler's Konrad flex all filled with Noodler's Black ink.) I'm working pretty large - 7"x10" on Bristol plate. As you might well imagine, it's much easier drawing details when you work larger. With pen & ink you want to shrink the final artwork down to at least 75% of the original size. I prefer to go with more like 50% of the original. Pen & ink drawings always looks better when decreased in size as the lines tighten up. You have to be careful with it though as if you shrink them too much all your lines might to close up so much that too much detail is lost. Getting it just right is a feel thing.

I'm going for a classic children's book look with these illustrations. Why...? Because I love the idea of a retro-sci-fi love story looking like it's something that you should be reading in bed. Cozy and romantic, at least that's the plan. I think adults should have their bedtime stories too.

So that's the report for tonight. I think it's time to put down my pens and head for bed. Goodnight to all!

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