Author Topic: An inking nightmare  (Read 981 times)

Offline Thomas Grey

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An inking nightmare
« on: May 5, 2005, 03:33 AM »
I completed this a while ago. I think I spent over 90 hours on it. Much of that time was spent applying correction fluid and re-inking. I think the hands and the ball were re-inked 25+ times. The corrction fluid is quite thick down there. I was using Pro White to correct for a while, but I had to do 3 applications to get the ink covered. I tried Liquitex acrylic white and still had to do more than 1 coat. I finally played around with correction fluid pens and I now swear by the PaperMate Wite Out pens. The feathering on the face also was re-inked 10 or more times. I wanted it to look as good as possible and despite all the corrections, I learned a lot doing this page. It basically took me from a novice to a fairly confident and fluent inker. Everything (except the Zip-A-Tone) is brush and ink. No quill or pens. I used a ton of different inks trying to find the best opaque black and fiinally just started mixing my own. I pour about 2 bottles of Black Magic into a larger jar and let that sit out for about 24-32 hours and coagulate a bit. Then I added a cheaper bulk ink (Dick Blick) to extend it and got some really decent opaque black. I experimented with brushes and I totally swear by the Windsor and Newton Series 7 #2 Kolinski Sable  brushes. I really tried to give the Raphael Kolinski Sable #2 brushes a chance and just wasn't able to acchieve the same fine point and control. I also experimented a lot with Zip-A-Tone. I found this huge cache of it while cleaning out my grandparents basement. A buddy of my uncle's was a graphic artist in the 70's and left it behind (lucky me). Tried to layer it in areas and just played around with different textures and effects. I have some of the newer Letraset tone sheets, but I had problems with the tack being too strong and it was pulling up my paper when I peeled the excess off. It is not as easy as it would seem to use an x-Acto blade to get that stuff to fill the space perfectly. It was all done on a Strathmore 500 cold press sheet. This is such good stuff. I have tried the hot press and the drying time is slow and it hard to manage. This paper soaks it in without bleeding and held up really well to all the crap I put it through.

I am pleased with it considering it was a major chore and huge learning process. I could never make it in the mainstream industry as an inker. I am too concerned with perfection and it being as close to what I imagine it should be as possible.  Getting those fingers to stand out from the glow of the ball and the castle within it was a definite acchievement. There were times I wanted to destroy it and other times I was so into it and everything flowed and felt right. Whether it's good or not in the eyes of others isn't as important to me as just seeing it through and finishing it. I think I started 15 pages and just destroyed them with my ineptness. Finally I sat bythis guy in a comic class that was an aspiring inker and he asked me why I had done so many and gave up. He just looked at me and help up a jar of Pro-Wite and said, "That's what this stuff is for..." I just had this idea that it had to be perfect from start to finish. Right after that I went to a comic art exhibition and every inked page they in the show had correction fluid on it somewhere. So those words rang true and seeing that Frank Frazetta, Jack Kirby, Will Eisner and R. Crumb all used it profusely broke me through the mental barrier of needing to be perfect from beginning to end. I took it to an extreme, but realized that perfection comes from making mistakes and correcting them...

The scan is a bit rough. I'll work on perfecting it and post a better one when I can.

« Last Edit: November 16, 2005, 11:51 PM by Thomas Grey »
"There's no mystical energy field that controls my destiny."

Offline Angry Ewok

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Re: An inking nightmare
« Reply #1 on: May 5, 2005, 10:05 AM »
Very awesome work. The ball reminds me of the Naboo Peace Ball or whatever it is Queen Admidala has at the end of TPM. How you managed to get the globe to glow like that with just brush and ink is beyond me...

I love the scenery, as always, but especially the little details - specifically the horns on Mickey.

So is this the BD cover? If so what font-style are you going to go for with the title? I want to see a comp!


Offline Thomas Grey

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Re: An inking nightmare
« Reply #2 on: May 5, 2005, 12:31 PM »
Alright, I'm letting the cat out of the bag here Brad. I did all the type in Illustrator and used some existing type as templates and had to create others. I haven't done a mock up yet and this is the cover for the origin story. I am thinking that I will start with a little more action, so I am also including a rough sketch of another cover idea. Not sure whether ths will show up well or not...
« Last Edit: November 16, 2005, 11:53 PM by Thomas Grey »
"There's no mystical energy field that controls my destiny."

Offline Angry Ewok

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Re: An inking nightmare
« Reply #3 on: May 5, 2005, 01:08 PM »
I really like the logo - I think if you brought "Dyzney" further into "Black", it'd fit almost like a puzzle piece.

I've never been to good at logos or type setting, but check the attatchment... to see what I mean.



ps. Hope you don't mind me messing with your logo,  :P
« Last Edit: May 5, 2005, 01:10 PM by Angry Ewok »

Offline Thomas Grey

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Re: An inking nightmare
« Reply #4 on: May 5, 2005, 01:30 PM »
Sorry to rain on your parade you manipulator of all things sacred to me.

The 'Black' is a classic Disney Script and the 'Dyzney' is the Mickey Mouse font. If the blend, then it becomes confusing and the strength of the graphic nature of each font is lost. If I was doing perfume maybe... But with comics, it has to jump off the rack. Your idea is cool, but not in the lines of the intent or character of BD. I did at least 4 to 5 pages of pencil roughs to get to this and I am happy with them being seperate. Thanks for the suggestions. It never hurts and always is welcomed...
"There's no mystical energy field that controls my destiny."

Offline Angry Ewok

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Re: An inking nightmare
« Reply #5 on: May 5, 2005, 01:57 PM »
Lesson learned! Just promise not to kick my ass at the next convention, okay?

 :P

Offline Thomas Grey

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Re: An inking nightmare
« Reply #6 on: May 5, 2005, 03:33 PM »
Wut'r talkin' about?

I had a long talk with Mike Baron (creator of Nexus, the Badger and writer on several SW comic titles of the past) and he told me about this series of The Badger he did.

The Badger is a character that suffers serious mental ailments and has several personalities. He's insane (just like you and me Brad). So he did a series with the Badger and he used a logo that looked like a kidnapper's lettering. Torn out letters from different periodicals... The concept is cool, but the logo/type turned out to be a disaster because it didn't jump out at you. It wasn't making a statement to anyone but a Badger fan.

What I'm saying is cool doesn't always equal desired effect. I also am being ' holier than thou' and I have such a horrible personal atteachment to this particular thing that you wouldn't be right even if you were...
"There's no mystical energy field that controls my destiny."

Offline Angry Ewok

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Re: An inking nightmare
« Reply #7 on: May 5, 2005, 04:13 PM »
Completely understandable.

If I were right, it'd be a fluke, I promise - I'm very new to design and lettering/type setting, and I've got a ways before I really begin to understand some of the pyschology behind advertising - specifically Commercial Art (I would consider a comic's cover to fall under advertising more than art).


Offline Thomas Grey

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Re: An inking nightmare
« Reply #8 on: May 5, 2005, 05:08 PM »
Well sure. Think about it. You decide to stop in a comic place for the first time and just check out what's new. If you aren't sure about what's good or popular, you go for the cover art and logo.

Graphic art is about catching the attention of people that are moving too fast to bother looking.

The more you learn about GA, the less you will like it. I think Bill Hicks (the most crass, harsh, blunt and amazing comic of our time) said something to the extent of...

"How many people out there are in advertising?"

"Please, do us all a favor... Kill yourselves."

"You think I'm kidding, but in all seriousness... Kill yourselves. You sadistic, worthless, scum-sucking whores kill yourselves now!"

"OOh, Bill's using the angry at society angle. Good approach. Great seeling tactic..."

"I'M NOT SELLING ANYTHING, KILL YOURSELVES!!!"

this is a bad elaboration of his extreme talent and actual wording, but hopefully you get the point.

My advice to you is if you become a graphic guy, you have to learn to do exactly what you would never do. Every idea you have will be shot down and the thing you do that you abhor and detest and wish you had never done, will be the exact one they want...
"There's no mystical energy field that controls my destiny."