Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Character Design: Sergio


Here is a sketch I did with a Japanese Brush Pen and colored in Corel Painter. I just love the painterly quality and hand painted feel you can only achieve in Painter -- or by painting the thing traditionally.

Monday, January 4, 2016

New Sketches for a New Year


Happy 2016! 


I thought I'd start off the New Year with some new sketches. These were all done in pursuit of a permanent style for my upcoming Wandering Koala web comic. I've made a couple attempts at it with a couple of different blogs, but neither of them excited me like I wanted them to, so here's hoping third time is the charm.

The sketch above was actually done on New Year's Day. I drew it with a Japanese Brush Pen and then colored it in both Adobe Photoshop and Corel Painter. I've tried a lot of different programs, but nothing gives you a truly painterly feel like Corel Painter. Adobe keeps trying, but it still looks and feels so digital, which isn't a bad thing, it's just not what I'm going for.

 These next two sketches were drawn in what I call my "combo brush". Basically I ink the figure with a Zebra disposable brush pen and then go over it with my Japanese Brush Pen to give it texture and grit. The background was also inked with the brush pen. I used a pattern effect in Photoshop to tone the image. I know it's retro, but there is something I just love about those thin mechanically-produced hatching lines. The color version was colored in Adobe Photoshop. I'm thinking of running it thru Corel Painter like the illustration above to make it look more painterly. While I approached both illustrations with the same basic technique, there is something so much more "painterly" about the above illustration.

As always, let me know what you think!

Monday, December 14, 2015

2015 Christmas Card


Here is the final Christmas card. Hopefully it will bring a little cheer to your corner of the world.

Friday, December 11, 2015

2015 Christmas Card - Preview

Each year I create a Christmas Card with an original illustration and poem. Usually the theme is suggested by the title of a Christmas Carol. Here is the black & white version of the illustration.


Come back in a few days to see the finished card!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Using new digital tools to mimic old printing and illustration techniques



For this year's Halloween series, I've been hand drawing the illustrations and then using Photoshop to create a faux zip-o-tone type effect. I always thought it was cool to see those evenly spaced lines creating shadows and textures on older illustrations. Then I colored this with the limited palette of colors used for silver age and bronze age comics. I did use a Gaussian Blur to soften the light and a satin FX layer for more shadow. It creates an interesting effect.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Halloween 2015: Wandering Koala in the clutches of Witch Hazel


Yesterday I posted the black & white line work of my latest illustration. Today I present it in glorious color.

I've always been a fan of minimalist color schemes. This one is basically orange and green with a bit of yellowish versions of those colors, and yet somehow it appears to be full color. I colored and toned this storybook illustration in Adobe Photoshop CC after drawing it with a Prismacolor Brush Pen, a Tombow Art Brush Pen,  a Japanese Brush Pen from Pentel, and a Sharpie.

I love the shorter stature of the figures, the cutsey look they have, the faux toned shadows, and the minimalist color scheme.

But what do you think?