Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Back to (the) drawing boards

Matt and I started drawing boards for Episode 2.5 and Episode 3 of Ronin Dojo Community College DX: The Digital Pirates of Dark Water Saga. 2.5 proved to be particularly difficult, as it takes place in a parking garage. It's a great location, with all sorts of cinematic possibilities-angles and perspective and repeating patterns vanishing into the distance and all sorts of other things which are hard for me to draw.

In these cases, photo reference is key- and the internet is the lazy animator's god. There was a beautiful spread of photos of vast, empty parking garages on Flickr. But even with an array of moody photos at our fingertips, it was still hard to turn the space around in our heads and fit things to what we wanted. If this weren't for a minute long piece, we'd probably have to haul our asses out to a Home Depot or something.

In other news, I've started experimenting with brushes and inking. I've been kinda frustrated lately, wondering why my drawings never look smooth and sweet like everybody elses. And I guess reading Bone was the last straw.

I went out and bought some small water color brushes, india ink and a pad of vellum. Not sure if these are the right tools or not, I was just kinda winging it on some advice my friend Kudlick had given me. So, here's a new Ronin Dojo t-shirt design I've been working on, which I inked with a mix of brushes and Micron pens.



I was mixing the brushes and pen out of necessity, my hand isn't steady enough to make thin details with a brush. However when I found Youtube vids of Jeff Smith and Jim Lee doing it too, I realized it was kosher and felt a bit better about myself. I really have no concept of how professional people go about things, cut me some slack.

Anyways, now I'm gonna go paint with some smashed berries.

38 comments:

Stephen Sloan said...

Brushes are SO frustrating... I've only felt comfortable using 'digital' brushes in 'photoshop' or 'toonboom'. I have no LEGIT brush skillz.

T-shirt image looks cool. I'll keep an eye out for more info.

andrewkudlick said...

Yea, getting good with a brush takes a lot of practice...
If you get a chance, check out Making Comics by Scott McCloud. He has a pretty decent guide to brush/pen techniques.

Ben said...

Yeah, I really should be working on my Wacom skills, since that's more practical. But by the time I get good at that, Cintiq's will probably cost 10 bucks.

Maybe I'll check that Scott McCloud book- or would it be better to get "How To Draw Manga" and just make a bunch of Goku and Vegeta drawings for the rest of my life?

Nino De Pan Blanco said...

hey sir have you tried using copic sketch brush pens? Really cool. has a brush on one end and a chisel but on the other.
peep it
http://www.copicmarker.com/features_sketch

tom said...

you should just use picto-chat.

Ben said...

Those look cool, and complicated to refill. I've never worked with markers like that before, but have always been impressed with people who make little sketchbook drawings with them. It's a nice touch, I'll have to try them out.

Nino De Pan Blanco said...

yea they're a bitch to find the ink refills but they aren't that bad to refill. You can goto the F.I.T school store or S.V.A Pearl store. I dunno if NYC got a utrecht you can check 'em out there too.
but for 5 bucks each its not to bad to f'round with.
Oh yea btw awesome stuff man, whats up with David? Eating a sandwich? on vacation..finishing up that red dwarf box set?
Inquiring minds, ok well I'd like to know..

andrewkudlick said...

Hmmm... I dont think there is a "How to Draw Manga" book by Scott McCloud. He did write "Understanding Manga" though.

But, you should check this:
http://www.cablenet.ne.jp/~japanime/tutorial/goku_tutorial.html

Mail in your sketches and I'll reward you with a pass/fail grade!

Ben said...

Official RDCCDX canon states David was briefly accepted into an out of state university. These "Lost Years" will be chronicled upon his return.

The unofficial story is that, the voice actor, Zachary Steel, moved to LA, and our microphone cables only stretch so far.

dmac said...

I like the one without Japanese text...it seems to crowded with. Or you could just forgo English and only have the Japanese. In which case you should make the kanji read: 浪人道場短大DX

Word.

Nino De Pan Blanco said...

hey ben have you tried digital inking with illustrator or flash?
pretty easy, cs3 photoshop pen i hear has gotten better but i never use it my self.

here are a couple of tuts i found online

http://bibly.deviantart.com/art/Digital-Inking-Tutorial-33092156

http://delya.deviantart.com/art/Delz-Digital-Inking-Tutorial-19617041

http://brian-romero.blogspot.com/2007/02/digital-inking-basics.html

im sure your interwebs savy sir so ive done enough spamming

but yea if you wanna learn stuff stay away from chris hart books

buy force lifedrawing and force character design for starters

Nino De Pan Blanco said...

er not implying you cant draw, sorry sir

Julian von Rose said...

Hmm, when it comes to brushes I'm clueless, but I hope that it works out for you. Like the shirt sketches, Japanese text one looks good, I'd go with that.

Ben said...

Thanks for the links man. That deviant art tutorial talks about making a blurred line layer, which is something I also stumbled upon which seems to bring some life back to inked drawings after the pencil line goes away. Very cool.

Nino De Pan Blanco said...

no worries keep the great work going man

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