Friday, 25 November 2011

Doctor Who Comic - 9th Doctor Character Studies

Hello Who-fans!
I've another batch of character studies for you!

This time I have been practicing my Eccie face! Though I reckon the most successful studies here are the ones of him doing his daft smile. Oh well!
Practice make perfect 'n all that! :)

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Doctor Who Comic - 8th Doctor Character Studies

Greetings Whovians!!

You may, or may not know that Doctor Who celebrated it's 48th birthday today!! :D

And so to mark this momentous occasion I thought I would post up the first of many Character studies for the Doctor Who comic project (that I've finally started) being written by Alex.

You may remember a couple of posts previously that featured a Doctor doodle or two, but here I have been refining the style and method for drawing the 8th Doctor that I can carry through an entire comic.
I kinda think I was getting the hang of drawing McGann in the end!
What d'you think? :)

The comic will be a total of 5 issues long, 22 pages per issue, and will be one of the longest projects I have ever taken on!!
I don't want to give too much of the story away now, but I'll give you a couple tidbits to keep you guessing! ;)
For the most part, the story takes place in the year 1912. It revolves around an epic moment in world history. And involves something in the 'Who' timeline that previously has only been speculated over!!

Stay tuned for more character studies coming soon!! :D

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Bayou Arcana - Lettering Preview!!

Howdy all Swamp Folk!!

As you well know Bayou Arcana, "Promises" has reached completion and I owe you lot something pretty!

So I thought, as you've seen the first page develop from pencils through to being coloured, that I would let you all see that process through to the end and post up Page One in all it's lettered glory!!

Without further a-do, I give you "Promises", Page One!

But thats not all I've got for you!

As I've done before, with showing you how I draw and put a page together (click here to be reminded) and how I colour (click here), I'll now show you how I lettered "Promises"!

Step 1: First things first I set guides on the page (the light blue lines) to mark out the safe zones to place text, so nothing will be chopped off when printed.
I then type the text for each speech bubble and position it where I reckon it flows best. Using the oval Shape Layer tool I draw white circles behind the text, then with the Direct Selection tool I tweak the shape of the circles to fit the text using the bezier handles, as can be seen on the top speech bubble of this picture.

Step 2: With one shape layer selected at a time, and making sure the "Add to Shape Layer" option in the toolbar at the top is highlighted, I draw in three new Anchor Points using the Pen tool for the tail of the speech bubble. The Anchor Points I then tweak using the bezier handles with the Direct Selection tool, as seen on the last speech bubble on this picture.

Step 3: As I wanted to integrate the speech bubbles into the page and make them feel like part of the art work, I needed to somehow introduce a texture to the Shape Layers I'd created. Problems is with Shape Layers, although their vectorized and useful for making a perfectly clean and smooth bubble shapes, they cannot be selected or filled with anything other than a block colour!
So what I did was to right click on each bubble Shape Layer in the Layers palette to bring up the set of options in this picture. I selected "Rasterize Layer" which turned the Shape Layer into an ordinary customisable Layer like any other, but kept the clean vectorized qualities of the Shape Layer!

(For the B+W comics I've lettered - Dark Harvest: Resistance and Red Riding Hood, I wouldn't use Steps 3 or 4, but leave the bubbles as block white Shape Layers and proceed to Step 6!)

Step 4: I then chose a suitable texture with which to replace the currently white bubble, in this case an old paper texture, and positioned it on a layer behind.
With the white bubble now as a regular Layer, I can use the Magic Wand selection tool to select the outside of the bubble. With this selection still active I then choose the old paper texture layer in the Layers Palette on the side and then press the Delete key.

Step 5: What this has done is deleted all the extra space the texture had around the white bubble (as you saw in the previous step, it was just a square of texture behind it) making it now an old paper bubble, exactly the same size and shape!
I then get rid of the white bubble layer.

Step 6: The final touches!!
I add an outline by double clicking the bubble layer in the Layers Palette to bring up the properties window. Then tick the bottom box on the left marked "Stroke", choose a line width of 3px and click Ok. The "Stroke" effect appears as a little drop-down menu on the actual layer itself, as seen on the right in the Layers Palette of this picture!
Lastly to add a little bit of transparency to the bubbles and integrate them into the page a little more, I change the layer opacity to 80%.

Repeat that process for all 6 pages and there you have it! One lettered comic! :D

I'll update you all on any news regarding Bayou Arcana's progress to print as of when I receive it! So watch this space!! :D

Friday, 18 November 2011

Sugar Glider Stories 2 - Launching at Thought Bubble!

Hey Hey People!!

If you should so happen to find yourselves in Leeds for Thought Bubble's comic convention this weekend (19th - 20th Nov) then you might just want to pootle over to table 126 and pick up a copy of Sugar Glider Stories 2 from the lovely Daniel Clifford!!

And "why would I want to do that?" I hear you ask!?
Well, aside from the obvious fact that Sugar Glider is AWESOME, if you buy a copy then you shall own my very first published comic story!

Oh yes people! I can (finally) reveal that I had a role on the creative team for Sugar Glider Stories 2!! :D

^ Sugar Glider Stories 2 preview poster. Individual floating panels by artists involved (including me). Design, composition and centre illustration by Jack Couvela.

Back in July, during the completion of the last few pages of the Dark Harvest intro comic "Resistance", I was also busy beavering away on SGS2!

I was asked ages ago by Daniel "Stan Lee of Small Press" Clifford if I would be interested in illustrating for his second collection of short stories centered around his and Gary Bainbridge's Sugar Glider series.
I instantly leaped at the opportunity!
And even when Daniel emailed me while I was feverishly working on Dark Harvest (with about a week till the 21st July, Strip Magazine deadline) and he gave me the option to illustrate one of the scripts for Sugar Glider Stories 2, with only a couple of weeks to complete it in... If I wasn't too busy...
I said "Hell Yeah!! I can make time!!" :D

And so "Moving Day" became mine to illustrate!

^ My panel from the preview poster shown above.

Building up to the launch of SGS2 Daniel arranged for several creator interviews to be conducted by Gavin Jones, the co-host of The Sidekick Cast.

You'll find them all right here on the Sugar Glider website!!

But to celebrate the launch of SGS2 (and did I mention, my very first published comic!?!) right here on my blog, here're some art goodies from "Moving Day" for your enjoyment! :)

So why is Babylon in a grump about hefting some boxes around? And why is Red Kite shouting his Super-pants off at Barn Owl?
Your going to have to grab a copy of Sugar Glider Stories 2 to find out!! ;)

Oh! Don't worry all of you who are unable to make it to Thought Bubble, the comic will be made available to buy online (along with the rest of the Sugar Glider series) here via Daniel's shop!

Monday, 14 November 2011

Into the Woods: A fairy tale Anthology - Red Riding Hood

Hello again Folks!

In my previous post, when I said I'd be able to show you some art from Red Riding Hood very very soon, I didn't realise how soon that would be! Haha! :D

With a thumbs up from Stace, I'm pleased to say that you get a double whammy of art reveals today! You lucky people! :)

So without further a-do, here're a couple panels from Red Riding Hood...
(These're actually my personal favourites too!)

Into the Woods will be launching at Cardiff Expo, 25th & 26th February 2012!!

Dark Harvest: Illustrations of the Legacy of Frankenstein.

G'morning Prometheans!!

Sorry for the lack of activity on here of late, but if you had read my last post then you'll all know that I've been working frantically to reach the finish line on Bayou Arcana, Red Riding Hood and the Dark Harvest Illustration commission!

Well from here on in folks, I'm happy to say that I can start cashing in some of those promises I made in the last post!!!

Red Riding hood is, as you'll know, FINIIISHED!! And I'm pleased to say that some art from that will be revealed very very soon! So stay tuned! :D

Bayou Arcana "Promises" is also FIIIINIIIISHED!!!! It's lettered and the complete files as preferred by Markosia have been handed over to Jimmy Pearson to be collected with the other stories. The deadline for all BA stories is January next year, so you'll have a while to wait till you can see the real thing, however I've requested that I blog a lettered page to keep your appetites wetted! ;)

And finally, the last bit of Dark Harvest (for the moment) is also... yup, you guessed it.. FIIIIIIIIINIIIIIISHED!!!!!

And here are some long awaited sneaky peeks!!

These images are cropped sections of larger illustrations that will be appearing alongside short stories from the Dark Harvest mythos, in the second published book!