It’s a Process

I’m very new to digital art and to making comics. My process keeps changing but this is the flow I’ve settled into for the time being. I work entirely in Clip Studio Paint Pro. We start off with a sketch layer. I use the mechanical pen to roughly block the scene then change the colour of the layer to blue using a handy one-click option in the layers window.
On a separate layer I fill the canvas with a grey tone. And on another layer I do my inking with the mechanical pencil again. I prefer the look of the mechanical pencil to the ‘pen’ brushes available with CSP. This is one of my favourite steps because it can be quite relaxing. I keep thinking to myself “specific, specific, specific” to keep the details at the forefront of my mind.
The next steps are in colour. This is a very poor example because my Cintiq was acting up and the pen wasn’t aligning properly. That’s never happened before! I chose a dominant colour for the panel. Usually this is the same across all panels at a particular location in order to unify them and signal to the reader that they are all in the same place (the cafe, for example, is cream). This location from chapter five is otherworldly, and has a verdigris tone. I fill the panel using the paint bucket tool.

From there, I choose local colours from the colour picker. I keep in mind my dominant colour. Colours closer to it can be more saturated while colours distant from it are kept neutral. In this way, colours shift according to the environment (Rumanye’s shirt is yellow but it’s brightness is drained away by the spooky pea soup environment).

I use the opaque watercolour brush to do my first pass. This allows some of the base colour to show through and further unify the scene.

Next, I add effects. Sometimes this is as simple as using the airbrush tool, but occasionally I use blending modes to boost the magical quality of an effect, for example.

And that’s all for now! I know my process with change again, as it has so often during this project!

ETA: I fixed the driver on the Cintiq. What a difference it makes, eh?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s