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Greg Stephens
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2001 12:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Today Steven Grant provides several links to online information about creating comics, and one of them answers a question I've been asked (and attempted to answer) a couple times myself: How to computer-color comics with Adobe Photoshop by Howard Cruse. Though Howard uses Photoshop and I generally use Corel Photo-Paint, the methods are exactly the same.

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rcar
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2001 2:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

he has put together pretty good tuturial. The is a much easier way to create the black line drawing on the second layer without all the wand work. Just change the second layer from normal to multiply. That's it! When you do that, all the white disapears and the black stays intact.

Randy
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Greg Stephens
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2001 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's true, but I avoid that method because you may not get 100% pure whites. If your original scan is slightly off-white or (much more likely) contains various artifacts (smudges, scratches, shadows, etc.), these will not be removed entirely. Using "multiply" may be nearly right, but some things just have to be removed manually.

If you do your drawing in the computer and avoid paper, this isn't a problem at all.

At this point, I must say that I don't use a manual wand or mask select tool to separate my black pen from the background layer- I adjust the gamma to highten the contrast then use a color mask to lift out blacks with minimal effort.

However, just because I think this is the best way, duplicating a layer and using "multiply" may work just fine for most people and it is easier than either of the other two mentioned methods.

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Jack Masters
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2001 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just don't have the patience to balance all the colors out. If I add even a single one, I feel I have to mess with the color of everything until it looks good, which takes me forever.
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Sean Frost
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2001 7:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I scan my stuff in as a black and white document, it levels out the background to a solid white. That makes the rest of the process very easy.

Of course, you can lose some of the finer lines this way, but my drawings are pretty basic and bold so it works for me.

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Max Leibman
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2001 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think we need more technical discussions like this.

Also, a side note, I find it interesting how universal the basic ideas and techniques of digital art are. I'm currently hacking my way through Paint Shop Pro 6, and I've learned more and had better ideas from reading online bits about Photoshop techniques than I have from the Paint Shop manual.

Peace out,

Max Leibman
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rcar
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2001 9:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I scan in my black and white art, I then do levels to get rid of smudges and artifacts. If anything is left over, then I erase. But my black and whites are usually clean so I don't have that problem too often.

Adding color I have a wacom tablet. So I use the paint brush and just paint on the under layer. I find this easier and faster for me. As for color, I don't let it drive me crazy. There are way to many variables (browzers, platform, monitors and so on). If the color is good enough, I let it stay there. I only do this for online, print is something different. I do the coloring at home, but when I look at it at work, the colors are different, and that is with the same setup so I can imagine what it looks like to other monitors.

As for programs, painter has a better feel than photoshop for drawing. I still like drawing on paper much better, but I keep trying on the computer. It will save a lot of time if I could get the hang of it.

Randy
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Zubkavich
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2001 5:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Everyone,

If you swing by The Makeshift Miracle, you'll see a brand new tutorial I've got up about coloring in Photoshop. I go through the use of Layers and how to keep your image organized while you color.

If you haven't been by before, I also have tutorials on drawing and composition as well as scanning in your artwork. The scanning article goes through a couple of ways to eliminate unneccessary greys as well.

Enjoy!
http://miracle.keenspace.com/Tutorials.html


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[ This Message was edited by: Zubkavich on 2001-10-04 18:48 ]
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Sean Frost
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2001 7:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I tried that 'multiply' approach this weekend, and it really worked well. Now if only I had any color sense...
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Max Leibman
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2001 9:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a question -- does anybody on this board use Paint Shop Pro? I know Photoshop is an industry standard of sorts (not just in comics, but for a variety of graphic arts professionals), and I don't know a lot of people who use PSP for anything, let alone for comics. I was just wondering because it landed in my lap by dumb luck, but I'm having a blast with it.

Anybody with experience on both programs who could tell me what I'm missing in Photoshop would be great, too -- I haven't had a chance to play with any version of Photoshop in years.

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[ This Message was edited by: Max Leibman on 2001-10-09 09:23 ]
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rcar
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2001 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paint shop pro is great for creating art. It has a much better feel than photoshop. I highly recomend it for anyone trying to creat natural media feel art on the computer. Photoshop just isn't as good for that. Everything else photoshop has the edge. Color correcting, manipulating images, creating cool effects and a host of other things. No program can touch photoshop.

They are the best at their respective goals. They an be used in tandem with no problem. One program can not do what they do individually.

Randy
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Bjorn
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2001 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I usually start the computer part at a much earlier stage than that... My drawings are fairly messy anyway, so I what I scan in is what most people would call 'Rough sketches'. After I'm done with that, I use Photoshop to do everything, including the outline. I create a new layer on top of the sketch, and draw the picture all over again, using the sketch as a guideline. It's better to do it on an insane zoom level on a greatly sized up pic though, so the defects won't be as visible (jagged lines etc.) Also, I usually colour each body part on a separate layer, it makes shading much easier (if you use Burn and Dodge like I do, that way there's no risk of getting an unnatural shadow across an arm when you're shading the torso.)

The rough sketch:
http://www.hi.is/~bjornkri/scsketch.jpg

Lines drawn in:
http://www.hi.is/~bjornkri/scared.jpg

Colouring + shading + many fixes to the line drawing:
http://www.hi.is/~bjornkri/scared2.jpg
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catgarza
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Joined: 10 Jun 2001
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2001 8:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

as usual, i'm a complete weirdo when it comes to process...

i usually draw my comics (or images to be used in a panel, etc.) on whatever kind of paper i can find using whatever pen i have handy (i've been using staedler transparency markers..the nonpermanent kind... and sometimes a nonphoto blue marker for roughs... although, sometimes a sharpy and some scrap paper work fine if i'm feeling adventurous)

i scan in the art as a bitmap about 200% its drawn size and import it into photoshop where i change it to RGB and start dumping in color. now, usually when i import the image into photoshop, i first change to greyscale and use the wand to select areas i don't want any white (backgrounds, spaces, etc.) i delete that area (this is after i've put the image on a new layer, of course... doing this in the background layer won't do anything, silly!)

for the actual coloring, i usually mess with the black outline in the adjust:hue/saturation to make it "warm" or "cool" by making it a very dark shade of a color (almost black, but this will vibrate nicely with the other colors you might choose for the character or backgrounds). then just paint bucket my colors into the character/object. viola!

once in a while i'll magic wand the flat color fields and add shading, etc. or texture... it just depends on what i'm doing...

ok, so maybe this isn't THAT wierd. i'm really not sure....

if you don't have photoshop, i suggest you steal a copy somehow. it really is the best program to use for this sort of thing and makes it possible to format stuff for the web/print/etc. rather easily. it's very powerful... i've used Painter, but i really have a lot of loyalty to old photochop, main.

horale,
cayetano
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catgarza
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2001 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

oh yeah, and dpi for this stuff...

i usually scan at 300 but work in 150 or 200. remember, the image is about 200% it's DRAWN size, so if the art is finished at 200% it's drawn/scanned size at about 150 dpi, then when you shrink it down to 75 dpi for the web, it'll come out relatively clean and if you shrink it down to the size you need for print at 200 or 150 dpi , it'll print pretty smoothly with little pixelation.

this is all relative, because i usually keep a folder of all my scans i want to reuse later. most of them are 200% of their drawn size at 300 dpi bitmaps. relatively versitle files to fiddle with with low file size. when i import into photoshop, i kind of figure it out as i go along... (it just depends...web or print? poster, gif, jpg, comic page? you'd have to do different things for each...)

anyway...

cat
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damonk13
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2001 5:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Multiply function is SOOO my new best friend since i was told about it a month or so ago...

I'm surprised that not one person here has mentioned GIMP, which I find rivals Photoshop in a number of ways, and perhaps even beats it out with a few very useful functions and scripts...

Best of all regarding the GIMP, of course, is that it's an open-source program!

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Polychrome
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2001 9:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Me, I use photoimpact, and I highly recommend it for coloring.

Um, what can I say? It's really cool. *shrug*
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 26, 2001 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To ensure the consistency of the line art, I always make a duplicate Black channel in CMYK mode (because I prepare work for print, not the Web, otherwise I'd use RGB). Then, when I'm done coloring, I simply select the duplicate black channel, select the line art with the magic wand and "Select > Similar," then select the CMYK channel, and fill with 100% black.

That restores the line art.

-db
www.rudypark.com
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HarperDJ
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 29, 2004 9:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

New to this forum and site. I will be checking out tips and advise from everyone.
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William G
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 01, 2004 4:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

damonk13 wrote:
The Multiply function is SOOO my new best friend since i was told about it a month or so ago...

I'm surprised that not one person here has mentioned GIMP, which I find rivals Photoshop in a number of ways, and perhaps even beats it out with a few very useful functions and scripts...

Best of all regarding the GIMP, of course, is that it's an open-source program!

I know this is a very old post, but I find Gimp isnt nearly as intuitive nor as web-geared as Photoshop 7.

Then again, I'm using a Linux machine, so Gimp it is for me.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2004 1:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I draw on normal multi purpose paper ,scan pencils in ,blue line it in PS,print one out , ink it, scan it back in ,and color via channels not layers.That's the way the pros do it.(in channels not the paper part.)
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William G
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2004 10:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anonymous wrote:
I draw on normal multi purpose paper ,scan pencils in ,blue line it in PS,print one out , ink it, scan it back in ,and color via channels not layers.That's the way the pros do it.(in channels not the paper part.)

Give the huge waste of paper this method seems to require, I feel safe in suggesting that the "pros" couldn't find their asses with both hands.
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Eric F Myers
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2004 11:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, that does seem like a waste of paper. Why can't you just ink your penciled pages in the first place? Or you could do your drawings with a blue drafting pencil.

Saying that that's how the pros do it is absurd. Which pros are you talking about? That's like saying all professionals ink with a brush. They do their art in whatever way works best for them. It's only when you work for the big guys (Marvel, DC, etc...) that you have to do things a certain way, because they want a uniform look to the end product.
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Rip Tanion
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2004 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I say, look at how the pros do it, and just use that as a guideline, not as gospel. Ultimatley, you should do things the way they work best for you.
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Greg Stephens
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 31, 2004 8:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've heard about this method before- The scanning of the pencils and then printing the pencils out on another sheet of paper in bluelines for inking- and it appeals to me. It preserves the pencils and allows the inker to not have to erase the pencils (since they're in non-photocopy blue and easy to remove once scanned in for coloring). Too much work for me, however.

As to coloring with channels as opposed to layers, it seems that in order to color faster, some colorists shy away from layers and use selections, simply for speed. I can see how that would work. But channels are in no way a substitute for layers- They have fundamentally different roles. Something about that sentence ("color via channels not layers") doesn't ring true and leads me to think there's some vital information left out. I'd want to know more.

There are reasons professionals do things they way they do, and they mostly have to do with speed and consistancy. However, you'll see all sorts of different approaches- Nobody inks or colors quite like Bill Sienkiewicz; Tom Palmer's inks are also instantly recognizable; David Mack does his own thing, too; John Byrne sometimes uses sharpie pens to ink, other times, brushes, and even other times just prints out computer generated renderings. And we all know that Scott McCloud pencils and inks with a Mac.

The point being- Yeah, there are some common ways that a lot of pros do things, and they have good reasons for doing them (and so I would say they are probably valuable to study and be aware of), but there are also a lot of pros who don't use those same methods.
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