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I might as well have emptied the ink jar over the fresh paper first...

Stealing the Belt. Click for full view
The Rogues of Clwyd-Rhan story I finished almost a year ago, The Rite of Serfdom, was very long and very uneven. The reason was that I worked with only a very rough outline and improvised large chunks of the script. That's actually OK when I'm making a short story, and it's even doable in a longer story if I'm well ahead of the published episodes, but once I started getting behind, the quality of both the art and the script started to vary. Nevertheless, it has some of my best art in the church, Inside Ottar and Grimborg sequences.

One of my aims with each new story is to avoid the mistakes of the previous one, so Headsmen is both short and tightly scripted. One of my other aims is for each page of the story to be better than the best work I've done so far. As a result, the creative process is... intense. Pages that are already inked may still change their appearance completely. In the one above, I tried to create the impression of pitch darkness (inside a tent in the forest at night) without actually making it all black... and without using tones other than black and white.

It'd be easy to do in colour, but colour isn't feasible if I want to have the project finished in time. Besides, I'm a bit fed up with colouring webcomics at the computer.
It would be fairly easy with cross-hatching or old-fashioned screen tones. But If I used those, I'd make it harder to colour the comic at a later date. Or I'd have to create multiple versions which in my experience is the sort of thinking that leads to raving madness in no time. So, time to expand my skills and take advice from my studio-mates.
The page above? Is now 65% covered in ink and still readable. It's looking rather good, in fact.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on December 9, 2005 9:50 AM.

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