reflectedeve: Pearl from Steven Universe, in a tux and top hat (back to the stage)
[personal profile] reflectedeve
I'm having a rotten day for no real reason, bah. (Just my brain being a jerk!) But things aren't all terrible; someone left cookies in the break room (good timing), and I have some [community profile] processfest catch-up to do.

I'm not going to push myself on the ones I'm having trouble answering, though, so I'm skipping around a little!

Day 7: Luxury Desert Island. I've been feeling ... cluttered. There are just too many things to think about and do! All I want is space and time to just make things (the things I feel like making). So yeah. Luxury desert island day dreams, for sure.

I mean, first and foremost, I'd work on my book, my webcomic, that central project I keep talking about. I've been doing a lot of reworking with it; I'm rewriting the opening (the part I already "completed" in school), filling in gaps in the outline, (re)developing the characters. I'm still struggling with that first plot point, too. There's so much that needs to go into launching this thing into regular updates, and extended time to just focus on it would be a godsend!

But, if I were on this mythic island, I'd also be doing FANART. [community profile] yuletart made me feel so excited and inspired; last week, I put together a fanart to-do list for the first time in ages! I can't believe I've never drawn any Avengers fanart, and I have this little Elementary!Moriarty idea that's been stuck in my head ... and some seriously goofy Teen Wolf stuff (because oh, that fandom needs goofy) ... what I wouldn't give for time when I felt free to mess around with those things! Maybe sign up for another bigbang or reverse!bigbang, too ... I miss drawing for writers.

I still want to do some sort of miniature flist reversebang, but I have no idea where I'll find the time.

Day 9: Tools. No seriously, I carry around WAY too many pens; my colleagues have been known to make fun of me for it. In spite of being exposed to traditional cartoonist tools like nib pens and brushes while in school, I've stuck to my beautiful, portable ink pens as my media of choice. I continue to use Sakura Micron Pigmas and white Gelly Roll pens, the same tools that I picked up from a favorite (amateur) cartoonist's FAQ back in high school.

However, I do appreciate some nice line variation, and while most brushpens (like brushes themselves) are just too flexible for me and my shaky hands/tiny drawing habits, last year, I discovered Zebra Disposable Brush Pens. I wish they were refillable, but nevertheless, they've become my primary inking tool of choice; they get the line variation, but they're much stiffer than most brushpens, so I still have tons of control. For my pencils, I prefer mechanicals (always super "sharp!"), though I switched to blue (or sometimes red, when the shop runs out) lead while in school. Being able to lift my pencils out in Photoshop, rather than erasing and re-inking, is a godsend.

Lately, a lot of people have been trying to convince me to try doing "finished" pencils and leave off inking altogether; it's a hard sell, because inking's my favorite part! But I'm thinking of trying a compromise, and "inking" with pencil (of a different kind/color than what I initially used. My mentor has been recommending these oil-based pencils, so I'm going to try them out and see?

For finished comics, I generally draw on smooth Bristol board; I generally buy 11x14 paper because it's the biggest size that fits easily into my bags, and I can fit two half-legal comic pages (my favorite size) onto it. (I recently did a CD-booklet-sized minicomic, and I could do four pages per sheet then! I always draw at-size.) For less formal work, I like Hand Book artist journals; the 8.25x5.5" size feels really comfortable to me, and I love that I can draw spreads if I want to; plus they have the elastic band, built-in pocket for my horrible random scrap paper notes, and even a handy built-in bookmark.

Sometimes, for major edits, I use translucent vellum (laid over the original work, the changes drawn onto it, and then scanned separately and edited in with Photoshop). I've tried just inking whole pieces on the stuff a few times (thus preserving my pencils), a tip I picked up from another cartoonist's blog, but ... the lines, when scanned, are always full of tiny holes. It's not a big problem if the image is intended only for digital use, but it's potentially an issue for printing, and it can make digital shading a pain, so ... I try not to do this.

I do my image editing (and sometimes coloring or shading) in Photoshop, and I lay out my books for publication (or PDF format) in InDesign, which is an evil pain in the butt, but invaluable. That's pretty much it for software; I do my note-taking, scripting and thumbnailing by hand, although sometimes I'll type up scripts to send people.

That's pretty much my entire toolkit at present; nicely portable, until I have to do the digital finishing! I used to do color pencil work occasionally, but I haven't touched them in some time.

As I've been gaining momentum on my central project, recently, I've been thinking about getting some software to help organize all my notes and drafts and things; it's all getting a bit unwieldy. A friend recommended EndNote (I was specifically asking about freeware, because I'm a bit broke at present); would anyone out there have opinions/additional recommendations/input?

Hmm, I don't know how interesting any of that is going to be, but it was still kind of fun to write out. :)


reflectedeve: Pearl from Steven Universe, in a tux and top hat (Default)

March 2017


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