Friday, December 23, 2011


This is our secondary poster for December's ALT "News." They call it news, but it's not really "news," however I try to include things that might actually be news to Japanese people, such as paper snowflakes and mistletoe. More on that later, though. Today we're making-of our second "Stronger" Santa piece.

These are the pencils. I forgot to snap a photo before I started markering the face with that peachy color, but this is close enough. I also messed up and forgot to glove his left hand. When you draw you have to really work from internal to external, so you have to essentially draw people and things as unclothed mannequins before dressing them in costume, so you can see his left hand is still pre-costume, while his right hand is post costume, in that it's wearing a glove.

This is a breakdown of how I color everything. First plan where you want your light source to be. Mine is typically in the upper left corner, so since the beard and head are obscuring the arm a bit, that means heavy light will break through more on the right than the left. Next I go over in our core color (red) where I want the darkest area to be. This makes future coats necessarily darker in these areas since it'll be a single coat everywhere else, but doubled down in this shadow area.

Next I go over everywhere else I want red to be, all the way up to the highlight, which is usually negative white space for me (the places you never color are called "negative space"). After that, I go in on the darker areas again with the same core color (red) and just use a bit more pressure on the pen. After that, I go in for the absolute darkest areas using a second, shadow color (golden yellow) and color in those areas of the shadow that I want to go really dark on.

This is the arm process brought to the body. Left is the basic red coloring, center is darker red and golden yellow, and right is all that and a black belt.

And this is what it looks like going to "print." The "culture" typography is based on the Cheers logo but the "merry" design is mine. I challenged myself to add some Christmas iconography to this using simple single-color designs.

Here are some detailed shots of the piece. The markers I used are all those pictured plus an orange and a gray from a different set, plus my set's two green tones (not pictured). I have since picked up a bunch of new markers and am absolutely pumped to give them a work out. I've got a couple new Zebra brand markers (my main set, pictured) including gray, but I've added some of those legendary Copics as well as this interesting soft-color brand called Mildliner. Excited to see what I can do with these.

Merry Christmas,


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