coloring questions

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coloring questions

Postby haloronin » Wed May 24, 2006 8:46 am

i am SEVERLY impressed with you rcoloring skills on your works.. is there by any chance you cousl explain your colorfilling process to me and any ofhte curious furys ou t there?
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Re: coloring questions

Postby Strega » Sat Sep 16, 2006 8:44 am

Sorry, as usual, for the extremely long delay between your question and this answer. I need to bookmark this forum, I always forget to check it!

I've used a number of coloring techniques over the years. If you'll specify which picture you want to know about, I will explain the coloring technique I used.

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Re: coloring questions

Postby haloronin » Wed Sep 20, 2006 11:07 am

actualy i mean in a series of pictures that you have done.. mostly due to your skunk snakes "evolution" in color with your nyoka(?) picture i notice that the images originaly have a grainy texture to them and seem's a little uneven.

did you originaly use water color/marker/ color pencil.

and from then on with the rest of your work the coloring begins to even out and on some pictures even the shadeing become apparent did you switch to a digital media after finalizing the line drawing?

i find that im lacking any skill in useing my own markers and pencils for any coloring for my own work. so im asking you to see if you have any sugestions on how to handel a problem like this.
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Re: coloring questions

Postby Strega » Wed Sep 20, 2006 8:32 pm

The evolution of my coloring techniques goes like this:

First I tried to use just colored pencil. This produced images with white holes in the color because I didn't know what a colorless blender was. This pic is an example. http://aryion.com/modules.php?name=2&g2_itemId=10902 It's a huge pain to color large areas with colored pencils, so I often left white areas or just colored those areas with markers (at first Prismacolor markers and later Tria markers).

Next I found out about colorless blender -- the pencil kind that you rub over the colored pencils and smear the colors around. This obliterated the white holes but resulted in pale colors as the original amount of color was smeared around. It also had the problem that the blender put down a film of material nearly impervious to any new color -- once you blended it you couldn't layer on any more colors.

I then discovered Tria marker colorless blender, which as the name suggests is a Tria marker with just an alcohol solution. This corrected the above "no new layers" situation but still made the colors pale. You could use colored pencils or whatnot on top of the blended color. An alternative to this was just to marker in the base color, then use colored pencils on top for detail, like in this image: http://aryion.com/modules.php?name=2&g2_itemId=11050

The problem with using markers only is that on large areas they tend to blotch and produce uneven colors. The answer to that was to color the area lightly first with the color I wanted, then use a COLORED tria marker of a lighter shade as a "colorless blender". Then you could put in details with more colored pencils. (At this point I was coloring drawings three times: with colored pencil, then marker, then colored pencil again. It was getting time consuming.) It was also a very effective means of coloring and let me produce work like this: http://aryion.com/modules.php?name=2&g2_itemId=11294

All this while I had an art tablet (digitizer tabled, a Wacom) but my scans were always too blurry to color digitally. It turns out I was scanning with the wrong settings. Once I figured that out I started coloring backgrounds in Photoshop. Then one year at Anthrocon I learmed a method of rendering fur by "smearing" dots in Photoshop. The first drawing I colored this way was "Flowers". http://aryion.com/modules.php?name=2&g2_itemId=10761

Now, after mastering this coloring technique (which is very time consuming, it took 6-12 hours to color a drawing), I realized that it had a drawback. When seen from a distance the fur looked very 'speckly'. I was only happy with a few of them. I tried a bunch of stuff to fix this, but it seemed the technique wasn't good for the sort of drawings I liked to do. I went back to colored pencil work for a little while, then did a quickie drawing with a "cel-like" coloring method.

It turned out that cel shading was fast to do and gave drawings a clean, cartoony look I really liked. You could either shade the drawings with the dodge and burn tools in Photoshop, or use lighter and darker shades of the base color for shadows and highlights. Here's one done with dodge/burn http://aryion.com/modules.php?name=2&g2_itemId=10761 and one with lighter and darker shades http://aryion.com/modules.php?name=2&g2_itemId=10261

The latter is pretty primitive but it showed the potential the coloring method has. There days, other than the occasional colored pencil pic (usually for creatures with black fur, since I seem to be much better at doing black fur with colored pencil than other colors), I do things pretty much with cel shading. Sometimes I throw in other elements like "shaggying" the outlines of furry characters with the smear tool as seen here: http://aryion.com/modules.php?name=2&g2_itemId=82898

These days I combine techniques, using cell shading, "shaggying" and dodge/burn to produce drawings that are easy on the eye and not too time consuming. If I took the time I could make more realistic drawings, but it'd take twice as long to color them as I am a slow artist.

If you want to try out a technique for making good looking furby hand, no photoshop, try this.

You need:
Prismacolor pencils
Tria markers (not too many, of lighter shades of the same color as your characters)

Sketch the character with a lead pencil or light blue colored pencil.

Using colored pencils, shade in the colored areas on the characters. Made sure to rub gently; you don't want to leave lines but rather a haze of color with no distinct texture. This is the most time consuming portion of the drawing.

Now use the lighter colored tones from the Tria marker to "blend" the colored pencil together. This step can be skipped if you are happy with the existing pencils.

Using other colored pencils, primarily lighter and darker shades of the existing colors, add detail like individual hairs. You can use gray Tria marker to add shadows, even going over existing colors. A recent drawing of mine using this techique: http://aryion.com/modules.php?name=2&g2 ... ewsIndex=1

Probably the easiest method to learn is cel shading. Sketch the drawing; ink it so it will scan well. Now scan the inked drawing using the .tiff setting on your scanner, at 300 DPI. Open it in Photoshop. Fill the areas of color with the paint bucket tool. Now select one of the areas. Use the eyedropper tool and make both foreground and background colors the same as the area you've selected. Click on the foreground color and use the arrow in the color selection box to make it a lighter shade of the area's base color. Do the same with the background color box but make it a darker shade. Now use a soft brush tool and put highlights on the character with the lighter shade and shaded areas with the darker one. If you are ambitious you can use miultiple lighter and darker shades; it depends on how much time you have.

That is as much as I have the energy to write at the moment. Any questions? 83

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Re: coloring questions

Postby haloronin » Thu Sep 21, 2006 1:26 pm

no no more questions from this tanuki.. that was plenty all i needed out of sheer appreciation all i can say is thank you (or eat me if you prefer ^_^ haha) pleanty of times strega.

many many thanks..
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