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Entries in How-to (10)

Monday
Jul262010

How-To #5; CECE Promo Card #5

Monday 4:30 pm

  My work day seems to be based around meals, snacks, and food. Mexican strikes again as I just enjoyed a great snack of nachos. With a Diet Mountain Dew chaser to counter the effects of getting up at an unholy hour.

  Here's the scan of the card now fully Inked. I mostly used a brush and various sizes of Microns and now it's ready for the next stage. From here on in it will all be computer work.

  I will need to take a break at this point as the clock is telling me real life needs to start happening soon. I hope to get back to this tonight and maybe get one more post in before bed.

Until then...

Later
WM

_______________________________________
Warren Martineck

Monday
Jul262010

How-To #4; CECE Promo Card #4

Monday, 1:00 PM

 Lunch was good, lots of leftovers from the Mexican themed party we had over the weekend.

... And I decided to go with Card "A". The main reasons were; even though the action in B was better, the figure looked a bit out of control and didn't quite fit with Shards character. Card A's figure being more in control with a steady stance felt more right. The flow of the chain whip in card A also felt better and less crowded than it is in card B. On top of all that, lately, in honor of Frazetta's passing, I've been meaning to do a piece where the main subject had their back to the camera. (something he did often) Seeing as how I already have pics of shards face I thought this would be a good time to switch things up.

  What I did was take the rough in Photoshop and add it to one of my Trading Card masters that has all the measurements and crop marks all ready worked out. Here I can adjust the piece, move the figure around a bit, adjust the size or whatever. I then turn the dark pencil lines into a very light Blueline drawing and print the whole thing out on good paper. This is where I go at it with some tight pencils and figure out the little details.


I was having a bitch of a time with the dead (Ogre's?) left hand and redrew that thing over and over. I finally broke out the camera and took a ref photo to make it easier on myself. Now that I have it tight enough and to a point where I'm happy with it, I'll move on to the next stage.

Later
WM

____________________________________________
Warren Martineck

Monday
Jul262010

How-To #3; CECE Promo Card #3

Monday, 10:00 am

Ok, all emails are caught up with, some scheduling is fleshed out and on the white board, and I'm back on the promo.
I spent some time going over a few more thumbnails but didn't come up with anything of worth and still hadn't decided which of the 2 I wanted to do. So I did roughs for both to see what I could come up with.


I use a really dull, blunt mechanical pencil lead to do my roughs. So much easier to erase and redraw. I darkened it up in Photoshop so it's easier to see in the post.

 This normally doesn't happen. Usually I do a few thumbnails, hit the one I want, and then it's off to the races. I don't think I can remember having trouble deciding between two different roughs before. But here are the two and I've yet to decide as I like elements of both.

See you in a few..
WM

_______________________________________
Warren Martineck

Monday
Jul262010

How-To #2, CECE Promo Card #2

 Monday morning; 5:30.
 Seeing as how I need to send out the finished artwork for the promo card this week, I needed to stop what I was working on and jump on this. As I mentioned in the previous CECE post, I'm going to post the process from start to finish and try to do it in real time.
  I've been thinking about the subject of the card for most of the weekend (while finishing up other work and doing all those weekend family functions) and wracking my brain about the what to draw.  
Then I noticed that Larry Elmore is going to be at the show and I got all excited and had flashbacks of my old D&D days. It was a time when I was seriously getting into art, planning on going to art school, and was visually absorbing any cool artwork like a sponge. There was a book I picked up of the Art Of Advanced  Dungeons & Dragons and I couldn't put it down. It was 120+ pages with 5 main artists work and a dozen or so other artists contributions. Larry was one of the artists and one of my favorites. His snow scenes were amazing.
  So, in honor and with a juiced renew for some fantasy, I thought I'd do a fantasy based card. Which works well because I have been developing a character on those lines (Shard) and most of the thought process and work is already done. You can see a bit of that development here in my Lightning Whip post.

I got up this morning about 4 am (not by choice) and couldn't wait to get down to the studio to start and work out some of the images I had in my head. So I did some thumbnails and I think, or I thought, I got what I needed as you can see from the scan. I was going to go with the bottom right image, the last one I drew, of Shard facing towards the camera with destruction and dead giants or Firbolgs behind him.
 Then I went back over the lower lower left image (of Shard facing the destruction) with some blue line, to help show what I drew, just for the blog. I knew what it looked like but I'm sure it would just look like scribbles to somebody else and thought this would make it easier for everyone to see it better. In doing so, I realized I liked the look of that one too, and maybe even more than the one I decided on.

 So I'm off for some caffeine and breakfast and to think about, again, which one to do.

Later
WM

______________________________________________
Warren Martineck

Wednesday
Aug062008

How-To #1, Terminus; The Life And Times Of A Sketch Card


 I've been asked many times how I do my Sketches and what I use. So, I've decided to put together a "How I Do It" type of post.  I've been lucky enough to get full approval from Marvel Comics and Rittenhouse Archives to post this using an upcoming Fantastic Four Sketch Card.  Thanks to them enjoy. 

(Click on the thumbnails for larger image)


This is the classic comic book method. Although I use different styles and techniques for others, the majority of my cards are drawn this way. As far as subject matter, I do put a lot of thought before hand on what I'm drawing. I try to keep every card interesting and also relate each card to the rest of the sketches I'm doing. Yes, portrait cards are easier, but lets face it, they're pretty boring so I try to keep them to just a few and usually only with characters that I will be drawing multiple of. Variety is the way to go but it does take longer. 


1) I start out lightly using a very dull hard lead pencil to rough out the basic forms and layout. These light lines are so much easier to erase when you screw it up or come up with a better composition. I don't use blue line pencils here because it's a finished piece of art and the blue pencil doesn't erase well. 


2) Moving to a softer and sharper lead, I tighten up the lines and details I need to see better. That usually entails, facial features, fingers, little odd whatsit's. I do find as I get better at it and more confident, I need to do less at this stage and go right into inking it which is great time wise. (I did most of the lines here in pic 2 just to show it better.)  


3) I use Black India ink and pens with a comparable quality ink to keep the image strong and fade resistant. I try to use the brush as often as I can to give it a more natural feel and it's much quicker putting down blacks.  I look back at some earlier sets and find the sketches that stand out have more black in them. Using the brush also helps remind me of that and I find myself slapping the black down more now.


4) I use the pens to get in those little details in that make it bit more visually interesting. On the whole, I try not to use markers if I don't have to. I put a lot of time into these cards and I would rather they didn't fade 10 years down the line. 


5) After the inkings done, I start putting down the base colors. I've found that watercolor pencils are awesome for this. They're fast, can cover a wide area or a fine one, and they blend with each other really well when you water them. I have a large stash of black watercolor pencils and use them for the dark areas and shadows. 


6) Blending in the colored pencils is the fun part. Most of the time I use just straight water, but where I want a stronger color, I will blend them with a dye instead. I use Dr. Ph. Martins for this as they're great for an almost radiant color.  Yin and Yang. The dark shadows blended right into a vibrant dye... sweet. 


7) It really comes down to layering. That's what makes it pop and gives the sketch depth and a completed feeling. To finish it off I go in with some Graphic White for highlights, halos, cover mistakes, or whatever. The Graphic White actually pulls the color through from the dyes which makes for a less stark transition. On the Terminus card, I splattered GW with a toothbrush for the blasting effect from his almighty staff. That's also a great technique for space scenes. 



There it is in a nutshell. (a really big nutshell)
Thanks to all for the emails and kind words, hope this was interesting and informative for you. 
Now I need to stop talking about it and sit down and do it. 

Later
WM

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