Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Groundhog Waltz, Illustration Process - by Diana Ting Delosh

Here's a peek into my illustration process.
My tools from L to R: mechanical pencil, 0.7mm HB black lead, kneaded eraser, Micron  Brush Pen, Higgins Black India Ink, brush, 00 Rapidiograph pen, Black India Rapidiograph Ink Universal waterproof for paper & film, assorted brushes, paint palette for mixing my colored inks.
 It all starts with a rough pencil sketch. Usually I refine it. Sometimes I'm bold and reckless and just plop the sketch on my light box, throw my watercolor paper on top and begin inking. Ideally, IF the sketch is spot on I should be able to ink totally on the light box that way there are no pencil lines to erase. However reality is messy and sometimes in the middle of inking I realize that the foot looks off or whatever and I start fixing it and then it's hard to see where I should ink so I'll finish inking on my drawing board.
Groundhog Waltz - Rough Pencil Sketch © Diana Ting Delosh
Haven't decided if they should wear hats or not.
Lately, I'm using either the Micron Brush Pen, truly water proof -Very  important as I paint over my ink work, or a brush and a bottle of waterproof ink for some of my line work. The problem with felt tip pens is that the point wears down and the black greys out. Love the thick lines and the ability to taper off to nothingness. Some details I add in with  Rapidiograph pens.

Before inking, I decide on the hierarchy of my illustration. What's the focal point? I use the more dynamic thick/thin lines on my primary focus. Thinner lines on my mid-ground/background. I'm right handed so I go from left to right to avoid smudging my ink. I also begin inking something crucial, so if I screw up, I haven't just wasted oodles of time. On the other hand, sometimes I just keep going and fix it in Photoshop later. Scan my inks after erasing any smudges or pencil marks.

After the ink is scanned I'll add in any pencil marks that I want for texture or further delineation.
Groundhog Waltz - Ink © Diana Ting Delosh
Sometimes beginning makes me nervous so I will ease into a piece. Sneak up on it. I'll start by painting the eyes or something else small. Lay down shadows in indigo and or sepia. Before I know it I've found my way into the illo and am painting away. After the paint has dried, I adjust colors as needed. I paint with colored inks, using them like watercolors. I like the brilliant colors. Like watercolors, it is a transparent medium. I can darken, mute or slightly alter a hue but I can't lighten. Thankfully most oops may be fixed digitally. Scan, Photoshop - Voila - it's done. Now off for a sugar fix.
Groundhog Waltz - Final Art © Diana Ting Delosh
Twitter: @dtdelosh

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