Friday, July 29, 2016

Marker Challenge: Days 13-16

The first days of my marker challenge were centered around the theme of terrariums and plants. I decided to next move to something a bit more graphic, so the current theme is logos and badges. The plan is to do a mix of original designs and existing ones, but for now I'm doing some fanart of existing images. The first set includes the Lantern Corps rings from DC Comics. I felt it would be boring to have just one a day, so I paired them up.

In the first themed set, I did use various templates and rulers to help get curves or straight edges, usually for either the sketch or the final drawings. Those templates, especially the circle templates, were used a lot for this theme because there were so many circles involved. If I did it again, I would probably use the templates for both the sketch and the final inks.

Another challenge I wanted to address was getting some sense of form across in the rings, that they had raised and lowered edges within the insignias. I used simple darker strokes to indicate shading and a white gel pen or color pencil to do highlights. I might be tempted to come back to these later and try doing a better job at getting that depth across.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Marker Challenge: Days 8-12

Still going on with the daily marker drawings, and I'm finishing up the first theme, the plants and terrariums. I'm not dismissing opportunities for coming back to it. In fact, I look forward to doing more of them when I've learned more about drawing plants and using markers. But a topic can keep me interested for only so long.

Below are the past five days' of drawings. There is more playing with colored pens for inking and "line-less" elements.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Marker Challenge: Days 1-7

I've been interested in markers, namely Copic markers, for a few years. I began my collection when I went to my only San Diego Comic Con around 2005 or '06, and I've added to them over time. I think I've got a good enough colors to do pretty decent pictures. But, as with so many things, I've been pretty slow to use them, which means I haven't gotten very good at them.

I've tried to learn from various online tools as well as some books on it. The online resources are good, but the books have largely been older (and some new) rendering books that focus on design and not the illustrative artwork I've seen by many artists. Thankfully, I've found a few instruction books that give some more illustrative advice, such as iii Academy (which just published the first collection of lessons) and the Intro to Coloring with Copic Markers, both from the North American distributor, Imagination International. Those resources helped me get a better grasp of the basics and to go from there.

But I still have to practice it, hence a challenge: draw a simple marker illustration every day. I've done pretty good so far,  having finished my first week.

 I sometimes start with a thumbnail sketch in my planning sketchbook, and sometimes I go without a clear plan. I have been using references for ideas, planning, and colors. I then pencil in the sketch on Strathmore artist tiles, currently the sketch artist tiles. They aren't the greatest paper for markers, but I chose them mostly for the convenient size; at 6x6 in., they aren't so large as to be so intimidating that I can't put something down or finish easily, but not so small that I can't get detail in. I then ink with the various marker pens I have before going into inks.

 If you wish to follow on a daily basis, you can follow me on Instagram.