Monday, April 1, 2013

Thursday's Children: Drawing Stuff

Welcome to the Thursday's Children Blog Hop, where you can share your sources of inspiration during your writing journey. Make sure to check out the other bloggers via the Linky List at the bottom of this post, and if you want to join in, just sign up and go!

Inspired by drawing stuff.

Drawing was my first love.

Yup, you read that right. Before I began to focus on writing, I used to LOVE drawing comics. It started in Junior High / High School. Whenever I was too bored to pay attention in math class, I'd start doodling a character or two. If I really got a chuckle out of one, I'd draw them into a series.

Here's one from a series called "Life as a Sperm". If it made you snicker, click here for more.

Now that I spend most of my time writing, I've started to miss drawing stuff. I thought to myself, why not take a "break" from writing by drawing something? How about a scene from something I've written? How would certain passages look, in "comic" form?

Unlike my doodles of the past, however, drawing comics is now a bit more high-tech. Here's a scene I drew called "Neas VS Ren", from 151.

First, I sketched it out on paper (sketchpad paper to be exact). This was mainly to map out how I might lay out the panels and what might happen in each of them. It also helps with planning the angles and positions for the characters. As it turns out, this sketch was very close to the finished comic.

Next, I recreated the hand drawn sketch digitally, using a graphics tablet and Photoshop. The tablet I use is called Bamboo by Wacom, and was about $100. Best $100 I ever spent! It sure as hell beats drawing with a mouse. By drawing digitally, you can erase mistakes quickly and experiment a bit more with your work.

Drawing something as detailed as a comic involves LOTS of Photoshop layers. There is basically a layer for each individual element in this scene — panels, characters, thought bubbles, colouring, the background. Everything can be drawn and refined individually, without affecting other elements. I LOVE using layers... although it's a slow process, it allows for lots of detail without worrying about messing things up.

The final step is to paint in all the colours and backgrounds (which can't be done the old way, with paper). Ta da! It's finished. Let me know what you think!

Have you ever tried drawing a scene from your story?

Don't forget to check out the Blog Hop, and join in, too!

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