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View Poll Results: What should I concentrate on next?
Coloring my own work and get better at CGing 5 25.00%
Finishing my comic project 10 50.00%
Make a dvd on how I draw 4 20.00%
Publish a sketchbook 1 5.00%
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Old 01-08-2013, 08:37 PM   #661
hanzozuken
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wow...hmmm. So I've been thinking alot of what Meatloaf and Xion have said and honestly it's been bugging the crap out of me trying to figure out a response or an answer for my coloring. So here goes my thoughts and hopefully it makes sense. I consider myself an artist where the pencils are only the starting point. My thought process of when I color is usually what ever looks cool to me as far as color palette goes and as far as the techniques is concerned, I grew up painting traditionally with acrylic paints so i'm more used to looking at brush strokes than gradients when painting. whilst I would admit that I would love, as I have stated multiple times, see other people color my artwork, I personally do not have a problem not showing off my pencils techniques when it comes to a finished color piece because in my mind, the finished colors is the final product. i am always learning how to make my art look better and i truly do appreciate the feedback so I will try and remedy the problem and possibly develop a celshaded technique that would enhance my pencils.
But I will share my goal and hopefully it better illustrates where I am setting my goal



I am trying to be a painter with the comic style mindset, if that makes sense. I want my pencils to stand alone all by themselves and yet at the same time, they will always look unfinished to me.
I hope this doesn't feel or seem like I am trying to be negative or backdown from criticism, by all means I enjoy people pointing out my flaws because I can never learn enough and I always want to improve. Does this make any sense?
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Old 01-08-2013, 08:51 PM   #662
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Also, quick edit, does this help if I make the layer with the colors more transparent so the pencils stand out further?

This version has the saturation upped a bit.
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:01 PM   #663
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If that's the style you're going for then you need to push the painting aspect a bit further. I don't know if you've noticed, but in a lot of the finer details it looks like some of the pencil work has been painted over. Surfaces that have highlights also have had their thick lines removed (green highlights on shoulders + arms for example). Shadows have been pushed even further so the dark areas are super dark and there's more blending between the solid shadows and the lighter areas.

So I think you should do the opposite of what you did, change the opacity on the colors back to 100%, and push the contrast in the shadows even darker and make sure the areas around it are blended correctly for the type of surface it is. Right now you're relying on your line art for all the shadows when certain surfaces should have a more gradual transition from extreme darkness to light.

I also think you should try to study on up color theory/color selection. Picking good colors based on lighting values is an essential skill for the type of coloring you want to do.
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:09 PM   #664
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yeah, trust me, i've noticed the difference between my painting style and the previous mentioned one(I have it as my desktop background XD). I'm trying to find a happy medium right now between where I am and where i want to be as an artist. I still havn't found my niche yet so basically everything I draw is an experiment to me to find out what works and what doesn't. I rarely use the same brush on 2 different pictures and the technique always varies because I still trying to figure out what makes me happy so far.
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:11 PM   #665
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That aside your line work is pretty much a pro level, so you just need to find your coloring style and go for it and you're totally ready for any kind of professional work.
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:13 PM   #666
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hahaha, i wish. I still find a crap ton of errors that I wish to correct but thanks!! Aside from that I'm super stoked that you are back Xion, I've missed your art!!!
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:18 PM   #667
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Stuff like anatomy, composition, etc, will just come with more experience. But I think the way you render your linework and the general feel is pretty much there.
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Old 01-09-2013, 01:37 AM   #668
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Ah thats the style you're aiming at, well one difference is that the pencils really aren't visible at all.
To me it looks like the colourist has used the pencils has a guide for lighting but has painted from scratch perhaps trying that?

I wouldnt mind having a crack at venom just to see the difference. Have you got a hi res you could send me? prefer inked but i can adjust the pencils if not

Have you taken your stuff around cons? I duno if sequentials is something you play with but your pencilling is up there with the pros well and truly
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Old 01-09-2013, 09:45 PM   #669
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the coloring for the darksiders 2 one is the best thing I've seen here so far as far as coloring goes, you should definitely take it in that direction!!
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Old 01-10-2013, 10:20 AM   #670
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He didn't color that one. :P

I'm glad to see you're not getting discouraged from trying to improve your coloring. I wish I could be more helpful in specifics about what's not working in my opinion, but I can't quite put it into words. It seems like you have a pretty good ability to render lighting in pencil, but then you have weird, conflicting lighting when you color it. It looks like you might be using black, white, and gray more than you should in the coloring, which probably contributes to the muddiness. If you're trying to go full on digital painting from your pencils, lightening them slightly and even tinting the lineart might help as well. You've got a lot of mixing with the gray of the pencils which I think makes it look muddy as well. I think your color choices are getting better, but your rendering is still really soft and airbrushy. That might be fine with a certain style, but your pencils are so crisp and clean that it doesn't work well with it at all.

Again, I only say these things because I want to help, and think it's really great that you've been able to take such criticism and continue to improve.

I know I've said I wanted to try coloring one of your pieces, and hope you don't feel like I'm just saying it to say it. I am terribly busy and color all the time when not at my day job, so it's a little rough trying to fit in coloring for the fun of it. I would like to get around to it one day!
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Old 01-11-2013, 09:25 AM   #671
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@alucard1515 Nah man I dont get discouraged at all, it only fuels my desire to get better. and I aint worried about Swampy although I really can't wait to see how you attack it. Every day I look on here to see if posted something but it's okay I understand you're super busy like me. So I'm also thinking that when I color I do tend to go to the darker color choices just to make other certain areas stand out more which I will try and cut back on and let my color choices reflect the light areas and such. Also I've been thinking about gradients and I tried using them before but I really hate the ragged way the lasso tool looks when I deselect the area so any insight into would be very helpful. But this little part I'm about to post is me trying to achieve the same gradient effect with the airbrush brush at 16% opacity for blending. Does this look terrible ie muddy or does it work or should I "go back to drawing board" and try and find a different method?
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Old 01-11-2013, 12:30 PM   #672
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I know I've said this before, but have you considered inking your pencils before coloring, Hanzo? Even digitally inking would increase the crispness of the lineart to the point of making them appear like the Darksiders II image does, without losing any of the detail the pencils have. It looks to me like the lineart is on top of the coloring in that pic, but I could be wrong.

Inking also makes the lineart easier to tint, as Al mentioned. I did that after taking his advice, and it works well for me.
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:44 PM   #673
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Yeah, I wasn't suggesting to go full on cut and grad, which I have little to no experience doing. I just meant that the rendering looks really soft that conflicts with the sharpness of your lineart. For something like this, I would probably color with a hard round brush (which I use for most things anyway). I switch between pressure for opacity, size, or both.

The latest one you're doing looks better, at least zoomed in here. I would still be careful of your darkest shadows, which seem to be mixing with black, which is where the muddiness comes in.

I'm not sure if I'd suggests inking or not, depends on what you're going for. If you want it to look just like the Darksiders style, then it's easier not to ink it, in my opinion. The finished image you posted has almost all of the lineart covered, and it's much easier to work that into a final painted piece with pencil than with hard, inked lines. I think you said you were going for sort of a hybrid, though? If that's the case, inking might work out better.

Also, when I digitally paint over pencils, I literally paint over them. I try to maintain them throughout the stages where I'm laying in values and color, but then work on top to eliminate the lineart. If you're doing more traditional comic coloring, I do the opposite. It's important to retain the lineart and not obscure it too much (again, my opinion).
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Old 01-11-2013, 03:07 PM   #674
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Quote:
I really hate the ragged way the lasso tool looks when I deselect the area
first thing to do is to make sure that the selection is antialiased, in the tool options at the top. If you mean that it's still jagged looking even with antialiasing, then you should consider making your selections with curves from a pen tool, then converting those shapes to selections.
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:25 PM   #675
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ok @Prof AZ: I stopping inking my pencils for a couple of reasons, one being time and the fact that I suck at inking. I'm not terrible at inking but I can't seem to ink my lines the way I want them most of the time and just leaving them in pencils allows me to not have to worry about making mistakes. I do adjust the levels to make them darker but sometimes I really just to like the penciled look as well.
@alucard ok so I do understand what you are saying, if you can do me a favor and take a snapshot of the color picker in photoshop and show me what areas I should stay in to avoid picking colors that make that muddied look, ie only in this box sort of thing? Also any brush setups you can recommend?

This is what I've done since I read the last posts from you all(which is great by the way!!!)

I used the main hard brush with opacity set to 16(just left it that way) and sort of repainted the shoulder area. With the blue section I used the hard brush at 100% opacity and then use the airbrush at 16 Opacity to soften the edges a bit so it doesn't look harsh. Normally what I do is I use the hard brush at 100 and then use the eraser airbrush at 30% to soften up the blending but I'm trying new things here. Working or no? Also should I just moved this entire discussion to the WIP section of PK of just leave it in my sketchbook.

@darkreaver, just unchecked anti alias but havn't used the lasso yet so I will let you know how the results turn out.
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:49 PM   #676
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Nice work mate, good to see you mixing it up and trying new methods.. I personally am liking the latest shot so yes its looking much better imo. The brighter high lights are giving it a nice dramatic look and the blending isnt as soft. I'm looking forward to the seeing the progression

oh and P.s you want anti aliasing turned on for a smoother result on selections
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Old 01-11-2013, 08:26 PM   #677
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I think it looks much better. It looks like you now have more defined areas of light and shadow, and it seems to make more sense with the way it's rendered in pencil. Just a side note, although it doesn't matter for screen, the blue you're using is out of gamut, and would print much duller in CMYK. A good thing to do to see how it will print, if you don't do this already, is to turn on proof colors. Default shortcut key is ctrl Y, or apple Y if you're on a Mac.

Here's what I mean about where it's starting to get muddy:

It actually doesn't bother me on this image. It's only really in your darkest shadows, which get desaturated anyway.

When I was looking at this more closely, I think part of the problem is the gray from the pencils standing in for shading. Since the lineart is left black and white, it's mixing with the base color, and you're not coloring it differently underneath the blacked in areas of pencil. In the open areas, you are using a progression of hues and values, not just darker or lighter values of the same color. But in those shaded areas, it's as if you were just adding black to the color to get that shade and it looks dull, and if you start mixing these colors overal, then it will start to muddy things up even more. Not sure if that makes sense.

I'm definitely not suggesting to do away with your areas that you're spotting blacks, but I think you should still use a different color underneath these areas (not much darker since the lineart will darken it a lot as is) or maybe do some coloring effects (subtly) on the lineart, especially in these areas.

Also, here are the brushes I tend to use:




The ones I boxed in bold are the brushes I use 90% of the time. The second image should let you see what the settings are (opacity, etc). I have the spacing on them set around 5% to keep smooth lines. Newer Photoshop actually has buttons at the top to change modes to opacity, size, so I don't really need different brushes that much anymore, but I'm used to cycling through them in a particular way now, so it's just easier to keep them.

The brushes I circled in red I use, but just for textural stuff. I don't like going as crazy with texture as some people that color, though.
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Old 03-15-2013, 12:34 PM   #678
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Wow, it's been awhile, nothing new on my front which is good, technically speaking because it means nothing bad has happened to me. But i've been super motivated as of late and besides doing this fanart stuff I'm working on doing animation soon in my art style which is kickass, as soon as I have something to post on that I will share.











Hopefully it feels like my coloring got better. I got tons more drawings I'm working on so I'll show you when I have more updates.
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Old 06-03-2013, 08:15 AM   #679
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wow, been forever since my last post. yes ive been busy.

edited version of bats with inks and different colors, slightly.


















i think that's most of them.
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Old 06-05-2013, 04:23 PM   #680
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Wow that's a huge update. Pencils and Inks are good as always. One thing I've noticed is that you tend to draw your heads in a certain 3/4th view, but it doesn't always fit the body. For example, your Batgirl, Hulk, Starfire, and purple glowy dude, all have their tilted in the exact same manner. It also looks a bit off on the Hulk as his head really shouldn't be in that angle with the way his body is.

In your purple guy and cyclops piece, their energy glows should be reflected on their suit, but it isn't, making the lighting seem less dynamic than it should be.
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