Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Alterna Originals Sketch Cards update - Adam Wreck card complete

Adam Wreck - completed card.

Back in mid April I posted about the Alterna Originals Sketch card series that I'd be working on for Alterna Comics. At the time I promised I would document my creative process for these cards and post it here. This is the first trading card series I've worked on so I've been taking my time and making sure I put forth my best effort. That said, I initially drew all five cards before stepping back and taking a good, analytical look at them. 

I was happy with two of the penciled cards and the other three just didn't seem good enough to me. So, being my own strictest critic, I went back to the drawing board and have re-drawn two of the three so far. My second attempts were much more to my liking. 

Rather excited by the fact I could hold four penciled cards in my hands that I was pleased with I immediately moved on to inking those cards and left drawing the fifth card for another day. 

Four sketch cards, inked and ready for paint.

Above is a sneak peek at the four cards in the inking stage. I'll get to back to the other three cards in a future post, but today I wanted to show the inked version of the Adam Wreck card, top left, which is stage two of my production process. 

Adam Wreck - pencil sketch.

Above is stage one of the Adam Wreck trading card - simple, clean pencils. Keep in mind that these cards are tiny, only about 2 inches by 3 inches, so a simple and clean layout is essential. I have to say, I've never really worked this small before. It has some pros and cons. One, because it's so small, the work gets done quite quick. On the other hand though, it's tough to get in all the detail you want at this size. Pencilling and inking this small wasn't the biggest problem, but painting posed a bit more of a challenge.

I chose to work with watercolour as I feel it's a classic medium and I just don't like the blendable markers that many artists work with these days. Besides, I feel I can learn a lot more by teaching myself the classic methods of painting which will, in turn, carry over to digital painting. Watercolour is certainly not the ideal medium for use on these cards though. The paper stock, while thick, is closer to bristol board than watercolour paper. The paint is much quicker on the card paper. By this, I mean, it sets into the paper almost as soon as you lay it down and there isn't much chance of reworking the paint by applying more water, etc. In fact, by applying more water the card paper quickly begins to deteriorate. So, it's a touch and slightly tedious process. On top of these technical challenges I really haven't worked with watercolour a lot recently and as a result I'm a bit rusty. All in all though, I'm relatively excited with the results on the Adam Wreck card and I'm excited to move onto the remaining cards.

Oh yeah, and I still need to get a fifth card in the works.

Leave me a comment if you like and be sure to check back soon for a look at the rest of my completed cards.


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Sammi Woronoff said...

These are great! You did a nice job not crowding the picture with too much in the background. I'm impressed with how small these are, and how well you were able to include detail with such small parameters.

I think it was a good choice going with watercolor for the medium, and he looks great. It shows really nice value that you wouldn't get with markers. I'd love to see how the others turn out!

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