Now might not be the best time for jokes, Molly.
So this page marks a bit of a departure from my typical process. I spent some time this weekend trying to improve the color swatches I use for skin tones, but one thing led to another, and before long I was painting the entire background for the current two-page spread in an effort to see if a different technique would work. Here's the point where I throw in the caveat of I still have a long way to go, but I quite like it. It gives me much better control over light and color.
To put it succinctly, in my previous process I was flatting* every little thing separately and then rushing to light it all, whereas now I'm flatting less and painting color and light as I go, which turns out gives everything more depth and harmony. I wasn't doing it that way because tbh I didn't trust myself to do it. And truth be told, I don't think I could have done it six months ago. I've learned a LOT since then. This process also comes with a major bonus: instead of spending stupid amounts of time flatting, coloring and lighting unimportant things like oh say books on a bookshelf or clothes in a closet, I can get the gist down with a few brush strokes, leaving more time for the really important things like...I don't know...faces?
Anyway, I don't know if you can really tell how much more depth there is from the above image, but I think this image I posted on Twitter says it all.
Granted, I didn't properly light that top image, but it's because I didn't have time to properly light it, and I still ended up posting the page a day late. The bottom image took way less time and it looks better, too. WIN WIN.
I was hesitant to introduce a significantly new process mid chapter, but I decided that if I can produce better pages now, then it'd be foolish to wait, right? Hopefully it's not too jarring.
Okay that's seriously enough text for today. Y'all didn't come here to read a book. XD XD
See you Wednesday, jury duty permitting!
*flatting is isolating elements with unique solid colors so that they can be easily selected for coloring/lighting later. It's a super useful comic technique, and I'll continue to use it, but not to degree I was using it before.