Monday, January 24, 2011


Every once in a while I am asked to color my own work. I find that adding color often brings the work to life, but if it's done wrong, it can destroy the artwork.  For inspiration, I try to find work that is done well in current comic books. Below is a page that I penciled, inked and colored for MILOS, a story written by Len Strazewski and lettered by Willie Schubert.

After I had inked the page, it was sent to Willie to be lettered. This is 
how it looked when I got it back.

My first step in coloring is to add a multiply layer in photoshop on top of the background layer. "Multiply" is a transparent layer that allows everything below to be seen.
I then add flat colors to the page.

After the first color layer, I add another multiply layer for the shadows. This is what that 
layer looks like without the original color layer.

Here's what the 2 color layers look like together.

After I finish with the second color layer I add a third, and final, multiply layer. Here 
I build on top of the other two layers to achieve a modeling effect. This is what the
layer looks like without the other two.

This is what the final page looks like with all the layers combined.

If you take the linework away, you can see that the color alone
almost forms solid, 3 dimentional-looking objects. 

Coloring is a fun, but time consuming process, especially today.  I'm often astounded by how different the page looks with the added color.  Although it's not my first love,  I do enjoy it.