Thursday, June 7, 2012

5 Steps to Coloring Animation Drawings

In Scene 11, Honey's hand flips a light switch. Here's what the composite will look like:

The steps for coloring the animation are exactly like the previous coloring background post except I did not add a texture—

1. The rough drawing on tracing vellum:

2. The clean pencil drawing on animation bond paper:

3. The inked clean-up drawing:

4. The initial base color:

5. The final color with shadows created using the Burn tool in Photoshop:

I opted to NOT use the black outline for the animation art and instead used a colored line simply because I thought it looked better.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Craft is the (Kind of) Enemy

Writer and artist Austin Kleon, creator of the inspiring and informative "Steal Like an Artist," posted this letter written by James Kochalka and excerpted from "The Cute Manifesto."

Dustin Harbin of the excellent Drawn blog shares his interpretation of the manifesto with which I agree. I did, however, qualify my support of this manifesto in the header with "Kind of" because I believe that craft is the enemy ONLY when one is getting started. Once one gets started, however, one should be improving one's craft. So the next comic or film should be better than the last and so on. Otherwise, one will get stuck on the OK Plateau, and we sure as hell don't want to live there!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

5 Steps to Creating an Animation Background

Finally, with Scene 11, I'm doing the first "real" animation and color backgrounds.

Here were the steps I took to make the light switch background. The coloring was done in Photoshop:

1. The rough drawing on tracing vellum (I got the idea to use vellum from Bill Plympton. He uses it as an inexpensive way to plan.):

2. The clean pencil drawing on animation bond paper, this time using a ruler to make the edges of the light switch cover straight:

3. The inked clean-up drawing (I tried skipping this step but scanning graphite pencil makes for ragged selections later when coloring.):

4. The initial coloring. The highlights and shadows were created using the Dodge and Burn tools in Photoshop:

5. The addition of a texture to make it look a bit more realistic:

And that's the first color background for the film. The photo-realism of the switch, however, means that I'll have to maintain that look throughout the film, at least for close-ups.

Future post: the steps to coloring an animation drawing.