I meant to update again earlier — but then I got swallowed by PHP. I’m overhauling my website, both because I wanted a new design and because I wanted to integrate the art and writing parts, and it kind of took over my life.
The good news: I should be done soon. PHP, you are my bitch.
Anyway, on to the WIP!
The last picture I left you with bothered me on several levels, most of which I ended up fixing by the time I took this picture. For one, the eyes are less terrifying. (They’re still a little uneven; it’s the same in the photo, which makes it all the more difficult to get right.) For another, I fixed up the colors. In this version, there’s more straight-up red, straight-up blue, and straight-up yellow. In the previous version, those shades got mixed together too much, which made the entire thing look kinda ‘meh’.
Although this is still HOURS from the final version, the other WIP shots don’t really show it. The fastest progress is always at the start of a drawing – I can get the main set-up and color blocking done in under an hour. The thing that takes up most of the work is finetuning. That’s the part where I really want to light the entire drawing on fire.
One example that I touched on earlier: the paper. I usually go with standard drafting paper for my work — white, smooth, thick, designed for pen/charcoal/etc. For this drawing, I went with proper pastel paper. I felt awesome. Like a professional. Investing in pricier paper! Finally matching up my materials!
Yeah, I’m totally going back to the cheap-ass drafting paper.
The thing with pastel paper is that the struture is very different. If you look at the above drawing at full size, you’ll probably see the little flecks of red shining through everywhere. In theory, I like that — but in practice, it’s hard to keep it that way. If you use one layer of pastel, it’s no problem. If you use seven layers of pastel, eventually, those red dots fade away — especially in areas where you keep erasing and adding and fiddling with details. This makes the problem areas really ‘cluttered’ and stand out from the other parts where the red shines through. Because of that, I actually ended up grabbing a fruit knife to scoop out pastel and show the red again. (Later on, I found out an empty mechanical pencil did an even better job.)
In case it’s not obvious: this was really irritating.
Another annoyance was that, when I erased, sometimes the paper would turn black.
Seriously. There was no getting around it. The paper turned black, and I could try to erase that blackness, or scrape away the top layer of the paper, or go over it with all kinds of different pastel colors, and it would stay black.
I’m pretty sure that’s not how erasers are supposed to work.
So there’s a small peek into the frustrations that go into these things sometimes. Ha! The last installment — featuring pretty frames! — is coming soon.