Before, After and After

I haven’t done an art-related post in while. So here’s a new one!

One thing that really intrigues me is the before and after of a piece of artwork. In fact, not just art, I love following the making process for a lot of things such as films, animations, even food packaging! I’m the type of person who enjoys watching behind-the-scenes footage – it always seems so interesting!

Today, I’m posting a before/after/after comparison of a page I worked on a couple of weeks ago.

SketchThis is the initial pencil sketch. Rather scruffy, isn’t it? :mrgreen: This stage helps me get an idea for how the page should look (sometimes I go through a few sketches before I decide which one looks best!) I drew this in my big sketchbook which has fairly huge pages. This is good because I can use the edges to write additional notes to help me with the inking/colouring processes later. It’s also quite useful for scribbling/testing my pens before I ink out the next stage on nicer paper (we don’t want leaky pen splodges!!).

(Fun fact: You may have noticed the ‘Aaw’ in the left upper corner of the page, slightly cut off from the photo. This has nothing to do with anything. I was speaking with someone whilst drawing this and though I don’t remember the exact conversation, I concluded it by saying “Aaawww!!” in a ‘oh darn, I lost!’ kind of way. The other person told me I sounded like Gohan from Dragon Ball Z (for any DBZ fans, the scene where he’s climbing up the cliff but then slips back down to the ground – “aaawww!”). I laughed and said “Aaawww!!” again and, at the same time, wrote it in the corner. Again, this has no relevance to anything :mrgreen: )

Page 14 - beforeSo this is what the page looks like re-drawn on A4 paper and inked with black pen. This particular page, I also experimented with grey pens too (hence the grey screws and scarecrow’s grey straw). You’ll notice the poster image is different and much bigger here than in the initial sketch. That was simply me deciding it should be a more prominent part of the page – that means make it bigger and take up more room!

The actual scanning process doesn’t take long, but I’m debating with myself whether it’s best to scan black-and-white (which omits all pencil lines) or to scan in colour (which seems to show slightly crisper quality lines). For this page, I chose the ‘colour’ option but as you can see, it’s picked up a lot of stray lines and the blacks don’t look quite as black anymore.

I also didn’t write any dialogue/text at this stage because I knew I would add it later on the computer.

Page 14The final image! This is after doing some digital editing – namely, adding panel frames, erasing pencil marks, straightening up lines, adding colour, adding dialogue…

This is all very experimental at the moment and is very much a learning process. In other words, I don’t always know what I’m doing! Which means my method to this stage is rather haphazard. It’s a lot of “try this, try that, see what works, learn from tutorials” etc. For this reason, this stage usually takes the longest.

And yes, I made yet another change – I chose a slightly different set of words for the poster!

In conclusion!

It’s an interesting thing seeing how different the first sketch is to the final product, isn’t it? πŸ™‚

I am not, by any means, an expert. The pros might not have deviated from their original sketch quite so much! Or maybe they do. I don’t really know since I’m not a pro πŸ˜›

Above all, the process of getting from start to finish was definitely a fun one. I always think the best part of behind-the-scenes footage is how much fun it usually looks. There’ll be amusing bloopers or people goofing around in their free time. It goes to show that the fun doesn’t come just from the finish line; it comes from the journey! (Yes, a little clichΓ©, but I’m sure everyone loves a little clichΓ© now and then :mrgreen: )

Hope you liked an inside glimpse of my drawing process!

P.S. I really love references so I drew the poster image in reference to Wicked the musical πŸ™‚

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About Lily

Lily is the blogger's name of an overimaginative, positivity-powered, and potentially awkward introvert girl who likes to think she's "quirky" (though it's very possible that she's just plain weird!) She loves music, musical theatre, art & comics, inspirational stories, languages, expressive people and anything that is a little eccentric.
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8 Responses to Before, After and After

  1. Pingback: Dragon Hearted Girl – Chapter 1: Page 14 | Dragon Hearted Girl

  2. You’re super talented! I like your style of drawing people. πŸ™‚

  3. Aaawwwwwwwwww!!

    (Sorry– I just had to put that in there!! : )

    Nice work, Lily! I thought it turned out great, and, like yourself, I love seeing the process behind the final art. For me, your key words were: “try this, try that, see what works.” Yes, indeed: experimentation– the very best way to learn, IMO.

    Great post, keep up the good work! : )

    • Lily says:

      This comment coming from you, the brilliant illustrator Mr Mark Armstrong… I am over-the-moon flattered (serious pancake situation happening right now)! :mrgreen: What a huge compliment! Thank you so much!! πŸ™‚ And yes, experimentation is definitely the way to go πŸ™‚

      P.S. Aaawwwwwwwww!! To you too πŸ˜›

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