So I’ve had a few questions in the past asking how I colour my pictures and I’ve FINALLY got my ass into gear to create this post showing how. I’m pretty sure those with better equipment and more experience with digital may well cringe at my technique, but I sadly have to make do with what I’ve got and, at the very least, it gets the job done.
The example I’m using for this is my Phantom of the Opera Batjokes pic which can be seen properly here
1. So the program I use is GIMP. If you’ve not heard of it, it’s free art software that works like a basic version of programs such as Photoshop and can be downloaded online to pretty much any computer.
Once shaded, the drawing is scanned and opened up in GIMP. Now for this picture there is a lot of black and it looks messy as Hell and once upon a time I would’ve coloured all the black in with pencil but, to be honest, its just easier to colour the black in digitally and it saves my poor little 4B pencils from having to work quite so hard.
2. I'm very particular with the order of how I draw my pictures and colouring is no different. The first thing I colour is always the skin and it’s literally a case of putting the opacity level down pretty low and then just colouring over the section. It’s basic but it works :D
If I want a picture to be particularly vibrant I’ll adjust the opacity but generally I stick with keeping it quite low so the detail of the shading underneath isn’t lost.
3. Then it’s on to the Batsuit, which is usually coloured a pretty blue, because it fits in with the comics pretty well and I just like the way it looks, really. Of course my main go to reference for the suit is from The Dark Knight because I just frikkin love that Batsuit! Although, for this picture I’ve made the nose of the cowl more pointy because I thought it would fit in with the period feel more.
4. Now for Joker, it’s actually kinda hard to see any colour on there, but if you look carefully between this pic and the previous one you’ll see a difference:
The reason I use the turquoise for his skin is because with everything else coloured in, his skin kinda looks dull and lifeless if left untouched. But the hint of colour gives it a nice almost metallic effect that I really like. Of course the opacity is extremely low, because anything more would leave him looking like a Smurf and I think even J would struggle to pull off that look!
5. Now it’s on to the hair and eyebrows for J. I don’t have a set green I use, it differs depending on the kind of J I’m using and pretty much how I feel at the time. I do often go more towards the bluish hint with the greens though, cos dat purdy.
With the hair it’s usually one layer of colour, before highlighting a few strands just to make them stand out more. I don't often make the eyebrows as vibrant as the hair because it’s a bit much for the face otherwise.
6. And now one of my favourite bits to do! J has messy make up in this pic (which I always enjoy!) and instead of the normal paintbrush tool I use for everything else, I go for the airbrush one, just to make the smudged lipstick more realistic and to keep the edges soft.
For his eyes, they’re green but I add yellow highlights to make the green seem more acidic, cos J’s eyes ain’t just any ol’ green!
7. And then it’s colouring in J’s suit and, yeah, he may be the Phantom, but he still likes purple! It’s exactly the same process as the rest, just slapping the colour over the top.
8. So, with all the colouring done, it’s time to adjust the contrast and shading. I use the burn tool for that and just generally go over the entire picture two or three times until I think it looks right.
9. And then I fill in all the black sections…
10. …before colouring in the background and then using the burn tool again just to go over any parts that I think need a little extra adjustment, mainly around the eyes and the hair, just picking up the shadows that need to be a little bit darker.
11. Aaaaaaand we finally get to this! The finished product!
I’m just gonna take a moment to squee over how happy I am with the mask! I was worried at first, but after shading it looks ok woohoo!
So I hope that was interesting and now you finally know all my arty secrets! (They’re absolutely not all that secret and pretty simple and basic but *shrugs*). If there is anything else you wanna know feel free to ask and as always thank you, thank you, thank you for all the support and kindness, it means the world to me. Y'all gorgeous!!!!