This is best drawing of TR I’ve ever done.
I was giving a brief talk in a comics class and came up with this page to basically give a summary of how I work. This is more or less the way I’ve worked for my entire comics career (I did A Kidnapped Santa Claus differently but we won’t go into that now).
Panel 1: In my sketchbook I’ll work out all the dialogue and key expressions. Once I have about a page-worth I’ll sketch out a rough layout. I will frequently number the word balloons at this stage, especially if it’s a crowded page. I can do a whole thing on word balloon placement.
Panel 2: I’ll take out a piece of Borden & Riley bristol plate paper (I used to work as large as 10 x 15” when I was doing Box Office Poison but I currently draw at a tiny 6.5 x 11”. I thought this would mean I’d finish pages quicker but, well, we know how that worked out).
I’ll use a T-square to rule out the panel borders and roughly pencil in the figures and background elements.
Panel 3: Yes, this is where I put the lettering in. I don’t rule out guidelines or even pencil my lettering. I’m a maverick! Sometimes I’ll make changes to the dialogue at this point, though, as I said, it can be risky. I’ll change a word or two, forgetting that it might have an impact on later dialogue.
Panel 4: Pretty self-explanatory. I use my T-square to rule out the panel borders (unless there’s a specific reason not to).
Panel 5: Starting to ink, what I consider the real “drawing” part of the process. Many times my pencils are as loose as the examples above, though I’ll sometimes do tighter pencils if I’m trying to do an especially tricky or unusual thing. I like to leave as much room for spontaneity as possible.
As stated, I usually start inking the smallest (or otherwise easiest) panel first, since it’s a good way to get the momentum going. I usually complete one panel at time (as opposed to some people who will do all the figures first and do background later, for instance).
Background are what I call a necessary evil.
Panel 6: (Mostly) Done! After I erase the pencils I fill in the blacks with brushes and Windsor Newton India Ink. I’ll also back and fill in details or other things I only noticed after the pencils were gone. I used to erase the pencils after I filled in the blacks but I noticed it tended to lighten the black ink. Back during Box Office Poison I used to use Sharpies to fill in the blacks but they age very badly, turning a sickly brown/green color (it’s the reason I stopped selling BOP pages—I haven’t looked at them in years and I’m a little scared to do so). Lesson: if you plan on selling your originals, use good materials.
My friend’s family created superhero alter-egos for themselves and here’s the comic cover I drew starring them. I tried to make the kids costumes simple enough where they could—in theory—make them in real life.
Cover to RAGE! #5
Cover girl for RAGE! #5
Anonymous said: years ago, you sold prints from Box Office Poison, Do you still have sell that one of all the characters ?
Unfortunately, I do not.
The print originally started as a commission I did around the time the Box Office Poison series ended (2000 or so. I’m a little freaked out by the fact I can’t recall the exact year).
Anonymous said: When is Our Expanding Universe due out?
I’m working on the penultimate chapter right now! The exact plan will be up to my publishers Top Shelf but hopefully sometime in the spring so I can hit the convention circuit. It’ll probably be about 250 pages.
elusivepalejerk said: Your voice sounds super familiar, have you ever done any amateur voice-work for PC mods?
How funny! No, I have not but I’d be willing to do so.
Anonymous said: What is the phone call that ruined Sherman Davies life?
Spoiler warning for my book Box Office Poison below the picture:
Boy, there are even less female superheroes in Who’s Who than there are in The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe.
Anyway, here’s Merry, Girl of a Thousand Gimmicks.
I dug up my old copies of DC’S WHO’S WHO so I’m drawing a bunch of DC characters I’ve never drawn before. Let’s kick things off with Beautiful Dreamer and Baron Bedlam!