Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Daily Quick Sketch: Birthday Bee

This is a sketch of a custom birthday card I made for my wife's birthday a few years ago. I decided to shade the pencil sketch with gray Copic markers. I find coloring with alcohol-based markers allows more control on how and where the color goes on the papaer.

Digitally color version using Photoshop's Hue/Saturation sliders to change the coloring

The biggest problem I have using marker is . . . once the color is on the paper, you're pretty much stuck with the results you get. Most water-based/ink markers tend to color too dark, bold or over-power to the line work. The solution I found to this problem was to use alcohol-based markers, (such as Copic.) Alcohol-based inks give far more control when coloring with markers.

The original pencil sketch that has been colored and shaded using gray markers

It does this in two ways:

1.) Alcohol based ink spreads more evenly, which eliminates the streaks, white gaps or darkened lines usually seen with water/ink based markers. The end result is a smooth and even texture with a slight watercolor look.

2.) Alcohol based markers allow you to build up to darker tones by simply going over the same areas with the same marker. This is a gradual build up too, allowing a lot of control with shading and highlighting.

It's important to use the proper paper. Some papers absorb ink too quickly which doesn't allow the proper even spread. Marker Paper or Mixed Media will usually give the best results.