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Twitch, Twitch - Part 14

6th Aug 2012, 4:07 PM in Twitch, Twitch
Average Rating: 4.8 (5 votes) Rate this comic
Twitch, Twitch - Part 14
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Author Notes:

KentuckyFriedPopcorn 6th Aug 2012, 4:07 PM edit delete
Hey, let's change the art style in mid-stream! I realize this is a no-no, but KFP is also in a constant state of adjustment and refinement as I work out what I like about it and don't like. The one big frustration I've had so far has been trying to do my inking on the computer using the tablet - I've just found it virtually impossible to get the quality of results I've wanted that way. This strip marks my switching entirely to hand-drawn pen & ink on paper.

I'm curious to hear opinions - For my part, I think the art looks better, and much more refined and detailed. I have always enjoyed working with technical pens and prefer that look to the heavier brushwork effect I was getting from the digital inking.

Also, there is a HUGE speed advantage for me. I've been looking over what works and what doesn't, and the majority of my grueling grindwork has been on the computer. It's also the part of the process that is no fun. I enjoy the drawing, the hand inking and the writing, but doing computer toning and shading sucks. This time, I was able to do twice the length of strip and pack in a lot more subtle expressions and dialog due to the speed advantage of hand inking.

I may ultimately drop the shading too - When comparing them side to side, I more and more prefer my original inks to their digitally shadowed counterparts. We'll see. Anyway, the story barrels on towards its ultimate conclusion!
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cattservant 6th Aug 2012, 4:36 PM edit delete reply
Yay you're back!
Very subtle, very subtle indeed!
Last panel: I guess it all depends on which part of the elephant you grab a hold of...
KentuckyFriedPopcorn 6th Aug 2012, 5:14 PM edit delete reply
Last panel - Yeah, I actually wondered if I could pull off a joke out of just an expression. I thought it was a fun time to highlight the differences in George and Christopher's thinking processes.
cattservant 6th Aug 2012, 4:42 PM edit delete reply
Don't know if it's a good or bad thing that I didn't notice the style change until reading the ANs. For sure I like the extra helping of comic!
KentuckyFriedPopcorn 6th Aug 2012, 5:11 PM edit delete reply
That's probably a good thing. At least, it means that the art didn't get worse to you! It's really nice to be able to sit down and sketch out a panel on paper in a few minutes instead of awkwardly struggling with the Wacom tablet and having every panel take an hour.
cattservant 6th Aug 2012, 5:23 PM edit delete reply
And, if your pencil crashes you don't have to start over!
KentuckyFriedPopcorn 6th Aug 2012, 5:28 PM edit delete reply
It's a little frustrating because I feel a bit behind the digital revolution, in that so many people seem to adapt to tablet and computer drawing so easily. I realize I'm probably largely being hyper-sensitive, but I look at my paper inking and it looks SO much better to me than what I did by tablet.
Unka John 6th Aug 2012, 6:33 PM edit delete reply
Unka John
I prefer the hand drawn product.You can always use ink washes instead of computer toning. I'm willing to bet you'll find that quicker as well.
KentuckyFriedPopcorn 6th Aug 2012, 6:57 PM edit delete reply
I'm very tempted, though I would probably just use pencils for my grey tones instead. Kind of depends on the accuracy of our cheapo scanner, though.
gary cramer 7th Aug 2012, 1:54 AM edit delete reply
gary cramer
Love the new look, it didn't change the feel of the comic at all. I'm digging the way the story is going also. Finally, someone who smarter then Gilligan and the Skipper!!!!
KentuckyFriedPopcorn 7th Aug 2012, 3:05 AM edit delete reply
Glad you liked it! I kept noticing that adding the big greyscale tones was totally distracting the eye from the inking detail, so I thought I'd let it fly based on just the strength (Such as it is) of the inking.
Blurlok 17th Aug 2012, 12:52 PM edit delete reply
I suggest dong what's going to keep you enjoying the creation - it's all great work. I'm not an artist but I appreciated the use of black and darkness of some of the previous panels (like evil twitch at the window or sitting in the tree watching the town burn). But the characters are what drives the readers interest here and nothing suffers by my observation.
KentuckyFriedPopcorn 18th Aug 2012, 3:57 PM edit delete reply
I'm sure I will return to some dark panels in future. I just didn't see any way to visually make these last couple of pages too dramatic - They're mostly conversation and I wanted the dialog to be the interest driver, not the pictures. That's why I left the panels so simple, that I figured adding background details would not only be useless but would also distract, in this case. I'll get some more scenes in, though. There are some upcoming strips that will show more of the town, the neighborhood, and George and Christopher's houses.
Also I'm fiddling around a bit with the shading, going from flat tone shadows to a grey scale watercolored look - Here's a comparison preview, with the old method on the left and the new method on the right: http://i.imgur.com/016YT.jpg
If anyone hates it, let me know now!
hankinstein 24th Aug 2012, 12:18 PM edit delete reply
I know what you mean about struggling with line quality using a tablet. I have a Wacom and it's a constant challenge to try and not make lines look "pixelly." I am getting better at the tablet, but boy that thing takes some getting used to.

I like the new style, and I understand about trying to find exactly the style you want. I worked for years and years. Mine still changes, but more in a more subtle way now. All cartoonist's styles will change throughout their lives, I think, intentional or not.

I think in this page the lines look very good. You can tell a difference from the traditionally done ones, but it isn't that big a difference (at least not to me).
KentuckyFriedPopcorn 24th Aug 2012, 3:10 PM edit delete reply
Just FWIW - This is the page with traditionally drawn lines on paper - All the previous comics were inked with the Wacom on the computer. Your last line sounded like you had it backwards. The main difference I find with drawing it by hand is that I tend to put in a LOT more detail... Just compare the pic of Christopher standing with hands in pockets with any similar shots from previous strips. It's so much easier to draw clothing folds and stuff by hand, when trying to draw it on the Wacom usually provoked a "OK, that's good enough and enough struggling, geez" reaction in me.

One odd note - I've just come into ownership of an iPad thanks to our biz, and am wondering if I'll be able to seriously adapt any of my coloring & shading work to it. It would be nice to be able to do all my digital toning work while lying on the couch...