I’ve been working more on my inking and cartooning skills lately and figured I’d show the process I’ve been going through. This piece is an Norman Rockwell inspired Doug the triceratops self portrait.
I streamed the work on this live during a stream last week. I enjoy putting the whole process out there as the feedback and back and forth nature of Twitch streamers with the chat always keeps my mind from wandering.
Here you can see I used a stream of consciousness or mind-map to generate idea after idea until I brought the focus in on a few ideas I wanted to sketch out.
Doug is a fun character. He’s not the brightest of the bunch, but despite his flaws he usually succeeds in fun and interesting ways.
Norman Rockwell vs Andy Warhol
I ended up deciding I liked two of the ideas and felt they were both pretty possible to pull off. I’m not a great artist by any stretch of the word so it’s important to choose a goal well within the scope of my ability.
The first idea I liked was of Norman Rockwell’s famouse Triple Self-Portrait and the second was to do a variation of Andy Warhol’s Marillyn Monroe portrait series.
After a brief sketch I realized I liked where the Self-Portrait was going more as there was more to look at and there was more room to be silly (e.g. Doug smoking a pipe and the painting being a far more realistic depiction of a triceratops)
I use a series of felt tip markers to do my inking, but typically I’m using a 0.5 Staedtler fine liner or a Sakura Pigma Micron pen of the same size. The large felt tip makes it easy to control line weight and the archival quality of the ink insures it can survive my sloppy hands using a kneaded eraser to remove pencil lines.
Many times I’ll also employ a series of brush tip markers or other brands depending on what feels right at the time or what’s within reach. I’m a huge fan of my giant prismacolor brush tip.
I’ve only recently gotten a set of copic knock off alcohol based markers. The experiments with them will continue but I do absolutely love their ability to blend. Until I feel more confident with markers I’m going to continue scanning the inks into photoshop, adjusting levels to retain blacks, and then digitally painting.
What you see below is unfinished, but gives a good idea of the colors I’m going to use in the final. I play a lot with my work, switching between colors and throwing things at the wall to see what sticks. If it looks appealing, I’ll run with it.