Since the last Fatalysia post I wrote around here some time ago,this project has been advancing lots.You can go to the minisite of issue #1 (garabatorama.com/secuencias/fatalysia_01.h
Now,would you like to know how those pages are done?
First,Liam (a.k.a. bigredcheese) writes the script —who appears where,what do they do,what do they say,and so on.For this scene in particular,we've got Susan (our heroine) and her best friend Christan talking about some important issues for the plot.The fist step is to transform those words into pictures that fit in a page.So,we need a thumbnail,an small rough sketch that will help visualize the page layout,body language,graphic storytelling and such.
I usually draw these with a common writting pen on even more common sheets of paper.Sometimes I need to make 2 or 3 different thumbnails before getting an ideal option.When it's ready,I then type some key phrases for quick reference and send it to Liam for some feedback (by the way,sorry for for the blurry parts,but we don't want to reveal too much and spoil the story).Once we both are completely sure that it'll be fine,it's time to begin doing the actual art.
Pages are drawn in card board.The outer blue lines indicate the page perimeter,and the 2 inner areas help as a reference to keep all important details inside the page.It would be a shame if drawings bleed outside of a comfortable reading area,you know.
Using a 0.5mm HB mechanical pencil,I draw some loose lines to indicate where are every panels,and then write the complete text of what every character is saying (again,sorry for the blurry parts).
This is not the way the texts will show up,it's just a reference to remember what kind of emotions are portrayed and to know how much space I can use for the drawings or if I need to change the sizes of the panels.
The lines are very thin actually,but I used some Photoshop effects in this scan to help you visualize this.
Next step,is use a square and a 0.8 technical pen and draw the borders of the panels.Then,one more time using the mechanical pencil,it's time to actually begin drawing.You'll notice there's not many details yet.Normally,in this stage I should be drawing the most detailed and clear as possible,but since I'm going to ink my own stuff,I'll add all the details directly with the ink (also,I'm a bit lazy and it annoys me to draw to many lines that will be erased anyway).
Using a 0.4 technical pen,I clean up the drawing,add details finally and correct some mistakes.If you watch closely Susan's hair,you'll notice that the small bang in her forehead is different from the original pencil doodles.I checked earlier pages and saw that in them the bang was pointing to her right,not the left.It may sound picky,but when you draw the same character page over page,you must keep it consistent.
Same goes for backgrounds.The first panel has no background because I drew it later,copying it with tracing paper from the second panel.
When the ink has dried up,it's time to erase all pencil lines and go to the final stage...
For the final stage,I use a #4 brush to add volumes,shadows,textures and some other efects like the trees in the distance.I could use markers or a digital tablet,but I like the tactile experience and the more organic kind of lines you get with a brush —artsy or geeky,you make the call.There's still the lettering left to do,but that's other story for another time.
And that's all,boys and girls.The same process is repeated over and over again for every and each page,but don't worry,it ain't that hard —it's really fun actually,at least for me