This is how I make a page

figure i’ll show my current process. people seem to dig that stuff. the process is heavily subject to change as i find new ways to be lazy.


^ these are the layers i use in case anyone is interested. i use a surface pro with clipstudio. i like clip a lot but am by no means an expert. part of me would like to do it with ink on paper but digital is way faster and more flexible. i may experiment with traditional media for a mini-chapter at some point before i commit.


i have a rough script and plot points that i have written but no huge storyboard. so from my rough idea of what i wanna do i then make the background sketch. i draw this in blue but i changed it here to black just to help visibility. after that i make the panels (which clip makes very easy to do).

i pretty much sketch it straight on the page as shown above and occasionally use the lasso tool to move parts of the image around to get a composition i like. that level of detail is about the best balance for me between intricacy and speed. i often find if i make the sketch too in-depth then when i do the final lines it looks really stiff and lifeless.

often i’ll play around with a few panel layouts to get the flow right but generally i do one page’s layout at a time. i rarely sketch out more than like 3 pages in one go. ‘wing it’ is a dirty term to some people but that’s basically what i do. me and my soul mate toriyama. if i storyboarded out the entire comic chapter all at the beginning i would 1) be bored to tears and 2) likely waste a ton of time because i’ll get to page 3 and decide i want to change something, meaning i’ll have to storyboard a lot of it all over again. again, some people work that way but i do not.


after that i do the main lines. it really doesn’t take super long assuming i’m not braindead. i do most of it on the Char[acter] layer and extra stuff on the FG and BG just so it doesnt get too messy. i’ve been using vector layers lately. they seem to work well, especially in regards to coloring and rotating parts of the image. a lot of times if i drew a character’s arm too long or something i’ll just lasso it and move and rotate it and whatever. vectors make that pretty painless. if it was raster it would be all blurry and nasty and also a pain to color.


to further help coloring i also work with aliased lines at a big resolution. if they were anti-aliased i couldn’t use the fill bucket tool as easily. after i shrink and export the final image for web use you can’t even tell.


then colors (b&w in this case). clipstudio makes it easy to fill in big areas even without completely closing the lines. after that i also do the stars (which are just a scatter brush). for this chapter i am using two gray shades (30/50%) and it seems fine. i may do something else in the future. i did it with just the one 30% gray originally but it was a bit flat at times. way back when i used yellow instead but i switched it out for a few reasons.

after all that i do the speech bubbles and that’s pretty much it. in total it takes a few hours give or take. i really don’t have it in me to draw for like 8 hours like some people. i’m sure in a year i’ll have refined the process further but i thought i would share. feel free to ask questions if you dig.

A tablet aside

no page this week unfortunately. still got a doodle for yall


(patented rob liefeld tinyfeetâ„¢)

i hadn’t really drawn sago (ch 1 character) since I got my new tablet. the main reason why the two chapters look a bit different is because by the time I started ch 2 I had a tablet with a screen. I don’t care how good your hand-eye coordination is, you are not drawing consistent and quick straight lines without seeing your pen. it was really hard to do any hatching other than very tiny lines and that just isn’t enough flexibility.
the new tablet is a bit harder to vary the pen pressure with on the other hand, but I’d by far rather have accurate lines. i’m way too lazy to take more time than I need to.

I also started using Clipstudio instead of photoshop and I personally like it a lot more. it makes it a lot easier to color and set up panels. the main thing it does worse is text (it isn’t great, but has gotten better). still recommend clipstudio to anyone though, it’s a waaay better price too.

at some point i’ll get a big ol off-brand cintiq type monitor tablet and then i’ll really be captain lazy. but doggone wait till you see how spicy my lines are then champs