Comic Talk, Tips and Tricks

Coloring like a Pro
cyberdog at 6:50PM, June 4, 2008
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Hey this is CyberDog here. Just wondering if anyone has got some good advice about coloring digital comics. Of course I do mine in Photoshop. I think I'm doing okay, but I just see some people that are alot more tighter and professional looking. Check out my comic if you want to see an example of my work.

CyberDog “GETTIN' DRUNK WITH THE DUCK!”
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:02PM
Frostflowers at 1:01AM, June 5, 2008
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I don't work in Photoshop all that often (Painter ftw!), but I have some experience with it, so I'll see what I can find to say.

Just glancing at your comic, it looks like you're using the smudge-tool to smooth out your shadows. Using the smudge-tool leads to kind of… muddy colours, and blurriness, so I usually stay away from it. Instead, I go for using the brush-tool and then fiddling with the opacity settings instead. That way, you can still get the gradient from dark to light, but you don't get the same blurriness in your colours; they immediately look a little tighter.

Also, it looks like you're using a lot of very saturated colours (your blues and reds in particular are very saturated). If you toned the colours down a bit - just tweak them a little until they're not quite so eyeblinding - that might help too. It also helps to have a bit of variety - you use the same shade of blue for everyone (the superhero costume, everyone's blue jeans, etc., etc.), for example. Tweaking that and having someone's jeans be darker and someone else's jeans be lighter might be a good idea.

The Continued Misadventures of Bonebird - a poor bird's quest for the ever-elusive and delicious apples.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:31PM
cyberdog at 12:48PM, June 5, 2008
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Right on, that sounds good. Thanks for checking it out. I'll play with the saturation. I didn't know it was so “eyeblinding”, LOL. My bad. Yeah, I do use that smudge tool alot. I'll try something else.

Thanks again.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:02PM
Frostflowers at 4:05AM, June 6, 2008
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You're welcome. Just glad I could help. :)
The Continued Misadventures of Bonebird - a poor bird's quest for the ever-elusive and delicious apples.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:31PM
Daiconv at 11:58AM, June 6, 2008
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I would say more contrast between your lights and darks. The more intense a light source, the higher the contrast. Like on the last page you posted where the guy is getting punched with the flaming fist, the side of his face farthest away from the fire should be darker and the side closest to the fire should be lighter. There's also hardly any shadows being cast on the backgrounds.

Also, I would say use less primary colors, but that's just my own personal taste.

Looking at how you shaded the guy's face in the first panel of the last page, I'd say you're almost there.

Oh, and really good photo reference can help out and save you some guess work.
without buttcheecks, it's just a hole.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:03PM
cyberdog at 10:18AM, June 7, 2008
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joined: 2-10-2008
Roger, I understand that. I'm going to be working on my next update today so I'll make sure I'll do that. I can see what you're talking about. I was worried about making things to dark. I'm on it!

Thanks
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:02PM

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