In case anyone is interested…this is a brief walk through of how we create a page for Ties That Bind.
1.) The name/thumbnail/layout/whatever
Call it what you want, this is the first step to making a beautiful page. Ayu (the writer), draws the layout of the page with the characters and other important information. It looks like this, and it rocks.
2.) The art
Kiyoshi and Ayu then discuss the artistic merits of the name and adjust whatever needs to be adjusted (for instance, one panel is removed completely and another is modified). Kiyoshi then sketches out all the panels separately on paper, then “inks” them by tracing over the sketches on a new sheet of paper using a pencil and a lightbox. The final “inked” versions (actually just really nice penciled lineart) are then scanned.
3.) The digital lineart
Ayu takes the scans, cleans up whatever needs to be cleaned, arranges them on the page, and draws in whatver boxes are necessary using Adobe Photoshop Elements.
4.) The lineart from step three is merged down and then made a separate layer. The blending mode of the lineart is set to “multiply” so that Ayu can color underneath it using her handy dandy Wacom Bamboo tablet.
5.) Effects and background
After coloring the main characters is done, Ayu does whatever color adjustment, filters, or whatever is necessary for effects (there really aren't any on this page). Then Ayu draws all the backgrounds digitally. Backgrounds are either done from scratch in Photoshop Elements, or traced from various photos and 3D models (built either in Bryce 5.5 or Google SketchUp).
The last step is to add all the speech bubbles and the “Pt” logo somewhere on the page. The font used is everyone's favorite “Anime Ace” from Blambot. And now we have a finished page! Yay!
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