Sunday, 17 May 2015

Recreating Digitally Tinted Sketches


I have now officially finished the text of the new book. Hurrah! 

Judging on the response to what I have been submitting over the last 6 months, we probably won't be changing the text that much - more tweaks that re-writes I should think - but that doesn't mean I'm done. There will still be a little jiggery-pokery with my image choices, once the layouts have all been designed, and there's also some new artwork to create specifically for the book (like the 'colour before line' step-by-step I did for the original presentation for the US co-edition).


The other big job that's left to do is the scanning. So far, we have been working with low-res images: either the photos I took of my tagged sketchbooks, or low-res scans lifted from the website. All those images now have to be located in the original sketchbooks and scanned at 300ppi, ready for print. John is helping with that, but I still have to go through all the scans individually, tweaking things, as my scanner picks up a lot of 'background noise' like paper texture and sketches coming through from the other side, much worse than you see with the eye.

Unfortunately there's another issue too. In 2010 I was rather into digitally tinting my pencil sketches, like this one of my new shoes (a reward after the first op I had on my poor feet). This means that there is another job for some of the scans from that period: because I was only playing, not consciously creating 'artwork', I only tinted the low-res scans I'd made for my website. Now that I want to feature some of those images in the book, I am having to create the coloured versions all over again.



This image is going into the 'drawing feet' section, because of the way the shoes are sculpted through shadow and highlights. Above is the new high-res scan of the original sketch, with a not very white background.

Once I had played with it in 'Levels' in Photoshop, it looked better. I moved the date across to the right a bit while I was at it, so it would better balance against the text (even though I suspect that the publisher will crop the text off this one):


Better. But the line-work in the old, tinted version was beefed up a bit and given a slightly blue tint, to help it to hold its own better against the colour, so I altered my new scan the same way (Photoshop is wonderful - how on earth would we have done something like that before?):


Then I painted the colours on a layer beneath the line work. The result was the sketch at the top. It was quite therapeutic actually - a nice bit of colouring in, with guaranteed success, so no brain power needed.

Sadly, those lovely red shoes have now bitten the dust. I did very recently buy myself another pair of bright red shoes though, so all is well.

4 comments:

Jagoda Pado said...

Red shoes rock! :)

Lewerentz S said...

I really look forward to read your book ! Your blog and sketches are fantastic, go on and well done !

Clipping Path said...

Nice shoe sketches .

mightystudents.com said...

There will even now be a little jiggery-pokery with my picture decisions, once the formats have all been composed, and there's additionally some new fine art to make particularly for the book. The other difficult task that is left to do is the examining. Every one of those pictures now must be situated in the first sketchbooks and filtered at 300ppi, prepared for print. A debt of gratitude is in order for the post.