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brendon
07-27-2003, 10:15 AM
I've heard it time and time again that inkers never, ever, ever, ever ink onto the original pencils....they use a copy.

But can anybody tell me what kind of copy? I certainly don't think that ordinary kinko zerox paper would do the trick. And it might be tricky to find a paper which is both usable for zerox and suitable for ink work...

anybody know?

Any modern tricks and tips appreciated!!!

jeremy dale
07-27-2003, 11:17 AM
There's quite a few threads in this very forum devoted to this.

How do they do it? They find pencil linart online, convert it to blueline, then print it off on a suitable bristol or likewise paper. You may have to print it off in segments, so having a program like Photoshop to manage that helps greatly.

Then they scan the inks in, piece together the pieces, and BAM-- it's done.

Dash, you have more experience in this-- help?

Jeremy

brendon
07-27-2003, 11:24 AM
I'm actually pretty handy with all of the mechanics, I understand the proccedures of printing very well.

Please let me be more specific...

I'm concern mostly over the paper...what type of paper. And if there are particular papers which you prefer, why?

I'm just guessing...but I think it would be tricky to get a good print on bristol board...and bristol board is expensive, so you wouldn't want to try 2 or 3 times with each print...

Also, I just think the idea of printing on bristol board seems wierd...can you really do that? I haven't tried it...

Phil Clark
07-27-2003, 12:42 PM
Originally posted by brendon
I've heard it time and time again that inkers never, ever, ever, ever ink onto the original pencils....they use a copy.

Never say "Never". In recent days it has become standard practice for penciler to scan their art and email it to the inker who then can print it out on a sheet of bristol in about 50% cyan only to create non-repro blue pencils to ink on. But not everyone works that way, and many inkers would prefer to work on the original pencils.

And of course there are the cases of an inker doing the inking digitally, in which case no ink is actually put to paper.

Robin, how do you work on a regular basis? And is that the way you would prefer to work?

Dash Martin
07-27-2003, 01:04 PM
I've found the EON boards work pretty good through the printer. BlueLines usually get jammed because of the thickness and waxy coating.

Robin Riggs
07-27-2003, 02:05 PM
Originally posted by Phil Clark
Robin, how do you work on a regular basis? And is that the way you would prefer to work?

Almost every page I've inked has been directly onto the pencils. I've worked on bluelines and overlays but that's amounted to maybe a dozen pages out of the thousands I've inked. Some inkers really dislike working on bluelines but I actually quite enjoy it. Standard practice is still to work directly onto the pencilled board though.

Oh, I nearly forgot to mention the digital thing. :) Almost always if the inks are digital it hasn't been done by an inker. It's usually a sign that the penciller has prepared the files themselves or more often that it's being handled by the colour house. It's not something that's going to be available as an option for an inker very often as the publisher and penciller often see it as a way to remove a stage in the production process and save some time and money. My feeling is that it's something that has potential for nice results but as with most things that are used as an expedient the results often don't live up to that potential.

Ian Miller
07-27-2003, 04:25 PM
I actually spoke with inker Gary Alanguilan once, and I asked him if the penciller sends copies of their pencils for the inker to ink over. I thought that was a good idea, since something could happen to the original pencilled pages and whatnot. He then explained that they use special shipping services to mail the boards to the inker or whatever. Then, I picked up the rough cut edition of X-Force #102, and they explained that Whilce Portacio just scanned his pencils and sent them to Gary to ink, where he printed them out on art boards.

I, myself, consider myself a penciller first and foremost, so I always want to keep a record of my original pencils. What I do is I do the pencils, and then I tape a piece of bristol over the pencilled page and ink it over a lightbox. It's pretty easy to do, except you may miss some details that you wouldn't miss if you just inked right on the original pencils. Maybe someday I'll have the guts to ink over the pencils on the same piece of bristol...

By the way, where's a place to get cheap bristol board or art boards with all the different areas marked out? I use Stratmore smooth bristol, but at $13 for a pad of 20 pages, it kinda gets expensive for poor little me.

SenorSwanky
07-27-2003, 06:19 PM
Well, it's even more expensive to get prelined boards. You get the most and best bang for your buck from EON (www.eonprod.com) at $20 for 25 sheets, last time I checked. If you want to get real high-end stuff, I've heard Blue Line's top of the line is what CG, Image, and other publishers use for their boards. But it'll cost you far more than EON.

Phil Clark
07-28-2003, 12:02 AM
Originally posted by Robin Riggs
Almost every page I've inked has been directly onto the pencils. [snip] Standard practice is still to work directly onto the pencilled board though.

Thanks Robin. I thought that was the way it still worked. I agree completely with you that cutting the inker out of the equation is going to hurt the business in the long term. There is just nothing that matches what is done by an inker with real skill instead of a colorist who simply high contrasts and cleans up the pencils.

I usually stay away from books that do that. The one recent exception was the Wolverine origin series. That was a disappointment both artistically and story wise. The pencils looked great, but pencils colored in a painterly style just don't have the same impact as inked art, IMO.

Ian Miller
07-28-2003, 12:42 AM
Originally posted by SenorSwanky
Well, it's even more expensive to get prelined boards. You get the most and best bang for your buck from EON (www.eonprod.com) at $20 for 25 sheets, last time I checked. If you want to get real high-end stuff, I've heard Blue Line's top of the line is what CG, Image, and other publishers use for their boards. But it'll cost you far more than EON.

What about just regular Bristol board?

SenorSwanky
07-28-2003, 02:15 AM
I doubt you could get Bristol pads or sheets cheaper online. The shipping added would negate any savings on tax and sales at places like DickBlick and PearlArt. Some items you can save a lot on, though, so look around.

www.jerrysartarama.com (http://www.jerrysartarama.com)
www.pearlart.com (http://www.pearlart.com)
www.dickblick.com (http://www.dickblick.com)

Phil Clark
07-28-2003, 10:25 AM
If you buy a pad of 18 x 24 Strathmore 400 Series Bristol boards and cut them down to 11 x 17 sheets (or just in half to slightly oversized 12 x 18 sheets) at $16.59 a pad that comes to about 56 per sheet. Of course you still need to rule them yourself, but if you are going for cheap, that seems like the best way to go.

Baloodoo Bill
07-28-2003, 09:01 PM
Ruling a page only takes a minute at most if you make yourself a jig. Same with cutting pages out of larger sheets. Personally, I've notched my cutting board, T-square and triangles so I don't need to measure. Lay down the sheet, transfer the marks, done.

If you have a paper you like, don't let a lack of pre-printed borders stop you. Working with inferior materials is rarely a time saver. It's a poor craftsmen who blames his tools but, their ain't nuthin' like the right tool for the job.

SenorSwanky
07-28-2003, 09:16 PM
I've gotta get a paper cutter for cutting boards. It's just too hard and time-consuming to use an X-acto blade when you can do a few boards in one chop.

Baloodoo Bill
07-28-2003, 11:26 PM
Paper cutters are notorious for leaving unsquare corners and uneven edges. This wasn't a big deal when art was shot with stat cameras, image up, and easily squared by eye. Today's scanners work image down and require a consistent straight edge for scans to come out square.

Cut so that your registering edge is a factory cut and you'll save time and aggravation.

SenorSwanky
07-29-2003, 10:25 AM
Hmm, thanks for letting me know that. I guess I'll have to do it the slow, painful way.

Baloodoo Bill
07-29-2003, 06:42 PM
Paper cutters are fine as long as you know what they can and can't do. If I had more room around here, I might be tempted.

Before I cut my paper, I mark all the corners (except the one with the embossed seal) and my jig is set up so that all trim or waste comes from the middle of the sheet. This gives me three pages per sheet with each page having two edges and included angle as they came from the factory. There's no reason you couldn't do the same with a cutter.

I draw with my marked corner in the lower left, squaring everything to the left (factory cut) side of the page, which is the same side I use to square it to the scanner. I can just slap pages in blindly and feel when they hit the registration bar and the scans come out square every time.

SenorSwanky
07-29-2003, 06:52 PM
Well, I buy 14x17 pads. I'll just do it with a blade. I guess heavey-duty mat-cutting knives work better than small X-acto ones, right?

Inkthinker
07-29-2003, 06:55 PM
I might add that there are sliding cutters and there are levered cutters. The sliding cutters (which you often see at Kinko's and other copy stores) are FAR superior to the levered ones, which often subtly twist the page and create ragged cuts at the top of the paper, near the hinge point

SenorSwanky
07-29-2003, 07:22 PM
Hmm. Do they sell sliding cutters sharp enough to cut through 17 inches of bristol fairly quickly?

Nirsus
07-29-2003, 07:29 PM
Originally posted by Inkthinker
I might add that there are sliding cutters and there are levered cutters. The sliding cutters (which you often see at Kinko's and other copy stores) are FAR superior to the levered ones, which often subtly twist the page and create ragged cuts at the top of the paper, near the hinge point

And the other advantage of the sliding cutter is that when the blade gets dull you can replace it. I think they still sell the sliding cutters that use standard razor blades right?

Baloodoo Bill
07-29-2003, 10:31 PM
Originally posted by SenorSwanky
Well, I buy 14x17 pads. I'll just do it with a blade. I guess heavey-duty mat-cutting knives work better than small X-acto ones, right?

I prefer the standard #11 blade/knife, but that's entirely personal. I find the smaller knife more controllable than the bulkier mat cutters.


Originally posted by Inkthinker
I might add that there are sliding cutters...

D'oh! I completely forgot about those things. I've never tried cutting Bristol board with one but, I have cut several sheets of copy paper all at once, 6-10 sheets at a time... Plus they have a much smaller foot print than the lever models. It may be time to visit Kinko's and try it out.

EGO Studios
08-01-2003, 04:37 AM
Originally posted by brendon
I've heard it time and time again that inkers never, ever, ever, ever ink onto the original pencils....they use a copy.


Nope, the exact opposite.

Not sure who told you this, but its misinformation for sure. Inkers ALWAYS work over originals, that has been standard practice since the dawn of the comics medium.

However some inkers are working on blueline nowadays, although a very small handful of them. The majority still do it as it has always been done.

I supposed down the line it may become more commonplace, however the only really large benefit is for the penciler to retain his un-inked originals.

As for the type of copy, when I do blueline, usually on my own work, I scan in a page, convert it to non-photo blue in Pshop, then print it right onto bristol.

brendon
08-07-2003, 09:25 AM
I thank you all very much for your replies. I've been told this many times from various people, I think I can even quote Valentino off the Image forum for saying that you never ink over the originals. What they're saying makes sense...It's not good to risk ruining the originals...Especially if they're not yours...

But anyway, I'm glad to here you guys say that it's false. I agree...I did my first comic this way, I inked right over the originals, and I can't see why you would do it any other way.

It's the way which artists have made finished inked works for centuries. The fact that you even started with pencil (which is erasable) underneath is more than enough to give the finished piece precision....why would you be afraid to ink right over the pencils? sure you can make a mistake or two...but if your hand is that shaky, then you're probably in the wrong business....

shannyeight
08-10-2003, 08:07 PM
i ink on all my pencilled stuff...i use non photo blue for pencilling...i use strathmore 300 or 400 vellum bristol paper...i can get it cheap, and it works just as well or i could say, better than the comic pages i sometimes use...the only reason i still use comic boards, is that they come in packs of 25/26, and they have pre ruled edges, for when i wanna be lazy....if i did full pencils, i dont think i could ink my own stuff...too much time/energy spent pencilling...

Ddubs34
08-12-2003, 12:34 PM
All these are valid points. I still have one question tho - is inking over the original penciling such a horrible thing? For example, If i'm just about to make my first comic ever, do I bother spending the extra $$ and print it out blue line or use a light box? I suppose it's a question that must be answered by each individual artist, unless there's something I'm missing that makes one or the other that much better.

Ian Miller
08-12-2003, 12:40 PM
If you're a first time inker or a beginner or whatever, I'd say use a lightbox to do the inks or use blueline copies, because chances are you may mess things up. For example, the first comic I inked, I used a lightbox with a piece of bristol taped over the original pencils, because no matter how hard I tried, I would smudge it horribly. That was a few months ago, and now I have enough experience that I actually ink over the original pencils.

But if you do decide to ink over the original pencils but you mess it up or smear ink or something, don't sweat it. You can always use white-out or correction paint to get rid of the mistake, and then keep going.

Baloodoo Bill
08-12-2003, 06:39 PM
Originally posted by Ddubs34
I still have one question tho - is inking over the original penciling such a horrible thing?.... I suppose it's a question that must be answered by each individual artist

Inking on the original is the very best of a fine thing, assuming your skill level is sufficient to the task.

There are, as Universe suggests, many reasons you may wish to work from a copy: Lack of original, original on cruddy paper, Inkoff competitions with friends, style experimentation, tool tests, etc. You do, of course, want to have a copy for your archives as insurance.

My personal theory is, the further away from the original you get, the less life the work has. The work already has to go through inking, scanning, coloring, reduction and printing. Why add another degree of separation, especially at such a crucial stage? You want to work on the best copy you can get and you'll never find one better than the original.

Bruce Lee
08-15-2003, 10:22 PM
The majority of inkers ink over the actual pencils on the board. Don't kid yourself otherwise. A few pencillers may have the luxury of sending only copies to inkers, but that's not the reality of the business. To my knowledge, the reality is that you pencil and it gets covered with ink. :eek: As to whether or not there's a risk of "ruining" pencils--Always. Many inkers make photocopies of the pencils just incase something happens--like an ink spillage, or a hungry paper eating dog, but they usually make these copies as a back-up, and ink over the original. Some companies like Image may have their own way of doing things, but their inking methods are more than likely the exception, and not the industry "norm."



Loston
http://www.lostonwallace.com

ErikC.Jones
08-20-2003, 10:37 PM
I'm a beginning inker,and I ink right over the pencils,I thought that was the traditional way to do it,I'd thought of making copies to maybe practice on at first,but I became comfortable enough that now I just ink straight onto the originals,and if I make a mistake,I just fix it with a little white out.