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What are you using to create your comic?
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 2923
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2012 9:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad you found it useful! And thank *you* for being pretty darn handy with one of those Pocket Brushes :D.
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Uncle Greedy



Joined: 02 Jun 2011
Posts: 285

PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe here are some buffs who can help me dating these mechanical pens.




The brown one at the bottom is the only one I am quite sure about, as I bought it as a boy around 1980-81, and I still use it quite often. The one above with the metalgrip could be 1970ies; I can't renember where and when I got it. The large aubergine one puzzles me a bit, because I don't recall where I got it as well, and its design looks old, but it could be just a new traditional one.
The two green ones above are both quite old, as I recall seeing them by my parents in the 1970ies, and they weren't new then. 1950ies? I don't know.
The upper one is made from silver (835) and has a twisting mechanism that works rather well. I stopped using it years ago as I hadn't many fitting leads left. I know this kind of pens had already existed in the 1890ies, but judging from design, I would say 1920ies. Anyone here who can tell more?
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 2923
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice collection! You might be able to look some of them up on leadholder.com.

(In theory, if they aren't on there, you could even send the guy who runs it a good photo and he'd eventually get an entry going for them.)
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Uncle Greedy



Joined: 02 Jun 2011
Posts: 285

PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

smbhax.com wrote:
Nice collection! You might be able to look some of them up on leadholder.com.

(In theory, if they aren't on there, you could even send the guy who runs it a good photo and he'd eventually get an entry going for them.)

Thank you for the link. I had stumbled upon it earlier, but forgot to bookmark the site. At least I could identify some of my mechanical pens not shown on the picture, and the two green ones in the middle, one of them is 1960ies and the other one is 1953 - 1960, and the fat KoH-I-Nor is early eigthies to midnineties. I think I will photograp those I did not find on the page and mail them there.
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xwhy



Joined: 01 Apr 2008
Posts: 169
Location: Brooklyn

PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 10:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For basic comics that don't require a lot, I still use MS Paint, although the version on my work computer is different than the one at home. They both have little things that annoy me.

I have used Paint.NET and GIMP at times when I needed to manipulate images in ways MS Paint can't (rotating by other than 90, shear, perspective). I should probably take time to learn some more features. And there's other stuff I've used.

I've also doodled on the Smartboard at school or one of the drawing programs for the iPad, but I usually need to touch those up.

I would love to sketch and scan, but I really don't know how. The white space in the scan is never uniform. I can't color the empty spaces unless I use a brush and the mouse. If I could do that without shaking too much, I wouldn't need to sketch on paper. (Not that I'm a great pen and paper artist, but I can do better than the mouse does.)
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 2923
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2012 5:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

xwhy wrote:
The white space in the scan is never uniform.

You could try scanning in black and white line art mode (as opposed to grayscale), which might result in a cleaner if more pixelated image. A more flexible way to do it would be to use something like the "Levels" function in Photoshop, which lets you set all the values lighter than (or darker than) a certain value to pure white (or black).
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Kirby Miller SK



Joined: 08 Jul 2011
Posts: 31

PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I mainly use Paint.net and occasionally scan in drawings. My football helmet and crayons level artwork doesn't require a whole lot. Very Happy

http://kirbymillerserialkiller.com
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rynocarp



Joined: 29 Nov 2011
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2012 8:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use to draw all mine in pen and ink and then scan it- recently got a Wacom Intuos 4 tablet and now just draw with that directly into Photoshop. Took some getting use to but the quality and quantity of my work have both improved. Highly recommend one.

www.alienanddog.blogspot.com
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 2923
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Fri Aug 31, 2012 12:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've decided I need to go back to doing a pencil layout before diving in with ink, and for now have gone back to my ancient (20+ years old and still going strong!) side-click 0.5 mm mechanical pencil, but am not thrilled about the wrist stiffness I get when drawing with a regular-width pen/pencil/brush all day. Looking around I found there are these things called "drafting pencils" that are like super-well-made mechanical pencils! And one of the most highly regarded is a wide-bodied model, the Platinum Pro Use II 05:



So I had to order one and am now anxiously awaiting it. Eep eep!
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sailorptah



Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 26

PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 4:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Threads like these always make me feel like I don't take my inking instruments seriously enough XD

I sketch in mechanical pencil, then ink with...whatever brand of pen I have on hand. It's a mix of Sakura Microns, Faber-Castells, Prismacolor Premiers, or Staedtler Pigment Liners. I don't know that I even have a favorite, beyond "whichever one has dried out least at any given time."

Once scanned, I clean up the lineart and add the colors in a ten-year-old edition of Paint Shop Pro 7. I've thought about going Photoshop, but honestly, PSP has always done whatever I need it to do, and I'll probably stick with it until the version of Windows comes out that no longer supports it.

Then I type the text in WordPad, copy it in pieces onto a top layer, and draw the speech bubbles and/or caption boxes around it. Not something I've ever heard other creators talk about, but it's really handy to have a master WordPad file for each comic with text in all the necessary fonts and sizes.

Resize, add copyright statement, and it's good to go!
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Marscaleb



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
Posts: 255

PostPosted: Thu Sep 06, 2012 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wanted to keep my comic purely digital; draw it all on a tablet with a vector program. But after a few tests I found that just would not work.

I start off sketching on plain printer paper with a cheap-A bic mechanical pencil. Next I ink it with a fine-point Indian ink pen; the most professional tool in my whole arsenal.

I know some people out there get these really nice pens and special pencils and draw on giant paper. I envy their skill and professionalism, but that just doesn't work for me.

Anyway, once I have it inked I scan it and color it in GIMP using my tablet for minor tweaks I may have missed.

Except for my backgrounds! My backgrounds are special!
Those I am painting with GIMP and my tablet. I'm getting better with it to. And though I started with the intent to make all my backgrounds completely painted, when I started on the backgrounds for my first page (which I made after the next five) I decided to fall back on my drafting training and my 3D modelling skill, and I made those in Maya, crafted with special shaders and post-render touch-ups to make it look painted. But since I have basically two worlds in my comic, I'm going to make the backgrounds for our world use rendered images while the backgrounds in the fantasy world will be painted.

I'm anxious to see how well this method works out once I get it refined. (Page 8 looks good but it won't be posted for another 2 weeks. blah.)

So that's:
-cheap paper
-cheap mechanical pencil
-nice inking pen
-Bamboo Wacom tablet
-Maya
-GIMP

Bit of a mixed bag, really. Free software and software that's over $9000.
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Bill Murphy



Joined: 22 Aug 2012
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On my site I created a "How It's Made" (How I Make It) page for anyone who might want to compare notes.

http://www.casuallyemployed.com/how-its-made/

I'm 100% digital. As you can see, I don't have much room for paper. Wink
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 2923
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2012 1:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ooh, that is cozy. I like the wall-mounted holder thingies.
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Bill Murphy



Joined: 22 Aug 2012
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2012 2:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

smbhax.com wrote:
Ooh, that is cozy. I like the wall-mounted holder thingies.


Thanks! The right side is the inside to my metal accordion closet doors. I put magnet clips on them. Wink
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Uncle Greedy



Joined: 02 Jun 2011
Posts: 285

PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used some Faber-Castell felt pens for the shading some time, and they are used up by now. I looked up what they do cost now, and I find them way to expensive. And, they are disposable, the same problem like the pentel-brush (or large parts of it) and many others. You could probably power a rare classic car with the oil thrown away in plastic pens over some years. I renember I had a nice Mars-pen with a flexible tip in the nineties, sadly it didn't work long and was disposable, too. I wondered if I could refill it with syringe, but that would be quite messy and unreliable. I found a better solution:

1. I still kept the pen, and had an empty glass (real glass) from a vanilla pod.
2. I cut up the pen, and fixed the tip and the felt inside to the cork, and sealed it with glue.
3. I cut the cap into size size. Openeing and filling should be no problem.
4. I mixed some cheap black drawing ink with water and filled the glass. It's not even leaking so far.

The pen worked in a first test. I can refill it any time, and mix the right amount of grey I need. I just have to build a proper holder for it next.

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