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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: 3020
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2013 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just recently switched from using a 0.5 mm drafting pencil (the Platinum Pro-Use II from Jetpens) to good ol' woodcase pencils. Tried some from Caran d'Arache (777) and Mitsubishi (Hi-Uni)--oh and Cretacolor's woodless "Monolith" pencils--but have finally settled on Japanese company Tombow's "Mono," which just feels really nice, and seems to draw several grades darker than Western equivalents in my favored "H" lead grade.

While you can import the "Mono 100" from Japan, I found that Tombow USA sells something they call just plain "Mono" or "Professional Drawing Pencil" here in the States, and it uses the exact same lead as the imported 100s, so you can basically get the same super nice pencil for nearly 1/3rd the imported price. I wrote more about the comparison here.

A couple photos of both versions--the US model has the white cuff near the end:




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Uncle Greedy



Joined: 02 Jun 2011
Posts: 286

PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 4:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Uncle Greedy wrote:
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.



I have the use of these pen and the 1950ies Graphos recorded in action on video now:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CcGmGq2BN8k&feature=em-upload_owner#action=share
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 3020
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

(Dug back a ways for this quote :)

ttallan wrote:
@smbhax, I was flummoxed when they discontinued selling those Mono erasers, because I'd just fallen in love with them and had bought several to keep me going. (And they are. A year and a half later I'm still only halfway through the first large-size one.) They're environmentally unfriendly, or something. OK, I get that. I'll use up my supply and then move on to something else. So the last time I placed an order with JetPens I picked up this eraser on a whim. The thing seemed kind of ridiculous-- a specialized eraser for 2B leads?-- but you know what, I think I like it even better than the Mono. It just does a really good job, somehow!

I found a tiny stockpile of the "small" size original Mono here, and managed to snag one before they were all gone. It really is a surprisingly good eraser! I've been doing big eraser comparison tests lately since I'm now working all in pencil and my old Staedtler Mars eraser just wasn't able to handle all the graphite I was kicking up--I ordered samples of all the decent-looking block erasers on Jetpens for starters, and picked up a few more here and there. The first thing I found was that the Mars is an awful eraser by comparison to what's out there. ;)

And you're right, the Campus 2B is a really good eraser! It came in #2 in my tests with H-grade lead (#1 was the Pentel Ain Dust-Gathering--*but* Jetpens just got the Campus B/HB back in stock, which could potentially unseat the Ain--I'll have a little follow-up on that soon), and #1 in tests on 4B lead. My only problem with the Campus 2B is that it can split after prolonged heavy use, but it is so good at erasing, gathering shavings together into a big roll, and most of all not smudging on soft lead that I can deal with a split tip now and then.

My eraser round-up blog entries so far are here for part 1



and now there's part 2



Sample of one of the initial messy 4B tests, the Mono and Campus are in this one:


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smbhax.com
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Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 3020
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2013 11:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've tried a kneaded eraser (Prismacolor's), and it didn't get the paper as clean as any of the PVC block erasers. The advantage to kneaded erasers, as far as I can tell from my own testing and watching them in action on YouTube, is not so much their cleaning power as their resistance to smudging; they are particularly useful, it appears, for blending and gentle adjustments when working with very subtle tones. And it is difficult to damage paper with them, although the soft PVC erasers they have these days are pretty gentle too. Oh, and a couple other kneaded eraser pluses: and you can sculpt them into, say, a little point for fine work, whereas you'd need a block eraser with a fresh edge (or paired with an eraser shield) for that, and they don't leave eraser shavings behind, so you don't have anything to brush off and risk mussing your delicate gray tones.

My primary concern when it comes to erasing in my current comic is to get a white surface that will scan cleanly (I dislike the damaging effects of Threshold to accomplish that after the fact), and my pencil current style is more a hacking and slashing of hard values than subtle grey tones, so for that the kneaded erasers aren't as effective as the block erasers. I probably *should* keep one handy for spot use but I like the simplicity of sticking to one pencil and one eraser at a time.
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 3020
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 4:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know why, but I figured the Zero was relatively new, and would be a different formulation of the eraser that didn't have whatever import-banning problem the original Mono had--'cause didn't the Mono get pulled years ago?

I probably should have got a Zero just to try one out in one of my Jetpens must-get-to-$25-for-free-shipping sprees. I found a Paper Mate "Tuff Stuff" eraser stick at the local store and that was baaaaad. ;) I'm sure the Zero's better than that. I guess I was a little afraid that it would be like their PVC-Free eraser, though, which isn't very good. Hm but it doesn't look like it says PVC-Free on it, so maybe it is different (but hopefully completely legal : o).

Oh yeah also I couldn't decide if I'd get the circular Zero, or the rectangular one. : P Oh yeah and refills could add up price wise.

Ooh and actually I found that Kokuyo's Campus B/HB is better at erasing hard leads (I use an H sometimes) than the Ain--it's less smudgy, in particular. So I guess I'm all about Kokuyo these days. That was in the new part three of my little round-up. I also threw in a kneaded eraser. They definitely don't smudge! I'm fanatic about erasing clean, though, especially since I'm going pencil-only on a lot of stuff these days.
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Kristy



Joined: 30 Nov 1999
Posts: 15

PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use a Fujitsu Lifebook Tablet PC. I draw my panels and pencils in Manga Studio, ink in Paint Tool Sai, and then tone and letter in Manga Studio.
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Varethane



Joined: 18 Apr 2008
Posts: 559

PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 4:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Desire to order from Jetpens....... increasing...... (I still haven't ordered that kuretake brush pen yet, either, even though I've wanted to for over a year). Does the free-shipping deal apply to Canada? I've been using a Staedtler for ages now due to laziness after losing my Pilot, resulting in a lot of cleanup in Photoshop/stray marks to be found all over.... I did a cursory check at my local art supply stores to see if I could locate one of those Faber-Castell Art Erasers, but it looks like it's not domestically available in Canada, so Jetpens it'll be I guess! (When I get off my butt and actually start ordering)

I'd probably go for the Campus 2B... the 0.7 mechanical lead I use claims to be HB, but it tends to be on the soft side and I suspect it's functionally a little closer to B.

...Also, I love the product description for that Zero eraser. 'the correction tool should be an eraser that is shaped similarly to its nemesis'-- it's an action hero!
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Varethane



Joined: 18 Apr 2008
Posts: 559

PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 8:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ttallan wrote:
No, the free shipping does not apply to Canada. Sad
Sad indeed! Now, who do I know who lives in the US..........

(I think that's what stopped me from ordering the kuretake months ago, come to think of it. I do remember putting it (and a few other things) in my cart and getting as far as their checkout page, and then stopping cold-- probably from seeing how much shipping charges added to my already $100+ order, haha)
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 3020
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If your lead is B/HB then it might be worth trying the Campus B/HB :D.
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egypturnash



Joined: 12 May 2012
Posts: 24

PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 4:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use Adobe Illustrator. Draw the whole thing direct in the program.

I am quite possibly crazy. But I've been using it as my main medium since 2000, so it's super easy for me!

Some design and plotting happens in my sketchbook, with pencil or pen. I'll fill up several pages at a go with sloppy little thumbnails as I work out the next several pages of story; occasionally I'll snap a photo of a particularly expressive thumbnail and work it further in Illustrator. Mostly it's just for planning, though.

Other times I'll go on a binge of sketching out the first draft of the next few pages off to the side of the current page.
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smbhax.com
No! Don't post it there!


Joined: 10 Apr 2009
Posts: 3020
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

egypturnash wrote:
I use Adobe Illustrator. Draw the whole thing direct in the program.

I am quite possibly crazy. But I've been using it as my main medium since 2000, so it's super easy for me!


I like that no-outline look a lot. : ) I used to do something sort of similar, in a very crude way, using the Lasso tool in Photoshop.
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egypturnash



Joined: 12 May 2012
Posts: 24

PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I remember seeing A* a while back and enjoying all the starkness. But now you are a dirty-handed traitor to the land of shading! HEATHEN

but seriously the pencils look pretty good too and if you have more fun with them then they are the Right Medium!
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achaziel



Joined: 08 Apr 2011
Posts: 43

PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 1:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Used to draw comics on a Wacom Bamboo before I upgraded to an Intuos 4 L.

Best 500 bucks ever spent.

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OnlyTheGhosts



Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 52

PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 8:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

achaziel wrote:
Used to draw comics on a Wacom Bamboo before I upgraded to an Intuos 4 L.

Best 500 bucks ever spent.

[img][/img]


I still use a Wacom Bamboo Manga, the medium-sized one. Probably slightly different as I'm in Japan. Love the thing, but the Intuos is kind of too large. Japanese homes are small, and my desk space is limited. Maybe one day...
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achaziel



Joined: 08 Apr 2011
Posts: 43

PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I still use a Wacom Bamboo Manga, the medium-sized one. Probably slightly different as I'm in Japan. Love the thing, but the Intuos is kind of too large. Japanese homes are small, and my desk space is limited. Maybe one day...


There are various wireless variants of wacom tablets around, so the desk space shouldn't be too much of an issue, or am I wrong?
But just to let you know, bigger does not mean better (no pun intended),many people are more comfortable with smaller tablets. Switching from a medium sized bamboo to a large intuos 4 wasn't easy for me, since I was so used to the smaller one.
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