April 12, 2009

Comic Tools reader Coop has a Frankenstein's monster art project thingie that he wanted other Comic Tools readers to get in on, so I'm passing it on: http://apatchworkofflesh.blogspot.com/

Oh, and folks who've been into the archives or who read Comic Tools back when MK was doing it might remember that this used to be an all-interviews blog, asking various artists what tools they use to make their comics. Bill Turner missed that so much he made his own blog called The Tools Artists Use. Here's the description from his blog:

A couple of years ago I came across the site Comic Tools where the weblog author would ask various comic artists about what kind of tools they used to create their artwork and comics. I found this fascinating, being a bit of a pen and notebook nerd myself, and was disappointed when the interviews of artists stopped.

Fast forward to December of 2008 and I picked up the book An Illustrated Life where the same types of questions were being asked of artists of all kinds. Although almost all the art in the book was focused on the notebooks of the artists featured, it showed me how many ways an artist can express themselves with a wide variety of tools.

With the Comic Tools weblog now focusing more on comic art tutorials, I felt that a site focusing on what’s used in creating art was missing. Plus, I want to include artists of all kinds and not just comic artists. I’m always curious what types of pens or paints or paper that other artists are using to create their art. Whether the artist is a self-taught notebook doodler or a RISD-trained professional illustrator, the process of creating art fascinates me.

It's an interesting blog to read, although I do wish he'd ask the artists about HOW and WHY they use the tools they do. It's all well and good to know someone uses a certain pencil, but I'd like to know why that pencil versus another, and what effects it produces in their final art that they enjoy. But if I was curious enough about something he didn't ask, I could always interview the artist for Comic Tools myself. What's great about Bill's blog is he's interviewing a lot of great illustrators and non-comics people, some of whom I've never heard of but whose work I love and will follow now.

Anyway, MK, if you're reading this, it seems you were missed enough that someone sprang up to replace you. If that's not flattery I don't know what is.


MK Reed said...

I had some idea that it was popular before you took over, but... imitators? That's pretty cool.

Also, Austin English started up another cartoonist interview blog not too long ago:

Bill Turner said...

Hi Matt & MK,

I've been meaning to send you both an email about the site, but hadn't gotten around to it yet (in fact, it's still sitting in my drafts folder). I do want to thank you both for such a great site, and the inspiration for The Tools Artists Use! It certainly wouldn't exist without the work done here.

I had tried to make some of the questions I ask open enough for the artist to explain a little about their tool selection, but I didn't want to focus as much on the process since there are several other weblogs out there that delve into that sort of thing. I may add a question or two about process in the future, but I already have so many questions I don't want to overwhelm the interviewee.

Thanks for Comic Tools, and for the link!

Comic Tools said...

Hi Bill!

No worries about not getting to writing us, I know full well how life can intrude on things like that. I've been postponing promoting Comic Tools and giving it a more presentable appearance for weeks now, as new things come up that force me to postpone.

As for the questions, it's as I say, you created your blog to fill a gap you felt in mine, and if I feel you've left something uncovered on your blog, I can always write to the artist myself to fill in the gap. Thusly, or blogs might compliment each other, filling in knowledge the other lacks.

Oh, and once again, I'm excited that you're introducing me to new illustrators. I find Illustration hard to follow with all the other things I occupy myself with, and you've already exposed me to several new artists.

Comic Tools said...

Oh!, and MK- Thank you for reminding me! I'd forgotten that I've been meaning to put his blog in my sidebar.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for all you post on this blog! I am new to comics-making and have found it really helpful.

I have a question that is probably naive, but hopefully worthwhile to other noobies like myself: with regard to pencilling, why do some comics artists use blue or red for pencilling? How does this play into erasure post-inking?

Are blues/reds used for other purposes that I'm not aware of, like scanning into Photoshop for manipulation-- or is it simply easier to differentiate what is/isn't inked during the inking process?

Comic Tools said...

In the early days of making comics you shot the artwork with a great big camera that turned every tone solid black or solid white and couldn't be adjusted, so artists needed to either erase their pencils very, very well or use special non-photo blue pencils, which wouldn't show up at all when shot by the camera.

Nowdays photoshop can be used to drop the blue right out from under linework that's been scanned in color, and you can also just as easily drop the red out. The process is rather like green-screen technology.

Colored leads are mostly non-erasable, but then again they don't need to be erased.