Tools of the trade

August 10, 2011 at 18:55 (Blog, Drawing) (, , , , , , )

As any artist worth his salt knows, you can’t paint without tools. What tools you do use depends entirely on what you try to achieve. Here’s a little insight into what I use to draw my comics.

Here’s what I use to get lines down on the paper, black Indian ink. I pour a little into an old eggholder that I use to dip my brushes and nibs into, and pour back what’s not used afterward. Saves a lot of gummed and driedup ink gathering in the ink-bottle.
To the right is some white acrylic I use to cover up tiny mistakes. It’s a little too runny and fluid for my taste, so I should probably invest in some white gouache or Deleter White 2.

Next up is a few of my nib-holders. I prefer the long wooden one, seems to have great ballance. The yellowish short one is more suited for writing than for drawing. And on the bottom… Not a nibholder at all.
Here’s a little tip: If you have some Pitt-pens and they run out of ink, don’t throw them away. They serve admirably as nibholders, as you can see here. ;)

These are the nibs I mainly use.
The upper one is a “Brause extra fine point”, also known as an “arrow point”. It’s extremely flexible and have a linewidth that range from between a fraction of a millimeter to 3 mm thick. Holds a lot of ink despite it’s size. It’s what I use for the majority of Darwyn.
The lower one, a “Brause Steno” is less flexible, but has an excellent ink capacity. I use it mainly to write lettering.

Here’s a little more advanced set of tools… ;)
The top one is a flat squared brush that I se to fill in large areas of ink (you see it from the side in this picture). The yellow brush I use for linework, and the fat one on the botton is reserved for watercolors. I also have a few old, ruined brushes that I se with the white acrylic to cover up mistakes.

You didn’t think I just started inking right on the paper with no preparation, did you? Of course not…
This here’s a right regular eraser. Perhaps a bit large, but that’s the way I like’em. A little soft too.
The mechanical pencil there uses 0.5mm lead, usually hardness H or 2H, I use to sketch out the drawings before I ink over them. Mind you, I always sketch out rough thumbnails on cheap office-paper first, to get composition and such right before I start sketching on the final sheet of paper.
The marker’s used, along with a ruler, to draw the panel borders.

And here’s a Windsor & Newton watercolor starter set. It came with these 12 colors, as well as the small, collapsible brush you can see in there. I also have this small palette-dish that I use for mixing colors (cost about $1). I’m far from proficient with watercolors, but I occationally get the urge to try it out.

Finally, there’s no use for all these other tools without something to use them ON; Paper.
Or bristol board, to be spesific. I use this type, with an extremely smooth surface, almost no texture to it at all. That prevents the nibs from “biting” into the paper, and gives me a really smooth line. Might not be your cup o’ tea, but I love it.

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