Sunnyville Stories Episode 1, pages 1-2

Hello from the Constitution State!  This week, I’m up in Connecticut to attend a fun event called Furfright.  Also, I’ll be at the Brooklyn Comics and Graphics Festival on Saturday, December 4, 2010 so if anyone’s stopping by, look for me.  I’ll be wandering around.  But I digress.  Anyway, I’m going to be posting up now the first pages of the first episode of Sunnyville.

Ladies and gentlemen, a new family is coming to the hamlet of Sunnyville today.  They should be on the train.  Let’s take a look, shall we?

Episode 1 page 1

I used a bleed effect here.  I did a different version of the page at first, until I took a second look at the book by Scott McCloud titled Making Comics.  He talks about how a bleed effect can be handy for opening up a better window into one’s world and it works better than my original page.  (Pick up that aforementioned book BTW – it has a lot of useful information on storytelling, characters, world-building, etc.)  As for the steam locomotive you see above and on the second page, I used photo reference to draw that.  Even though I prefer to work from my imagination and the subconscious (much like the Surrealists and abstract artists), you’ll sometimes need photos, pictures or even live sources.  Copying from photos of course is a touchy subject among many artists out there.  Here’s one take on the subject and here’s yet another.  My take on drawing from photo reference is this – it’s useful but don’t use it as a crutch.  Copying a photo too closely can make a drawing look rigid and artificial…plus if said photo is copyrighted, that can bring up various ethical and legal issues too.

Episode 2 page 2

The technique you see up those panels with the dark shapes of the bushes and plants is an age old technique called repoussoir.  By putting the dark shapes in the foreground, middle values in the mid-ground, and light shapes in the background, I give the illusion of atmospheric perspective.

As for those grass blades, I used a Hunt 107 nib…which sadly gave out.  A marker was used for the bottom panel.

Well, that’s it for this week.  Next Saturday, I’ll have some more pages up with commentary and you’ll find out who’s riding on that train.

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About Max West

I am a freelance artist and the creator of Sunnyville Stories, an independent slice-of-life comics series.
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  1. Pingback: Sunnyville Stories Episode 1, page 11-12 | Sunnyville Stories

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