Tuesday, February 17, 2009


After years of avoiding the computer, with much coercion from professors and voodoo priests I formed a way to make my images by hand and use the computer in the end to get a result I was both comfortable and happy with; Line work followed by one or several ink washes and texture layers on semi-transparent layout paper, and lastly, put together on the computer. This gives me much more control over each aspect of my image, and to a sense replicates the form and file of Photoshop whereas each separate layer can be manipulated within the larger image. Original method? Far-from it. But it works for me. (see below for line work)

The funnest part of the line-work is by far the meticulous texture in the hand and face. After a few straight hours of being inches from the bristol your eyes start to cross and you can no longer focus on the hatching, your hand knows what to do and continues, but you are off somewhere else; a bomb could go off and you'd be none the wiser.
The ink washes I used in this piece are not par for my course. Gray-scale is tricky when screen-printing, and unpredictable. Normally I do several washes for tone, dark and light shadows, highlights, and separate washes for fine features; in this case I did one wash that will be turned to half-tone. Half-tone looks badass silk-screened. Really. You'll have to wait for step three to see it though...

Hand lettering typography has always been a guilty pleasure of mine. Guilty because it often looks like shit, but in this case I think it works. The standard is do multiple versions of each word till it clicks... I did one. And for some reason when it's white punched out of black there seems to be a larger excusable margin of error. (see type layers below)

Again, the type needed to be tied into the concept, and not obviously an afterthought. Not to toot my own horn, but I think I nailed it. From here I scan in each layer, adjust layers to get the line-work and shadows right, piece together the ink-washes, and get the type ready. This method of layers minimizes the use of the computer quite a bit and you don't have to use the infernal pen tool to get juxtaposition right. The next step is making the layers into silk-screen ready separations and then on to the printing. Check back soon for the finale...

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