Coloring has been used for centuries as way to convey mood, tone, emotion and pace in telling a story. In today’s market, we have the ability to quickly edit the style of a story or advertisement through the use of digital media. My experience with digital color was preceded with a more traditional approach.
Beginning in 1993, I began my coloring work as a staff colorist at Valiant Comics. I was brought in following my work at an advertising studio through a mutual friend of then Editor-In-Chief, Bob Layton. Valiant gave me the experience I needed to learn the time honored skill of telling a story through the media of color.
You can completely control the drama of any story through the use of digital color whether it’s a still image, a comic book, a storyboard or animatic. In the example given, I set the tone for one of Robert E. Howard’s short stories entitled, “Marcher’s of Valhalla.”
“But not all men seek rest and peace; some are born with the spirit of the storm in their blood.”
~Robert E. Howard
Since the mid 90’s, I have had the great pleasure of working with incredible writers, pencillers and inkers in the comic book genre. From Valiant Comics with my work with Dave Ross for “Rai and the Future Force” followed by Raf Kayanan on “Ice Age in the World of Magic the Gathering” to Barry Windsor-Smith on “Storyteller” for Dark Horse Comics. One of my first digital color jobs was rendering color on a Richard Corbin 8 page story for Crossplains Comics.
Knowing the proper way to set up a coloring file is the key to creating a digital page. Keeping the black and white line art on a separate layer allows the colorist to maintain a separation from the original art while maintaining story consistency.
Another key would be creating a flat color layer so that various sections of the drawing could be masked off and rendered without interfering with the other sections. Finally a rendering layer and special fx layer, the icing on the cake.