Corban Wilkin: Illustrator


A Graphic Sketchbook Novel
March 21, 2022, 15:09
Filed under: illustrations | Tags: , , , , , ,

The great cartoonist Seth subtitled his brilliant Wimbledon Green with the words, “A story from the sketchbook of the cartoonist Seth.”

Wanting an excuse to make some fun comics just for himself, he decided to put aside a bit of time each morning to draw a little comic in his sketchbook. Without planning ahead, he drew what came most naturally to him, and gradually a story emerged, eventually ending up as the complete book.

I’m working on something with a similar approach: a graphic novel called Amy & Kay.

Every page of this comic is drawn without any under-drawing. It’s just me and a pencil, drawing it as I go along.

Working this way permits a lot of spontaneity to come out in the drawings. The standard way of drawing comics, and the way I’ve usually done it (as detailed in my last post), is to create a careful underdrawing and then ink over the top of it. This is a tried-and-true method that’s served people well for countless great comics, but the results can look a little overwrought, and lacking in the focus and emotional immediacy that a spontaneous drawing can give to a character’s expression and gesture.

When I noticed that a lot of my sketchbook drawings and doodles were stronger than my more careful illustrations, I knew I had to find a way to make my comics more like my sketches.

I’m quite deep into this book, and I’m starting to see the result: a story in pictures where the drawings may not be technically perfect, but where the immediacy of the drawing hangs together in a natural way and seems to give more life and character to the story than I’ve managed to acheive before.

More info on the book coming soon! Until then, here’s a few snapshots from the drawing board in the last few weeks.

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Making a Comics Page, Start to Finish
March 21, 2022, 11:16
Filed under: illustrations | Tags: , , , , , ,

When I was giving school talks about Dino Detectives I spoke a bit about the process of going from script to full-colour artwork when making a page of comics. I thought I’d share here the examples that I used from the book, going from a script, to thumbnails, to scrappy roughs, to blue-line underdrawing, to the final line drawing. Then the process of layering the colour on, from background, to characters, then adding details, then shadows, and finally a few special lighting effects.

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