Sunday, May 18, 2014

The Process

I’m sure there are literally zeroes of people who wonder what my artistic process is like.
Well, if you’re numbered among that non-existent group of people, this post is for you!
Really, there are two processes:  when I know what I want to draw, and when I don’t know what I want to draw.
Eventually, however, the two processes converge, and are mostly identical.  Here, we’ll examine the latter process, which is the less common process.  When I say it’s less common, I don’t mean that I engage in it less often than the other, it’s just that it’s less common for it to result in a final product that anyone sees.*
Let’s begin.

1. Launch Manga Studio
2. Open a new document
3.  Stare at blank document for several minutes
4.  Smoke break
5.  Stare at blank document for several minutes
6.  Begin drawing random strokes
7.  Erase random strokes
8.  Smoke break
9.  Return with a vague idea of what I should draw
10.  Begin sketching
11.  Begin erasing
12.  Shoulder begins to hurt
13.  Neck begins to hurt
14.  Lose some amount of sensation in drawing hand
15.  Reconsider vague idea of what I should draw
16.  Close document; click Do Not Save
17.  Repeat Steps 2-10
18.  Begin sketching something that looks halfway-decent
19.  Irretrievably fuck things up
20.  Swearing break
21.  Clear the document
22.  Begin sketching something that looks halfway-decent
23.  Consider halfway-decent sketch and decide to not scrap it
24.  Begin inking**
25.  Retrievably fuck things up
26.  Fix the fuck-ups
27.  Begin coloring with flat colors
28.  Create approximately a gajillion layers for shading, highlights, and midtones, which I will completely lose track of, resulting in drawing on layers that I hadn’t intended to draw on to an extent that goes beyond Manga Studio’s ability to Undo
29.  Try to get a different look to the colors, even though I’m not entirely certain what look I’m going for
30.  Revert to standard look; swear
31.  Shoulder and neck are now in agony; swearing has increased exponentially
32.  Curse the day I was born
33.  Vow to never attempt to draw again
34.  Sigh…then get back to work
35.  Vision in left eye is now blurry, and will remain so for several hours
36.  Smoke break
37.  Say, “Fuck it,” and decide to just draw yet another damned picture of Scarlett Johansson*** and give up any hope of ever doing anything new or different, or managing to bring to life the vague images – or rather, vague impressions of images – swirling around in my brain
38.  Close document; click Save, never look at it again
39.  Draw yet another damned picture of Scarlett Johansson
40.  Wonder why I even bother
41.  Do the whole goddamn thing over again

*Which is actually incredibly common; I would say that 80-90% of the time I spend drawing does not result in a finished product that anyone sees.

**Throughout this step, in addition to constantly erasing and hitting Undo, I will swear at my hand and/or the brush tool, and ask, “Why are you doing this???” as my hand and/or the brush produce lines that look nothing at all like what I’d intended them to look like.

***Or Kelly Brook, or Eve Angel, or some other random woman; the point is that it will just end up being the same old bullshit


Merlin T Wizard said...

::sigh:: I need to get back into doing something creative, even if I hate the process and the outcome.

Jon-Paul Maki said...

Yeah, I suppose that's a good idea...assuming you're looking for reasons to feel bad about yourself. I mean, this does wonders for me in that regard.