Friday, July 24, 2020

What Artists Think - Blue Bolt Edition

I'm currently on a streak of turning old, public domain, comic images into T-shirts, and such. My latest can be seen above. Available by clicking here. I'm very happy with the results, but this image was filled with a few challenges. Click on any image to enlarge.

The original cover, from Blue Bolt #105, is below. Here's a few thoughts-- Note the reflection of light on Blue Bolt's helmet. I've noticed in old comics, artists often use this shape to indicate a highlight. The hilarious thing is that it's in four sections, like light coming through a window frame. This works great for apples in a still life, painted inside, but not so much for outdoor scenes. I suppose it merely became a symbol for reflected light at some point.

Also, his left, lower leg is really long! I had to draw his right, lower leg from scratch and decided to make it a similar length. I took liberties with his cape too, just to make it a nice shape overall.

I knew I would need to re-ink this cover to get the maximum clarity out of it. But, as I started to work on it, I realized there was no way such tiny hatch work was going to print well on fabric. That kind of detail would definitely clog up and get blotchy.

I paused and considered not even doing this image. Except, I really liked it! It was draw by the magnificent LB Cole and was a great representation of sci-fi comics from the Golden Age. I ultimately decided to simplify the inking and replace the hatching with shadow colors. Happy it worked out.

And here you thought doing art was all cheese and crackers.


rien said...

Blue Bolt sure looks a lot like he'd be Yellow Bolt! And he's lucky he didn't shoot his own hand off!

Kerry Callen said...

I think his raygun must shoot curved beams. Sci-fi!!