Comic Talk and General Discussion

Traditional art Vs Digital art.
ozoneocean at 6:47PM, Nov. 30, 2015
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Heh, there's not really a difference here- art is art, your tools and media don't reall matter, what's important is how its meant to be seen and what it's meant to be used for.
But, people do like to discuss this though so I'd like to open this to opinions :)
 
I'll start:
A lot of digital artists make their work too smooth or they get seduced by all the fancy effects they can use and this gives their work a very “cheap” look. While even the most basic traditional art is nice and rough and textured in some way, which tends to make it look “warmer” and more real than more comon digital art.
 
HippieVan at 7:18PM, Nov. 30, 2015
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I really like digital art for two reasons. One, I'm free to experiment with weird colours or whatever because there's no risk of completely destroying what I'm working on. I often do a couple different variations of the same drawing coloured or inked in different ways. This is helpful because I'm very risk-averse with traditional art (see my newspost a while ago about being an anxious artist). Two, I often make mistakes that are easily fixed in photoshop and a huge pain to fix on paper. Say I put the eyes too far up. Or I make the character's head too big but all their features look just right. Digitally it's really easy to just shuffle stuff around.
 
But there are things that I just can't do with digital art. Not that they can't be done, necessarily, but that I don't have the skills. I've discussed this a few times, but I don't like doing the initial sketch digitally. I just prefer the feeling of paper for that step. Maybe more advanced tablets/pens could replicate that feeling, but mine certainly can't. I also can't get the feel of two of my favourite mediums doing digital work. Pen and ink/just general black and whiteness, building up cross-hatching. I just can't do cross-hatching properly in a digital format, though I'm not sure why. Also watercolours. I recently was trying to replicate a watercolour-type look for a comic-related thing, and after messing around for a while I decided it would just be easier to drag out my actual watercolours when I have some spare time.
Duchess of Friday Newsposts and the holy Top Ten
ozoneocean at 8:14PM, Nov. 30, 2015
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I beleive you can get good watercolour effects from manga studio or Art tool Sai… I don't know for sure though.
I started with digital art back in the early 2000s because I was showing my art on the net and I could not STAND my art not looking as it was originally intended to look…
I spent so long trying to get it looking like it did in person by taking the best photos, slides, scans, then messing in Photoshop to try and fix it… but that took sooo long. In the end I COULD sort of do it but I was never happy with the results really.
So I took advice and got a tablet.
 
Doing work fully digitally meant that my process was streamlined and my work would look as it was originally intended when it ended up on people's screens.
There were many advantages to digital work for me:
1. I saved a LOT on paints and pens and paper and brushes, canvas etc.
2. Storage was no longer an issue. My house was getting FULL of drawing books, paintings, drawings on loose leaf paper, and sculptures. It's hard to store art for long periods without damaging it.
3. I've always hated mess. Digital art was clean, than goodness!
4. Setup is a real bastard. You can't START an art piece till you set everything up. And then when you want to work on something different you need more room to that THAT set up as well… And if you don't have the room then you have to shelve one of your on-going projects to MAKE room for the new stuff. This is even harder when you're working in different media for the different projects. At one stage I was paying rent on a seperate studio!
 
The huge disadvantage I had with digital art was that it was all tied up in the expensive, stationary computer gear and software on my desk. This meant I couldn't work on my stuff anywhere else other than THAT desk in my home, which was very, very limiting creatively.
That was gradually fixed when I got another tablet for my other computer… so then I had two rooms to work in.
Then I took that to the office with me and put my art on a USB drive… then I was sort of mobile with it.
 
Now of course I have a lightwieght tablet so I draw anywhere I feel like, just like I used to with my sketchbooks, but with way more colouring options. I save my work on Dropbox and Google Drive so it's backed up and I can easily work on it using more powerful tools later on.
 
usedbooks at 8:47AM, Dec. 1, 2015
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I enjoy working with pencils or even charcoal, basically B&W media (not ink, though, I just can't manage it), but I'm all thunbs with any kind of color. I can never get the colors I want. I keep spending $$$ on art supplies and then sucking at them. 
 
I like to edit and polish digitally. My hybrid tablet laptop is very nice for that. I can color digitally too, because I have layers and an undo button and can try different colors and effects. (So much less expensive too.) 
 
 
I have mad respect for people with artistic talent. Artistic ability is in the person, not the tools. I love to see digital and traditional art, but I think I enjoy traditional artwork more. It looks more raw and has more soul, not as perfect and polished. At least in many cases, like Oz mentioned.
Call Me Tom at 9:55AM, Dec. 1, 2015
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Sure digital is great as you can go back and fix every mistake or small imperfiction, If you'r a God of art like Ozoneocean! However If you're like me and can't draw your way out of a wet paper bag the simple fact that it's expercted that your digital art must be perfect makes it not very fun.
 Traditional art is rough and you can't go back. You keep going forward so what if the paint gone out side the line? This makes it more fun as I don't have to wory about if a pixle is out of place, don't have to spend 2 hours with the image zoomed in at 300% making sure that all the shadow goes in the folds of some background character and I don't have to go back and redo things in the page because someone noticed that part of an arm is the wrong colour!
Genejoke at 1:10PM, Dec. 1, 2015
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digital art is just so much more convienient.  No worries about supplies etc.  but the very nature of using those materials give the art something that often cannot be replicated with digital art.  That said Ozone nailed it at the beginning, art is art.
KimLuster at 2:59PM, Dec. 1, 2015
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Well it's true the older we get the less we want to change…
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I KNOW that if I'd take the time to learn how to create a digital piece of art from start to finish, that it'd save me money, space, and most importantly, time…  But I just can't make myself do it!  I've fallen victim to something that affects all people, at all ages, to some extent, but it more affects people my age and beyond…  We just detest changing how we do things!  I get aggravated every time there’s update to my phone and computer…. grrrrr!
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So with art, I stay traditional for the most part, but I have taken to ‘enhancing’ my stuff in a rudimentary fashion once I scan it in (enhancing shadows and highlights, and colors) and of course all my text is added digitally (using a very old Photodraw app – if it crashes I’ll have to learn something else *shiver* )…
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That said - I think I've gotten very good at economizing my space and movement with my traditional supplies.  I can do 90% of my stuff via supplies kept in a bag that’s about as big as a laptop case (although twice as wide).  Got papers, pens, pencils, brushes, rulers, scissors, vials of water, even a few ‘Dick Blick’ Models for Anatomy Reference, so I can take it most places with me and pretty easily work on my art (don't even need a flat surface - got a handy large clip board in there too, and big clear plastic shield to lay on top so my hand can rest on parts of the paper and board without messing it up while I work on other parts).
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Took me a while to figure that all out…  And in that time I probably could've mastered photoshop or something…  But… Change!!!  *grrrrrrr*
usedbooks at 5:05PM, Dec. 1, 2015
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Changing technique isn't an age thing. No matter your age, you are basically taking a step back (or more accurately, a step onto a new road entirely). You have to put in the practice to reach the same level. Creating art requires a good base in both theory/academia (understand the rules of proportions, perspective, etc.) and talent, but you have to build on that foundation. The more you practice, the better you will get. That's why picking up a new medium is so frustrating. If you've mastered one medium, you can be extra disheartened to try a new one and find yourself at beginner or mediocre levels. If it's something you want to do, you have to stay motivated and put in those hours of practice. 
 
 
On the other hand, if you find yourself on a plateau in your chosen medium, switching to a new one and persevering might allow you to reach new heights entirely.
KimLuster at 8:05PM, Dec. 1, 2015
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I dunno…  Yes, an older person can practice and learn just like a younger one (I've done it with many things), but it's the ‘want to’ that's the problem.  We just ‘prefer’ how things were at a certain age…  I may try to find some links (or I may just be too lazy ;).  But it's akin to the a reason people, as they age, still prefer the music from their teens and 20's and often just don't get the appeal of more modern music.  
usedbooks at 9:03PM, Dec. 1, 2015
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I've been lazy since I was ten. We all like what we're used to. Or I guess some people are “new things all the time” people. But at that end of the spectrum, the tendency is to never stay with anything long enough to get good at it.
last edited on Dec. 1, 2015 9:08PM
Peipei at 3:45PM, Dec. 2, 2015
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I think the major differences between digital art and traditional art for me is convenience. There is a lot more room for mistake making when it comes to digital work xD. It's a lot easier to correct something in the digital vs. real time, don't have to worry about leaving erasure marks where you don't want them to be. Even better, you don't have to worry about mistakes while inking either (but that's what photoshop is for I guess?…Haha ^^;). Saving paper is also a bonus for me too.
I tend to like to combine both tradditional and digital art too, especially if I draw something in my sketchbook while i'm out, i'll take it home, scan and apply color with Photoshop or Manga Studio. 
I guess a draw back with digital art is unless you actually print the art or save the file externally/to a cloud, you basically lose your entire collection if something goes wrong with your computer/device, which can be a real bummer :s.


I like Pie!
fallopiancrusader at 12:16PM, Dec. 6, 2015
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I believe the decision on which medium to use is an intrinsic element of the artwork itself. It's also worthwhile to think about categories of media. Some digital artists strive to make their digital paintings emulate an analogue in physical media. Others celebrate the synthetic quality of the painting's digital origins. I have heard some digital artists declare that if a digital painting is trying to mimic the “look” of traditional media, it is somehow dishonest. (not my opinion, but whatevs) Some artists debate the validity of 3D renderings versus flat digital paintings. As a commercial artist, all of my media decisions are strategic: what allows me to meet the deadline in the shortest time possible, and what allows me to compete with other professionals out there in the field. I cut my teeth in watercolors, then I switched over to 3D rendering. Now I do almost everything in Photoshop. That seems to be what my clients demand the most these days. I am currently toying with the idea of doing 3D modeling in 3dsMax, then doing all my renderings in a video game engine, like Unreal or Unity. That seems to be where digital media technology is headed.
fallopiancrusader at 12:27PM, Dec. 6, 2015
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One thing that excites about digital media is that they force you to think about the concept of an original, and of the viewer experience. I say there is no original in digital media, only copies. How to present your work becomes an important decision as an artist. Is it printed out and hung on a gallery wall? Now you have to deal with color range problems when you convert your art from RGB to CMYK color-space. Is it displayed on a monitor on a gallery wall? Again, the problem of what constitutes an original. Is it shared over the internet? Now you have no control over how the other viewer's monitor is calibrated, and what they see might be very different from what you created. I think it's very exciting that other people might be experiencing my art in a way that I never intended.
KimLuster at 4:50AM, Dec. 7, 2015
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Interesting stuff, FC!!  Related, when I've scanned in my traditional stuff, edited and posted on web, I've often found it looking quite different!!
Ironscarf at 6:16AM, Dec. 8, 2015
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I'm a traditionally schooled artist and learned to do everything the old fashioned way. That's all we had back in the mists of time. About seven years ago I switched over to digital production, with pc and tablet and various types of software. I don't see this as a change though, as I continued to work in exactly the same way using the new tools. I can use layers now and various other digital techniques of course, but the end result looks largely the same to me. I haven't discovered how to create this super smooth digital look everybody keeps talking about.
 
As for the infinite variables of traditional media, of course digital methods are not as subtle, but we are dealing with comics here. These works were only ever intended for print, or usually in our case, online publication. Either way, most of those subtleties have always been lost in translation. If I was making things for gallery walls that would be different, but for comics, digital tools get me so much closer to defining how the finished result will look than pen and paper ever did. When all's said and done, it really doesn't matter what media you choose. Whatever helps you to get from A to B is the best method.
 
last edited on Dec. 8, 2015 6:18AM
tupapayon at 8:27AM, Dec. 8, 2015
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Good thing I'm not an artist… so I use whatever works…
I believe most of the artists here are using their tools very efficiently. I don't think that we could find two artists doing exactly the same. So, whatever you are doing, if it's working, great. If you don't feel confident or comfortable experimenting with new techniques or tools, then don't. However, sometimes trying something new could become your best tool.
Cada cabeza es un mundo.
ozoneocean at 7:23PM, Dec. 8, 2015
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@Scarf- too smooth digital art can be seen in two main places- the work of young beginer digital artists who use soft brushes too much or digital “airbrushing” overmuch - And professional comic artist colourists who use too much gradients in their work.
 
The big trouble for a digital artist is going BACK to using non-digital tools. The safetynet of the undoo feature and infinate possible copies and backups isn't THAT big a deal to get over. For me the main thing with non-digital tools are all the limitations. It's like you have a VAST honking massive library of tools, techniques, materials, and abilities that're just shut off from you…
 
But of course it's not all one thing or the other. You scan or photograph art and work on it further anyway… Pitface does all her main work with non-digital tools and still calls herself a digital artist, and I think of Kimluster the same way.
 
ozoneocean at 7:33PM, Dec. 8, 2015
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Back in the day my art lecturers were heavilly influnced by old modernist thinking; they were very “essentialist”… they had stupid ideas about the intrinsic properties of different media, purity of ideas etc, all that old style 1950s artistic facisim of thought that was SO fucking poisonous.
 
This is why I can retain the false idea that there is a huge difference between digital and non-digital art.  Among other things.
 
Ironscarf at 3:14AM, Dec. 9, 2015
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ozoneocean wrote:
@Scarf- too smooth digital art can be seen in two main places- the work of young beginer digital artists who use soft brushes too much or digital “airbrushing” overmuch - And professional comic artist colourists who use too much gradients in their work.
 
Ugh! - you mean when everything looks like it's made from injection moulded plastic?! That is truly the stuff of nightmares. I would much rather see simple flat colour. If there's going to be tonal modelling, I think it's essential to have texture when you're working digitally, with no canvas or paper tooth to help out. I always like some kind of brush tip setting on the pen to build that up, but there are plenty of other methods I'm sure. ADF has no actual tonal modelling, just line techniques and the occasional rough dry brush type effect.
 
bravo1102 at 4:36AM, Dec. 10, 2015
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And this is the stuff those of us who build things from injection molded plastic try to overcome.  A model with texture. Maybe some of these artists could learn something from model builders though we have been going overboard ourselves with all the sprayed effects. SoUchida tonal shading rather than a simple wash and some dry brushing.
Ironscarf 
 
 
Ugh! - you mean when everything looks like it's made from injection moulded plastic?! That is truly the stuff of nightmares. I would much rather see simple flat colour. 
 
fallopiancrusader at 9:06AM, Dec. 13, 2015
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Ironscarf brings up an important point. Even if a work done in digital media has no intention of mimicing physical media, I believe it still has to have a sense of human scale and gesture. As my technique has progressed, I frequently layer several photographs onto the canvas at low opacity before starting my coloring work. My brush work will completely obliterate the textures below, but I don't work with my brushes set to 100 percent opacity, so there is just a tiny bit of chaos poking through. Mindfold page 14 is an example of this technique being used extensively. For figurative work, I will polish some areas to a vey slick finish, but I will let the original gestures of my layout sketch show through in other areas. For my own personal aesthetic, it is very important to have a strong sense of gesture in the drawing
Whirlwynd at 6:03PM, Dec. 14, 2015
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ozoneocean wrote:
The big trouble for a digital artist is going BACK to using non-digital tools. The safetynet of the undoo feature and infinate possible copies and backups isn't THAT big a deal to get over. For me the main thing with non-digital tools are all the limitations. It's like you have a VAST honking massive library of tools, techniques, materials, and abilities that're just shut off from you…
This is so true x_x I did a couple pages in pencil and paper earlier this year because I had some injuries from a car accident that made it difficult to look at a computer screen. I started out in traditional media comics but that was fifteen or more years ago, adjusting back to paper was weird.
Add me as another one who got into digital art because I didn't care for the mess and the constant hunt for supplies. And being surrounded by stacks of paper. The stacks add up quickly when you animate on top of drawing comic pages.

binaryfaye at 11:30AM, Dec. 27, 2015
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I've been thinking about this a lot recently as it is December which means lots of painting for me! (Which is why my comic is so woefully behind this month. I still have 2 more paintings to do for a January christmas party! I swear more comic is coming! I digress….) 
I kinda think of this debate like the vinyl vs. mp3 debate. Vinyl is warm and rich. The imperfections are part of the experiance. Digital art is more like mp3s, it's crisp and clean. Flawfree and possibly more true to the artist's pure vision. 
I, obviously, like both. My comic is digital and I like that shiny, cool quality. But for other things like portraits I have to do it with traditional media. 


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