Adding line weight and what that does.
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- [Voiceover] Alright, so you can see things are really shaping up. I've gone in and put in all my standard uniform line weight to get all the details and objects and the correct lines which I discovered throughout my rough. And I've got all my panels filled in. And now what I want to do is show you a little thing called line weight. So again, you're looking at this and everything is uniform and the same. All the lines look the same, I'm not really getting a good feeling of depth in these panels with this thin line.
All the objects appear to be the same distance away from us. So I'm going to show you how line weight can change that. And I'm going to show you again on one panel, and then we'll both go off and do the rest of the panels on our own. So my brush is still set to 10, which is the line that I did throughout this, but I know that I'm going to want to beef that up a little bit. I'm not really sure where yet, but I'm going to start just by doubling it at 20. Next thing I want to do is make a new layer so I don't mess up any of these initial lines, just in case what I choose to do is not the right move right off the bat.
Alright, so here in this panel, the top panel, panel one, we're going to start there. We have pretty much four objects, I'd say. We've got the background, we've got the man, we've got the girl, Valerius, and then we've got this robot up front, that's its shoulder. So out of everything on this page, the robot is the closest to us. And what I like to do is start with the thing that's closest, so I can always move backwards. What I mean by that is I'm going to add this thick line. And I'm just starting with 20, like I said, and so far it looks pretty good.
You can make this as thick as you want, depending on how many objects you have. Sometimes if there's like seven objects you want to differentiate depth between, you might want to start a little bit thicker. But you can always add to it. It's a little easier to add to it than it is to take away. So I'll probably just start with this 20. I like the way it's looking, so already just by doing this, you can see that it's making this robot pop forward. It's kind of like an optical illusion. It definitely looks closer than she does.
So let's turn that off for a second and see what happens when we do the opposite, and we were to do like a thick line on one of the farther-away characters, just so you can see how that doesn't make sense at all. So here you see, by adding that thick line around him, it's very visually confusing. For some reason, he pops forward when he should be further back. This is a weird step, but I really get a kick out of line weight because comics and sometimes animation are really the places where you use it the most.
You don't see these lines in real life, like if you were to hold your hand in front of your face, it wouldn't have a thick line around it because we're not made up of lines, but in a comic book, that's really all you have to work with. The first time I figured this out, ever since, I've referred to it as a magic trick. So go ahead, and we're going to put a thicker line around that robot again. Making you do everything twice, huh? So put that line around the robot. I'm kind of letting it fade in on some of these details.
Like, I really want it on the outside mostly, but I like the way that I can kind of have that fade in and bring out some of these details. This is kind of a metal plate that's over the innards of these wires and stuff. And then this wire looks like it's coming out ahead of those other wires, so I might add a little thicker line weight there. Just so it looks natural, and it doesn't look like you're just putting a big, thick line around something. So again, already he looks closer to us now.
I know from my rough that I'm just going to have that other side, his right shoulder, kind of fade to black, so I'm not going to worry about that yet. And double-check that you're working on the right layer. So the next thing is to continue on with the line weight throughout this panel. And right now the lady has the same line weight as the man. And I don't want that to happen. I want this line weight to be somewhere between what we just did on the robot and what the man already has, which was a 10-point.
So I'm going to go with 15. And I'm going to bring out, more so than the rest of her lines, this front leg because that front leg is actually in front of most of her. So this is why we did our initial line work all with small lines. If we had started with a big brush, we may have drawn ourselves into a hole and had to go back and trim stuff, because if he already had a 20-point line, then we'd have to make the line around the robot even bigger and bigger.
So this is one way out of many ways that we're going to talk about to kind of push and pull things forward and push them backwards, adding depth to these panels. So, already you can see that she looks closer to us than he does, but now she's kind of blending in with the robot, so again I think I'm going to go even a little thicker on the robot. This was something again, I'd never really noticed in comics because it was done so well in most of them, but if you look at a panel of Spider-Man kind of punching towards the viewer, you'll notice that on a well-inked page, the inker will have put a really nice thick line around that fist if it's coming at you.
So do some research, look at your comics and see what other people are doing and whether it's working or not. So now the robot's popping even more forward. Then if there's any other areas where you want to add, you know, just something subtle to kind of differentiate objects again, like on the man here, he has kind of this chest armor and these lines on the chest are kind of getting lost with that arm, but I know that those lines are in front of that arm so I'm going to kind of just beef that up a little bit. And we'll do that further, like I said, in a couple other steps, a few different methods.
But just take a look and see if everything is looking like it's at the right distance away. And if you like what you've done, you can go ahead and call it. And I'm going to move on and go through every single panel and take this same approach, for example, this hand is closer to us than that robot chest. Val, the woman, is a little closer to us than this robot is here. And then the man's side of his head is even further towards us, so that's going to be the same type of scenario that we have here in the first panel.
So take some time to go over every panel and bring your closer objects forward using the line weight and go back and even redraw if you have to, if some of those lines were too thick from the beginning. I'm going to do the same, and we'll see you then.
Method 2 shows us how to turn finished pencil artwork into clean, seemingly inked artwork, ready for color and ready for print—without any additional drawing.
- What is digital inking?
- Creating a page template
- Sizing artwork
- Choosing the right Photoshop brush
- Inking linework
- Filling in black areas
- Inking by converting drawings to grayscale