Making of a Monster – Part 6

So we’ve covered the conception, drawing, and painting of this monster movie poster for this year’s Illustration West 59 advertisement for the Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles. All that’s left in the creation of the traditional art is the colored pencil stage.

I really love the colored pencil part of any illustration I do. Firstly, it is a sign that we are nearing the end of the piece, which is always cause for a sigh of relief. It means I have very few opportunities to screw anything up anymore. Secondly, the way I work, colored pencil pulls everything together into the art’s final look. As messy as the art can be during various stages, this is when it hopefully comes together the way I always saw it in my mind.

For the record, I use Prismacolor colored pencils. I have 153 colors available in the studio, some more helpful than others. (I HATE the metallic colors that seem to come wastefully packaged in their sets.) They reside in actual store displays on my shelves, so it looks like a pencil store up in here.

So, without further ado, let’s take a look at some closeups of the art after colored pencils were applied!



In the image above, you can see that the colored pencil is actually used sparingly. I spent so much time on the paint part of the illustration, that I really don’t want to cover it up very much. So, you can see subtle hints of shading from pencils in the monster’s eyes, a little on his upper lip, some cross-hatching on his lower lip, some hatching on the back of his head to help with the transition from scalp to hair, and you’ll see it in various other places. The biggest use of the pencils, though, is in giving a definitive outline to the character.

Remember the image below from the last lesson? Penciling the city was going to be challenging, because the original ink lines got completely covered by gouache when it was painted.



A print-out of the original drawing needed to be kept next to this art the whole time to be sure the city would be penciled properly. This caused a little bit of sweat to form on my brow because it could be easy to draw windows on one building that were wonky if I wasn’t careful. They turned out okay, though, right?



And then there are all those people. (No, I didn’t draw Waldo, so don’t bother looking for him.)



How about the details of our hero couple? Care to see?



They turned out okay. You can see above that pencil helped define panty hose, pearls, and many other details. How about just a tad closer?



You can really see how the paint and pencil is working together on the man’s suit. A French gray color was lightly applied to the suit in spots, allowing the texture of the paper to do its thing. There are also some yellow and purple pencils applied to the suit, as well as a couple shades of purple pencil on the hat.

So, care to see the whole thing with the pencil completed? Here you go:



Come back tomorrow to see some final digital steps that completed the poster!