As you can see my process is very simple, I sometimes use different methods depending on what type of work is being undertaken, but for the mainstay this is how the magic happens.

Stage 1: Sketching out my idea

This is the most enjoyable part of the process for me personally, as I work with my pen to hatch the ideas directly on to the paper.  Sometimes I have a joke in my head but that almost always changes during this stage. I use a pencil to do this, usually a hard H on the graphite grading scale this minimises  smudging. But to be honest I just grab whatever I find as like most parents with a home studio my equipment is besieged upon on a daily basis by my children.

Stage 2: Inking in

I do this in one of two ways:

Part 1.  I scan the sketch into Photoshop and play with the brightness and contrast  to darken the pencil image then I tidy up the image taking out a lot of the working lines and feathering. I drop the layer percentage to around 10% to 15% and print it out, this gives me a very pale print to trace over.

Part 2. I pop the sketch on the light table and trace. I do this to tidy up the lines to get a more polished look. I use 100 GSM A4 cartridge paper and Ink in with 0.3  0.5 and 0.7  Rotring Tikky Graphic pigmented ink pens.

I scan with a HP Photosmart C4680 All-in-One at 300 DPI and use Adobe Photo-shop CS3

Stage 3: Colouring in

Again with colouring in the cartoons I use a few different techniques, but for the most part I use Photoshop or the Letraset Promarker Permant twin-tip. I find this pen gives a nice flat colour and has little bleed. I also prefer this pen as the smell is almost non existent and it does not aggravate my chronic asthma.

Stage 4: Shadow and speech bubbles

I scan the coloured work into Photoshop, then play about with the hue and saturation setting to colour match with the original. I then drop the light sourcing in using black and different alpha layers . If the artwork requires a speech bubble I usually use the custom shape tool which has a few speech bubbles already done for you.

Wish list:

I would like to be able to tell you that I do it all on a Wacom Cintiq 24HD