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Usagi Yojimbo #145, The Thief and the Kunoichi step by step

A look inside the art by Stan Sakai

Usagi Yojimbo #145, The Thief and the Kunoichi step by step

Postby Steve Hubbell » Tue Sep 09, 2014 14:44 +0000

Stan Sakai wrote:7 hours ago
I finished the story art for Dark Horse Usagi Yojimbo #145, The Thief and the Kunoichi, this morning. This is actually issue 204 in the ongoing story of Usagi. I'll start on the cover today. Here is a step-by-step look at one of the panels with commentary. The art was done on 2-ply Strathmore 500 series cold press bristol, 11x17 inches with a 10x15 inch image area

I use 4-ply for my watercolor covers. I used to use 5-ply, but Strathmore discontinued making them. Occasionally, I will use the Strathmore illustration boards for my color work, especially if it is a bigger piece.

loose pencils, using an HB .5 mechanical pencil.

You can see my use of basic shapes to construct the figures. They will be tightened and refined before inking.

hand lettering done with an Aames Lettering Guide set at 3.5, using Rotring Art Pens M and B filled with Badger Black Opaque ink (old formula). The new Badger ink formula is terrible.

I am running out of my cache of Badger Ink and am looking for a replacement. Any suggestions? It has to be free-flowing as I use fountain pens, waterproof and permanent.

Different projects call for different settings for the lettering guide. For Groo, I set it at 3.25.

borders are inked with a 3.5 technical pen, and figures inked with a Koh-i-noor Art Pen (discontinued). Koh-i-noor has a new Art Pen, which is more a technical pen. I use the old model which is a fountain pen with a nice flexible nib.

You can see some very subtle changes I made between the pencil and this inked stage, mainly to eliminate awkward tangents

I decided it needed some background, so used a simple one-point perspective for a building front.

All the pencils are erased. This is my least favorite part of the entire art process.

I use almost three Magic Rub erasers for each issue. I used to pay my kids a dollar a page to erase them, but they liked to do it even less than I did.

Blacks are spotted in with a Pentel brush pen filled with Badger Black, and details are added using a couple of different pens mostly two Koh-i-noor Art Pens, one older with a more flexible nib and the other newer with a rigid tip.
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Steve Hubbell
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