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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.

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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.

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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.

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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

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

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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.

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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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