This is probably the hardest chalenge you'll face during your time as an artist. Gathering your art suplies!
How in the name of hell are you going to start?
Don't fret when you stand in one of those big shops with boxes of pencils reaching up to the sky, it's not that hard.
And I can surely tell you that you don't need the newest of the newest, or the bestest of the bestest or the thing with the fanciest name.
The hard truth is, that you can make wonderful pencil sketches with a normal graphic pen or an HB pencil and that normal printing paper works just as fine as that expensive manga paper.
Sketching material and Inkting business:
Don't throw all your money off the bridge by buying salmiak wood pencils from the Indian rainforest.
The best picks are ordinairy 2B, 2H and a HB pencil. It depends on what you like to work with as you draw.
-If you like nice fat lines, then the 2B pencil is a good one.
-For the harder and softer lines, the 2H pencil is a good choice.
-And if you just like a bit of both, then the HB pencil is the thing for you.
When you like to inkt your drawing for computer colouring by hand, then there are three good options.
-Number one is the good old pen and inkt. You can choose from a school pen, to a spoon pen, alluminium or not. Just pick whatever you think works for your hand. Good things of this methode are: you're never suddenly out of inkt, it gives you that real manga-ka feeling and the lines are always of the same colour black. Bad things of this methode are: your hands are always stained with black after inkting, the risk of knocking your inkt bottle over is HUGE, the lines dry very slowly and the pens can stain or leave drops if you're not very carefull.
*Tip: make sure your hands are very clean and always start at the top so you won't smudge the drying lines.*
-Number two is a very fine fineliner. They're in various colours and you can get them in various thicknesses. Good things of this methode are: the lines are almost immediatly dry so you won't need to be afraid of smudges, it works very fast, its less messy and you don't need a real calm hand to draw the lines with them. Bad things of this methode are: you can easily mistake the thickness of the pen in the shop so be carefull, the lines are not always of the same colour black and you can suddenly run out of inkt.
*Tip: always keep a second pen close.*
-Number three is digital inkting. If you have a programme like Photoshop or Paint Shop Pro, you can forget about the old fashioned inkting and put it directly into your computer. There are several ways to choose from and several programmes that all fit the standards. Good things of this methode are: no matter how much you mess up it's always possible to make a clean re-start, no staining or smudging, the lines are always of the same colour and you never run out of inkt. Bad things of this methode are: it's very time consuming, you'll need a lot of patience and when something happens to shut your computer down before saving- it's all gone.
Besides your regular black and white suplies, you'll also need full motion colour!
It's almost the same story as with the pencils, a long and hard to remember name does not always means quality. But there's a slight difference here. You have to stop using those kindergarten crayons one day because, they're simple horrible. I'm afraid that I can't tell you what brand is better then the other. My opinion might not be the same as yours and you're still the one who has to live with those coloured drawings till the day you die.
So, it's better for you to try out some brands and see what lies good in your hands and what you like to use.
But for the colouring job itself I can still give some tips. Since pencils are not the only divine thing under the sun, here's a small list of what media you can use:
Remember! Only practice and dedication makes perfect.
Paper? Save the trees right?
Now, you've got it all. Pencils, inkt, stuff to colour your drawings with. But...where do you make your masterpiece on?
Certainly not on the wall, I bet your mother doesn't likes that. So it's better to go and get some paper!
There are lots of different paper brands and lots of things to choose from. But remember, be kind to your wallet.
-For pencils sketches and doodles, the best choice is normal printing paper. It's cheap, white and you can get it in boxes of 200 pieces of paper. Easy.
-When you want to inkt something, it's better to pick a little stronger and thicker kind of paper. Ivory is the best pick then.
-For painting with water colours, you'll need a different kind if the ivory paper doesn't works for you. You can buy water colour paper in any art shop.
-For the real painting thing, we'll forget about that damned paper and take some canvas! Brand, price and size are all in your own hands now.
Again, these are just suggestions, and it doesn't matter if you like to use something else that works just as fine.
Okay, things that might be usefull and don't fit anywhere are that you just can live without.
-A scanner: well, doesn't that seems a little obvious? I mean, how else are you supposed to show off with your briljant creations?
-Rulers: for nice, straight lines or the cool curves that you can't do by hand.
-Erasers: use the hard ones for light pencil lines on thick paper and the soft ones for lines on thin paper. Seriously there's a right eraser for every kind of paper.
-A tablet: überhandy for immediat digital colouring, inkting and loads of other stuff. You can get them in all sizes and prices over the internet, or at a computershop closeby. It's not a must, but it's something very usefull.
-Drawing and anatomy books: very handy when you're not very good at drawing your desired form already, or when you need some tips and tricks.
-Software for digital colouring: it's a good thing to have when you want to colour like that. You don't need the latest version of Photoshop when Photoshop V. 7 works just as fine. Other programmes like Open Canvas, Paint Shop Pro or GIMP can be bought online or in your local shop, and for Christ's sake; Stop Using MS Paint!
-A lightbank: it's a good things to have when you inkt in a lot and when you would like to keep your origional sketeches unharmed. But it's not a must.
And you seriously thought you were done? You wish!
Onward! --> How to crack the perfect Egg
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