"Crule and Unusual" is a vile little story in which everyone dies, and you're glad they do. Rich begins by sketching his idea out on 8.5” X 11” cardstock from Office Max with a Bic Magic Grip 0.7mm #2 mechanical pencil, also from Office Max.

Note that we rough in our lettering right from the get-go. This is pretty much the only way to make sure you don't end your story in the middle of a page. That can be catastrophic, unless you have a Twinkies ad to slap in there.
The rough is scanned, Brightness/Contrast-ed in Photoshop, printed out at 115%, and lightboxed by the selfsame Rich, who adjusts the composition and adds detail on the fly (see panel 8).

We hand draw the panel borders (mostly with Penstix, which are cheap and have a line that doesn't spread), but they can be added digitally if you're Germanic about right angles.
Steve scans the finished pencils and B/Cs them in Photoshop until the borders are almost black and most of the schmutz is gone. He prints out a full size copy on bond paper at the “quality” setting, and does a light-and-shadow study with Verithin black and ulramarine color pencils.

Note how it’s actually starting to look like something. This is why he gets the big bucks. 
Over another full-size printout, Steve lays in tones with Design broad nib gray scale Art Markers, and adds shading with airbrush and color pencil.

Fine details (such as facial features) are rendered under an electron microscope in India ink, and high
lights are added with Rich Art Poster White.

Quarkmaster Bob Keenan slams in the lettering effects, and the finished product is whisked, probably unbidden, to your doorstep!











more behind-the scenes-info than you wanted to know about a story you probably haven't read yet!

(How Steve and Rich create B&B)










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