I haven't done one of these in a while so I figured I'd do another one seeing as how this process I'm about to show is a new one for me. I recently got a cintiq and have been using that to create commercial illustrations but haven't had a chance to incorporate it with my comic book work. With a bit of time on my hands I thought I'd try it out on this cover.
The first initial stage as always are my layouts.
This second stage which is something new for me. I decided to "pencil" my page digitally. It allowed me to put a proper vanishing point for the buildings and make sure it's precise. It also allowed me to create some very nice curved lines for Hot Pursuits helmet. Although old habits die hard, using the grid, I started another layer and free handed the buildings.
I then "penciled" in the figure and I was able to change his orientation from the initial layout, and I was also able to play around with his size until I was happy with the placement.
I then simple printed the linework very, VERY, VERY lightly on my art board that it's almost invisible. It's visible enough that I can see whats there, but once it was painted you pretty much cant see it at all. It allowed for a very clean painting process and very streamlined. I used two different colors on this, ivory black, and sepia for the reflection.
After the painting process I scanned the art in, and I played around with the color scheme of the cover. I always do this for Brian Buccellato (colorist) just so that he has a jumping off point for how I want the colors to look. It also makes the colors layed under the watercolor look more cohesive and less muddy since it's not colors under black. I also fixed the lightning bolt on his chest, I had drawn it "normally" and not a reflection.
So that's about it. Hope you guys enjoyed a little behinds the scenes look. You can see the final cover at the DCU blog along with a description of the book written by the every so talented Mr. Sterling Gates.