Trying out inking and coloring in Manga Studio

July 6, 2015

Latest Post My epic journey from Orchard to Orchard by Owen Soule

The past month or so hasn’t yielded any finished pieces because I’m spending most of my “Soule Designs" time honing my figure drawing skills. I expect it will take a few more months of pretty consistent work until I feel like I’m where I need to be. However, last night I decided to take a break from realism and take a sketch to inked and coloring completion in Manag Studio. The result is this crazy tentacle-tongued homage to Dark Horse’s B.P.R.D. Plague on Frogs story arc, which I’ve been reading way too much of recently!

There can't be a frog monster without a hearty "ROOONNNK!!"

Ok, so the process I followed to try out inking and coloring in Manga Studio is very similar to what I did in Photoshop for Peck, Peck, Peck. And when I say very similar I mean exactly the same, except for my bumbling around trying to find out how to do a certain Photoshop action in Manga Studio, but more on that later. My process starts with a rough sketch like so:

The result of too much comic book reading on a fragile mind?

Yes, I always work on grey to avoid searing my eyes with whiteness. That rough sketch is then colored blue (via PS Adjustment Layer or Manga Studio layer color) and “digital” ink is put down on a separate layer:

Really love inking and coloring in Manga Studio, feels so much more natural than Photoshop

The final step is coloring which yields the first image in this post!

At this point I’m still learning the Manga Studio UI, luckily whenever I have a question like “how the hell do I edit a mask?” or “where is the friggen crop icon?” I can pretty quickly find a tutorial where a Photoshop user is explaining how to handle these tasks in Manga Studio. Also, I’ve tried to match my Manga Studio UI to my Photoshop setup, which really just means making sure all buttons, layers, etc. are on the right hand side of the screen. Since I’m right-handed this helps greatly when using a Cintiq so you’re not constantly reaching across the screen to do common operations ;-)

If you look closely you’ll see I’m working at a ridiculous 600dpi, take that computer!!

I’m not planning on throwing Photoshop away indefinitely. The live filters and more robust masking in Photoshop are sorely missed in Manga Studio, but for bare bones drawing and inking it is certainly a step above Photoshop. That’s it for now, I may do a post of figure drawing sketches in a few weeks just so I don’t have a blog void like I created last month!

Owen Soule

Published July 6, 2015