robotheartscephalopod asked: I'm interested in how you produce the comic. Do you use certain equipment? I'm kind of uneducated and I just draw on paper with a mechanical pencil. Also, I love the comic and thought the recent Hobbit Movie comic was great.
(AN: Okay guys, I know I usually answer asks privately, but seriously, a technical question? That is like, MY FAVORITE THING, and I cannot not tell you all EVERYTHING).
Yay, I love talking shop! It is seriously my favorite thing. I’m actually incredibly particular about my instruments, and I use for AmCap what I use for most cartooning work I do (which I also draw on paper with a mechanical pencil, by the way - I like a 0.7 HB. An 0.5 is fine too, but I find an 0.7 wears down unevenly so the pencil has sharp bits and soft bits, and I like that). I don’t use blue pencil. Or bristol board. I have friends who use it, and for them it works. I, meanwhile, just use grey pencil and cartridge paper (and in the case of American Captain, the paper in my sketchbooks, you know, for authenticity’s sake…). I also use a Staedtler eraser, the white one in the blue packet (I told you I was particular! Those erasers are damned expensive, but accept no substitutes).
Then I draw black lines over that with ink - Pebos Encre de Chine India Ink specifically. I’ve tried a lot of brands but Pebos is really it for me; it has a thick, bright line, but it also mixes really well with water to produce washes. AmCap has no washes (or even backgrounds) obviously, but like all of my other comics it’s inked with a dip pen and nib (I’ve tried felt and ball tip pens, but they’re not for me. If they’re for you, though, I seriously recommend these ones because omg they are great). The nib I like is a speedball C6 (I never learned mastery of nibs. I have a friend who has, like, 30, and he uses them each differently and sometimes in the same drawing. I have one nib I like, the C6, and I use it. I think it’s even technically a calligraphy nib, which means it’s really firm, so if you’re just starting out with nibs, be mindful you can tear the paper quite easily, and also that you can damage the nib if you press on it really hard. Also, you have to clean it every time you use it. I didn’t used to, and I lost a lot of pen handles that way because the nib a) dries in and then b) rusts).
But the really, really, really particular thing I do with the nib is, if you see in the picture here, it has a gold reservoir on top, and I cut that off with a pair of scissors. There’s a second reservoir underneath that’s not shown in the picture, but that stays. It’s just that especially, removing the top reservoir makes the line of the pen slightly more uneven, and I like that rough look, I really do. I don’t know why. I just do. It’s my thing now.
Where AmCap differs from my other work (besides, as I say, being drawn quickly in sketchbooks. Oh yeah, and normally I use a ruler for lines!) is that once I’ve inked and erased I’d usually use a series of brushes and washes to just fancy that shit up and make deep artistic points about light and space and what-have-you. That is a lot of fun and it has a lot of scope. If you’re getting into comics with ink, do play with washes.
Hopefully that answers your question, and I hope it’s okay that I made this answer public, I just really, really love talking shop about comics.
Thank you so much for your kind words about the comic too. I’m really glad you like it :)