Monday, 15 July 2013

IDW Covers: Dr Who - Prisoners of Time #10

Dr Who: Prisoners of Time #10
(IDW, October 2013)
Art by Dave Sim
Good example of what happens when you start doing multiple images on your covers -- you start thinking in terms of multiple images instead of just sticking with one nice publicity still (like the one I got the foreground figures from).  And then you start thinking "Hey -- what if I made them into a film strip?"  Part of that is my on-going attempt to learn how to do the really tiny accurate figures that are a center-piece of the work of the best photorealists.  An Al Williamson figure that's an inch high is just as accurate as a figure that's a full page in height.  Makes me crazy.  An on-going problem for the last four or five years.  How do you get your pencil sharp enough to tight pencil a tiny little face like that?  How do you keep your Hunt 102 nib sharp enough to be sure each one of those tiny lines is only microns wide?  Well, I hadn't figured it out at this point. (at this point, I was using the Eddie Campbell "whittlin'" method:  sharpening the pencil with an electric pencil sharpener and then whittling the lead to a point with an Exacto knife).  I did figure it out recently, though, when Ted Adams sent me volume six of RIP KIRBY, the first solo John Prentice book.  In the introduction, Leonard Starr is talking about how he and Prentice got divorced around the same time and that one of the reasons for Prentice's divorce was that the sound of him sharpening his pencils on sandpaper was driving his wife around the bend.

DING!  Light bulb goes on over my head.  Ran out and bought several sheets of sandpaper.  It really does work great.  Sharp as you want, just pull the pencil point across the sandpaper towards you.  That was when I thought, "Say -- do you suppose that works with pen nibs, too?"  And it does!  Just like a razor strop.  Pull down one side, pull down the other side.  Sharp as you want it!

But I hadn't discovered that at this point.  Or those tiny lines on the tiny figures would have been a lot tinier.

1 comment:

Jeff Seiler said...

Amazing! After nearly forty years in da biz, Dave, you're still discovering new techniques and craft. Totally enjoying these insights to how you do such amazing work. Thanks a lot! Almost makes me want to buy the Dr. Who variants, even though I have only ever watched, what?, maybe one episode of Dr. Who. Have no idea about any of the storyline/s--just that there have been multiple Whos. Anyway, enough of listening to me ramble on; back to the board, Dave!