Tuesday, July 12, 2022

Roger Rabbit charity piece colored

A few months ago I listened to the audio book 'Who Censored Roger Rabbit' by Gary K. Wolf, and while it's very different from the Robert Zemeckis movie, it got me in the mood to draw some Roger fan-art. 

I auctioned off the original inks for charity (the amazing World Central Kitchen by Chef José Andrés: wck.org) and then just as a coloring demo on my Twitch channel I colored a scan of the art. 

To the left you can see the final colored piece, but below I'll go through the steps.

When the movie came out I played the hell out of the DOS game. For the final level Roger must navigate the ACME warehouse and grab various gags to use to get past obstacles and to force the weasels to laugh themselves to death. The game came with a copy protection item that was a paper acme catalog with all the gags and joke items listed as though they were real (and then after the 1st stage the game would stop and ask you to look up a price or fact on a certain page). 

For the rough for this piece after I'd drawn Roger, I wanted to include a bunch of those gag items from the game like: The boxing glove mallet, shrinking pills, rocket roller skates, portable holes, a screw ball, exploding cigars, extra sticky glue, and I also threw in Marvin Acme's will. These were all composited together with a brick pattern shadow in Photoshop.

With the pencils/roughs done I printed out the above version and taped it to the back of a sheet of Strathmore 300 series bristol. On my Huion lightpad I was able to see through the surface of the bristol to use the prinout as a pencil guide to ink from. I used Copic Multiliner SP pens (0.3 & 0.7 nibs) to ink the piece.

I wanted the inks to be as clean and readable as possible since they were the item going up for bidding for World Central Kitchen. The brick shadow became such a big and dark shape in ink, I didn't go as far with the texture on Roger as I'd planned, but I think the restraint helps as he's normally so cleanly outlined for animation.

The next step was to get a high res-scan and start the coloring process (though I did the coloring bit months after the auction ended and the recipient had the original in-hand). I didn't want black inklines on this, so I did a color hold for the whole piece (areas where I want the black ink to be a color other than black) to make it more sepia. Then I added in flat colors for Roger and the gag items per their established hues, but I certainly muted them a bit to make it all look a little softer and more old fashioned. 

Alternate color holds were also added to glass highlights, labels, and the brick wall shadow.

Here again is the final color art after I'd rendered it:

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