Chapter Two — Over the Waves

Page 66 — The Curious Case of the Moonlight Swimmer!

Page 66 — The Curious Case of the Moonlight Swimmer!

For those who are interested in art process: I tried something new on the painting stage of this one: the dark, dark blue is Prussian Blue FW Acrylic ink, I applied that first, then was able to paint freely with the watercolour (mostly Daniel Smith Indigo, one of my favourite go-to neutrals) right across it. Sort of similar to masking, but in reverse. Then, white ink spattered over the sky, and some on the waves; finished it all up with some digital cleanup and a yellow tone for the moon, hills, and moonlit waves.

Sometimes I think it would be so nice to just pop the colours in digitally; on a page like this it would have been so fast! But I like the painted-by-hand look more, and haven’t learned to simulate it digitally yet, though I know it can be done. It would be silly to change medium in midstream, anyway. Maybe on the next story!

Making a Mermaid Maquette

I’ve been shamefully neglecting my main blog lately, because I’m having so much fun over here at Mermaid Music! So I thought I’d get double the use out of a post and write something that applied to both blogs.

One of the things that has been a semi-regular feature on my other blog is the occasional tutorial, or series of tutorials. Tonight I started making a mermaid character maquette for use as drawing reference for this comic, and have documented the first stages. I’ll continue posting the progress of the piece as I go along. Rather than post it all again here, I’m going to send you over to Karen Gillmore Art now, to read the post about how to make a mermaid!

So click away, and while you over there, if you like what you see, why not follow or subscribe on e-mail to get lots of art and comics related goodies in your inbox?

I know she doesn't look like much yet, but this is the inner soul of a mermaid maquette!

I know she doesn’t look like much yet, but this is the inner soul of a mermaid maquette!

Dreaming of Mermaids

Nothing like snuggling in a hammock with a kitty!

Finally the pages I’ve been itching to show off! This double page spread is the turning part in this chapter, and I had such fun painting this. And I finally got to show a mermaid! Don’t worry, there will be lots more in future chapters, and one or two more in this one. Although this is two pages, I’ll be updating as usual on Friday, which kind of counts as three pages this week.

As usual, it’s watercolour with ink, but I used coloured ink for the dream part, and black ink for the “real world” part. For those who are interested, the inks that I’m using are FW acrylic inks, and they are really fun to use. I also changed tools for the outlines — the black ones are my trusty old Pigma Micron pens, and for the coloured outlines of the dream I used a brush, a Dynasty Black Gold number 0. The colours of the inks are so clear and beautiful, I know I’ll be using them in the future for washes as well, as soon as I get control of them — they are permanent when they dry, which makes them several orders of magnitude more scary than watercolours!

I also added a bit of Photoshop magic to tint the mermaid green. I’d already painted her scales (in watercolour) and I didn’t want to risk muddying them by painting a wash over them. I was originally going to leave her blue and white, like the rest of the dream, but a friend suggested it and I thought it was a good idea!

I hope you’re enjoying “Mermaid Music” (and if you just found it, now’s a good time to catch up!). Please feel free to comment, and if you also make webcomics, share your URL and I’ll come have a look!