Guest blogger: Anthony Hope-Smith on the GONZO graytones

Hello once again! In my previous two posts I gave examples of thumbnails to pencils, and pencils to inks. So in this month’s post I want to share with you inks to colour, or in our case, graytones.  Now there is a reason that I mentioned colour in the previous sentence, and that is because I am more used to working in colour than I am grays. Indeed, this is my first foray into the world of graytones, and as such I have had to learn pretty much from scratch. 

First off was to look at how it has been done before, which meant looking at plenty of older material such as the black and white Warren mags, from a time when graytones were more commonplace, whereas now they are more of an aesthetic choice than a financial compromise. I then looked at films from the pre-colour days; the use of black and white cinematography in order to better understand contrasts. I found that this actually wound up better informing my black and white art as well as the graytone part of the process. Once I had an idea of where I wanted to go with the look of the graytones it was time to start experimenting on the pages themselves.

I approach it exactly as I would colouring with a limited palette, and I think it is working out well for my doing so. This is, of course, all part of an ongoing learning curve and by the time I have finished the book I should have a better idea of what works and what doesn’t. In the meantime, please enjoy the example I prepared for this post!

GONZO is available for pre-order via the SelfMadeHero store. It will be officially launched at Leeds Thought Bubble in November, where Anthony will sketching and signing copies of the biography.

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