Sketches & Color Comps: An Explanation

When setting up the pages of color comps and sketches, I tried to size the images to the same dimensions so that a viewer could flip back and forth and see relative changes at different stages of the process---but that can also be misleading to the viewer.

To that end, below are examples of the "Gift Triptych" spread, shown in their relative sizes.  Some of the comps, the "Goodbye" spread were even smaller---about 2.5 inches wide.  Most of the comps were done after the completion of a tight graphite underdrawing on the final sheet of watercolor paper. (See below)  With the drawing completed, I'd do a quick "comp" on a scrap sheet of watercolor paper, using only a brush. (with no underdrawing)  Comps like this usually take about an hour to do.

The drawings are done in graphite directly on the final sheet of watercolor paper.  All the drawing is done purely by eye---I find that projection or scaling devices impede the freshness of the work.  

Sketches--in contrast to the comps, drawings and paintings---are done completely out of my head with no reference whatsoever.  They aren't pretty, but they only have to communicate the most general ideas and plans I have to my editor.  As such, I don't invest much time in individual pieces at this stage. 


Color Comp vs. Painting (Shown in actual relative sizes)

(about 4.5" wide vs. the 26" painting)

Underdrawing vs. Final Painting