Monday, August 24, 2009

COMING SOON! NetTrekkers Comic Yearbook #1

Click to enlarge: NetTrekkers Comic Yearbook #1 - Cover Art

Available soon to elementary schools across Canada!

Stay TOONed for more details :)

- Mike Cope

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Inking a Comic with Mike Cope's Hand - YouTube Video

In my previous entry, I gave a sneak peak of the rough pencil sketch and page layout for September's NetTrekkers comic. I thought it might be fun to capture and share some of the inking process. I hope you enjoy the results ...

YouTube: Inking a Comic with Mike Cope's Hand!

Here are the video's release notes ...

Watch the hand of Canadian cartoonist Mike Cope magically turn a pencil sketch into an inked cartoon character -- right before your very eyes!

Featured in this video is Page 1 from the September 2009 episode of the comic "NetTrekkers," in which Patrick travels to the Canadian prairies during the annual wheat harvest. The original comic art is drawn on an 11"x14" sheet of Strathmore Bristol board (smooth finish).

Prior to shooting this video, Mike Cope planned the text and page layout in Adobe Photoshop, and then rough sketched the panel illustrations using a regular 2H pencil. The inking process (seen here) is done using a combination of dip pens equipped with Hunt 102 and Speedball 513EF nibs, and Winsor & Newton's Black Indian Ink.

"NetTrekkers" is published in The Canadian Reader by LesPlan Educational Services Ltd. and is distributed to elementary schools across the country to help promote children's literacy. Each month's story is written by Canadian children's author, Vivien Bowers, and illustrated by Mike Cope.

This video may be freely shared and distributed in its entirety for educational and/or entertainment purposes only. For commercial and/or broadcast use, please contact mikecope [at] copetoons [dot] com.

© Copyright 2009 by Mike Cope - COPETOONS.COM

BTW ... You can click on the [HD] button to watch my tensed hairy knuckles in high definition -- if your computer (and stomach) can handle it!

You can also view finished samples from last year's NetTrekkers episodes by visiting my portfolio section.

Stay TOONed!

- Mike Cope

Friday, August 14, 2009

NetTrekkers Comic - Rough Page Layout & Pencil Sketch

Here's a sneak peak of page one from September's upcoming NetTrekkers comic. In this episode, Patrick (who is now sporting stylish glasses!) travels to the Canadian prairies during the annual wheat harvest.

After receiving the comic's script (written by Canadian author, Vivien Bowers), I create a rough layout of each page using Adobe Photoshop. This includes dividing up the pages into panels, deciding their sizes, as well as transferring all of the captions and dialogue text. I also draw some very quick thumbnail sketches to plan where and how the characters will be posed ...

I print a copy of the rough layout and transfer the panels onto my drawing board using a light table. Actual size of the original comic art is just under 11" x 14" and drawn on a sheet of Strathmore Bristol board (smooth finish) with a 2H pencil.

Click to enlarge ...

Next comes the inking and colouring stages, but I'm saving those for a future post :)

Stay TOONed!

- Mike Cope

Saturday, August 08, 2009

NetTrekkers - Comic Art Samples

I've added some page samples from NetTrekkers to my portfolio section. The comic appears in 'The Canadian Reader,' which is published by LesPlan Educational Services Ltd. Each month's story is written by the talented Canadian author, Vivien Bowers.

I'm currently in the process of creating a mini comics treasury (what we're calling "NetTrekkers Yearbook: 2008-09"), and so, I'm finding it interesting to see how I experimented with different aspects of the illustrations over this first year.

Click the following graphic to view the samples ...

Stay TOONed!

- Mike Cope