Coloring Masks (Not That Kind of Mask)

Amy Reeder’s posted a great look at her personal coloring process:

I’m not an uber-experienced colorist and I have no idea what the standard technique for coloring is—so maybe this is common knowledge—but there’s something new I’ve been trying occasionally when I really want to play with opposing hues as light sources. And I thought I’d share.

The short of it: I create three hue versions of the base color and give each a layer. Then I use layer masks to choose which layer comes through.

I’ve watched a fair number of tutorials, and definitely binge-watched a lot of the videos over at Ctrl+Paint, which is an excellent resource. I vaguely recall mention of the Channel Mixer over there as a tool for helping pull together color schemes. And I knew layer masks were a good way to edit less destructively. But most of the stuff I’ve seen previous to this is about adding colors to a base layer.

This is the first I’m seeing of this very cool, full-colored multi-layers technique, though. I remember reading something about stone carving being about revealing the shape already in stone. This feels a bit like a similar philosophy, as all the potential palettes are there, and the colorist sort of brushes away the layers to find the right mix of them all. Well worth a look and a read for anyone interested in coloring techniques. Or just a kick ass Red Sonja picture.

(via Gail Simone)

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