Andie Tong’s finished inks are coloured by Pete Pantazis and end up like this:
I guess before starting on this project I was vaguely aware that you usually had a guy who drew the pages and a guy who coloured them, but if I’d thought about it at all I’d supposed that colouring was a pretty mechanical process, yeah, you decide a jacket’s red and you make it red, APPLY. Seeing what Pete does with Andie’s pages has been quite a revelation. He gives every scene a very different treatment, he thinks a hell of a lot about the lighting, the weather, the time of day, the mood. He gets great variety into each issue that sets a tone for each character. The atmosphere he creates is astounding, and actually the much greater clarity he gives the action too. So the time of day wasn’t entirely clear before, but here we have a fire lit, shadowy night. The officers are ruddy in the glow of welcoming lamplight from inside the inn. The Practicals are sinister in the long shadows. Details like the candle glow around the doorframe in the first panel, or shining down the steps and across the cobbles, there are even stars in the night sky in the third panel, all add a sense of realism and atmosphere.
I’ll check over the coloured pages, usually in scene batches. The sharp-eyed among you may have noticed that on this first run, West’s hair is the wrong colour in panels three and four. Lettering is usually done on the black and white pages first by unsung hero of the whole process Bill Tortolini, checked by me, amended, then married up with the coloured pages for a final result. The final result for this page, you’ll be able to see at www.firslawcomic.com tomorrow (Monday 20th), with further pages posted free every monday, wednesday and friday. Should you wish to get ahead, and read whole issues at a time, you can pay us actual cash money for the privilege over at ComiXology, for which you also receive guided view and some of the inks and pencils. You can download their software for nothing and it’s a cool way to view this and a vast amount of other material (a fair bit of that free). I recommend it…
2 comments so far
Beautiful colours. I always imagined this world as being thoroughly grimdark and everything being browns and greys, but these comics have given me a very different, more aesthetically pleasing, vision of this world.
There’s a lot more planning and work put into the comic than I thought there would be and your “Script to colored page” answered a few questions I had about the whole process. Except that, I’m curious if the characters look the same on paper as they did in your head when you originally wrote the book. It seems that Glokta is more appealing in the comic than in the book. Were you a large part in the character design or did they refer to the books description more than anything else?