Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Entry 305: Blast From the Past- Part 28

In 2007 I went clear-line style for a few issues of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. I went from rendering everything completely in gray-tones in my first Star Wars issues, to scaling back a little, and now I was jumping to pure clear lines with no rendering.

I had been a fan of the clear-line style since high school when I had first seen Geof Darrow's work on Hard Boiled, but I hadn't really tried it yet. I came into comics wanting to control the final look as much as I possibly could without knowing how to color. The results had been okay, but I realized that the colorist was always going to be coming at it with their own vision. I thought maybe getting out of the colorists way all together would result in something that looked better to me.

The first issue I did this way was Knights of the Old Republic #13. Here are some more pages.

Overall I'd say that I was pleased with the results. I really liked how clear it all looked.

Once again, All the colors in this post are by Michael Atiyeh.

As I said in my last Blast From the Past Entry, I really felt that when you work in the Star Wars universe you should always be showing new places, vehicles, and aliens. To that end I asked my buddy D.J. Bryant if he could sketch a few alien ideas that I could throw into the backgrounds. I used several of his designs on the page above with all the TV screens. There are also a few on the next page, including the little brown furry guy in the foreground in panel one.

(By the way, D.J. is currently nominated for an Eisner for his book UNREAL CITY. So those are designs by Eisner nominated D.J. Bryant. Go to D.J's page here.)

Here are a few pages without color.

So that was issue 13. I probably could have managed to draw Issues 13, 14, and 15, but right at this time I had to move. I went from the Bay area in California up to Portland, Or. I ended up skipping issue 14 and went onto 15.

I returned to my rendering ways for that planet in that big panel. Here's a look at the black and white.

I got to do lots of fun acting in these Star Wars comics thanks to John Jackson Miller's scripts.

After seeing the results of my clear-line experiment in issue 13 I realized that what really didn't turn out right were scenes that I needed to be more moody. Like the page with all the TV screens. In my head that scene is much more creepy. To get what I'd really want out of that scene I'd have had to really micromanage the colorist, undermining the whole point of using this style in the first place. So, for the final scene of issue 15 I returned to the style I was using previously to try to get the mood I wanted.

And with that, Part 28 of my Blast From the Past Entries, I have reached the point when I began this blog! The circle is complete. For the next part of my journey as a comic artist you can go back to Entry #2, where I finally get hired to do a cover. It's like time travel. But this won't be the last BFTP entry. I'll keep it going. Obviously, there is a lot to be said that wasn't said in real time, as my career was happening. So stay tuned for more.

Blogged and Blogged


  1. Thanks for the plug. I'm a big fan of the clear line style you used in these issues. You're right though, it doesn't work very well for dark or moody scenes. I always thought the night scenes in Tintin didn't look quite right. The moody scene at the end works great!

  2. Star Wars and your art sure was much better back then. I mean back then star wars was allowed to have a white male protagonist. That seems impossible nowadays with men hating feminist like Kennedy at the rest of the Disney staff at control.
    And you still drew women with cleavage. That is also something I can`t see you ever do again. All your art has been nothing but ugly looking women for some time now, heck you even keep censoring old female costumes and bodies to no longer show of cleavage or have boobs either.
    It a shame what has happened to male dominated hobbies. they all have been taken over and ruined by sjws and now they are pretty much dead.