Remember the concept sketches for the "Programs and People" article I posted a couple of weeks ago? Well, since that post, I've been working furiously on the final version.
Just to recap: The article details the use of genetic engineering to combat bovine infertility. Specifically, this effort (as far as the University of Idaho's ag program is concerned, anyway) targets dairy cows. Which is why the secondary art is all dairy-related:
So, onto the feature art. This is what the original concept sketch looked like:
So I re-drew it:
I think I've mentioned before my relationship with flat color, haven't I? Here's my process: Sketch, re-sketch, outline, flat color, inking/shading, additional details. Flat color is what I call the preliminary application of color. It doesn't have shading of any kind yet. Consequently, I think it looks terrible. It's bland and lifeless. Like the spaghetti at Shari's restaurant. In fact, it usually looks so bad that it makes me question whether or not the illustration is even going to work. This feeling can be akin to panic because, by the time I've reached the flat color stage, I'm pretty much committed to the illustration. But looking at the flat color almost always makes me wonder whether or not I made the wrong choices and now it's too late to do anything but turn in a crappy illustration.
This time was no exception:
Fortunately, it almost always looks better once I've painstakingly added shading and other details. This part of the process is usually the part that takes the longest, but it's well worth it. To invoke a cliche, this part brings the drawing to life. And because of that, it's my second favorite part of the process (nothing beats sketching for me):