Anti-Alias Coloring Question

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Anti-Alias Coloring Question

Postby leonardomlk » Thu Aug 23, 2012 5:21 am

Hi guys,

I'm a comic book colorist for 4 years now. I'd say that about 95% of my time during all these 4 years was spent working mainly on cartoony/for children books. Most of my published works so far were done using the "cuts and grads" method.

My layer setup consists of 3 basic layers: lineart, flats (anti-alias turned off), colors (anti-alias turned off). Any other layers I might end up adding on top of that are adjustments or effect layers. My tool settings are as follows:

Magic wand tool: anti-alias turned off, tolerance at 2, contiguous turned off
Lasso/Polygonal lasso tool: anti-alias turned off
Paint bucket tool: anti-alias turned off, tolerance at 0, contiguous turned off, all layers turned off

This is what's been working for me ever since I learned how to color properly. However, one of my clients has recently requested I change my workflow to better suit their needs. Basically, I'm working using the same "cuts and grads" coloring style, but they want it completely aliased and separate by layers following this structure: lineart, flats, shadows, highlights.

Using this method completely breaks my workflow as instead of doing more free selections that respect only the area I want to color, I'll need to do accurate selections for each and every area I color, otherwise, it'll color over unwanted areas. Using layers as a clipping mask is not an option, as it'd be a problem for them as well.

I've been messing with all sorts of different settings for my tools, such as increasing tolerance (which is a bit risky) and marking all layers on the paint bucket (which leaves color gaps where the lineart sits, even if I'm coloring on a different layer). For this new workflow, I'm using the same tool settings as listed above, the only difference being that I've activated anti-alias for every tool, turned all layers on the paint bucket and turned up the tolerance a little bit. While this allowed me to keep my method, it has considerably slowed me down as I need to fix all the color leaks it causes.

My question is: is there any way I can keep my original workflow while applying the changes the client requested for keeping it anti-aliased and separate by layers without having to deal with color leaks?

Any sort of help from the pros (Dave McCaig, Laura Martin, Sweeney, etc) or anyone here in this forum who understands what I'm talking about would be GREATLY appreciated.

If you guys need more info in order to help me, please just let me know.

Thanks in advance!

Leonardo Ito
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Re: Anti-Alias Coloring Question

Postby Eagle » Thu Aug 23, 2012 1:09 pm

Maybe you could work with masks, but apply them before sending the files in. Preferably keep a copy of each file without the masks applied so you can make changes if needed.
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Re: Anti-Alias Coloring Question

Postby leonardomlk » Tue Aug 28, 2012 5:28 am

Eagle wrote:Maybe you could work with masks, but apply them before sending the files in. Preferably keep a copy of each file without the masks applied so you can make changes if needed.


Hi Eagle! Thanks for the reply, much appreciated!

May I ask how you would apply masks in this case? The client wants only the flats on the flats layer, only the shadows on the shadows layer (so if they turn it off, only the flats that are below this layer will remain) and only the highlights on the highlights layer.

A close friend of mine suggested the same, but I'm having a hard time coming up with an effective way to make it work using layer masks while maintaing everything aliased without causing any color leaks.
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Re: Anti-Alias Coloring Question

Postby Eagle » Tue Aug 28, 2012 6:10 am

When you're satisfied with the results in your masks, drag the mask icon on the Layers palette onto the little trash bin icon [or right-click, Delete Mask]. When it asks if you want to preserve, delete or apply it, click Apply.
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Re: Anti-Alias Coloring Question

Postby leonardomlk » Tue Aug 28, 2012 10:16 pm

Eagle wrote:When you're satisfied with the results in your masks, drag the mask icon on the Layers palette onto the little trash bin icon [or right-click, Delete Mask]. When it asks if you want to preserve, delete or apply it, click Apply.


Going to try this. Thank you very much for your help!
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Re: Anti-Alias Coloring Question

Postby Eagle » Wed Aug 29, 2012 6:58 am

No problem.
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Re: Anti-Alias Coloring Question

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