Monday 2 November 2015

ABC Warriors: Red Spice

After last years 'Anderson, Psi Division: The Line of Duty', I've been fortunate to work with writer Lee Robson again for Zarjaz magazine. This time had the luxury of brick-batting with him from the ground up something we'd both enjoy working on and would hopefully play to both our strengths.

Always had a love of the dark, weird elements of Pat Mills 2000AD universe such as Nemesis the Warlock and elements of ABC Warriors. Lee had a look over my portfolio and saw recurring psychedelic-style elements and mystical hoodoo voodoo motifs such as Tarot card designs. This led to us putting the focus on Deadlock.

Within the strip there is a section that happens on a mystical, spiritual plane (ask Lee to explain, he wrote it!) so to differentiate this section, I brought in ink washes to the background. I'm learning the hard way that ink washes aren't just a gung-ho case of slapping it down, there needs to be a degree of consideration, getting an even wash and gauging the darkness of wash applied (always seems to dry out lighter than it goes down). So not altogether sure how successful this comes through on final pages, but hopefully creates a differentiation between sections happening in the real world (the real world of mercenary robots on Mars) and also brings a bit of hand-applied grime to proceedings.

Really enjoyed working on these pages, hopefully it shows to some degree. The 10 year old me that devoured Best of 2000AD monthlies would be very happy. Found it a really smooth process working from Lee's script. He lays out concise direction, clear and easy to visualize action and he knows when it's fine to step back and let the artist take the wheel and have fun when it comes to defining things. Also, real down to earth guy to have correspondence with, a big help moving things along.

Here's two character sketches I did initially to help me lock in to drawing the lads...

'ABC Warriors: Red Spice' appears in Zarjaz no.25, available now. Spread the word.

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