Monday, September 1, 2008

Manga Studio

[image: Rouge pinup by Randy Kintz]
For the first time in a while I had some freetime to play with some programs. I've been holding off on using Manga Studio for a few reason. First off, a lot of the projects I was working on needed a fast turnaround and didn't give much leeway for experimentation. So I stuck with Photoshop which I've used since version five. Secondly the brush/table was offset by like three inches, which was really odd. Though all I had to do was reinstall my Wacom drivers which fixed everything.

Manga Studio is an interesting program, build exclusively for comic book production. I haven't messed with all the functions in this, but i've heard good things. So I just wanted to get my feet wet and work on some quick pinups. Randy Kintz has a some great, fun work. And he seems to have a similar inclination to draw hawt girls as I do. His pencils/pinups that he's posted on his DA site are tight enough to follow but rough enough to allow for some interpretation. And there's a level of complexity to them that is fun challenge to me. It allows me to work on some different lines than I normally wouldn't get the chance to. So with me caught up on projects for the most part, I was able to find some time to play with some new line-art that would be a challenge without making me cry on a new program that offers its own challenges.

[Another piece by Randy]
So, after reinstalling the drivers, Manga Studio worked like it should. It's an interesting program; much more control than PS, acts much more like a pen/brush for this sort of work. I had to tweak out the brush settings because it was trying to think for me. But I finally got it to work in a way that i can handle it. Hatching and feathering is much, much easier in MS than Photoshop. It also offers real time, arbitrary rotation of the page that doesn't muck with the lineart. This a godsend that baffles me isn't in the Adobe Suite. It's in nearly every other art program i've run into: ArtRage, Painter, MS. Free range page rotation is natural part of drawing because we use a different natural line. It also keeps me from craning my neck at odd angles to rotate my visual plane. The program is aliased so that's something to get use to; though it would make coloring/flatting a much easier process. So far, thumbs up. I'm going to play with for a while longer before I jump into it for a project.

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