Although I like to start most of my pictures without lines, characters require me to use them to sketch anything efficiently. I find it important to visualise and then try to capture that initial expression, not caring too much about proportion, anatomy or realism. I can figure these out later, but the initial design is my top priority, and remains important until the end result.
Dropping in colour
Just as lines may dictate forms, these early colour washes can influence every following stage of the picture. I don’t use any kind of colour picking, but the Photoshop HUD overlay is vital for me to pick fresh colours with every stroke. I use different blending modes, such as Color Dodge here, to quickly drop in a dodged rim light.