Get bet­ter at pan­els

World of Tanks artist PJ Holden shows how to use real-world ref­er­ence for comic art.

ImagineFX - - Contents -

Comic art is one of the most re­ward­ing, un­usual and dif­fi­cult art jobs you’ll ever have. Ev­ery new job is a chal­lenge, re­quir­ing the ap­pli­ca­tion of mul­ti­ple art tech­niques and a range of cre­ative ap­proaches.

When I was asked to fin­ish World of Tanks for Dark Horse, I had a tight dead­line, but I was also re­quired to draw de­tailed, be­liev­able and most im­por­tantly, ac­cu­rate tanks and other World War 2 ve­hi­cles. Un­like draw­ing fu­tur­is­tic war sto­ries, you can’t just make this stuff up. Th­ese things ex­ist and peo­ple know ex­actly what they look like.

Luck­ily, this means there’s usu­ally a plethora of ref­er­ence ma­te­rial out there. There are mod­els, books, videos and, most pre­cious of all, man­u­als – th­ese will of­ten show ve­hi­cles from the in­side. This is cru­cial knowl­edge to have when you have a team of peo­ple in­side a tank, and the book will be put in front of mil­lions of read­ers who’ve all played the game and know ex­actly where the driver sits.

In this work­shop I’ll take you through a page of a new cre­atorowned se­ries I’m work­ing on with Gor­don Ren­nie called World War Thule. It’s set in the dy­ing days of the War, and tells of a last-ditch ef­fort of the Re­ich to find new re­sources in the Hol­low Earth. We fol­low the allfe­male crew of a Ger­man King Tiger Tank as it fights At­lanteans, di­nosaurs and cave­men with weird fu­tur­is­tic technology…

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