We have locked down the actors we're using as character references for the first 30 or so pages of our graphic novel (introduction to Emily and all her relatives). There were a surprising number of costumes to be created, but, we pulled on our creative sewing powers and little by little, our characters began to come together.
Having character reference photos helps keep my art consistent, and also helps it go faster. Drawing out the artwork completely off the cuff takes me (Christina), more time. But when I can begin with one of my characters photographed in the pose, it cuts down on the time I have to spend making sure that an image looks accurate, and is what I wanted. I'm hopeful, that working this way will cut my creation time down immensely. This is why the upfront time spent on costumes, and historical research is worth my while.
Here's how it works: We start with a beautiful, well-lit image (thanks to Daniel's photography prowess) and then I take that basic image of Emily's father sitting and recreate it as a drawing. Obviously, there are still a few things I have to artistically adjust. Our cat was not cooperating here, so I used a different photo where she was sitting pretty. And this modern chair was not going to work, so we tracked down a different image reference for a chair from the Victorian era.
But simply beginning with this photo, helps me to draw and color an image that is realistic to lighting and clothing folds much more quickly than I could do, without the help of photography for a reference and gives me more upfront control of the finesse of my art.
But with the drawing beginning, this is where it all gets so fun. The story is about to start coming together, and we will be sharing it with you here. Keep checking back, because we'll start sharing our pages here on the website, as they come together!