Back when I didn't have a Cintiq or Wacom Tablet, I would draw everything out via pencil, then trace it with a Micron or something, then erase the lines. If I were to go back to that, I'd probably use a brush pen or something to do the larger outlines of a character, so the line width would look more natural and varied.
As of right now, I draw everything on a piece of paper with a pencil, then I take a picture of it with a generic iPhone, and then I go over the ink on a separate layer in Manga Studio, and then I color in Photoshop.
For the initial sketching I like using a col-erase blue pencil, sold cheap at art stores and online. It gives a soft, easily erased line.
Brush pens can be pricey but they do give a really sweet line.
If I'm just inking to scan into an art program, a black ball point pen works fine. Micron pens do give a better line.
Thank you for your help.
Brian, what kind of information about inking are you looking for specifically? Are you curious about traditional or digital? If traditional, are you wondering about dip pens and brushes, or disposable/refillable? What do you use to ink? If digital, what program are you using?
Or are you wondering less about inking tools and more about inking technique?
I am more interested in the traditional inking method, but I am open to learning about new tools or techniques.
I currently use Faber-Castell india ink pens.
The only software I have imediatley is a Photoshop Elements 10, but I do have access to the newer Adobe products through my work.
I would recommend getting solid with traditional before you do a bunch of digital stuff. They look and feel very different.
I've used the Faber-Castell pens, they are ok. Some people swear by them, I don't really care for them, though I do use the Faber-Castell Bid Brush, that's pretty great.
This is something I wrote to one of the other members here yesterday, he was looking for information on traditional inking without doing the dip pen thing:
"The best technical pens in my opinion are the copic multiliners. They come in a variety of tip sizes. I most commonly use a 0.1, 0.3, 0.5, and a 0.8 for panel borders. You may not get much in the way of thick to thin lines but they will get the job done. I think they are somewhere between 3 and 5 dollars a piece. I like to buy them in bulk packs from amazon. For expressive lines and heavy black areas you really need a brush. If you aren't into the dip thing. Pentel makes a refillable pocket brush that a lot of people use. They are about $20 and comes with a couple cartridges. I prefer the Kuretake no 40, or the Platinum brush. The Kuretake is about $30 on amazon, and the Platinum is more like $50 (if i remember correctly ) but you can buy platinum converters for them both (about $8 on amazon) and then just keep refilling them with rapidograph ink, which is pretty common and easy to find. They are more because they don't use the synthetic fiber bristles, they actually have real hair, so the line they make is much superior, but again you can refill them yourself, which is ideal, and much more convenient.
For large black areas if you aren't using a dip brush the faber-castle pitt artist pen big brush is super great. it's very black and can cover large areas pretty easily, but you won't want to use it for small details, the tip is too large. For white I use a sharpie water based white paint pen, extra fine point. I also have other white paint available for dip brushes.
Most artists use a combination of dip and refillable (or disposable tools) there is no absolute method, though some make more sense and save you a lot of time, but mostly it's just about getting the job done and making it look good. To do that use anything and everything you have at your disposal.
A lot of artists prefer that thick to thin line for figures and use the technical pens only for backgrounds. without using a dip pen with a flexible nib you are then forced to use a brush, which takes a long time to master. A way around that, if you have time, is to do all the line art with the multiliners and then go back and touch up here and there with a brush for some heavier black shadows and some variation in line work."
That's kind of just a general overview of some traditional non dip tools. if you have questions about using them or when to use what, or using traditional dip pens or brushes, you can ask me anything.
I personally use a combination of dip pens, and refillable brushes, i don't use too many dip brushes anymore, I get tired of dipping. For super small details or technical stuff I use the copic multiliners.
Hope that helps.