CG Coloring Tutorial – Coloring Pencil Work Tools: Adobe PhotoShop 7.0; Wacom Intuos Tablet 12x12; Lots of Pepsi and Twinkies Work Area: 1280x1024 resolution Aloha All! Before reading on, I strongly suggest reading Discloner’s excellent coloring tutorial, which is laid it out in a simple to understand format and covers the basics of coloring. Also, Outlander’s “Basic Color and Color Theory!” is a must as well. This is not an official tutorial, per se, however I had some people interested in how I approach CG coloring. Also, as a warning, this is a project that will take over a course of a week or so, please bear with me. Since were using PhotoShop 7.0 (ver. 4-6 should work as well), I might as well give you a quick rundown of PhotoShop (PS from here on out). I should also note I use a Win2k based computer, but Mac versions will be identical except use the apple command key instead of the CTRL key when pointed out. First and Foremost – PS is a resource intensive program. Memory plays an important part here, so more is better. Just by doubling the amount of memory you’ll see PS perform tasks quicker, sometimes by about 25-45%!! This is the cheapest upgrade and for PS the most effective in my opinion. PS has its own memory management, so you can set how much memory PS should use. Edit -> Preferences -> Memory & Image Cache. (I use 70%, but you can vary it to what works best for your system.) While we are here, we might as use the drop-down menu and select the Plug-ins & Scratch Disks portion. A scratch disk is another name for virtual memory. In other words, a section of your Hard drive will be used if PS needs it. The scratch disk also is used to store a selection that is copied. So this means that you want some free space on your hard drive. For web work, usually a couple of hundred MegaBytes will be sufficient, but if you’re doing projects for print or video, then you want a couple of GigaBytes free. Note: It is preferred to have PS use its scratch disk on a separate partition or hard drive. This is due to Windows also having a scratch disk function and sometimes the two scratch disks just don’t like to get along. Tip: If resources are low, break up you project into various files. Do the background separately from foreground elements, or even panels on a page can be done this way and re-composited later. Secondly – Save, save, and save some more. I can not stress this enough. I have worked on a project for a couple of hours almost to completion when a black out happened. My previous save was still in the beginning stages, so I had to redo most of it. Saving is also a must, if you are going to experiment. PS only has a certain amount of undos before you are committed, so reverting back to last save is great security blanket. Tip: Set yourself a time limit for saving. I usually save every ten minutes. Third – Don’t be scared. PS can be overwhelming when you’re first starting out. Do not be afraid to experiment. The goal is to have fun while working on a project, if you’re not sure of a step or what to do next, save and just go wild. You’ll be amazed at what comes out sometimes. Fourth – Relax. CG coloring is similar to painting, it takes time. Take a deep breath, sit back and go to town. Also, choose a piece of art that speaks to you and that you will enjoy coloring. Tip: In PS, there are many different ways to achieve the same effects, so don’t panic when you get stuck, just try a different method. Well that intro was longer than I planned so let’s speed things up.