Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login
I've been working on a new project called bloggercamp where I do WordPress Themes, Tips, and Tutorials.

Check it out if you use this CMS/Blogging Platform
I am se55 no more...</b>

Most of you, my watchers, a random se55 enthusiast, may undoubtedly know that I have converted to statichavoc --- this isn't just a spur of the moment decision.  This is final.

so please turn your watches to that account instead.
<table><tr><td colspan="2">
Sarah Hebblethwaite (silentkitty) is a 23-year-old illustrator with an intense interest in creating characters and comic books. She has created different characters ever since she was old enough to pick up a pencil.  Sarah draws her inspiration by various Japanese mediums, starting out from video game manual illustrations and quickly graduated to magazines and manga.

Sarah is currently involved in two comic book projects, one of which can be found in her gallery, both of which are headed for print within the next couple of years. So now we delve into the mind of Sarah Hebblethwaite...

Please take note that this interview took place before Sarah received her Tier Admin status, however, questions as well as their answers have been updated accordingly. Enjoy.

</td></tr><tr><td valign="top" width="50%">
Sarah, you've been around deviantART quite awhile and your style has only become better... to what do you attribute your growing skill level?
Well, I think a lot of it has actually been sitting down and looking through artwork that I consider "above my level", and thinking to myself, "Hey, I wish I was that good." That's really always been one of the ways I've motivated myself to get better.  I've spent a lot more time recently sitting down and trying to draw in styles outside of my own, too, which I think has been helping.

Make sense to me! So try to imitate a "skill" level higher than yours to grow as an artist?
Well, not so much imitating it as sitting down with it and thinking "What is it that I like about this picture that I might be able to incorporate into my own style?". It helps me to get better at thinking about art, too.

I see what you mean.  After browsing your colorful gallery I come across 3 main concepts; dragons, females, and manga/anime style.  Why do you choose to draw those things? What about those subjects appeal to you as an artist?
Well, dragons are something that I've drawn ever since I was little (I still have some of my dragon drawings from when I was 5 or 6, lol), so that's just something that I've never really grown out of.  Most of the non-dragon drawings in my gallery are actually portrayals of characters from the comic that I'm working on, which will be done in that style.  And as for them being mostly female.. I'm not really sure.  The female (or at least feminine.. people tend to mistake my male characters for girls, lol) form is something that I find beautiful, and it lends itself to my style (which, I guess, tends to be sort of wispy, which isn't really something that hulky males work well with. )

Ok so it's basically just something you "grew" into and developed over the years?
Yeah, I'd say so.   I was really influenced from anime and manga from the very beginning, since some of my first drawings were of characters I got out of video game booklets.

So were you a "gamer" way back when or are you still getting thumb blisters from controllers?
Haha.. I've been a 'gamer' since I was about 7.  That's another thing I haven't quite grown out of yet.  A lot of my inspiration still comes from RPGs.

So final fantasy... yay or nay?
Well.. They've all had their good points and bad points.  I've been less interested in the post-PSX ones, but I did really love FFX.

Agreed, ok we're getting sidetracked here.  Back to art... Your style is unique, with dark lines, contrasting colors and beautiful yet distant backgrounds, I'm assuming your characters are of invented nature, so where do you get your ideas from these days?
Well, a lot of the artwork that I'm doing now is related in some way to the comic project, since it's eating up a lot of my time. The story and cultures are still in development, so I've been doing research on some different cultures around the world, to see if there's anything that I'd like to use, in clothing design, especially.. So I've actually been pulling a lot of inspiration from that.
</td><td valign="top" width="50%">
A woman of the world so to speak hehe, so have you had any formal training or is it all self taught?
Haha.  Well, I'm just graduated from college for graphic design, so I learned a lot about the programs and whatnot from that.  Most of the basics of drawing I taught myself, though, because my art teacher in high school was a little.. lax in that department.

I see so you really haven't had any boundaries when it comes to art? (That's always a good thing).
Not really, no.. Thankfully, most of my teachers have been pretty open about letting me keep working in my own style (I've heard lots of horror stories about people that work in a cartoonish style getting to college and not being allowed to develop that, because the teachers didn't consider it "art".

That is a shame, people should be able to fully develop their style. So what became of you after college?
After I graduated, I moved out to Ohio, where I've been working alternately on the comic project I mentioned, doing freelance illustration, and working part time at a copy center locally.  Not the most thrilling life, but I enjoy it for the most part.

This is a question I always ask.  Do you have any advice for up and coming artists following your style?
Well.. I think the biggest piece of advice that I can offer is just don't paint yourself into a corner.   It's great if you want to work in this style, but I also think it's really important to get out and draw from life, try your hand at painting, photography, everything you possibly can.  Being well rounded will just help you to develop the style that you're the most interested in doing.  And when you're looking at other people's art, the same thing applies.. don't just look at art in the anime style, look at everything and try to learn from it.

I'm glad to see an artist with dreams and such great potential. Sounds like an adventure and good luck with everything! Thank you so much for your time with this and I look forward to more dragons from you.
Haha, thank you!

Interview by se55
Mark Penix

Featured Content Staff</i>

Warm as Snow by silentkitty Screw You World by silentkitty Quiet Interlude - Fix by silentkitty Random Dragon Part II Take II by silentkitty
<table width="100%" cellpadding="5" align="center" bgcolor="white"><tr><td height="75" colspan="2" bgcolor="#845B5B" valign="top" align="left">
Deadline: March 31st, 2004 
Note Article Entries to HEIDI 
</td></tr><tr><td align="center" valign="middle" width="118">
Click for Article

Click for Article

Click for Article

Click for Article

Click for Article</td><td valign="top" bgcolor="#AF9494" style="color: white;">
Do you enjoying writing, reviewing, interviewing, or researching?
What about helping others?

If you answered yes to anything above, then the deviantART PCS team wants YOU!  We are currently looking for a few good people to help make this site as informative as it is visually pleasing.  So, we present this contest of sorts to you.

"A contest?" you say. Well, not by normal means… there is a twist.  Great, now I bet you're asking yourself, "How do I enter?”  Ask, and you shall receive...

Our assignment, should you choose to accept it, is to write an article about anything you wish (guidelines listed below).  You don't have to worry about formatting except for basic paragraph form; we just want to see your skills in action.

And now for that twist I was telling you about…

After you work on your submission... you have to work some more!  We aren’t looking for people who simply want to gain “staff status” at deviantART.   We are, however, looking for dedicated people that work well with others, can be reliable, timely, follow directions, and produce work on a consistent basis.

Why would you want to do all this work for nothing?  There are a few incentives: you'll receive recognition from your peers for producing top notch content, possibly make new friends, gain a little insight into the way our publishing system works, and maybe you'll even learn a thing or two along the way.

As promised, here are the Article Guidelines:
1. Relate to the art community in some form or fashion.
2. Be at least 4 paragraphs, no more than 8.
3. Have each paragraph with at least 4 sentences.
4. Be sent to Heidi via note with the subject: "PCS CONTEST"
5.             More than one article may be submitted.
6.             We are not looking for interviewers at this time, submit something else please.
7. Finally… the articles must be sent by March 31st, 2004

After the articles have been reviewed many times, a few “winners” will be chosen based on Super Top Secret PCS criteria.  If we do find that your article meets what we are looking for, you’ll be given the opportunity to prove yourself over a month’s time by doing random assignments that either we give you or that we allow you to choose on your own.  However, that will be done on a case-by-case basis. There are no predetermined number of slots open on the team, so don’t be afraid you won’t make “the cut”.

Disclaimer: Any article submitted can be considered for publishing; appropriate credit will be given. Also to be considered for a staff position you MUST be at least 18 years old.

Article by se55
Mark Penix

Featured Content Staff</i>

<table width="98%" border="0" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" align="center" bgcolor="black"><tr><td></td></tr><tr><td style="color: #CCCCCC;">
boyinmidair |

Matthew Woodson quietly graced the scenes of deviantART mid-June of 2002 and has since erupted and put out masterful art and insight into the mind of an "inker".  Matthew's work is awe inspiring and to even the most conservative of commenters, he envokes a response.  It doesn't take long to realize that genuine emotion is poured into his work with the utmost care and clarity. Here, you and I have the welcome opportunity to crack open his mind, run through his ideas, and realize his patience. If you haven't had the opportunity to read the tutorial Matthew put together for me, please check it out here... How to Ink like an idiot.

(Matthew is currently enrolled in college at the Art Institute of Chicago.)

Artist Interjection:
I have been drawing since before I can remember, but started really getting into it when I was around 6-7, taking most of my influence from comic books and books of Japanese ink paintings. Eventually I put together a portfolio, and applied to school at The Art Insitute of Chicago, where I am still currently enrolled. I have had an online portfolio ( now for almost 4 years, and have met many an interesting person through emails and occasional run-ins. Some of those people becoming very good friends to me, one of them being Hamilton Cline ( hamdiggy ), who introduced me to many other amazing artists like himself (jasinski and pirate-trish). They all were members of this online artist community that I had never heard of called DeviantArt. After hearing that I had never heard of the community, Hamilton half way asked/ halfway begged for me to join.

</td></tr></tr><tr><td style="color: #CCCCCC;">
Well Matthew, first off I'd like to thank you for taking time out of your busy life and doing this interview with me.  The main reason I choose to interview you was your unique approach to art, where do you think your style reigns from?

If you are talking in terms of inspiration, you'll be getting a long list in return. But to shorten that up, my inspiration mainly comes from comic books (obviously), traditional ink drawings,etchings, and Japanese sumi ink work. But mainly my style is controlled by my love of ink, and anal retentiveness. These aspects both create boundaries for me, that I try and do as much as I can within them … and I think it kind of forces out this style that I have become so comfortable with.

Very interesting, how did you get into styling Japanese sumi ink work? Where did you first experience that style?

My grandmother. My grandmother supplied me with amazingly intense art books, and art supplies. She did this even when I was very young ( 3 or 4). She was an artist herself, and also loved Asian ink work, so in turn I received a lot of exposure to the style through books from her.

That's awesome, you can associate a very personal experience with art and in a sense can help inspire even more. Glad to hear something like that passed down so genuinely.  I know you concentrate almost fluently on inking alone, but I also know you do many sketches and the like.  Where do some of your subject ideas stem from?

Whoa, that is a good question. My ideas come from all over the place, people/things I see in the everyday, movies, photos, lots and lots of things I pick out of literature, past experiences, dreams, stories I have written, it just goes on and on. Its kind of like I have this huge collection of snapshots in my consciousness taken for every second of my life, and I just kind of pull a few out to work off of in reference. It's a damn hard thing to explain … so I hope this makes the least bit of sense.  I just try and convey certain emotions through nameless people and images... sometimes the emotions are nameless as well.

So in essence you retain a photographic memory... interesting concept.  Most of your art is black and white and filled with detail.  About how much time would your average piece take and at what size canvas do you like to work at?

From concept to inked piece … its about 2 days…but you have to understand, that's 2 days of working intently…so I guess about 12-18 hours, and half that time that is working STRAIGHT. I have this problem with never being able to put down my brushes... kind of explains a lot of things when it comes to my almost constant lack of sleep. But when it comes to "canvas" size, I use whatever size the pad of paper I currently have at that time is. Today its Strathmore Bristol Vellum, 11X14... but it usually depends on what I have lying around, or what is the cheapest at the store.

My god, you're definately a devoted artist i think lack of sleep for art deserves a purple heart, or something similar. Hehe. What makes you so devoted to art and what keeps you going after so many years of inking?

Ah, the question I ask myself daily. And a question I usually cant answer. I love to draw…I just love it, its like breathing. And I know I sound so stupid saying "I love to draw"… but it's just how it is. If I could bear children, I would give birth to drawing's child. I have made a lot of mistakes in my life…but art is one of those things I cant screw up on, even if I try as hard as I can…it all just ends up falling into place. I have also made some promises to some people…promising that I would never stop creating, and so far I haven't forgotten those promises. But the inking question is a fun question... I usually explain it by saying "I ink because I am a loser". But in reality, I have tried many many types of mediums, and never really been comfortable with anything OTHER than ink…its so smooth, and clean. I am very afraid of messy mediums…christ, a pencil is even too messy sometimes. Ink runs in my veins anymore. (this isnt far from the truth, I have swallowed a lot of the crap).

Drawing's child eh? I'll see if i can't find Drawing for you.  You guys would make a cute pair.  But seriously, so you think that your grandmother's influence will stick with you forever? Also, I hope you never break that promise, your stuff is great!

Probably so ... my grandmother was the only person in my family who had any respect for art really. I mean, i grew up in a family in which both of my parents were psychologists and my brother a micro-biologist. There isn't a lot of room for an artist there. My grandmother also pushed me hard when it came to my work, and applying for art school. I am now attending the art school of her dreams (as well as mine of course) , that her mother wouldn't let her apply to when she was my age. It's a weird lineage thing. And RIGHT after I got accepted here is when she passed away…so its like a silent promise these days. Yet another dead person in my life that influences my work to know end, the list is ever growing it seems...

Well I'm glad to see that this skill has skipped a generation directly to you.  I'm sure if your grandmother were still alive she'd be overjoyed with your skills and dreams.  Speaking of dreams, where do you see yourself in 5 years?  What do you WANT to do with your skills?

damn, alright…we'll see if I can answer that one. I really have no clue…I have had so many choices. For so long I wanted to just do comics…comics, comics, and more comics. And to some degree I would like to still do that, but now I am focusing on other aspects of my "art"…ive really been getting into my writing recently, and even more so into my sculptural and puppet making work. So its really up in the air. But it WILL be doing something with art…I cant do anything but art, my college and highschool GPA can prove that for you too.

Great answer, my grades are probably the same as yours hehe. That's another subject we need to talk about, you have other styles and work than inking, such as Puppets, Leather stitching, etc. Care to describe them a bit , the when's and why's?

Whens and whys…hmmm. Well, leather work is certainly an influence from my father. My father did A LOT of leather work, in fact it's how he worked through college a few times. He used to give me scraps when I was young, and I would do stupid things with them and make little coin purses. And then about a year before my father passed away we started talking about leather work a lot, and different ways to do things and such. And now, almost 2 years later I have turned my father's ability to make belts into my own personal ability to make crazy crazy leather things (ie; masks, bags, corsets, cuffs, etc) in fact, its what I am trying to do now to work my way through college….these art school kids will pay insane amounts of money for personalized leather work.

But my puppets are a different story. I am OBSESSED with puppets, and have been since I was very young…I used to watch Sesame Street, and make the puppets I had seen on the tv out of felt. It was like a daily practice. But then when I was in my early teens I got really into classic puppet theater. Mainly eastern European marionette and hand puppet shows, as well as ancient Buddhist and Japanese puppets. The idea of being able to create a thing, and bring it to life all with just your hands astounds me.

Well from all that it seems like you are the well-rounded artist afterall!  I'd imagine you could make quite the living from other people's "fetishes".  Good luck with that!  I really appreciate your contributions to the PCS Team and your contributions as an artist to the world.  Thanks again Matthew.

yeah, no problem. this was entertaining, to say the least.</td></tr>
<tr><td align="right" style="color: #CCCCCC;">
Interview by se55
Mark Penix

Featured Content Staff</i>

<table width="75%" border="0" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" align="center" bgcolor="white"><tr><td height="121" align="left" valign="top" bgcolor="white"><img src="…" alt="" / ></td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px; vertical-align: top;">This is a tutorial on how I personally go from a concept sketch, to a finished ink piece. A lot of people have asked me how I ink, so this is pretty much here to explain a few things. DO NOT follow these directions exactly…you will end up with a big mess.

I am by no means a professional inker and I pretty much make it up as I go along. But this is here just to give you the basic idea of how I ink... very differently than most people. I hope this helps some people out in the long run.

Matthew Woodson: aka boyinmidair
</td></tr><tr><td align="left" ></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">Strathmore Bristol Vellum, 11X14 or bigger:
This stuff is great, and cheap…most inkers don't use it because of the rough texture, but it gives me the exact effect I want. There is another type of Bristol Vellum somewhere out there by AquaBee, but I think they are out of business now. If you find this paper, USE it … it's really amazing paper.

Koh-I-Noor Rapidomatic .5mm Mechanical pencil:
I usually sketch with this, its fast, sturdy, and heavy. I guess it's a drafting pencil, but it gives me the lines I want.

Brushes (varying sizes, usually 0/3 and 6):
If I had money, I would buy real sable brushes, but I don't, so I am stuck with synthetic. I don't buy fancy brushes at all, because I go through them so fast…but synth. Sable takes ink well, experiment around if you have the money for it.

Higgins Black Magic Ink:
This stuff is my god. I usually let it sit out with the cap open for a few days before using it, it makes it real think, and real nice for brush work (especially dry brush). It's cheap, dark, and permanent.

Light Box:
I am a light box junkie. I hate erasing things, so if I sketch, and want a new sketch, I just trace through on a new piece of paper. It's why my transitions between pages are so so jumpy. But light boxes are SUPER expensive, so make your own! I used a big tin can, with a lightbulb in it and a piece of plexi-glass over it for almost 5 years.

But eventually I bought an actual lightbox, that has served me quite well. BE CAREFUL in making your own though…you can burn stuff really easily (ie; plexiglass, paper, hands, etc)

Staedtler Mars Plastic Eraser:
They are big, tough, and never get really dirty. These things are intense, and have been known to even erase black magic ink.

Sakura Waterproof Micron pens:
these are cheap, and stupid. I use them to draw borders, and letter things. I just have like one of those trusty 6 packs. I also use the thicker pens to sketch a lot.

PaperMate Liquid Paper:
yeah…uhh, it's just whiteout. Just plain ole' whiteout.

2" Artist's masking tape:
Self explanatory.</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr>
<tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">This is the stupidest step, I gotta say. This is my "concept sketch" step. These sketches are never well worked out, and almost always done in class, on a train, or on a bus. And are drawn everywhere, napkins, notebooks, etc. They usually contain stupid things, like homework assignments and stupid cartoon drawings of myself feeling sorry for myself.

I did this one in the middle of my Writing Workshop class, with a Micron 08 pen. Just figuring out perspective, anatomy, and foreshortening of the anatomy for the figure. This was based loosely on a girl that was sitting in front of me at a diner, though I never saw her face…so improvisation came into play. ANY anatomy class will pretty much tell you to begin drawing figures using simple shapes, like I have done here. But proportion is another question entirely, I couldn't tell you how to draw in proportion if I wanted to…it just kinda works out for me in the end to look decent.</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr>
<tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">After the "concept sketch" I decide if I like it or not, and if I do I slap it down on a lightbox and redraw it to see what I want out of it. This sketch usually starts spacing out objects, figuring out texture and dark spots. But it is still always sloppy, and never really explains anything.

You can see here that I worked out the hair a bit more, and was working out the foreshortening of the arm too. But other than that it is still very very loose.</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">Once again, we go back to the lightbox, and do some drawing. This is where the drawing really comes together. I worked out all the proportions, and dark areas. I also drew in the box around the piece with a Micron Pen (I don't know why I like boxes so much, so don't bother asking). You can also see me putting more detail in the foreground than the background, trying to bring out depth, to an obviously dimensional piece. In this step I get EVERYTHING down that I want, because next comes the inks!</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">INK! Oh sweet sweet ink. Here I take a pretty small brush (0 or 1), and just pretty much layout the larger white areas of the foreground, not worrying too much about detail. There is nothing too exciting going on here…I am not sure why I made this its own step. Laying out the wide open spaces really gives you a sense of where to go next with the ink.</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">I LOVE DRAWING HAIR! Pretty much what I do is take the thinnest (3/0) brush I have, and load it up with ink. I do a lot of improvising when it comes to highly textured areas like hair. I layout the dark areas first, being rather sloppy and just making sure that I fill out the dark areas, so I can remember where they are. Then I go at it with the detail…I get asked a lot "how do you get such thin lines?" well…I don't really know what to say, other than patience, and obsessive compulsiveness.

Half the time I hold my breath with each line, because the breathing out could disrupt the line…this is because I am crazy though, and wouldn't recommend this. It can lead to hyperventilation and dizziness. I try to get as LITTLE of the ink and brush to touch the paper as possible, when I am doing things like hair….it is very hard to get used to, but very helpful in the end.</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">REMEMBER KIDS! Thick lines in the foreground, thin lines in the background….it gives a sense of depth (why am I telling you this? I usually forget it myself). I have no idea how to do none. I think I was absent that day in high school or something…so I just kinda draw lines until it looks decent. The wood is done the same way as the hair pretty much…just with thinner lines, and a more "woodlike" texture (obviously). I try to make the back of the table more "busy" than the front of the table…kind of the opposite of the "thick lines front, thin lines back" idea…but somehow it works out for me.</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">This is my favourite part of all of doing any piece. I take Artist's masking tape, and put it around the edges of the border, and everywhere I don't want ink to get pretty much. If I couldn't get the tape close enough to the line, I then use an Exacto knife to cut off the excess so I can get a clean line (BE CAREFUL though…especially if you are using strathmore paper, not to cut too deep…the paper is very soft, and it will be hard to ink over cut lines). After I have peeled off all the tape that I don't need, I get out one of my fatter brushes (6 or higher), and go to work. I fill in everywhere I want solid black with ink obviously, and then for where I want it "splotchy" I use the dry brush technique. Dry Brush is when you wipe off a lot of ink onto a paper towel or something, and then just lightly place it on the paper... so it gives some visibility to the white paper beneath. A lot of people have weird ways of doing dry brush... but that's how I personally do it. I also sometimes use my fingers to get just a tiny amount of ink where I want it.

I bet you're asking "what the hell are those blotches on her face!?". This is the secret to my work…THE POWER OF WHITEOUT! If I am not satisfied with the balance of contrast, as well as any point of texture, I just start lightly slapping on ink, to be corrected later. Doing this always gives a very "messy" but smooth texture…this is usually done in places where just using a tiny brush won't give the effect I want.</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">You can see here, that I have stripped off all my masking tape, and filled in places I had mixed with the large brush, using a smaller brush to get more detail. I have also gone at it with the whiteout, and evened that out with tiny brush strokes (much like the strokes in the hair and wood). I also started experimenting with the smoke with whiteout…trying to see how much light I should put into it.

WHITEOUT is a very very difficult tool to use, and shouldn't be used on anything that you aren't going to scan and change the contrast on a computer program. Whiteout is very shiny, and never the same "tone" as your paper, making it very visible when you are seeing the original piece. But one good thing about whiteout is it works perfectly for covering up inked areas, and it is also very fun to do brush work over. I have been experimenting with other mediums I could use, that would match the paper better (gouache, white ink, etc.) but haven't really found anything that works any better.</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">We're done! After some final touch ups with a small brush, some intense erasing, and a little tiny bit of splattering with a small brush (0/3) we are finished.

After I am done with the piece, I scan it into my scanner (usually at about 300dpi) and change the contrast until I am happy with it. Pretty much what you want to do with the contrast is to make it look EXACTLY like the actual piece of paper….lots of scanners can't do this, especially not mine. The original piece is pure white and pure black, and the scanned picture should be as well.</td></tr><tr><td align="left"></td></tr><tr><td valign="top" style="background-color: #DDDDDD; padding: 10px; border: solid #666666 1px;">I hope this helps someone out there. If someone had written this for me when I started out inking, I would have been far too happy for anyone's good. Pretty much just test things out, and see what you like…and of course practice until you can't stand it anymore. The piece that I did for the tutorial took me about 18 hours straight (minus the constant scanning)…I have the amazing ability to sit inking for hours on end, but I know a lot of people don't have this ability.

There are also some books out there that may be worth purchasing, but don't take my word for it (word up Lavar Burton) because I haven't read or purchased them. The books are pretty much "How to ink for comic book artists"…I think there are two different books, that seemed quite good. After looking through them for a few minutes, I noticed some things that I had no idea about….but uhh, don't email me and yell at me if you think you have wasted your money on these books.

Once again, I hope this helps someone out there. If you have any questions (like, serious inking questions) feel free to ask, and I'll see if I can help out there. Also if any of you out there can ink better than I and think I ink like an idiot, feel free to tell me that as well.

Special thanks:
se55- for being extremely patient.
New kids on the block- for giving me stupid step titles.

<center>"Step by step, ooh baby. Gotta' get to you guuuuuuuuuuuuuurrl."</center></td></tr><tr><td align="center" valign="top">Copyright © 2004 deviantART Inc. All Rights Reserved
All inked images used with permission</td></tr></table>
All the tattoo artists out there, this contest may be for you. What I am wanting is to honestly cover up a "mistake" made while I was younger.  I'm looking to cover up a "bad tattoo" and I would like to get one of you to design it.

I will be having this tattoo placed on my back from each (inner) shoulder blade and maybe halfway down my back. I'm looking for a dragon with spread out wings... can be in any form (tribal, celtic, cell, etc) whatever you decide to do.  I will be the only one to choose the winner and even if I don't want to put the tattoo on me there will be a winner regardless so don't worry about that.

There will be only one winner.

Prizes are as follows.

:bulletred: One 8x12 or equiv. Print of your choice

:bulletred: A 3 month subscription to DA.

Good luck to all the artists and thanks for this ;)