This is the really easy bit: you just keep inking until it’s finished. Inking is largely a mechanical process that doesn’t require much thought energy. I tend to put on DVD commentaries as background noise, as it’s fairly easy to concentrate on those and let the hands take care of business on the paper.

I always ink the lines first so I end up with complete figures and no solid blacks. Some artists put in all the solid blacks first, so they don’t then waste time putting in a holding line only for it to be obliterated later. It’s a matter of choice.

On this piece, W!n had already indicated where he wanted the blacks, so I just followed his lead.

Here it is fully-inked:

Atom inked

If you compare the pencil art to the finished piece, you can see that I changed a couple fo things. I wasn’t happy with the position of Solomon Grundy’s left hand, so I altered it. I also added detail to the Atom’s left fist, and drew in his chest insignia. The main change was drawing in the bad guy’s discarded gun — for which I sought out some reference online.

Once you’re happy with the inked piece, scan it on the black and white setting, using a fairly high dpi: say, 600.

By using the b&w mode, any left over cyan lines should disappear. If not, adjusting the brightness/contrast will normally take care of them. Alternatively, go into the levels dialog, and click the black eye-dropper tool on the lightest area of black in your artwork. Any stray lines should instantly disappear.

Adjust the sharpness to taste by using the ‘Unsharp Mask’ dialog.

That’s it. Done. One finished black and white cover image.

However, I went one step further and coloured it using Photoshop — but that’s a story for another time. I’ve been self-indulgent enough as it is with these articles.  Next time, more silliness from the Silver Age — promise!

Finished, with colour

Atom, Solomon Grundy ©2007 DC Comics