Oddball 1950's Sci-Fi Comic Book Single-Page Fillers from Cosmo The Merry Martian

Z9 and Z7 two-headed funny alien Cosmo the Merry Martian - #1 (of 6) - Page 10 z9nz7

From Cosmo The Merry Martian comic books...profoundly unfunny (but still captivating in their weirdness-osity) single-page gag fillers featuring Z9 'n' Z7, Squarehead, and Jimmy Jupiter...
Click on any page for a full-size comic book scan
Squarehead blows square bubbles from Cosmo the Merry Martian - #1 (of 6) - Page 11 squarehead
Squarehead rides a bike with square wheels Cosmo the Merry Martian - #2 (of 6) - Page 21 squarehead
Squarehead bakes square doughnuts Cosmo the Merry Martian - #3 (of 6) - Page 26 squarehead
Click on any page for a high-resolution comic book scan
Lonesome Jimmy Jupiter builds a robot girl Egghead Inventor Cosmo the Merry Martian - #2 (of 6) - Page 10 JimmyJupiter
Jimmy Jupiter Egghead Inventor gets in an accident Cosmo the Merry Martian - #3 (of 6) - Page 21 Jimmy Jupiter

 Well, after thinking about it some more, I guess these would be pretty funny if you're  eight years old, which is the target audience for this comic. Anyway...they're so awkwardly bizarre that they're intrisically groovy.

Here's a look at Cosmo The Merry Martian himself...
Cosmo the Merry Martian funny sciience fiction comic book scans fifties
Cosmo the Merry Martian Funny Flying Saucers comic book scans from the fifties 1950's

Wanna see more Cosmo comics? Let me know!

ArtRage Digital Painting Videos Start HERE - Video #1 -Intro to ArtRage 2.5

ArtRage video 01 brushes and paint digital painting application
Click on image - BIG video will open in new window
ArtRage time!

That's right -- we finally made it through all of the Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop tutorials... and now it's finally time to play with the paint!

ArtRage video 01 brush paint tube palette knife

I use ArtRage every time I paint a cover for Nickelodeon Magazine. ArtRage is a digital painting program that imitates the look of real paint, as well as other natural media like pencils and pastels etc. etc. The thing that makes ArtRage such a wonderful program is that it's ridiculously easy to use -- you can just jump right in and play!

SpongeBob paint Artrage digital art tutorial video

And it's not like I knew how to paint before I used this program. ArtRage is so easy and so funny use that I just gradually picked up the techniques and going to show you by playing around with the program. I've never even read the manual! Okay -- every once in a while I'll look something up in one of the tutorials... but 97% of all the tools and features are totally intuitive.

SpongeBob Hat Artrage digital Painting tutorial video

But it isn't just for play... I've been using this program for professional jobs for the last two years, and I don't need to look any further for a digital art program that gives me exactly the tools I need and the results I want.

Artrage digital Painting rough tutorial videoSpongeBob and Patrick Nick Magazine Digital Cover art by Sherm Cohen Bubble Gum
work-in-progress version and finished cover

(By the way, if this is your first visit, I've been posting video tutorials that show how I drew, inked and painted this recent SpongeBob and Patrick cover for Nick Magazine. The list of Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop tutorial videos is HERE, and the original post with the full-sized artwork is HERE.)

Here's the weird part -- for some bizarre reason, this amazing ArtRage application only costs $25. Twenty-five bucks! The "other" famous digital painting program costs $400, and it's so freaking complicated that I always end up tearing my hair out before I can actually get any work done.

ArtRage digital painting program

There's even a free starter version available at the ArtRage website, but after you try it out, I know that you'll see that the $25 for the full version is the bargain of the century. I strongly encourage you to download this application and try it out. And ArtRage runs on both Mac and Windows!

They have a bunch of great tutorials and very helpful forums on the ArtRage website, too.

Since this is the first video in the series, it's primarily dealing with setup and tools. And a lot more trimming on this series so we could get to the good stuff really fast. ...and just as I did before with the Adobe Illustrator tutorials, I'm going to show you the exact settings that I use every time I fire up ArtRage.

ArtRage video 01 brush settings pressure thinners loading
How to import a PSD file into ArtRage
#1 When you import a layered Photoshop PSD file into ArtRage, it has to be in RGB mode, not in CMYK mode. You can change the mode in Photoshop before you bring it in to ArtRage.
#2 When you import your drawing, ArtRage will put it on the lowest layer and give it an opaque paper background......To be able to see through your linework to the color paint below, DO THIS: On your imported Drawing layer, go to "Edit Paper Settings" and near the bottom of the options dial the "paper opacity" (NOT the layer opacity) to 0%
I already have the next two videos ready and lined up for posting this week -- so after you watch this one, keep checking back for the next few chapters. This whole series is going to be fast-paced and chock-full of useful information and killer tips

Plato Platypus - Obscure Comics from the Golden Age of Funny Animals

hobo Plato Platypus meets sad horse funny animal comics Animal Antics #23
Click on any page for
a full-sized funny animal comic book scan
Plato Platypus tries to cheer up unhappy horse funny animal comics Animal Antics
Plato Platypus tries to help out insomniac  horse funny animal comics Animal Antics
Click on any page for a
full-sized funny animal comic book scan
 Plato platypus pulls out a kitchen sink from his case
Plato PLatypus puts a muffler on a cat horse in pajamas
 Plato Platypus is driving the horse crazy leaves on a train
I'm not crazy about that platypus design, but the horse is great!
Plato Platypus and horse funny animal comics Animal Antics
from Movietown's Animal Antics #23, November/December 1949

Video #14 - Coloring SpongeBob Line Art in Adobe Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop Coloring Line art tutorial video SpongeBob
Click on image - BIG video will open in new window

I'm coloring the line art on SpongeBob in today's Adobe Photoshop tutorial video. Most of the steps are the same as they were for coloring Patrick in the previous video... but since repetition is the mother learning, I think that'll help to see it all once more on a different character.
How to use the Magic Wand tool Photoshop Coloring Line art tutorial video

The way I select all the line art on SpongeBob is to use the magic wand tool on the clear background.
How to select with the Magic Wand tool Photoshop Coloring Line art tutorial video

This selects all of the clear areas of the canvas... but then I use the inverse command from the selection menu to flip the selection to SpongeBob's line art only.
How to use inverse selection command Photoshop Coloring Line art tutorial video

I imagine there is an easier way to do this, but this screwy little method has always worked for me.
How to use the Paint Brush tool Photoshop Coloring Line art tutorial video

The advantage of having all the line art selected is that I can go over it with a big fat color brush, and I don't have to worry about going outside of the lines. I still have to use the brush tool (rather than the paint bucket) because not all of the lines are painted the same color.
coloring SpongeBob hat anchor button Adobe Photoshop painting Line art tutorial video

Another key tool that I use frequently is the eyedropper. The eyedropper tool lets you sample colors from any place on the canvas.
How to use the eyedropper tool sample color Photoshop Coloring  tutorial video

I usually import a small reference drawing of the characters I'm working on so that I can quickly grab any color I need to. This is especially important for licensed characters that have a very specific and unchanging color scheme.
coloring SpongeBob holes painting Line art tutorial video Adobe Photoshop painting SpongeBob holes coloring Line art tutorial video Adobe Photoshop

As an added audio bonus: about one minute into the video, you get to enjoy the sound of an ambulance siren passing by outside my window. It adds a little bit of real-life drama, doesn't it?
coloring SpongeBob and Patrick  tutorial video Adobe Photoshop Nick Magazine

I'm not a big fan of using Photoshop as a painting tool, but it's definitely my go-to graphics application when it comes to image manipulation and coloring simple flat line art. Only the outlines are going to be colored in Photoshop -- all of the fills and background art will be painted in ArtRage 2.5, a wonderful painting program that beautifully simulates the look of natural media like oil paints and pastels.
next video tutorial on ArtRage painting

And the three best things about ArtRage 2.5? It's super simple to use, it's ridiculously inexpensive, and it produces results that are good enough to allow me to continue painting covers for one of the most successful magazines in America. Stay tuned, because with the very next video, we will start a brand-new series on digital painting with ArtRage 2.5!
...and to catch up on the previous tutorials:
Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop
Cartoon Inking tutorial videos:
Here the YouTube version of the video in case you're having any trouble with the high-resolution video at the the start of this page:

SpongeBob and Patrick Blowing Bubble Gum Nick Magazine Cover art by Sherm Cohen

How I Spent My Lunchtime Staff Meeting

Bill Bored sketch-meeting
Drawn during a staff meeting at Phineas & Ferb.
I was listening...really!
Drawings during luunch meeting 900
Can you guess what they gave us for lunch?
P.S. --- Another
"Cartoon Coloring in Photoshop"
video coming tomorrow!

Video #13 - Coloring Cartoon Line Art in Photoshop

Some people use Photoshop channels to isolate the line work, making it easier to color only the lines. I have never really understood how to use channels. It's probably not very difficult, but I seem to have a mental block against it. Every time someone tries to explain channels to me, my eyes glaze over in my brain gets vapor lock.

magic wand selection tool digital coloring tutorial photoshop

I have my own crazy system for isolating the line artwork: Use the magic wand tool to select the background (every thing that's not the line work)...
magic wand tool digital coloring tutorial photoshop

...then use the invert command under the selection menu to invert the selection.

inverse selection tool digital coloring tutorial photoshop

Every thing that was selected is now not selected, and every thing that was not selected before is now selected. You know something is selected when it has those dashed lines moving around like marching ants.
paint brush selection digital coloring tutorial patrick photoshop

Now all of the line work is selected. Next, I use the eyedropper tool to sample the character's color off of the model sheets.
eyedropper color sampling tool digital coloring tutorial photoshop

When you're working on characters that have a consistent color design, you can't just guess at the color. It has to be perfectly on model 100% of the time.
eyedropper sample size digital coloring tutorial patrick photoshop

Now, when something has selection lines around it, that becomes the only area that can be worked on in Photoshop. If you paint over a selection, the paint will only stick to the area that is selected. So no matter how sloppy you are, it is impossible to color outside the lines when you're working on a selection. This is a great feature because it lets you color the line work really fast and loose, but it always looks perfect when you're done.
paint brush outlines digital coloring tutorial video photoshop patrick

The only dangerous thing about using selections is when you forget that something is still selected. If there is a small area on your canvas with a selection around it, you can't paint or draw or do anything else outside of that small selection area. This is one of the most common causes of "Total Photoshop Roadblock." Nothing seems to work anymore!
paint brush selection digital coloring tutorial video photoshop patrick

So make sure to always deselect your selections after you're finished working on them. You can go to the Select menu and choose "Deselect," or the quicker ways to use the keyboard commands: Command+D on Macintosh, and Control+D on Windows.
next video coloring Spongebob digital painting tutorial video photoshop
In case you missed them,
here is the COMPLETE list of all eleven
Adobe Illustrator
Cartoon Inking tutorial videos:
smaller YouTube version below:

...and of course the completed Nick Mag cover art is at:
SpongeBob and Patrick Blowing Bubble Gum Nick Magazine Cover art by Sherm Cohen
UPDATE: "Anonymous" left this super comment about this post:

"something you might find useful: There's a checkered button above the layer box, and when you click on it it locks all the transparent pixels, which allows you to paint the lines without going out of bounds without having to select everything."
Well, I tried it, and it works beautifully! In fact, it also solves that antialiasing problem, which means that working with antialiased line art will work after all! When I get a chance, I'll go back and put that info into the video ^_^
I love it when you guys share your tips!