Tomb of Dracula Thursdays - page 02

The trickiest part with dealing with horror books is to not get the colouring too dark. There is the tendency to make everything dark and spooky, but, when printed, the pages become muddy and indistinct, and it can be difficult to figure out what is going on.

I did go fairly dark with the background on the first panel, but that was entirely to let the crystal ball and the lighting on Doc really pop forward. I kept all the other backgrounds a bit lighter to not blur the page out. As before, much of the colouring is left very muted to let the saturation of Doc's garb really shine through.

I'm using a very hand-brushed look on all the modeling here, rather than the smoother approach I've done with other, more super-hero styled books. Again, it works with the theme and mood of the book, similar to what I did with the Kolchak: Night Stalker of the Living Dead book.

Colour holds were again limited, kept to the interior of the crystal ball (including a small grad in the lineart in the second and third panels of that same lineart, just to give it a feeling of translucency) and to the simulacrum of Wong being brought forward. I had thought about doing a colour hold on Wong after he's fully appeared, but the dialogue clearly indicates that he is exact in every detail to the 'real' person, so he shouldn't look supernatural.

I did make his flesh tones a bit on the blue/gray end of things - he is supposed to be dead, after all.

This book was written by Marv Wolfman, with artwork by Gene Colan and Tom Palmer, and lettering by John Costanza.

See the original blog post about this project to learn more of the story behind why I'm colouring this issue.