Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Silverthorn the elf prince

This one's for you, Tristan. I drew "Silverthorn the Elf Prince" as part of an illustration series for a role-playing game, now long forgotten. He was a "non-player character," meaning that he was part of the story and could not be played by a participant in the game.

My media recovery efforts extend to black and white pictures that are now stuck inside plastic portfolio pages. I mean literally stuck. The black toner on these old copies has melted into the plastic and you cannot get them out without destroying them. So I scanned this through the plastic, which is why the solid black doesn't look solid, but otherwise I think the image looks all right. The original ink drawing was done in January 1983 (that's right, more than 26 years ago) and is 5" x 7". 


Tristan Alexander said...

For me? I'll take it! He is very nicely done. Your line work is great, I don't get to see to much simple black and white from you and now I wish I could see more.

emikk said...

Black toner stuck against clear plastic....yuck!

Tristan Alexander said...

By the way, you should check out my latest Weble entries as I have returned the favore..sorta.

Jon Westcot said...

As someone who has stumbled here via Tristan's "weble" (journal in my parlance), I know you don't know me, but I do have one suggestion to make regarding the technical aspect of scanning something that's supposed to be black and white but doesn't come out that way at first.

I tackled this battle myself with an amazing piece of work Tristan gifted me with when I asked him, back in 1983 or 1984, to draw something we could put onto t-shirts for volunteers at a Haunted House we were designing. The actual artwork, by the time I got from Tristan years after we'd already used it as the t-shirt design, was faded in many places from its original true black and white look.

Here are the steps I used to recreate it in its original glory:

1) Scan it at grey scale with at least 600 DPI resolution. This should give you an image with 256 levels of grey.

2) Reduce the number of "colors" to 16. You should see things snapping closer to either black or white at this point.

3) Do this again, but take it down to a pure black or white image (i.e., 2 colors).

4) You may find at this point that you need to do some touch-up here and there. At least you only have to worry about 2 colors, though, right? ;)

5) You may also try reducing the overall size of the image at this point, too. But, before you do, take it BACK to 256 colors. This will allow your image editing package of choice to dither and smooth out some of the harsh "jaggies" that result when shrinking an image. It will give it the illusion of a crisper, truer drawing.

Hope this helps!

By the way, I think your drawing is great! It reminds me a lot of the new work being turned out for the Dresden Files RPG.