For those of you who don’t know his work, Chris Samnee draws like a beast.
He’s got his own series with Marvel right now (drawing Siege: Embedded and then moving ahead to Thor: The Mighty Avenger with Roger Langridge), working on Serenity: The Shepherd’s Tale with Dark Horse and the brothers Whedon, AND he’s putting up sketches on his blog as well as Comictwart.
So how does he manage to pack in so much, when so many other artists break deadlines month after month? Well, for those who are curious about how Samnee gets so much done, he’s got a post up talking about how to pump up your drawing speed. Here’s some highlights:
-It’s easy to skip around on a page and do all the easy stuff first but don’t. It’ll end up eating more time than you can imagine. If possible, start at page 1 panel 1 and go from there. This will also help continuity throughout the issue.
-If you’re having a hard time getting ramped up at the start of a new issue, start with a splash page. They’re generally pretty fun to draw, can get your mood up a bit and take far less time to do than most pages… so in no time you already have a page completed and it’ll take some of the pressure off.
-Measure how much time it generally takes you to draw a panel. Then set a timer for how long you estimate each panel will take you to complete. Slowly scale back how much time you give yourself to complete each one and you will keep building speed. Make sure you start at a comfortable pace and slowly scale back the time you give yourself to complete a panel. Don’t sacrifice quality for the sake of speed – but you can learn to draw faster. (This is probably my best advice for gaining speed.)
Some of it may seem a little obvious — like playing video games all day might be a little less than conducive to productive work habits — but there are other gems that really stick out as “why did I think of that sooner?” There’s plenty more to see on his blog, which is definitely worth a look.