From the Drawing Board: Zombie Drawing Process

Most of my drawing is done digitally, but I’ve been having a lot of fun lately doing old fashion pen and pencil on paper, thanks to my monthly subscription to Sketchbox. For a reasonable price they send you a box full of cool art supplies at the beginning of every month. They aren’t paying me to say this, mind you, I just think it’s a really cool product.

Anyway, here is a look at the process that went into a zombie drawing I recently did. Image one is the pencilled image, Image two is inked, and for Image three I sought the comfort of the familiar and applied color digitally by way of Photoshop.

Pencilled Zombie
Pencilled Zombie
Inked Zombie
Inked Zombie
Digitally Colored Zombie
Digitally Colored Zombie

From the Drawing Board: Monster! #21

When I first saw Tim Paxton’s Monster! back in the early 90s it was one of those way cool photocopied and stapled by hand publications epitomizing the DIY zine culture that began to dwindle with the rise of the internet. The current incarnation of Monster! is a digest-size magazine usually in the 100-page range and available at an attractive price through Amazon’s print on demand service CreateSpace. It’s a great read for monster movie buffs with a strong emphasis on international horror and a strict “no slasher movies” policy. And for the last year or so I’ve had the pleasure of contributing the occasional drawing or film review.

I illustrated the contents page for issue #21 of Monster!, and this seems as good a place as any to show off my handiwork. You can buy that issue here, if you are so inclined. Some of the creatures I chose because they were featured in that issue, while others were just old favorites of mine. Most of these were drawn in pencil, scanned, then “inked” in Photoshop on a Wacom tablet. I will sometimes work entirely in Photoshop, but I find drawing with an actual pencil feels more fluid than the tablet.

Click on any of the images below for a closer look.

This is the final page as it was published.

Table of Contents to Monster! #21

Now let’s check these guys out one at a time.

The final artwork done in Photoshop with a Wacom tablet. This nazi zombie was drawn using the VHS box cover of Joel Reed’s Night of the Zombies from 1981 as reference.
It's Alive This critter is the star of Larry Cohen’s 1974 mutant baby opus It’s Alive. Cohen’s films were the subject of an article in this issue by comic art legend and film journalist/historian Stephen R. Bissette.
 Curse of the Demon This behorned beastie is the title creature from Jacques Tourneur’s 1957 horror classic Curse of the Demon and his face graced many a monster mag when I was a kid. After seeing a limited edition statuette of the creature recently, I realized for the first time that he was covered in hair, not lumpy demon flesh as I had always assumed.
Horror of Party Beach I’ve always liked the design of the monsters from 1964’s Horror of Party Beach, even if the actual monster suits used in the film look pretty silly. And I was never clear why they seem to have Italian sausages hanging out of their mouths.
Reptile This lizard lady from Hammer film’s 1966 production The Reptile was another mainstay of monster magazines. I particularly recall her gracing the cover of an issue of Warren’s Monster World. Sadly, when I finally saw The Reptile, with the creature’s unmoving eyes and ridiculous forked tongue, I realized this particular monster looked better on the printed page than in a motion picture.
Pocong This one was entirely new to me. The Pocong is a ghost trapped in its own burial shroud, and its long film career was explored in Monster! #21 by John L. Vellutini in his extensive article “Ties That Bind: The Pocong and Other Creepy Creatures in Contemporary Indonesian Horror Cinema.”