There’s something I’ve noticed about a majority of the How to Draw Comics books out there. Is it just me or do they kinda gloss over the ‘backgrounds’ chapter more often than not?
It’s even rarer to find a pro talking less about how important backgrounds are and more on how to actually construct them. Turns out it’s our lucky day. In this post Todd McFarlane shares some awesome insights into how to draw backgrounds for comics. A true gem, mined from the many years of experience this comic book legend has gained throughout his career and the evolution of his jaw dropping skills. Enjoy -Clayton
Todd McFarlane: "HOW TO DRAW A CONVINCING ENVIRONMENT FOR YOUR CHARACTERS!! When doing any assignment I am always trying to make the world those characters live in be as convincing as possible. Now, that doesn't mean things have to be REAL, because you may have to do a science fiction piece where everything on the page is made up from your imagination. What I am talking about is to make sure that the setting you will put your characters in are 'consistent' with the story they are involved in. In the example below, it was a drawing for Ubisoft video game Assassin's Creed franchise. The setting was a fight between the Assassin and his enemy. They wanted it to take place on a shipping dock or a pirate ship. So, after giving them a couple of options we all decided on trying to put the two characters in the 'middle' of the camera shot. There are pirates in the foreground and ship details in the background. I also wanted to make the detail on the ship seem like it was 'aged' and that the boat had been out to sea many times (as compared to a pretty drawing that would seem too clean). ***NOTE: please ignore the fact the Assassin has NO FACE and the Pirate has NO LEFT HAND or SHADOWS beneath him. I was merely using these unfinished Character to see how BIG I wanted them on the page and for seeing where the best placement of the two would work out.*** So, for all you aspiring artist or you skilled deviantART.com folks that are just starting out. Make sure you give as much attention and effort to your environments as you do to your people. Because when done right...they are both characters! TODD" https://www.facebook.com/liketoddmcfarlane