Inked line work for Batman 21. Colors by the amazing Brad Anderson
When I first read the script for this issue and saw all of the 9 panel grids, I was a bit scared. I like the 9 panel grid here and there, but wasn't sure I was the right fit to draw something like that for an entire issue. I normally like big, open, 4 panel page layouts where I can draw stuff big and bold. But by the end, I was so in love with the way the book was being told that I begged for more! I hope to do more one day and learned a lot while drawing this book.
The opening 2 pages were originally different. I had drawn up 2 really interesting pages that tied right in with the original Watchmen story, but it as changed at the last minute and I had to redraw pages 1 and 2. These first two pages were also 9 panel grid pages. I don't know if I'll ever be able to share the original 2 pages. Maybe one day.
I wanted to have a consistent visual of the watchmen button looming over Batman for the entire issue. So I decided to make the bat computer extra big, with many more screens than necessary, and have the button image on the screens every time you see it.
The Hockey sequence allowed me to draw a hockey game, which was really cool. I wanted to portray the game on the TV that Batman is watching to be 100% accurate to an actual hockey broadcast. I also got to use me jersey designs for the Gotham Blades and Metropolis Mammoths that I had done a few months before. So now they are cannon!
One of my pet peeves in comics and movies is when someone's watching sports on TV and the camera is on the field, where it wouldn't be and getting all these action packed shots. That's not how sports are broadcast. Instead we see the action moving across the ice, and when the fight starts, it zooms in, just like it does in a real hockey broadcast. A reviewer knocked me for this sequence, calling the scene boring. I guess he's never watched a real hockey broadcast.
I like how the lightning arcs over the panel borders creating a 3d effect.
At this point, we have the Reverse Flash appear...if you notice, the camera line from this point on reverses as well. Its also normal to have the action running left to right. But for the sucker punch...its reversed...
Many people commented on how cool this page turned out. I like it as well. Honestly, I did the silhouettes to pump out this page as fast as I possibly could. This book was a rush, and I had to cut corners anyway that I could. In the end, it created a really memorable sequence. I added the yellow to give it that Watchmen look, riffing off of the classic cover.
Notice how the blood Batman spits on Reverse Flash's face...is the reverse of the blood on the Watchmen button.
Here, I used the yellow again, but this time we see full detail.
All of the blood was drawn on a different layer so Brad could easily color it.
This sequence was fun to do, especially with how we were playing with time in the issue. The shot stays the same for 9 panels, and gives you that quiet sense that something is going to happen. Then BOOM, reverse flash appears and is half burned alive.
Lineart for Batman 22. Colors by Brad Anderson
This book was also drawn very very quick. I believe I did 9 pages in one week to finish this book. Luckily Joshua Williamson had pity on me and gave me a few pages of white and no backgrounds to help me hit deadline!
While issue 21 was drawn to pay homage to Watchmen with the 9 panel grids, Issue 22 was drawn more like an issue of Flashpoint.
My fav shot of the book is this one of Batman charging into the light! "WE RISE"
Thanks for checking out my process!