karakuri Tokens

This week something a bit different as we take a brief look at some tokens I have recently completed.
Usually for tokens I will work in a vector drawing program, the benefits being that you can scale the graphics to any size with no loss of detail.
This time though I decided I wanted to mix things up and try something a bit different so after drawing the initial sketches by hand and scanning them in instead of opening the vector program I opened a more traditional drawing one instead.
Of course doing it this way means a fixed dpi and since these are going to be printed out the higher the better, on the other hand my Mac is getting on a bit now so lets set it at 600, since thats going to be what the printer outputs it at.
The next step was to paint each sketch in greyscale (it helps to set the pallet to greyscale also so as you don’t get tempted to use colour.) Having a graphics tablet is extremely helpful at this point, a mouse isn’t exactly the most efficient drawing tools, my particular tablet is essentially 1 to 1 with my screen size but smaller tablets have the advantage of requiring you to move your arm less and are probably the best place to start for new users.
You may be wondering why I chose to do the images in grayscale first rather than jumping straight into colour there are two main reasons.
1. Its quicker: With four images to do and at such a high resolution, limiting the choice of colours cuts out quite a bit of the thinking time involved for both myself and the Mac, with a mild grey laid down I can set  the brush to lighten or darken and then set the opacity and those will be the only tools other than the eraser I will need.
2. It leads to more consistent images; Since I’m essentially building with light is very easy to tell if something doesn’t look right and to keep the shading consistent across the whole image. if I was to section each area of the image off based on colour and work on the shading of each area individually theres more opportunity for the shading to differ between areas.
Finally it  means when you do finally add the colour you don’t have to mess around with working out what the light dark and mid tone of each colour is and its relation to the other colours in your image all you have to do is paint the colour over the final piece and set the layer properties to colour and the shading will magically appear.
Having coloured and printed the images out I have to apply the image to the foil and in this case I decided to splash out and get something a bit snazzy.
And thats about it, I definitely enjoyed doing the art this way so no doubt I’ll do something similar again. Next time we return to your regularly scheduled playmats.

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