Not so very long ago, my friend Candace asked if I'd be interested in contributing to her Puella Magi Madoka Magica doujin. A doujin, for an American audience, is very similar to a fanzine in that it's a small fan-made book that may include essays, comics, and illustrations. Since Candace's Madoka doujin will be in color, I went ahead and did a watercolor piece (big surprise right?)
I did do a few things different than the status quo, however. For one, this is on my favorite paper to paint on, Carson's Arches paper. It's not good for comic pages, but it's excellent for single illustrations. I really love the tooth and it's ability to absorb and hold water, which makes utilizing watercolor techniques fun and much easier than the cheaper papers I use for long form projects. I also decided to go for saturated colors- shadows were created by simply layering more saturated tints on top. Generally I create shadows three ways- layering of similar tints, layering of contrasting color on top of base, layering of 'shadow tone' (usually indigo and Payne's grey, but may also include a purple) on top of base tint. For 7" Kara and Gizmo Granny, I utilize all three interchangeably, which makes for more realistic color, but may result in a muddy finished illustration.
It was a lot of fun doing something that feels very 'anime', and working on this project gave me an opportunity to check out Madoka. If you enjoy this piece, you should check out the finished doujin. I'll be sharing more information on that as soon as I have it, and I definitely look forward to seeing the finished book.