For those who have wondered why I'm tweaking these vintage comic book scans before posting them on my blog, here's a before and after from one of the Jack Cole comics. As you can see, the blacks are very washed out in the original. This is no doubt what the comic book actually looks like -- but I'm more interested in presenting the artwork in a more flattering way, and less interested in recreating the look of the original printing. Vintage comics had notoriously bad printing with terrible color registration -- and the tanning of the cheap newsprint over the years doesn't help things any.
With Photoshop, I'm boosting the blacks, brightening the overall image and knocking down the tan of the paper -- and sometimes dropping white into the "gutters." I'm also touching up the blacks in some case where they've seriously faded. So the end result is less authentic to the printed book, but I hope you'll agree it makes for a better visual presentation of the artists' work.
Yup -- this is what I do on those days when my son Kirby is up and playing, but still wants enough of my attention that I can't get much actual drawing of my own done! So if you enjoy these posts, thank my kid for keeping me away from my own work!
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