A Sally Forth Christmas

Here’s the Sally Forth Sunday logo panel for November 29, 2015.


And here’s Francesco Marciuliano’s script for that panel.

Scene: Christmas Tree Lot, Exterior, Day.
Hilary, Sally, and Ted gather (in that order) around the very same tree from the “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” They all look down at it.
Ted: Nope.


Look close and you’ll notice, I even gave Ted Charlie Brown’s hat and coat.

As 2015 marks the 50th Anniversary of A Charlie Brown Christmas, hope you enjoy this little tip of the hat to Schulz From Francesco and I.

Using Reference


Script description from writer Francesco Marciuliano for the first panel:

Scene: Exterior, Plane in flight in very early morning.
Sally and Ted’s dialogue come from the midpoint in the plane’s cabin in that order.
Sally: You’re doing it again, Ted.
Ted: Doing what?

After some searching on the internet, I came up with the following for “airplane” and “sunrise.”



The finished drawing.


Here’s a couple of tips for finding and using reference:

Never use the first image that pops up in your search just for expediency’s sake. Take the time to find the image that best works for your layout. The layout should dictate the reference you use.

I will sometimes place the image right on the layout (in Photoshop), but I never pencil the image verbatim. Doing so makes for a stiff drawing. You should use your reference as a jumping off point for your drawing – translate it and make a drawing that best suits the storytelling.

All for now and all the best!

-Jim Keefe

Ink Drawing Compared to Digital

For those interested…
Here’s the title panel for an upcoming Sally Forth Sunday (10/11/2015). The image on the left is my pen and ink drawing. The image on the right is the cleaned up bitmap scan with the lettering dropped in.

Click on image to see larger.


Once I scan the original and have the digital file, I take a moment to fix anything that pops out at me. In this case it was the rim of the plate.

For anything you draw it’s important to get a fresh take on it before considering it finished. Examples for original art are looking at it in a mirror or flipping it over on a lightbox. For digital images you can flip it, or what I prefer is printing out a copy the size the image will see print (and if it’s not meant for print, then just a reduced size copy) and see how it holds up.

-Jim Keefe