So I’ve been reading Usagi Yojimbo and trying to improve my inking. Jim Shooter, on his blog, made the very good point that inking is more than tracing. An inker has two very important tasks. First, to delineate distance and depth of field by controlling line weight. Second, to identify different materials (a metal wall vs a stone wall vs a wooden wall, say) through the use of certain bits of visual shorthand: the wavy gloss of metal, the rough pattern of stone, and so on.

Both of those things are currently well beyond me, and I’ve been using coloring to cover up those shortcomings, so that’s something to work on.