2.) Watercolor / Sketchy
It's easier to get into 'moody' type of works, since the way the brush strokes work, the specific blending of the colors, all contribute to an experience that is furthest from 'factory-made'. Backgrounds especially are a cinch since you generally stroke the general structure and shadows and don't have to fill in the details.
It's also easier to make event CGs that match especially if the event CGs have quickly-drawn backdrops. There won't be such a jarring contrast between a rougher event CG and a normal sprite+rough BG compared to a rougher event CG and a normal sprite+crisp BG.
This is precisely the reason I'm thinking of going the watercolor route for the kinetic novel I am working on. It is a moody story and takes place in a slummy polluted city. I am also bad at backgrounds, and sketchy, vague lines combined with murky colors that run together will not only be fun and (relatively) easy to do, but also contribute to the mood of the setting. Really a win-win, at least in theory (we'll see if I can pull it off).
Sprites seem harder to create and to edit. The painterly approach seems to have many more layers... if you flatten as you go along, you lose the flexibility of editing the sprites later on. But if you don't flatten, it looks like it may become a resource hog.
crap-looking chibis... well at least the few water-color type chibis I've seen don't look nice compared to standard cel-shaded Chibis. I think you'll need to go the Vanillaware route and really define the heads and limbs.
If I watercolor my sprites, I most likely will be using traditional media, so there won't be any layers. Unless... I've been thinking of sketching my lineart, inking it on cels, and then painting with watercolor on a separate sheet of paper to match the lineart (this will require lots of patience on my part and/or a lightbox of some sort), and altering the lineart as needed without having to paint much more. Then scan the color layer and lineart layers separately (lineart over white paper) and use Photoshop to make the lineart images transparent, overlay onto color layer, and presto. Repeat the process for multiple poses. Obviously this method has its flaws but it's the best I can think of at the moment. I'll probably get a better plan when I actually start the illustration work (right now I just have to worry about writing the darn thing and finalizing character concepts).
And I don't like chibi's so I don't have to worry about that aspect.
It will depend on the work in question. Plot-heavy/grim-dark/movie/OVA/miniseries/kinetic novel type stories will probably shine using watercolor, while Fluff/light-hearded/romantic comedy/TV series/4-koma type stories will be most flexible using cel-shaded.
Advance thanks for any feedback/elaboration to these thoughts.
I think you're probably right about one style being more suited to some story types over others. And I'm glad that I seem to have picked the right approach for mine ^_^
_________________“When I stand before God at the end of my life,
Aspiring writer-artist.I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, 'I used everything you gave me.'”
— Erma Bombeck
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