July 3rd is the birthday of my Elfdoll K, Kaneda Jones. Currently starring as Aloysius Keaton in The Takashima Extraction. I wanted to do something special for him, since Keaton’s end is not so happy. After creating the first composite image, I thought I’d create a little birthday surprise for him using the 2 panel PBB Comic Book Maker.

For some background (because you’re dying to know this, right?), Kaneda has been in love with Cassie, aka Miss Camille Starfall, since the two met. They make a nice couple but with his frown and her world-weary look, fate is not going to let these two get together.

Carrying that theme into the Takashima story, Keaton is in love with Miss Camille, but all he can do is daydream.

It’s just not meant to be.

However, today is special. It’s Kaneda/Keaton’s birthday so he gets the girl.

Twice.

Awwwwwww….

For the composite images, I added the extracted characters to the office background, added a dodge and burn layer to add the light source on Keaton’s left side and deepen some of the shadows. I also added a layer with some flyaway hairs for both of them, but these vanished once I ran the Illustrated action.

Version 1 is the Illustrated Cinematic #1.

PBB From Dusk Till Dawn Cinematic #1; 2 panel color Comic Book Maker

I opened the 2 Panel Black and White template, dropped the color files in and it automagically converted the images to black and white. Sweet!

PBB From Dusk Till Dawn Cinematic #1; 2 panel black & white Comic Book Maker

Version 1 is a bit too bright for my taste. The pink skin tone is very odd for a mid-day interlude.

I like version 2 better but I need to watch the dodging and burning layer. The shadows are too dark on Miss Cassie/Camille. It looks like she has dirt on her face. A few adjustments may be needed with contrast, shadows and highlights. I need to watch the doll eyes. As happens in Photoshop Filter Gallery, the eyes get lost in the processing so I need that dodge layer to bring back the whites of their eyes.

I think I’ll go back to the first composite, which is the top panel of this comic and remove the dodge and burn layer, which has almost no effect on the final version of these images.

The comic book maker template is pretty straightforward. I haven’t used Smart Objects much, so it’s a bit of a learning curve, but this silly birthday gift for Kaneda has me pretty excited to keep working on the story.

I need a more standard comic book font. To be honest, I haven’t spent much effort on fonts because I’ve been so focused on the brushes and overlays.

If simple compositing holds true as I build new images, I’ll be able to very quickly composite my images and get to building the comic book faster.

Expect more PBB tests when you see them.

Happy birthday, Kaneda Jones!