It's not the same process as my editorial cartoons, but it's artwork just the same. While waiting on call backs for a number of stories Monday, I took it upon myself to try and create a graphic to go with the update on the Iowa Caucus I was writing at the time. I knew I had taken photos of both Pete Buttigieg and Bernie Sanders during their visits (both at the Waterfront in Arnolds Park by the way), so I could use the photos any way I pleased.
I don't trace any work that isn't my own when drawing one of my cartoons, and this graphic was no exception. I pulled a couple photos from the file which hadn't been used. I was looking specifically for two photos featuring similar poses. I reduced them to basic colors in Photoshop, but I created each figure separately to allow myself more wiggle room for the final composition. It was then a matter of smoothing out the edges on a separate layer. It's times like this a Wacom tablet is particularly handy, as it needed a more manual approach. I knew I wanted to keep the graphic monotone, and blue is of course associated with the Democratic Party. Each color was done on its own layer so I could adjust the intensity of each shade on its own as needed. Eventually, I joined the two at one of the largest dark blue areas, but left the gap between their waists to keep the graphic from getting too bottom heavy. I also went back and added a few shades of light blue to their faces and necks to give them more depth. Being as the face is what draws most of the viewer's attention, it often earns more detail work than say the shirt or pants.
The graphic then got an added layer of visual interest from the DCN's Graphic Designer Nina Sorenson. We used an old feature on the University of Okoboji Broomball Tournament for reference with the text, and I think it turned out pretty striking on the page.
I'm not sure of the total hours on this one, but it was the majority of an afternoon and a few last touches the following morning. That said, I didn't take any progress animation shots along the way.
Thanks for reading.