This page represents an interesting problem with the original artwork for Empowered, though the art file I’m posting for this page probably isn’t high-resolution enough to really perceive what I’ll be talking about. See, a recurring issue with how I draw the series’ pages is that, sooner or later, whatever specific type of copy paper I use for a penciling medium will inevitably change and become unusable for my artistic purposes. For the first 450-odd pages of Empowered, I was drawing it on a very particular kind of Officemax-brand copy paper that worked perfectly for me—but, as I discovered to my dismay with this very page, the paper’s composition had changed with the latest ream I’d bought. Now, all of a sudden, with the latest batch purchased, the paper’s surface seemed maddeningly grainy and pebbly, frustrating my increasingly desperate attempts at pencil tones and shading.
So, after struggling through this page’s rendering, I discarded my once-beloved Officemax paper and moved on to hopefully greener pastures—or whiter pastures, perhaps, given the paper color involved. This tragic process has happened at least four or five times during the decade-plus I’ve worked on Empowered, alas. As of the last five years, I’ve settled on a specific type of Staples inkjet paper which works well for my purposes, but I’m very much aware that someday the paper’s composition will shift, and I’ll have to start looking for another drawing medium.
As I vaguely recall one artist putting it, “If you love any particular form of art supply, sooner or later it will be taken away from you.” All too true, folks.