I believe Mega Man 03 was the first ish to have a regular production cycle, at least for me. I usually receive pages to color for a book about a month to a month-point-five before the book is scheduled to go to the printers. As of this issue we also switched up the team again, adding the fantastically talented Gary Martin to the book as inker - a position he is kicking ass in to this day.
Gary's inking style is way bolder, stronger line definition than what I'm usually working with on the Sonic the Hedgehog books... I think I spent half the first year of this book just learning to color for different inkers!
This issue in particular featured some of my favorite Robot Masters - Elec Man, in particular. I am so excited that Elec Man has been a prominent supporting cast member in the books - a leader of sorts to his fellow RM's. He's got a great color scheme and his powers are the most fun to render. The opening pages to this book in particular were a blast. Nice blacked out backdrops with all the lightning I could go nuts on!
I am a little surprised we didn't have to edit that first panel a little, though. With where the word balloons fit on the page, it crops Wily's hand and we're not sure which finger it is that Wily is holding up. (Once you see it, you can't unsee it.)
Hey look, Proto Man!
Dr. Light is a great character to color for. He's this fat, bearded, jolly machine-maker. A Jepetto (sp?) to Mega's Pinochio... Or a Santa Claus! I love giving him a shiny red Santa-nose. I thought for sure that wouldn't pass approvals but it has and it's stuck! (Though I try not to get too crazy with it, to be honest. Don't want the good doctor to look sick. Or drunk!)
I never did figure out how exactly to render the Magnet Beam power up. Thankfully it has (so far) only appeared in two issues of the book. I couldn't find any footage or screens of how it looked in Powered Up, either - so its colors are based purely on the look it had in the original 8-bit game.
A couple more amazing villian shots of the evil Dr. Wily. When I receive the pages, one of the things I have to do is set up the final black-and-white artwork for colors and lettering. A page measures 6.92x10.5 inches (and I work at 600dpi), which includes the full bleed - art that extends slightly beyond the actual printed area. I was so excited when I was looking over the files and saw that last page, the original Robot Masters gathered around Wily. What a bad-ass, villainous shot! It's one of my faves in the whole first arc!