All of this Random Penguin House news inspired me to try my own merger.
This started as a pencil sketch in my sketchbook:
I placed the sketch on my lightbox, and very loosely marked the landmarks of the sketch (eyes, pose, etc). Then I turned off the lightbox and drew a new drawing with ink on Arches watercolor paper:
I then put a new piece of Arches paper over the original sketch on the lightbox, marked the same general details, and did a fast watercolor wash:
The last step was to merge the ink and watercolor in Photoshop. I didn't worry about it lining up exactly to keep some energy for the final.
This process opens up the possibility of trying various color schemes without losing the original pen drawing. The idea is based on the color separation technique that used to be standard for picture books.
It's always difficult to keep the energy of your sketch through to final, and I'm thinking this might be a possible answer to that problem. What do you think?