some insight to how i color. first i "flat" color in manga studio. i like to flat color there cause the pen tool and the fill bucket are just fantastic. the fill bucket has the ability to automatically expand out by whatever amount you determine. this is crucial for when you resize with all the layers i like to use (which i will get to in sec) and anti aliasing happens. normally you get the little glowing edges with muti layers, well the the paint bucket tool that automatically expands and goes under the inks layer just a little prevents that from happening.
from there i export the file as a psd file (layered photoshop file). i open it in photoshop and resize it down to 300dpi. in manga studio its 720dpi. at approx 10x15 actual size. so the pixel size is like 7000 some pixels wide. now in manga studio, i work in pretty much bitmap mode. meaning there is no blending or anti aliasing at all. thus im able to work at such a huge size (computers dont have to think so hard when its dealing with just a single color). but when it comes time to render and blend and make it look all pretty.... most computers cant handle that high resolution while bending and mixing and whatever millions of colors and whatnot. since 300dpi is print standard i reduce it to that. so that takes it to 3000ish pixels wide instead. thus makes it so my computer can handle the rendering im going to be doing.
from there i open that psd in either Painter 12 or Paintool SAI program. and render away. Painter is my most used one. i like all the brushes and the blenders. its got some major limitations when it comes to selections and whatnot. but that stuff is what i use photoshop for.... and really by the time i need to color.... ive done all my complex selection and have the file how i like it from there.
i use so many layers for one reason. i get lazy about coloring in the lines. when using the paint bucket i make several layers of single colors or grouped things. colors that cant be paint bucket filled i just use the pen tool and color just like normal. but since i can just go under the ink layers i dont have to worry about messing up my inks at all. from there painter (as well as SAI and Photoshop) have a magnificent little button for each layer called "transparency lock". when activated. it locks all the area that are transparent. basically it reverse masks the layer. so you can only color/render/blend/ the area that has color already. all the transparent pixels with no color applied is locked. thus i don't have to worry about coloring outside of the lines.
recently i have started using the program Paintool SAI as well. its cool. it has lots of limitations too.... but it has an awesome default brushes. its pretty simple, thats a plus and a minus. and can handle big files better than most programs. as of right now... i sorta jump back and forth to what i use to color between painter and SAI... i even will do certain coloring things in Photoshop... but mainly i just use photoshop to do everything form resizing to canvas resizing to altering overall colors and make complex selections or editing.
unfortunately i pretty much need all these programs to do all these things. its a bit tiring to switch between them all. but i do enjoy the satisfaction i get from seeing the final product.
so.... finally. what you see here is the coloring of my super killer mario piece. you can see i have it open in painter, i have all the layers. and i have started rendering some of mario.
anyway sorry if this boring to read.