Olyoptics Color Pages for Sale

A note from Steve Oliff

There are too many guides and other color pages to put them all up on this site, so I will be posting only the best ones at first, and adding more as time goes on. As my inventory gets sorted out, I will at least be posting lists of the pages I have for each title. If you have a particular interest in a series that I colored and don't see any examples or lists, send me an email, and I will look to see what I have and get back to you. I still have thousands of pages out of the 40,000 that I've colored in my career.



Color Guides are the original color designs usually done on xerox copies as a guide for the color separators. In the old days of hand-separations a series of codes was written on the guide to denote the colors desired. From the late 1980's guides were for computer color separators. At Olyoptics, the guides were not coded, and are much better rendered than standard color guides. Most all color guides are done on 8 1/2 x 11 inch paper.

I have color guides from the following titles, plus many others.

Spawn, the Maxx, Akira, Pitt, Iron Man, Legends of the Dark Knight, Sandman, Death: the High Cost of Living, Captain Marvel, Blade, Moon Knight, Avengers Forever, Spiderwoman, Gen13/Maxx, Violator, Spawn/Batman, Nova, Hulk/Superman, World's Finest, 2112, Martian Manhunter, Black Widow, Spiderman, Fantastic Four, Silver Surfer, Black Panther

Avengers Forever 10 Cover

Carlos Pacheco art

Bluelines are a full color method developed in Europe, which a few American publishers used in the years just before computer coloring became the industry standard. It involves coloring on an art board that has a blue version of the line art printed on it. Then the black is shot separately, and there is an acetate overlay to show the colorist what their final product will look like. These bluelines are the actual color that was photographically reproduced. The colors are opaque watercolor (goauche), acrylic airbrush paint, colored pencil and Pantone film. They are larger than guides, and fully rendered color. Because of the glossy acetate with the black line art, bluelines look very nice in mats, and don't really need to be put under glass.

Blackhawk, Time2, Cosmic Odyssey, Gilgamesh, Twilight, Shatter

Time 2 page

Howard Chaykin art

Greylines were a method developed around the time of Pacific and Eclipse Comics in the middle 1980's. They were the same size as the printed comic, and consist of a photostat printed with a 10% version of the lineart. They had an acetate overlay just like the bluelines. The colors used are primarily water-based felt pens, Dr. Martins airbrush colors, and Pantone films.

Airboy, Skywolf, Spiral Path, Alien Worlds, Axel Pressbutton, Mr. Monster, Twisted Tales


Airboy cover

Photostats are copies of the lineart that are printed on a photo paper. In the early days of my coloring career, the main full color techniques were on photostats. Full coloring was done on the stats. Sometimes, (Like the Hulk, Moon Knight, and the X-Men graphic novel) there was a separate black plate that I did effects work on. Techniques used were felt pens, airbrush, Pantone film, and cel-vinyl animation paint. The sizes range from same as printed size to oversized.

Hulk, Moon Knight, Timespirits, X-Men graphic novel, Akira covers


Akira 32 Cover

Katsuhiro Otomo art

Oddities One of the strangest techniques I've ever used was developed by Gladstone Publishing for their Disney projects. It involved having a vellum overlay that I colored on, while the lineart was on a photostat below. The lineart shows through enough to allow coloring, which stays clean on the vellum. Acrylic airbrush paint, felt pens, and colored pencil are the mediums used with this system. Gladstone kept all the coloring I did for them, because Disney is very tight with art, but I used the technique on Sam Kieth and Bill Messner-Loeb's Epicurus the Sage graphic novels. The stats DC provided of Sam's amazing inking are incredibly sharp. They are perhaps the best photostats I've ever seen.

Printer proofs are from our old Mitsubishi G650 printer. They are glossy, usually oversized (11 x 17) and are from a variety of projects from 1990-1997. 3-M's, also known as color keys, are a form of film proofing. They are four acetate overlays with each page having one of the 4 CMYK colors printed on it. Registered together they make up a proof that is used for accurate color checking.

Epicurus the Sage, Printer proofs, 3-m's

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