When I start a project I usually draw it out in my Joleskine Sketcbook. It is a Moleskine sized sketchbook I bind myself using what ever paper I happen to be in love with that day.
I started binding my own sketchbooks after I saw that Joe Lambert did the same thing and they were much cooler than the store bought variety. I try to map out (with thumbnails and an outline) all the pages in a story and since most of my stories are short 5 to 16 pages it works out well. I also start writing to get the main points and draw the pictures to tell the story. I usually use blue ball point pen that I got from Jet Pens for about 20 bucks for this part in the process.
It is a multi-pen with black gel ink and pencil as well as blue ballpoint pen ink. Once I get the main idea planned I draw bigger more refined version of the each page. Instead of drawing scribbly drawings, the drawings start to take shape. By this point it is cemented in my head so when I start drawing I just have at it.
I draw on Bordens & Riley Bleed proof paper. I used to use Bristol but I found that it would bleed or snag when I use the dip pens so I started using Bordens. It is REALLY expensive but I think that it’s worth it. I may go back to using Bristol or Illustration board at some point but I like the Bordens right now. I used to start out really big but then it took too long to do the work, so I started to make them smaller. I think these are about 5 times larger then actual size and before I started out 18×24 which is about 10x larger than the comic. I may go back to bigger drawing because I like doing them. I start out by drawing the sketches in non-photo blue using a lead holder:
and then gradually tighten them up. However, I do not tighten them up completely unless I have to draw something that I am not familiar with. Then I use two kinds of dip pens Zebra G, School nib, and a pentel pocket brush. This is in addition to random assortment of microns and Faber Castell. I used to use Rapidograph, but as Alec Longstreth has attested to they can be a pain in the ass to keep up. I also have a Windsor Newton Series 7 water color brush that I use occasionally, but not enough that I would buy them frequently.
Once I am done penciling I take them over to NHIA ( my employer) and scan them in.
Usually I scan in at 4-600 DPI at black and white. I know there are those that scan in at 1200 but I cannot see the difference when I print on High end and low end printers so I will stick wit it. At this point the blue line is gone and I have minor touch up spots and specs to clean.
I open the file in Photoshop CS5 and use my Wacom Tablet to start coloring. I know a lot of people choose their pallet based on other things I just try to start with a limited pallet and augment it as needed. I always use a base color, it is a lot like painting on a colored ground. I set the black line art on a layer set to multiply and th color layer underneath. I know people do things in channels and color in Illustrator using Vectors but Adobe Creative Suite is a lot like Grand Theft Auto, there are a lot of ways to kill the prosititute. I made some brushes in a sketchbook using my handy Altoids can water color kit that I built usin and another jet pens purchase a small water brush.
I use those brushes to create painterly effect in Photoshop.
After ward I build the comic book and do the lettering in Indesign.