ok,that was fun. i will eventually do this with images but until then...
**FOR CPT. WALKER (...or anyone else "who has the knowin' of the knowin'".
*a): draw your design/image.
*b): scan into photoshop ( b/w photo at about 150 dpi)
*c): adjust 'levels' and 'curves' to your liking.
*d): 'posterize' at 2.
*e): use the 'magic wand' on one of the black areas.
*f): 'select similar'
*g): convert 'mode' to rgb.
*h): select a 'red' from the color scale than fill.
*i): this is your template. save as photoshop, bitmap, jpeg or anything else you can 'place' in illustrator.
*j): 'place' your template in illustrator (.....duh).
*k): either in your mind or on paper break down the design into seperate line weights ( thin, medium, think, extra chunky...whatever).
*l): now going off your 'blueprint' use the pen tool and trace your design using the 'stroke' option ( example: thin=1pt medium=2pt thick=3pt). keep in mind that a 4pt stroke is 2pts on the inside and 2pts on the outside.
*m): once your done than ' object>path>outline path/stroke'
*n): now it's up to you to use the 'individual select' arrow to clean-up and/or enhance the lines.
i kno this might sound complex and 'computer geek' but trust me, as an old ruby-cutter', once you've done it it's extreamely easy.
hey art* thanks for the input. i'm the first to admit i'm a sorry-ass excuse for hernandez, crumb and/or clay but if there is ever the chance to 'drink beer and watch a game' while scribbling let them know i'm available.
...as for learning to draw. yep, i'm still learning.