Well, first of all you need to have a good artistic composition. Make sure your lines are bold and dark. Do not shade on your initial drawing, Adobe Illustrator will not be able to convert gradients into anything worth working with. The coloring and shading will be done after the live trace is complete.
The next step, you need to either scan the image at 300dpi or take a good photograph, so that the image has little distortion.
What I do next is, desaturate on Photoshop to get rid of any color info.
The next thing to do is adjust the contrast and brightness, so that the black is true black, and the white is a white as I can get it. Make sure you convert to CYMK before you open in Illustrator, it saves time.(This will save you time once you open the document on Adobe Illustrator.
You should now have something like this….
The next thing to do is dial in all your live trace options.
Now, make sure your object is selected, which is your drawing.
I like to have my drawing zoomed in before I do the live trace options, that way I can see how clean my edges will be.
Make sure you have the Preview box checked as well as the Ignore white box.
With this particular drawing, I put the live trace option as black and white, and changed the threshold to 50, to reduce the amount of rough edges. You will still need to go in and smooth out all the rough edges, so it has a really clean look to it.
The next thing you will do is go to OBJECT>EXPAND>and have the fill and stroke options checked before you press okay.
This will turn your drawing into paths that you can manipulate.
Now, the tedious task of smoothing out the lines. I like to do this with the smooth tool, as shown below
With this tool, all you have to do is go along your existing edge, and Illustrator will automatically smooth your lines into something a lot less rigid.
Be patient! You will have to select each path throughout your drawing to clean up the image thoroughly. The more time you spend, the better it will look.
The next thing, after you smooth out all you lines, will be to hand color your drawing.(as shown below)
This may take a while, but you will be impressed with your finished product.