Written By David.
In the second installment of this series, let’s talk about decisions and computercrashes.
So last time, we left with a fairly decent pose, as well as good set-up for the painting of Mortarion around the time of the Horus heresy.
A few decisions had been made in regards to how he would look:
-Similar to Curze (“siblings”)
-Gaunt/ Deathly posture and features
- Details to keep in mind are: censers, no greenor white colours of armour, smoke coming out of the high collar, smoking pipes coming out of his back.
This is the image we had/
At this point, I do “the google rounds”.
Essentially, I look through google for images that I can use as reference for various items.
Items like hoods (monk-robes), roman shoulder-guards, freaky scythes, censers, smoke, fumes from burning oil-fields etc.
These things are ten stored for references. I will not se them straight off, but more as guides to how something is shaped.
If I need to create something unique for a character, I might “kit-bash” some of the images together to create interesting shapes (using various layerstyles in a similar fascion to how I started this illustration, see part 1 , but for this illustration that was not needed. (An example of an item that could have been made thusly, is the scythe, but I made a decision to paint that from scratch, based on pre-existing art.)
Examples of art that fell under references vary from Scythes from Darksiders 2, to conceptart for the Angels in Diablo to exhaust-pipes from Trucks and Holocaust-victims.
During this time, I also refine the previous image a little to get to the point where I like it a bit more. Not much is done beyond adding some backlighting, a few placeholder-censers and painting in the face a little.
So let’s stop here for a while and talk about catastrophical crashes.
I have made it a habit to constantly save iterations of my illustrations.
This way I can go back and copy-paste something that might have been better from a previous version, but I also make sure I do not loose hours of work if Photoshop crashes.
I have, to date, never had a version of Photoshop that did not crash on me at the worst possible opportunities.
Lately, I have also made it a habit to use a cloud-saving source to save my most recent works/files, simply because in case the computer crashes and files are lost, atleast some of my work is saved.
Better be safe then sorry.
So I worked on Mortarion for a long while. Each iteration of the illustration moving towards a goal.
The face was altered to focus more on his skeletal look, whilst maintaining a somewhat proxiation to my illustrations of Curze and Angron. I also used references of men from the Carpatian region as reference, to hint at the origins of the Legionaires (who are supposed to mainly have been recruited from this region on Terra, before recruitment from Mortarions homeplanet began).
Some alterations to the colours happened. The reds/oranges moved towards gray/blue/greenish to reflect this sensation of the sick and poisonous.
A shhoulderpad was begun on and the robes and scythe was worked out.
I had 8 preview-images to show on the blog. And they all vanished in a severe computercrash, loosing several folders worth of illustrations and references.
Luckily I had saved the ast two iterations of the image on my dropbox-account.
So here is where we come back to the image. It is not done yet, and there will be a part three, but you need to know why there was a jump in the look.
And a caution- save often. USe external harddrives or cloud-saving if needed, but make sure your work is safe.
Luckily, everything for my proffessional work was saved on an external harddrive except a new sketch, which means nothing suffered for commissions and proffessional works, but it could have been much worse, so keep this in mind!
Now the astute viewer will notice a few things:
1) The pose is slightly altered.
This mainly comes down to the fact that the lower body is in shadow and the shoulderpad has to face a certain direction for him to be able to hold the scythe.
2) the collar looks completely different.
I went away from the crude stove-collar and moved towards a more knightly one.
3) Alot of the ornaments vanished from the previous image, including the censers.
During research, I found that Mortarion didnt fancy ornamentation, so I stripped it down. The censers where only really placeholders. They will return once I paint them in proper.
4) He is kind of stout/heavy set.
This, is fixed. Namely in the next preview image-
Following this I will be painting in the lower body, the scythe will be completed and the censers will appear After this I will start adding the gasses in an around the collar and finally there will be some colourcorrections and post-process work to make the illustration complete.
Let me know what you guys think.
Oh, and here is something Orky to end the day. Wprk in Progress:
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So Halloween passed, thank you all for making it special by participating in ourcompetition.
Starting this week, there will be a new series of posts.
These posts are about following the creation of an illustration from concept to finish.
For the beginning illustration, I chose to use one of my personal Primarch illustrations.
I will go through wwhat ideas I have, how to flesh out the image, what thoughts and knowledge must be sought. Sketching, colour composition, painting roughs, using reference, when to use texturess and not and any number of other topics that come up along the way.
So let’s begin with the start, shall we?
For this particular illustration, I knew I wanted to tackle another Primarch.
But which one?
I have a list of Primarchs I am completing, where I have saved some general ideas and cool stuff to inspire.
Her’s what the folder look like:
You will notice that some are missing, which does not meant that they are completed, but rather that I haven’t ound anything yet to make me feel it is suitable to save as reference or inspiration for that particular Primarch.
So let’s choose one-
It is, after-all, the season to be dreary.
Not that much, but we can work with it.
So I do a quick sketch, without looking at my ref/inspiration images, but after I have looked at them/
So, its loose, crappy and not much to see. But it gives an indication, a hint at where I wan to take this piece.
Let me explain it to you.
Mortarion, for me, was always a riddle.
He grew up as a son of an alien (or a mutant, it seem to have shifted over the years). Taking control over the planet of Barbarus, a lethal place for humans to live and so poisons and poisonous gases are a part of his culture.
Likewise, the figure of Mortarion has this “Angel of Death” over it. A hooded figure, slender and agile, with hints of wings and a scythe.
The above is the way I think about Mortarion in passing, without investing any real tought to the character.
So the next step, is to look at the sheer physical aspects of Mortarion.
I did a Google-search, and ended up with a few images. I show them here to give you an idea, but I am in no means taking any credit fore these:
– John Blanche
– Alex Boyd
– Adrian Smith
-Ibrahim Swaid ( http://holypixels.blogspot.be/2011/08/mortarion-work-in-progress-1.html )
So that’s the four first ones I got..
Now comes the choosing.
What do I like, what don’t I like.
I like the general features, the hood, the gaunt look of Alex Boyd’s version. The plain-ness of the armour. In fact, even though I usually really like Adrian Smith’s work, in this case, I find it completely out of tune with what I want to portray.
So I make a list of things to add in the illustrration-
Scythe (obviously, I even drew that in the sketch, before thinkking about it).
Slender – like in the Alex Boyd image. – usually PlagueMarines are bloated, which is fine, but I want him to look like death/ This is not neccesarily going to be after he joined chaos.
Censer- holding poisonous gasses.
Things to concider-
Colours, not sure about wite, or even green. I need to do some research.
Shoulderpads. I sketched something like the Angron or Curze shoulderpads, not sure if I will keep that or go with something else.
Smoke- I want poisonous gases to come out at the collar and from the Censers. Need to make them visible without looking lame.
Things to not take-
No Green, no White. Not on Armour in any case. I want him to be dull in armour/clothing. He will be pale, so he need to stand out a bit.
Chest from Hulk- I really need him to look like death, he cannot have the most powerful look, not bodywise in any case.
Perhaps the fumes will cover some of his face, but I want his face to show mostly.
After writing these things down, I do a new sketch. And i failed (I lost the file). So I decide to do a tested methood when I need ideas.
I use an older image and duplicate layers, moving, reshaping, twisting and turning them around, using layer-effects to get “happy accidents”.
In this case, I used my Angron Painting.
This is the “sketch”:
So I add some brushstrokes to give a hint at my figure (using the same pose as before)
It still doesnt do it, so I do a little altering and adding a coloursplash, followed by a proper silouhete (next two images)
And after moving the arm and scythe, I am getting happy about the pose.
I know I said no facemask, but at this time, I am unsure how to make him look, so I have left the lower part of the face.
I will most likely make him look similar to curze, as I use roughly the same features for all the Primarchs, just changing them ever so slightly, to show they are siblings, rather then the same characer (or, indeed, completely different from one another).
That thing above his head?
Yeah, I dont know, perhaps I will keep it, perhaps not.
I thought I saw something like that in the back of Ibrahim Swaids Mortarion… it has potential. Maybe some sort of machinery, part of his exhausts…
Till next time.
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Hello there Studio Colrouphobia-followers!
Today I thought I’d take a little time to talk about how I use reference. There are many things to consider about references and many rules people
mention in regards to reference, so I thought we should discuss a little about it and I will also let you know how I use reference when I paint.
Lets start with the only rule you really should think about at all times. It’s divided into three parts.
If you are uncertain about copyrights and other rights- Shoot the reference yourself! Take a camera, locate a suitable view and take a
photograph of it!
The second part of the rule is:
If you bought a book with the reference in, and unless it say anything specifically about it on the image itself or on the publication-page (Where the information about edition and publisher and where it was printed etc. can be found) about using as reference , you can use it as reference!
And the third part of the rule:
When in doubt- Do not use as reference!
Now, before moving on to discussing other things, please do remember that the moment you use a piece of reference by cutting and pasting it into your work it’s not a reference any more- it’s a manipulation, manipulation wont bring you further towards being an accomplished painter or illustrator, it wont bring you anything but sorrow down the road (mainly because eventually people will find out and, rightfully, call you a fraud).
How I use reference and why
A lot of artists will say they do not use reference, or use it sparingly. I am not yet such an accomplished artist that I could do without reference though, and many of my illustrations defy life in such a way that using life as a base for painting them would only get me so far.
So I use photos to help me get certain things correct. It could be understanding a certain type of lighting, texture or shape of something. I used to copy photographs and drawings when I was young, it is an excellent way of learning how to sketch and/or paint, to copy something that already is well done.
But that was for practice. Nowadays I still do copies on occasion, though I would rather call them “studies”. Using a photo of an apple to try to paint a similar apple
(note “similar”, not “the same”). It needs to be believable, not a copy. I also do the occasional actual copy, trying to copy a work of a master such as Rubens, Caravaggio or Rembrandt to get the idea behind their work with colour and light, or to do a copy of a Pyle or one of the Orientalists to understand composition and how to use colours to strengthen it. But these are meant as practice, for me. They are not shown outside my family (and barely even that) and are not used for anything else but to further my own skill. A boxer need to shadowbox, an athlete need to run laps, painters and illustrators need to paint.
When it comes to actual illustration of something I use images, whether photos or other illustrations, as guides towards what I want to paint.
Consider Babar. If you have never heard of Babar: he is an elefant that grow up around humans, learn to walk on two feet and dress in clothes. Eventually he becomes king in his own land. A very nice set of children’s stories that teach basic ethics at the same time as being entertaining and sweet.
I have, for a longer time, been pondering to paint a classical portrait of Babar. He is a cartoony-like elephant, but only because the illustrated book was supposed to be for children, not education on the looks of elephants.
Since I illustrate with a certain amount of realism, and try to get to the part where seeing an illustration of mine is believing the illustration, I wanted to paint Babar a little more realistic. So I went about doing a little sketch of him:
This is my sketch: Babar, now an old king, sitting infront of a fireplace in a victorian styled chair sipping a Cognac. Behind him sits the head of Rataxes a friend and enemy (it’s a complicated relationship) of Babar’s. The size of the paper, and the fact that I had not truly planned this image much, mean that the head of Rataxes sit more behind the head of Babar then being visible.
After completing the sketch, knowing that I need to alter some things once I start painting it, I go about getting me some reference:
I find an image of a Rhinoceros, amazingly enough I find exactly the type of chair I wanted to seat Babar in, though not at the perfect angle, but still. I find three different elephant-heads, african ones, and I find a set of crown jewels (the Danish ones, but I like the Kings crown and it looks somewhat like the one I drew on Babars’ head).
I decide against using the elephants as final refferences, because I am uncertain where the images are from and whether there is a copyright on them. Normally, this would spur me to scour the internet for a massive amount of hours but my dear wife remind me that we have a zoo in the city, and that I have free admittance to it whenever I want to (one-year-subscription) and that, indeed, there are elephants there. Even though I will use the above elephants for my reference mash-up, I will still shoot new references to use once I begin the actual painting. (and on the plus-side, they also have a Rhinoceros or two at the zoo, which mean I might get some very nice photos of Rhinos as well, to use for this painting).
Now it’s time for a quick recomposition/colour-test:
In the above image, I have copy-pasted some of the references from above. I painted the clothes of Babar and the Head I had to paint because of the lighting but I did a lot of colour-picking. This stage is not really part of the painting itself, merely there to see if I “got it” or not. As such, it isn’t supposed to take that long. I believe I spent a glorious 30 minutes on getting the image above done. Obviously, the tone is very dark, but that is also partly because eventually I will look just as much on this image as the reference to get the final painting done correctly. The mash-up is meant to give a better understanding on the general look of the painting. The references are what will make the final painting come alive.
It is important for you to realize a couple of things here:
- This is meant to serves as a reference. I copy-pasted images in, to give me a better Idea on shapes. In the end, I might use the general tone of this, as well as using the photos copied into this document as reference, but I will paint the entire painting from scratch!
- I do not suggest painting over anything unless you really are starting out, and then only as practice! Don’t do paint-overs to get you “cool art that get me jobz”, because it wont. It will only tell people you aren’t good enough when they start putting pressure on you for deadlines and start seeing you painted over other peoples work, which in the end can cost them a lot of cash in the form of lawsuits and whatnot.
- I use reference as a visual guide, that does not men I have to stick to it rigorously all he time. There is still room for change along the way, but the reference is there to help me see things like light, shape, tone and texture.
Next time I come back to talk about reference, I will show you how I paint Babar from begin to end. With reusing the sketch as a base for the painting, painting under-layers and dead-layers, looking at the reference to get a good idea on what I need to think about with colour, lights and shapes/form etc. etc..
If you have any ideas on what to take up on this blog, or if you have any questions on this topic, other topics or such, please leave a comment and I will answer as promptly as I can.
Until next time,
So before I start this blog with some more regular things, let me first congratulate George Takei on his 75th birthday.
Beyond being openly gay, one of the first asians I saw in any form of higher position on a tv-show and playing uber-cool Japanese business-owner in Heroes, Mr.Takei also has a wicked sense of humor that he shares with us through his Facebook page. Go give the man some love:
So it’s been a while since there was an update from this blog.
You might wonder what’s been going on? The truth been told, I have been pretty busy.
A few things will be shown later in this entry, but first, something for all of you that are interested in illustration.
I saw this yesterday, and I found it brilliant.
For some of you, this might not be the most obvious, or even clear, thing, but trust me, once you start thinking in these terms, your illustrational work will be better of it.
Now I know some of you will look at this and go “huh?” but just look, listen and consider.
Text-> Simplify-> word association-> simple icons-> bridge-> drawings from bridges-> Box your composition-> Explain shape through value-> Define your execution.
I am working on a couple of things that still are a little hush-hush. One of the things I am doing is a test-run for something. These things happen sometimes in this business and can be tacked together with payment or without payment.
Something I wanted to touch base with with the people reading these, and who are interested in working as illustrators or designers, is how to take rejection or failure.
I am a sore looser.
No really,I am a terrible looser. I hate loosing, because I pride myself to not get into situations where I cannot win (famous exception being anything that has to do with my wife..just cannot beat the woman in anything!).
Now just because I am a sore looser doesn’t mean I have to take failure or rejection poorly.
Like said, I am doing a testrun. I am not going to tell you what it is for, but there is a chance that I might get told “Hey, you have a nice style, it’s just not the one that we’re looking for”.
That has happened to me just as to most people.
In essence, it means that either you wont get the gig because of style or because you have not achieved exactly the skill that they are looking for.
So what can we do about this?
Well first of all- realize that you can always improve your skill and your artistic ability.
Secondly- realize that some things you wont be able to do. Please note that I didn’t write “cannot ever do”, but rather “wont be able to do”. If you aim your skills at painting realistically, then stylized cartoony might not be what you excel in. Or Cubistic, or maybe you aim at a very saturated palette. Unless you focus your aim at all of hese things, chances are that you wont be able to keep the standard that some of the companies out there want to see.
What you need to do is to work, practice, challenge yourself and evolve in the direction you wish to see your art. If you do that, then eventually you will find that you have work cut out for you.
Now then, for what you have been waiting for.
Here is the cover for Skrapyard.
To find out more about this game, head over to Precinct Omega Publishing
I got contacted by a very nice guy over at Heresy Online with a question if I wanted to do a few commissions to bring a Space Marine Chapter alive.
Here are two images of the Lantern Marines:
Tactical Lantern Marine
Until next time.
David here and the time has come for another blogpost!
It has been a while (again) and there are schedule-related reasons for this.
Because of these reasons, we are restructuring the postingorder.
Monday sketchposts will remain as they are and, hopefully, continue to be
posted every Monday for your enjoyment.
Wednesday blogposts will move to Thursdays due to it being more fitting in
the week for us schedulewise. Thursday blogposts, then, will not happen
every week unless we have a mass of things to share with you.
Thursday blogposts will also be alternated with tutorial posts so eventually
we think these will become more or less weekly anyway.
This week I thought I’d show you some completed work, as well as let you
know some excellent pages on the internet to improve your skill as an artist
whether professional or happy amateur.
This lady-knight on a blue dragon, is my sister-in-law. It’s a gift to her
and since she likes dragons I thought I’d paint her riding a dragon.
If you remember well, you have seen a couple of compositional sketches for
this painting in an earlier blogpost. The makings of this painting has been
veiled in secrecy, to not let her know it in advance we had to fake
referenceshoot with a sword and “tring to figure out lighting” with a
camera to get good face-reference.
The reference used for the dragon was a blue-white monitorlizzard,
to get the scales and colours correct.
The final illustration will be printed and given to my sister-in-law as a
birthdaypresent. This will also go into my portfolio, and if enough people
are intrested, might make a limited-run as a poster or print.
Next up is a little something that I think you will recognize.
This is the beginnings of completing the illustration I made in pen on paper
into a fully painted illustration. I am doing this as a test to see how far
I can move the digital medium toward traditional painting. Using the Flemish
technique in digital form, I took the pencilsketch, added a light
yellow/olive “imprimatura” cover over it (after having lessened the opacity
of the lines to make them barely visible).
I then flattened the entire painting, duplicated the layer and used the
real-bristle brushes in Photoshop CS5 to do a two layered underpaintig in
This, of course is an aproximation of the colours, and I am doing a lot of
trial and error. Finally (up to this point) I am doing what is called a
“dead layer”. A Grayscale painting with a hint of cool respective warm tones
to lay as a base for the final painting.
This might seem timeconsuming, but the truth behind it all is that I want
to see how close one can get to the traditional means of painting using pure
It is not going to be a substitute, and I am not expecting it to look like a
traditional oil-painting once done, but to evolve one must break with ones
patterns and try out some new things. This is how we get ideas and evolve.
What I am expecting to get out of this is an improved workflow, better
colourmanagement and perhaps a more subtle way of painting skintones.
As far as painting skintones, this way of painting will not be more
timeconsuming for me then what I already go through, so possibly it might
help me speed things up.
The Ahadi-painting is a personal piece, and something that I work on on-and-off.
In other, artrelated, news, I am also making an illustration for something
called Feast of Blades: http://www.feastofblades.com/
This illustration will be featured in our next free tutorial and so I’m
saving images for that post. Hope you do not mind.
So with the art displayed, let’s get back to a topic I have promised
Where on the net can you learn to improve, reach out to the crowd you want
and generally get hints and tips on what to do to have more fun and success
with painting or doing art in general?
Let’s start with some of the heavy hitters-
The blogspots where you can just get buckettoads of information:
(and bucketloads,if you rather would have that!)
This is the big one ladies and gentlemen. Although there are forums such as
conceptart.org, which I wholeheartedly suggest you check out if you haven’t
already, muddycolors is just the best spot to find information, inspiration
and help with just about anything in your art-aspirations.
Essentially, it’s a blog where several professional artists joined together
to post inspiration, ideas and information on what to think about when you
It’s not the names that make the place, though there are some impressive
ones: Dan Dos Santos, Donato Giancola, Arnie Fenner, Jesper Esjing, Petar
Meseldzija and Greg Manchess to name some of them.
No, it’s the information and what they share that makes this worth it!
Mostly, the information is concerning traditional painting when a choice
between digital or traditional has to be made, but in general, the
information and inspiration can be used for any medium. Ranging from
exhibitions to check out to how to compose, set your digital version of art
to best suit printing, through art critiques on readers works and all the
way down to how to handle turpentine and the dangers with it.
In short, the amount of goodness that comes from this blogspot to anyone
interested in doing art is just astounding.
Possibly not as known as muddycolours, Enliighten is a great place to
learn art. Mike “Daarken” Lim (Wizards of the Coast, Blizzard Entertainment,
Fantasy Flight Games, BioWare, Mythic etc.) decided to give back to the
community through giving awa free tutorials and discussions on art on his
boards. This is great resource for anyone beginning with art.
Jon Schindehette’s, Art Director at Wizzards of the Coast, exemplary
blogspot for helping aspiring artists and freelancers with tips, tricks and
challenges to get better at reaching future clients. This spot is just as
useful as the muddycolors spot, except this is more directed to those who
want to make art for a living.
Artorder used to be on ning, but has now moved to wipnation.
Dave Rapoza began with crimsondaggers and, together with his friend, Dan
Warren, they set up competitons, art-critiques and general awesomeness.
I found out about CrimsonDaggers through Daves Livestreamchannel,
http://www.livestream.com/fuckinartwithmrdelicious , which is also filled
with awesomeness. Metal, awesomeness and painting. Like Artorder,
crimsondaggers used to be something all on its ow, but has now also got a
spot at wipnation.
Speaking of awesome, awesomehorsestudios is also a good spot to find info
and critiques at. For me, this spot had a little less to offer since they
do their critiques live, and you can watch episodes for free as they air,
but have to pay (albeit a smal sum) to watch thm later. Unfortunately I sit
on the wrong side of the earth to be able to justify watching these live.
The really great one for me was watching their interview-athon at illuxcon
(found here: http://www.awesomehorsestudios.com/s1e5-illuxcon-interview-special/),
As a freelance artist this gave me so much. It was also cool to see some of
the persons I have worked with, as well as some I’d like to work with, even
if it wasn’t pressing hands. Emails are useful, but sometimes a little
Awesomehorsestudios also has a spot at wipnation, but be sure to check out
their own website. There is something for everyone there!
A little edit here: Thanks to Marc from Awesomehorsestudios for letting us know
that all episodes from Season 2 on are now free, live and always.
You can see everything up at http://www.awesomehorsestudios.com/watch-now
Online Galleries and their use:
Online galleries can be really useful for the aspiring artist. It can give
help through comments and critique. It can give exposire and it can be
rewarding to exchange art with other artists.
Here are some of my favourites and their use.
In my opinion, this is the best gallery currently. I might be wrong, there
might be something more suitable for getting more exposure and contacts
with potential clients, but currently the entire website just flows with
proffessionalism, ease and goodness. Mainly aimed at professionals, I was
lucky to get an invitation in the early days, but my bias towards cghub has
more to do with the way you can mark your artwork (time it took to complete,
lists of medium-including programs used, etc.) and the fact that it is
really easy to manouver once you get a hang of it. Nowadays you can get an
account on cghub without an invite and if you want to go professional I
think this is the place you should put a portfolio-gallery at.
The forums of cgub are probably underrated, as I find something useful or
inspiring there verytime I check them out.
Here is a link to my own profile on cghub: http://colrouphobia.cghub.com/
This gallery is still fighting some early hickups, but in my opinion it is
still worth being there. There are several reasons for this: Many helpful
blogs or webspaces have recently aquired a spot under wipnations wings.
(see above), but the galleries can stand on their own. The most powerful
thing about wipnation, at this moment, is the opportunity to do redline
critiques. Redline critique is when you see something that you think
should/could be improved in an image and you take a red tool (for instance
photoshop brush) and paint on the image to show what you mean. Wipnation
allows for this in their own galleries, something that is really useful for
the aspiring artist.
This is a feature I miss on just about every other gallery online. If you
want to check out my own meager wipnation gallery, it is here:
I think it is safe to say that almost everyone into art knows about
deviantart nowadays. This place has it’s plus and minuses. For one, it is
large. This is very useful if you wish to find something inspiring. Chances
are you can find it on deviantart. The downside is that you might have to
search for it for a long time if you want something more specific.
Exposure, this is a tricky one. If you manage to get the eyes of a few
people, there is a chance you will get more exposure. For me, I had the
fortune of getting into th semifinalists in a huge competition on
deviantart. After that I just got more and more watchers. I am still not
getting as much exposure at deviantart as I would want to, but it is still
a useful tool for other things.
The above gallries are for you to put your works in, and to look through
works of contemporary artists.
How about spots where you can check out the old masters, or where you can
get help with anatomy and such.
There are a multitude of such places on the internet, and so I share with
you only two such places:
Webgallery of art is a great place to see art from museums all over the
The first link leads to their mainpage, the second link directly to their
search engine. Explaining how to search will take a lot of time, so just
experiment, it’s worth it!
http://inspirationalartworks.blogspot.com/ is just pure gold.
This blogspot has really collected a great set of images, whether photos
or artwork, for an aspiring artist to check out and use for studies and
for anatomy pictures and
photoreference. Be advised that there is nudity or images deemed unsuitable
for the younger crowd in this spot.
I think that is about whatI have to give you today.
Until next time!
Hello again, time for another blogpost from Studio Colrouphobia.
It has been a while and for that we are sorry. The truth is tat it comes with the territory, being a freelance-company mean that sometimes we are just crammed with work and has little time to do anything else. The past two weeks have been such a time.
First things first: The reaction to the tutorial we last posted has been varrying but in general it was received with thanks and praises.
The main concern voiced as the lack of detail and in-depth description, as well as “tips” on how to paint like this.
The lack of depth an detail to the tutorial comes down to what we earlier explained is in store for the future:
Some free tutorials, and some with a cost to them.
To be able to motivate the tutorials, we need to look at the time it takes to create them. As every hour of work counts in this business, most of the free tutorials will be more like walkthroughs of paintings painted in the studio anyway, mostly portfolio-pieces or commission-work that do not have an NDA or where the NDA no longer keep us from showing the illustration.
These tutorials will be less detailed, with less explanation and not loaded with tips and magic sollutions to become a great illustrator. We do, however, feel that these will be invaluable for the beginner-up-to-intermediate illustrator as it will give you anything in the range of inspiration to tidbits you didn’t know.
The paid tutorials will be more descriptive, most of them will also be in the form of videos with voiceover to guide you through more detailed help. Some of these will still be aimed towards the beginner or the intermediate illustrator, but thse will also suit the intermediate to “almost-pro” crowd to a bigger extent.
Finally, the workshops will be tailored to your needs, they will include individual feedback and help on a level that only face-to-face tutoring could out-do (and we have face-to-face workshops in mind for the future as well).
Wen it comes to “tips on how to paint like you do”, there is only one thing that will help you achieve the level of ability you wish to reach and that is practice.
So we hope you are up for the future tutorials and workshops from us, we certainly are!
And now for some works.
This time it is a little limited, as mentioned earlier, there has been a lot of work and deadlines that had to be met the past two weeks, all of which still is under NDA, but here are some further painting on Arbaal (with details). This painting is still not done, mind you, and has quite a bit left to go.
And this is a very quick sketch of a Chaos Terminator.
Next time we will probably have a sketch to show you of a current commission that has the benefit of not being under NDA.
-Posted by David
Hello there people, David here with a little update. So last time we posted something, we had a couple of questions added: We wanted to know whether the readers of this blog where interested in tutorials and workshops, both free and paid. The response was good, just not in comments on here.
In the numerous forums that I personalty post on, as well as on Facebook and Twitter, there have been quite some answers to the questions, some in posts, most in private messages. You have also asked questions such as: What’s your favourite art galleries online, how do I protect my art and are there any art-tutorials or websites you recommend for me?
In the future I will let you all know what my personal favourite art-galleries online are, as well as giving info on how to protect your artwork and other tutorials or places to find good tutorials. But this time around, I thought I’d give you a bit of a tutorial myself. For free, to show what the future has in store for you.
(1) I wanted to paint Arbaal, a follower of Khorne in the Warhammer Fantasy universe. To get into it fast I opted to use another painting as a base, I don’t always do this, but it helps to find new things fast and it can really help to get the base values down quick and easy. So I decided to use the Angron painting I just finnised before the hollidays. This character is also follower of Khorne, but in the Sci-fi setting of Wh40k, I thought it was fitting.
-Note: if you are doing a painting in this way, make sure the the original plate, i.e. the painting or photo you start with, is YOURS. This is of particular importance if the painting is for commercial purposes. It also helps covering all your bases when it comes to copyrights and protecting your artwork. Remember, if you don’t steal, then others are more likely to not steal from you.-
(2) I then made the painting grayscale, copied the background and flipped it, setting the second layer to divide at a low opacity. To get to this I experimented with various settings on the layer, ranging through every layer setting and testing at opacity of 30%, 50%, 80% and 100%. Once content with what I had, I fine tuned the opacity to get to this mirrored image.
(3) I decided I didn’t want to make a portrait of Arbaal. He is a very real character in the game, as he has been a playable character (Something Angron hasn’t been) and as such I wanted to show some action. Cue copy/paste and shrink the top layer. This way I keep some of the tones I had, making the image keep in the same range all over.
(4) It looks a little dark, I want to keep the most of the painting at a middle range throughout most of the initial stage. With the portraits series it is easy to keep everything dark and just paint up to light values, but for this I need to maintain a certain atmosphere also. So I take another of my paintings; enlarge it to only show a background section, copy it into the document and set the layer to divide. I move the layer around a little to see how things look. Once content I flatten the image, duplicate the layer and save.
-At this point, I’d like to point out that if you can, and want to, keep the layers. I have learnt to just paint over my mistakes and so I flatten constantly. That way I can also paint at very high resolutions on my slow machine.-
(5) I see something in there, lets paint up the bottom background to look like there could be fire there. Fire good! Then add the typical Khornate helmet-guards. Maybe he is swinging his axe and he should sit on a Flesh-hound of Khorne, let’s add a hint of that in there also.
(6) A bit too bright anyway, darken a little and add in a demon-head for the hound. I used reference for Arbaal, the only one there truly is is of a miniatuer from way back. Hence I wanted to do some re-design. For a while I was pondering horns on the Fleshhound instead of a fleshy collar, since Fleshhounds come in various forms.
(8) Defining the head of the Flesh-hound a little more, adding some bright to the background again, I want that fire there. Did you notice I dropped the arm?
(9) All right, all Chaos Warriors that have a cloak seem to have fur-cloaks when I look through the internet for ref. So why not? It will bring a bit of character. Also, he need to hold the beast in some reigns and I still want an axe for him. So I paint that in. It looks good in the brighter areas, this way I can also keep his outlines a little less detailed since the bright background will make all sit well in space, at the same time as it makes the character seem more three dimensional.
(10) I didn’t like the background at all, too stagnant. So I added outlines of some structures. I make a mental note that this could be Praag at “the siege of Praag”, since Arbaal was present at the time. I also add the collar for the Hound proper, and decide I want to keep the front of the hound in this pose, but make it a little more flowing. A tail is added.
(11) Making some changes to te values to show more detail. The chain he has to ”steer” the Hound with is added, twirling around its horns and through the mouth. I add spikes to the right-side shoulderguard, define the helmet more. Spikes on the axe, symbols of Khorne. I make the collar a bit more majestic and add some spikes and details to the body of the hound.
(12) First colourpass. This is something for an upcoming tutorial, but to get the colouration I use a hard-light layer. Watch out for tutorials and workshops on how to fully utilize this technique in the future.
(13) Second colourpass, after having flattened and saved the painting once more, I duplicate the background and paint onto it. I lessen the colours somewhat on the armour and begin to incorporate complementary colours of green and yellow/brown. At this point I am not too worried about the saturation as I am opaque-ly painting over it later.
(14) I had a skull on the left-side shoulderguard but I didnt like it. Que paint something else in. A new skull!
(15) And here is where we start to lessen the saturation somewhat. This is the last image in this tutorial as I am still painting this, but in the future there will be more tutorials coming. The free ones will be more loose and not go so much into details, much like this one was. In the workshops and paid tutorials I will go much more in depth and there will also be room for questions and one-on-one help. But more about that in the future.
For now, here is a final image, the 100% version of Arbaal’s face:
(Click to enlarge)
And that’s it for today. If you enjoyed this little tutorial, please let us know in the comments below. Also, if for some reason you cannot post a comment, or if there is anything else you feel we need to know, you can always mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know, so we can look into it.
Now go back, enjoy reading it again, click the images to see them bigger and let us know what you think! Next Wednesday, some of my favourite Art-Galleries online!