Friday, July 24, 2009

Process? *edited*

A psuedo process walk through, with step by step notes in the comments. Let me know if this helps anyone, or if you have any questions. *I found I had missed a step. Step 3 is what I had when I blocked in the color, and 4 was basically the same with a little more refining. You can see where I lost the drawing now.*


RYAN said...

This started as mainly a way for me to try and be organized about painting digitally. As I was painting, I was making mental notes and decided to save out stages of the painting for my own future reference. This really isn’t meant to be a tutorial, but kind of a process shot that’s got some explanations, since I get asked every now and again about “how did you do this part?”. Here it goes.

First, I think I heard this from Iain McCaig, pick something you want to paint. Painting something you like gives you that much more impetus to paint it:) I personally think if you paint something you hate, you might be prone to saying “good enough”, as opposed to painting something you love, where you might sit for hours trying to make it look as awesome as it is to you.

1) With my reference picked ( I like skulls. Skulls with squid hair are more awesome, which means I should paint some) I toned my canvas around 50% grey. Any mid range grey will do, it’s just to get rid of the white. Then I picked a Burnt Umber type color (out of habit) and started massing in the shadows. It doesn’t really matter what the color is, as long as it’s kind of close to the value of your shadow area in your reference.

I used mainly a flat brush set to opacity and flow set to pen pressure, the angle set to direction. I also used a rake brush (same settings) for a while, just to add some stroke variety. Iused it mainly on areas that were form shadows, since it kind of has a softening effect as compared to the flat brush. Occasionally I used the airbrush, at a BIG like a blender, to have some smooth transitions. I was just worrying about light shapes and shadow shapes and proportion.

As a side note, I should have done this part with a color closer to the shadow color, but it turned out alright.

2) This really isn’t a second step, but I decided to put it in here. I put the dark accents to help myself see the forms a little more clearly, and judge proportions a little better. Personally, I think this stage is ugly, and kept wanting to leave it all burnt umber but the darks helped me a lot. I’ll have to do that more often.

3) Color. I slapped it on there. I found that at this stage, the drawing suffered because I was so intent on getting the colors. Fine. I can always bring it back. Craig Nelson said that some of the best paintings come from painters who have totally lost control of a painting and have to bring it back under control. As an aside, I found that if a color is really hard to nail down, it’s usually a neutral (grey) of some color, and you’d be surprised how often a color you think is “green” or “blue” is actually a dark desaturated yellow, orange or red.

Strokes. I use more solid brushes for cast shadows, and looser ones for form shadows. For example, I used a rectangular brush for hard edged shadows (or lights) and a scratchy brush (a rough circle maid up of tiny dots, like you sprayed ink from a tooth brush and made a brush out of it) with low spacing so it looks like a dry bristle brush. Both are technically hard edged, but one is softer in comparison to the other.

4) I started refining the major planes into smaller planes, suggesting detail, and correcting drawing problems from the earlier step. I’m not really introducing new colors at this point. Most of my palette was figured out in the previous step. If I add any new colors, they are slight variations of existing colors. As far as refining,. I guess what goes through my head is “how can I describe this plane with the least amount of strokes”. I don’t nail it in one or two strokes, but mentally scoffing at aimless strokes keeps me on track.

5) I find myself starting to noodle too much, and 3:10 to Yuma (I’ve got it playing in the background) is rolling credits, so I hit “sharpen more” in the sharpen filter palette, to pop the strokes, and call it done.

RYAN said...

I should note, since people always ask, I didn't use the eyedrop tool. I put a color down, and if it's not right, I try again.

The_Geeks said...

very cool! Hope to see you Sunday!

agent ouchie said...

this is WONDERFUL. i confess have been looking at some of your earlier studies while trying to learn how to paint. i like the way your paintings look like you decide on a stroke and go with it, very nice and bold looking.

Mike Stanislavsky said...

nice study dude, superb study really

Nadia Moon said...

Ryan, you are such an inspiration!

Jose Ramos said...

Nice and great style Ryan. I like your wora lot .
.Congratulations , and I hope get back soon!

ryan said...

Awesome man! I love the image you made for your blogger title/banner.