Sunday, November 11, 2012

Process 2- Watercolor and Digital Paint: Part two

Well here go the final stages of the process. Once the watercolor painting is done I scan the image and add digital touch ups until the work is where I want it. 

The final result, in this case at least... is the finished version of the Dragon Charmer. I wish I had more to say about it but I'm surprised that I don't. I'm not sure it's strong enough for the portfolio but it was nice to practice this technique again.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Process 2-Watercolor and Digital Paint

Okay, it's been awhile since I posted anything here and I do apologize. Between two new, non art related jobs that have me working anywhere from eight to 13 hour days between the two of them finding time, let alone energy to make art has been a challenge. So, while I've got a day off and some energy I decided to keep my promise to detail my other process when I'm not doing a pure digital painting.

This process I learned about while researching illustrators and I eventually got to speak to a man named Justin Gerard who taught me about the process. First of course I do several thumbnails and then pick one I like to work up into a finished piece. Here's the first thumbnail I chose.
Typically, I do a lot of  thumbnails (15-25)  and I've had this idea longer than most and it's gone through several thumbs in a few different iterations (so I think it's been closer to 35-50). The concept is a dragon charmer. Someone who's magical music is so entrancing dragons can't help but be mesmerized by it. I like using toned paper because it lets me get a rough idea of how light is going to fall and as I've said before, I think process is about idiot proofing as best as you can. After the thumbs I work out some of what I think will be problem areas for the piece. For this one, hands were going to be very important to get right. 
 So I sketched up some hands holding a flute (since I decided a flute was the instrument to go with here as kind of a call out to the Pied Piper). Once the preliminary sketches get done I usually move onto a more worked up thumbnail... that is unless I decide about half way through that I don't like the initial thumbnail after all. Yes that is exactly what happened here. 
Normally I have a big thing against centered compositions but there is a time and place for them and I felt like it might be possible to make it work here so I decided to get out of my compositional comfort zone and try it. So yes, now it's time for the big drawing. Once I get a solid drawing I do a solid drawing in pencil. Then I spray fix it to keep the drawing in tact and do a light sienna wash over it laying in some value guidelines. At this point it's pretty similar to the purely digital process mainly in that I only have to worry about a couple things at a time (in this case value and creating volumetric forms) and I can worry about color later. 

Here is the image as it stands now with the sienna values in place. This is typically the phase where I go, "Please don't let me screw this up. I could end up happy with this, please don't let me screw up!!!"
Water Color Underpainting

Next time: Full Water color and digital painting.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Sea Serpent and Process

Right now I'm in an interesting place in my illustration life. I'm still in a place where I get to play with new ideas, new processes and I love that I'm learning something new every time I sit down to make an image. I have two processes that I like right now, one purely digital, and one that is partially digital and partially traditional. Today, I'd like to showcase my purely digital process.

Usually, I like to get a really detailed drawing going on before I sit down to work. That didn't happen this time and I had to move to the painting early.

 I remembered something a teacher told me once that process was a way of idiot proofing your work. This is partially why I use a black and white underpainting first. It helps me set my values and make sure I only have to focus on one thing at a time. Thumbnail and drawing focus on composition, painting focuses on value. After that I paint over it with color layers and anything else I think will allow me not to screw up the hard work before it.

And here's the final image. I'm pretty happy with the result and I hope anyone looking at these is too.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Well it's time for the first post in a new blog and I think that it's only fair then to begin with a small sampling of my best work and hopefully continue to put out lots of new good stuff for you all. I hope you enjoy what you see here. 

The Fall of Oberra
17 x 23.5
Digital Painting

Web Mender Mystic
Watercolor and Digital 

Mythical Creature Series
Digital Painting


Mythical Creature Series
Digital Painting

Asimov's Realm
Watercolor and Digital