Monday, May 28, 2012

Painting in progress

I'm in the middle of another painting, but don't have the usual amount of time to try and get all done in one sitting, so I'm sticking it up here as it ticks along, a sort of WIP/Tutorial type thing. Just to go through, I start of with an incredibly rough sketch (not seen, but the linework tends to have SO MUCH MORE LIFE than the clean line it's not even funny) always drawn on a midgray background, at about 30% opacity, 60& flow hard round brush in photoshop.

I then do the clean(ish) lines you see above. WHY OH WHY? Because then I can a) lock in the design of things and forces me to think things through a lot more but B) because I can flat em in super fast. Much like in comics stuff, when I got through the flatting process it gives me a time to exclusively think about the tone and colours I want. For this I want it to have the overall air in the place of what-wet-fur-smells-like, with the dragons dropped in over it like a breath of fresh air...or an unwelcome draft, depending on your perspective :D

I then press Ctrl Alt Shift E and that makes a flattened clone of the lot, and then Ctrl Alt Shift B (I THINK) to greyscale it. I then paint up a quick value study, so I'm not getting ahead of myself with colour alone.

NOW is the point where those two techniques clash horribly, but I'm in the porvess of figuring out how to marry the two. Either way, from here on I combine the two and make with the pretty. I have 90 mins painting time left, so FINGERS CROSSED I should have something for ye later on.

Wish me luck.

Normal Service will resume shortly.


OK, my eyes have pretty much called it quits for the day. Here's where I'm at so far :D

Friday, May 25, 2012

Not Quite Right and the Holy Numbers

It's been bugging me lately, pieces not slotting into place. As if it's the exact opposite of being in a rut. Ideas are there, just none of them sing. Going through the same (and some new) processes, but the end result has an altogether Brother-Bear anticlimax to it.

I really liked Brother Bear, but it was no Lion King. Knowing they could make that, it really cheapens the lesser pieces.

I say this not as a moan, because I'm going through some stuff at the moment so I don't EXPECT to be hitting every punch with my personal work, but what I really want to talk about is HONESTY.
A friendwas tweeting about Pascal Campion's work, wondering why it's all so good. I replied saying that is was completely honest- most of his pics look like they come from happy moments in his life, and the emotion's dripping from the page.

Some people's whole careers seem to veer towards their perfect project, the one thing that it seems like they were absolutely made for. There is overdoing it , like the Burton-Depp-Elfman triumvirate of doom, but that's the kind of zest I'm talking about.

The most recent example I've come across is Tommie Kelly's Holy Numbers. His struggle with religious themes has come to fore before, and he's been trying different things over the past few years to push his storytelling visually. His actual linework always seemed very....thick to me, and when he got onto DOWN it really started gelling for me with how he tells stories. There's something gutteral to it (in a good way), and it matches the topics he goes for 100%.

 Tommie sent me the first few pages to read just before he launched, and I held off. Kinda like caviar- it's not something you have at the drop of a hat, the occasion and your mood needs to be right. Today was the perfect time for me to check it out, and I'm genuinely curious to see where it goes from here. It's really great to see one artist and writer who seems to have all the pieces really slotting into the right place.

Honesty, in form and in fiction :D

Here's Holy Numbers by the way:

Tommie's also behind Irish Comic News (amongst a crew of awesomefolk)