I can tell when I feel like I’m not successfully moving forward in my art goals. I tend to begin slacking off on the amount of work, waking up later in the day, and generally just end up bummed out. Strangely, instead of taking action towards moving back on track, I do everything that moves me away from where I need to be… Strange indeed. [/introspection]
Regardless, I’m thankful that I decided to break my art funk and do something new and fresh, because afterwards I felt like I really leveled up, learned some new tricks/techniques, developed a new-cool process, and moved further in developing my new world for my story.
I watched this cool tutorial for creating environment concept sketches many many moons ago and I’ve always intended to go back and follow along with it. If you’ve seen some of my previous school work in photo-manipulation you’ll understand why this tutorial really appealed to me. It basically paralleled perfectly with my own process, because it uses almost all of the tools I use on a consistent bases with photo-manipulation.
Using a variety of images, layers, blending modes, opacity settings, masks, filters and other tools. You create a multitude of different shapes, colors, lines, spaces, etc that give an impression of a landscape, interior, cityscape… These thumbnails are then used as a base to paint/sketch on, and eventually creating unique environments.
In the video, he uses this process to create these fantasy landscapes only, but the process is the same for other genres too.
It is worth noting that the video suggest using low res images and after my 30th save (ended up with around 80) or so I can tell you my computer started chugging because I save mostly larger reference images when I do my google searches. Most of the images I used were actually images from my Blue Moon reference boards off of Pinterest, with a couple odd balls thrown in.
There is a ginormous amount of experimentation that the gif doesn’t come close to showing. Sometimes it was a matter of choosing a single filter or blend mode and it seemed like I knew just where to put the image. Other times it was me going through all of the possible options before decided on something or just trashing it and starting over or with another image entirely. It was more trial and error than anything… sometimes I just immediately saw something and I just built that idea up.
Really fun and interesting process and because I was “Working Small” (I worked at 16.7% of the actual canvas size), I was able to focus on the shapes and colors and composition and not all the little details and “Learn Big.” This is a screen shot of my work area in Photoshop and my canvas to screen (21.5″) ratio.
Again, this is just the beginning phase of the tutorial. At about 10 mins in he begins to start painting over his thumbnails. A really fascinating watch if this type of stuff interests you.
I am curious what people see in these thumbnails and which people like the most. Pick a couple and let me know which you guys like the most or which stand out, or which aren’t really working.
“Imagination rules the world.” – Napoleon Bonaparte