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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Leering Man

I had a lot of trouble with the third guy in line, namely that he appeared to be leering at the gal in front of him.
This might be appropriate to a pulp fiction story, but he was intended to be just lusting after chili like the rest of them.  But no matter how I worked over it, trying to control his eye direction and everything, the strong impression remained that he was thinking about young women, not chili.

The original pencil sketch was somehow not so obviously lecherous.  As intended, this guy is just crazed with chili envy, or so it seems to me.  But I couldn't seem to translate this into color.

My solution?  I changed him into this: a man with a pathetic look, rather like the preacher from the HBO series Deadwood.  But at least the girl is out of danger!

Next:  Getting To The Final

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Part 3: Painting Continues

The next stage shows rendering continuing, with a lot of work on the bridge detail, the green hand and the foreground figure:
So far, so good.  It is a tricky thing making the stonework not look too linear.  But as I now add contrast the the first guy in line, I see that the coloring of the other figures is way too washed out by comparison.

Here was the next stage:

I  have now darkened all the robes, and the chains, and I have sketched in all the necessary linear detail from the drawing layer onto a paint layer.  But I see that my goal of a high contrast illustration is getting away from me again,  so... I opened a brand new layer in the Photoshop file and sketched in the values and colors I wanted to arrive at, but in a careless and slapdash fashion, all very rough;  now I find myself much closer to where I want to be.  Note that none of this layer will actually appear in the final, but the layer will guide me to the values and saturation I want.

However, the above screen shot does include some detail work on figures two and three in line, the young woman and the leering man.

Next: The Problem of the Leering Man

Sunday, November 6, 2011

From Black and White to Color

Now to the Photoshop document with the tight pencil as a layer, I begin adding color based on the scheme in the rough comp shown in the last post.  On a new layer, of course, I block in the basic flat colors, as seen here in two versions:

Here it is with the pencil layer turned off...

And this is with the pencil layer turned on.
Right now it looks maybe like a comic book page, with hard outlines and mostly flat colors.  But some gradients have been applied: 1)The red robes lose saturation and grow paler as we move into the distance; 2) The side of the bridge becomes lighter where it turns to catch the light coming through the archway, and 3) complex gradients have been applied to the marble pillars and to the inside and outside of the cauldron in the right foreground.

The one thing rendered at this stage is the chili itself, based on personal photos of my own actual chili batches over the years.  Yum!

Then of course most of the stone structure of the bridge has been copied from the pencil rendering, since the detail of the stone shapes and mortar is essentially a linear rather than tonal problem.

But if you look back at the upper image here, it is clear that the value range within the figures is not yet defined, not to mention the detail.  Remember: the goal is to eventually make the pencil rendering layer redundant by putting all its information into the painting itself, and to do that mainly by tonal and textural means rather than in a linear way.

Next: Bringing It All Home