Friday, September 4, 2009

Switching Gears 2

Hello my friends. I hope that all of you are having a wonderful and safe holiday! I am still in the process of switching gears as I call it, and more on that shortly. But first, let's talk about Klowny. I really expected to be done with this by now, but a lot has been going on in my life, including starting a new business. More on that in a month or so, but it goes hand in hand with all the things we have been talking about the last few months.
As with any Illustration, you start with an idea and good reference material. Sometimes getting just the right reference material can be a challenge to say the least. Normally you start with sketches of what you want the finished piece to look like, and then you set up a model shoot for your figures in the painting. In this one, I found a clown photo of a girl I liked, and have been changing it to suit the purpose of what I need. There is no model for Klowny. He is freehand. I did find a picture of the trailer park to use as a basis, and I mostly free handed the elephant.
Now you see the pic as it is so far, but by the end of today, I will have the Trailer park looking more like a "Klowny Park" and have most of Kitty-Boo painted. So let me stress this one more time. According to Irene Gallo, Todd Lockwood, Daniel Horne, Brom, and on and on, reference material is key to doing a great illustration. An Illustrator is paid to produce a believable image of the fantastic, and you can not do that without using photo references for the things you paint. The only Illustrator that says he doesn't use reference is Frazetta. I believe that to a point, but Frazetta is one of a kind. To drive the point home one more time, if you ever took a live drawing class, either still or model, you had a model to work from, did you not?
After I have all my material together and have done thumbnails on what the finished product will look like, I start doing sketches of each of the elements. The great thing about working digitally is that I like the sketches, i can polish them and use them in the finished painting, which saves a lot of time as well. Drawing the Trailers was a major pain and took a couple of days. But this is where the training Todd gave me came in by having me go downtown and draw sketches of buildings all day. Another great thing about working with Painter is that I have Perspective grids to work with, which help me keep all of this in perspective. ( No pun intended. lol)
But as soon as we find our dream house and get moved, I will start doing some more 'Traditional" pieces to show you step by step. I enjoy working both ways, and I want to share with you the joy of doing the same. Now this next step works for both traditional and digital. In Traditional, you do all your sketches on Tracing paper, then you overlay them over a "Lightbox" if you have one and can move them around to get get finished looks for the final layout. Norman Rockwell was one of the first to use this technique. In digital, you do the same, except in "Layers" mode. So, with Klowny, I have a couple more elements I want to add. For instance I want to give the trailers a more circus like look, and add a few more props. So, in the next blog I will show you that.
If you haven't noticed, I have pulled down the Wicked Kitty site for now. I am putting it through some major changes and I want it reflect the lessons I am working on for all the artist readers, promoting my clients, doing podcast, and video cast. As I have said, I am doing some major upgrades to the Wicked Kitty World. One of them is really going to surprise you, and in a couple of months I will announce it and what it will mean to all my friends and fans out there.
I am still working on the Portfolio part of my book, so until i can start sharing that with you, I am going to share some "secret" little tips to help you in your work. Today's is a simple, but effective one. When ever you are drawing a hero, no matter the Genre, draw the hero's hands and feet size and half from what they really are. This gives both male and female figures the look of being powerful and heroic. It also works for the villains as well. This is one of the very first things Daniel taught me.
Well, I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and please be safe. Peace and Blessings!

1 comment:

Geo said...

i like the tracing paper method. it works well,not as easy as doing it digitally but it works. before i found that method i went through alot of erasers and paper.

also i remember reading that thing about heroes and villains in stan lees book,the one you told me to get.