Its been a while, I didn’t mean to ignore my blog–but lots and lots of things have been happening in my life! First of all, I’m moving back to California! I have been thinking about moving back on and off while living in NYC and I finally decided on it two weeks ago when I gave my two-week notice at my job. I am completely ecstatic to be coming home and I just have missed my family and friends so so much!
Anyway, that’s not why I blogged! I recently finished this concept art painting about a month ago, its been sitting in my hard drive the last few months unfinished and finally I came back from Italy in August and finally had some down time to actually finish it. I couldn’t resist but I really wanted to make a new case for my iPhone and so I uploaded this piece in my Society 6 Store and ordered one! You can see below how awesome it turned out in the image below, the artwork is printed on the casemate brand. They are also available in prints of all sizes in case you were interested!
Why the dragon? The dragon is a symbol for power and inner strength. I love the dragon symbolism.
I’m experimenting with a new style in photoshop these days, trying different things to get different results. This is actually an older drawing I had from months and months ago that I never did anything with. Here’s the original drawing in case you were curious. I learned so much traditional oil painting techniques this summer that it has helped me improve upon my digital painting as well. We also got to visit a lot of museums this summer such as the Uffizi Gallery and the Collection at Pitti Palace in Florence. We had our own personal tour guide, Bill Maughn who is one of the directors at the Academy of Art University– and he’s been to these museums several times. I also got to see a lot of old paintings from the medieval period through the renaissance with angels being depicted in their paintings as messengers of God and also as protectors, the intermediaries between the heavens and humans. Italy is a very inspiring place to visit and study. I’m thankful that I got to study there and also have been completely inspired by the art and environment of Florence.
What I’ve been working on the last few weeks and my initial sketches and thumbnails, color studies before I did the final painting in Photoshop. It could use more tweaking but for now this is fine. I will probably be working on this during the summer time and getting my work polished before submitting my portfolio.
Before I do a final black and white drawing, I draw smaller thumbnails to work out the composition and to make sure all the foreground, middle-ground, and perspective are all working together. You don’t want to invest too much time and effort on a concept that may not work, so drawing the smaller thumbnails either 2x3s or 3x5s will help with quickly coming up with concepts. If one doesn’t work, you can do a few more from a different view to get a more dynamic scene. For this establishing shot, I probably re drew the thumbnails more than twice. Then I drew the black and white rendering in col-erase Tuscan Prismacolor animation pencils (so that it doesn’t smear or you can use graphite, whatever your preference) on a 9×12 drawing pad Strathmore 400 series. You want to use better paper so that when you are doing the shading and values, its easier to render. The actual drawing is 7×10 and after I scanned it I desaturated the color in Photoshop to get a more penciled look. Then I was ready to paint.
This is my finished 3D character rendering of my character design for the thesis book I’m working on. I have to say that I had such a fun time doing this! To concept a character, imagining their personality, designing the clothes and the movements are what I truly love doing the most. This is the protagonist of my thesis story “Neo New York”, character’s name is Sacha North. As you can already tell its got a Native American Indian look and feel to it. I’ll post more of the Visual Development soon…. Below you can see the finalized sketch I started with before I painted this in Photoshop. You’ll notice the differences as I’ve changed the design of the feathers and skirt shapes in the finalized versions. The original skirt shape just didn’t make any sense and I thought it didn’t fit with the character, then i found a reference photo and it made all the difference =).
I’ve been experimenting with new brushes that a friend of mine sent me a link to, download here. This is a past post on a sketch I did a few months ago but never got around to coloring, I’ve been trying to experiment with a few different brushes this semester and color schemes. Hopefully after this spring semester I’ll be able to sketch more ideas with this Vampire character, creating characters is what I love the most! I’m also taking a digital background painting for animation class online this semester which I am learning a lot from! I’m so lucky to be studying under Ken Spirduso who worked on the backgrounds for Brother Bear, he is an amazing artist and instructor! I’ll be super busy from here on out as the semester is getting busier (last two semesters of grad school) and I am working on my thesis concept art book everyday like a crazy person!