Thursday, May 17, 2007

Mostly words, but a doodle too.

I'm trying to find a way to break out of the rut I'm in. All the stuff I'm drawing is feeling very samey, and I want to constantly improve and expand, so a departure of sorts was in order. I'm mucking about with the dry media tools in painter, and I think I found a bleed/resaturation setting that gives you an OpenCanvas like ability to blend color, but still a grainy finish, which I really dig.

I'm using the flattened pencil tool at it's default settings for the linework (which is really placeholder and throwaway - I intend to substitute for my inked lines eventually) and Sharp Chalk with a 50% Resaturation and a 80% Bleed.

My inks tend to have a strongly defined light source, so I think a method that works well for me is to throw down large swaths of color behind the pencils/inks in a seperate layer. I highlight certain areas that make sense within the context of the lineweights I've already created and then start to render from there.

I've never worked this way before. I always opted to paint in greyscale on a solid, 50% grey background. I've only done one test so far, and it took all of about ten minutes, but I'm liking the potential here for print/editorial work. I think my solid, spot hues work great for limited color pieces like tee designs, but for situations were more elaboration is allowed, I think something like the following test is worth pursuing:

Having a broadly defined light source sitting in the underpainting allows me to solve all my highlighting and shadow issues pretty intuitively. I'm really glad I decided to fire up Painter and doodle a bit.

My site is about to relaunch. When it does, I intend to post a video/sketch diary of sorts. Lots of videos of the working process, lots of lengthier explanations behind decisions I've made. I'll do the same here.


Aeron said...

I enjoy reading about your techniques in digital drawing and painting. It's not something I've explored much myself but when I do I'm sure your work will help me wrap my head around it much better. Looking forward to those process videos.

Ray Frenden said...

Thanks, aeron. It's not strikingly dissimilar from working traditionally. The biggest difference is the flexibility that layering and undo provide. If you want, I could bring a laptop and tablet down to Chicago sometime. I need an excuse to bust out of my reclusiveness anyhow.

Aeron said...

Unfortunately I'm not in Chicago much anymore. I used to be there every other weekend. I miss rollerblading on the lakefront. Once I was chilling behind the Shed Aquarium on that long concret slab that jets out into the lake and saw a seagull pick up a frog and fly into the sky with the frog legs dangling out of its mouth, one of the funniest goddamn things I've ever seen.

Ray Frenden said...

Where do you hail from now?