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CanvasSky
03-30-2013, 12:28 AM
I'm having a hard time taking photos that aren't covered in weird reflections. I really didn't think acrylic paint was this shiny! The colors also pop more in real life than they do here.
Anyways, here's an attempt at one of the many Harvards still flying, doing a low-level pass in an imagined modern setting.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/30-Mar-2013/1206405-harvard.jpg
It's about the fifth plane I've ever painted, but none of the others have been this big or detailed. The canvas is 16x20 and the plane is a bit over six inches long.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/30-Mar-2013/1206405-harvard_detail.jpgI didn't realize until after I took the picture that I forgot to darken the inside of the cowling. That's fixed now.:clear:

Chas McHugh
03-30-2013, 03:44 AM
I reviewed this for some time trying to work out what you were trying to achieve without an answer, so I looked at your other posts and saw this:

However, I'm thinking of doing (and hopefully selling) some paintings of individual aircraft that really do exist, belong to real people or organizations, and are fairly recognizable. Do I need permission for this?

.....and if that is were you wish to go, you will need to master the art of making illustration into art. Abstract art is but a microscopic part of the aviation art market, whereas there are too many who would count every rivet for accuracy.

In short, straight lines associated with the aerodynamic aspects of aircraft design need to be portrayed as straight lines, which is very difficult with a large brush and canvas on an easel, and my instinct tells me this was painted on an easel with a large brush.

The canvas is relatively small, and so should the brushes be that you paint the aircraft with. My advice would be to draw the aircraft accurately prior to painting rather then build up the aircraft on the canvas.

You have taken on a huge task by painting in yellow; it is the hardest colour on the palette to achieve 3D reproduction with. But across your colours, they all appear unmixed straight out of the tube. Experiment using a colour wheel as reference. Add opposites and see what happens, for example red & greens, with and without titanium white. This makes 'tone' or variation of the same 'colour' and use of this is essential.

You have got a very good impression of speed, but this in isolation is unlikely to get you a sale. This may all appear a bit negative, but we all start somewhere and the secret is to experiment and improve through experience. Techniques can be taught; experience must be accumulated.

Mark A Bufton
03-30-2013, 05:50 AM
Agreed. You'll find plenty of inspiration here - particularly some of Chas'. It's well worth skipping through some of the posts for ideas. The works of Chas, Jim, Neil and several others have already had a huge effect on my (seemingly inadequate :D ) works. You're on the right track. Perhaps try a few static aircraft portraits as exercises first? It'll get you used to drawing the aircraft's shape accurately and eliminate the need to portray moving prop blades, motion blurr etc. Check out Chas' Burma DC3 (his latest one). Static aircraft can be utilized to great effect :)

Mark

NeilF92
03-30-2013, 09:04 AM
A good sense of speed portrayed in this one . I agree with Chasthough - aviation art purchasers seem to like accuracy - even if it is stretched and twisted accuracy if that does'nt sound too contradictory .
Have a look at Peter Van Stigts work .
http://www.flickr.com/photos/peter_van_stigt/
He takes real aircraft and enhances the image in a surreal way to give dynamisism to his work . Not to everyone's taste but he gets plenty of praise so he must have something right.

CanvasSky
03-30-2013, 11:37 AM
Thanks Chas. That impression of speed with the background was the part I enjoyed the most. Remember, I usually paint landscapes, in which I'm never aiming for photorealism. Even those have come a long way in just a few months.

I am hoping some of you guys' skill will rub off on me if I hang around here long enough. Already, I was looking at one of Piotr's propellers when I did mine--which may not look like much, but believe me, it's better than the last one I tried.

In short, straight lines associated with the aerodynamic aspects of aircraft design need to be portrayed as straight lines, which is very difficult with a large brush and canvas on an easel, and my instinct tells me this was painted on an easel with a large brush.
Easel yes, large brush no.

You have taken on a huge task by painting in yellow; it is the hardest colour on the palette to achieve 3D reproduction with. But across your colours, they all appear unmixed straight out of the tube.
Very few of them are unmixed, but they did suffer in that photo, whether it was the lighting or camera rebellion. Now that the sun is out and my camera battery is dead, I took this in natural light with the webcam on my laptop. Very low resolution, but the colors are a bit truer to the original:
http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/30-Mar-2013/1206405-harvard_color.jpg
Cadmium yellow hue mixed with yellow oxide, with raw umber added to that combo for the darker tones, and cadmium yellow hue mixed with titanium buff for the lightest areas.

I'm curious now which colors might be easier to achieve 3D with, in your opinion.

even if it is stretched and twisted accuracy if that does'nt sound too contradictory.
I think I know what you mean by that.

And now my computer is giving me some very scary error messages, so I might be disappearing for a little while. Sorry if that's what happens.

Chas McHugh
03-30-2013, 02:34 PM
The colours to use for yellow are Titanium White with a touch of Cad Yellow for the light areas, and do not be afraid to over exagerate the light areas to an almost white. The 'opposite' colours are purple / blue / brown and I would experiment with each (mixed with Cad yellow) to see which shade is best. Avoid black as that is unlikely to work in the first instance*. *A thin glaze of opposite colours as a second layer may see success. Cad Yellow is one of the palettes bully boys and needs to be reminded that you are the boss. As I said earlier, there is no colour more difficult to master then yellow; for when it muddies, it always goes horribly wrong.

WRT the prop, I would have opted for nothing more then a gesture of representation as in the main, one cannot see a prop at all and personally I dont like the photographic blade stop if I can help it. Notwithstanding that this is inevitabley the way with helicopter rotor blades. But that is a thread in itself.

I have had the pleasure in standing and staring at some of the best aviation art on the planet, and in each case, there is rarely more then a few square millimetres of plain colour, look at some of the Robert Taylor coffee table type books and look closely at the magnified images, there are thousands of individual tones.

Martin is right though in that you are in a good place to get guidance without anybody forcing you to become a clone of anybody but yourself. Not all advice will suit you and some you will dispell; but at least you will have broadened your own outlook.

PS: My idea of a large brush is anything beyond size 1 !

shadwell
04-01-2013, 08:31 AM
agree with most of previous posts , all i can add is that another good way to obtain darker yellow areas is by using ochers and browns instead of blacks and also your ground shaddow would be darker colours of what it is on rather than all brown ie the wingtip on the grass would be a darker green and not brown ......the actual portrayal of your idea however is reasonably well portrayed:thumbsup:

CanvasSky
04-02-2013, 11:56 AM
My laptop is back, with a new hard drive, in record time. Expensive...

Thanks for all the advice on colors. I know I tend to be conservative when it comes to shadows on objects, and I was reluctant to mix in anything too dark because BCATP yellow is so pure and eye-catching in photos.

Size 1 brush, large? To me a size 8 is about in the middle!:lol: I do have and use a number of brushes that are 1 or smaller. Acrylic seems to have a tendency to do its own thing, however--which is okay for leaves and grass, not so good for landing gear.

I know my draftsmanship is also weak and the sense of perspective is off here. Initially, the far wing tapered so much as it approached the vanishing point that it looked very strange, and I think the dihedral on the wings also threw me.

I spent most of Saturday drawing an Albatros D.II and a Spad VII--subject matter dictated by what books happened to be at the library, while my laptop was in the shop (but it's nice that neither of these types has appreciable dihedral). It was mainly an exercise in geometry and following the rules of linear perspective to the letter produced some very stiff and strange results. The scene had been supposed to be a dogfight between the two of them, but it's so static you can't even tell. I think it was helpful, however.

Yesterday I was thinking about a number of things I could do to improve this painting:
- More texture/color variation on the ground.
- Deeper shadows and brighter highlights on the plane.
- Make the wheels smaller and foreshorten them more, especially the far one.
- Straighten out the lines of the fuselage.
- Move the cockpit canopy over farther from the viewer (probably the hardest part.)

However, I'm not sure it's worth trying. Do you think this can be saved?

NeilF92
04-02-2013, 01:57 PM
Given that you are using Acrylics it should be straightforward to overpaint and rework the various bits you mention . Personally I wouldn't be inclined to spend more time on it - learn the points and move on to better things.
Did you draw this from a reference photo? If so and you have Photoshop or similar software you can take a crop of the aircraft . resize it to the length of your painted version - overlay them - set the top one to semi transparent and see where the corrections are needed.
Saves a lot of angst.

Mark A Bufton
04-02-2013, 07:01 PM
I agree with Neil. Start afresh.

Plus, in my experience, it can prove beneficial to wait a while before modifying a painting. Techniques and ideas are built on over even a short period and coming back to something after a break can bring a "better hand to the table"....if you understand my meaning.

Chas McHugh
04-03-2013, 03:38 PM
I too would leave it be now. What I would do is get 2B , HB, &. 4B pencils and paper and practice shape and tone for one must first master that if you want to be a successful artist.

With paint as an exercise, purchase a colour wheel. Choose a palette or copy an artist who you admires. Then using a board place a blob of colour. Along side the colour, place in a triangle pattern, Titanium white, Lamp black and the opposite colour to the subject colour. Then blend from subject colour out to and through the mixers noting the effect each had on the subject paint. Do not muddy the paint into a mess. Any colour that has 'cadmium' in its name is a strong colour. Black can be replaced by Paynes Grey if that is preferred.

Then embark on the ultimate challenge: Paint a black VW Beatle (bug) without using any black paint at all! Why? .....because this will force you to use opposite colours in mixing and appreciate that black things reflect all around them. You can mix a black and that is a valuable lesson in itself. Why a Beatle? ....because the only thing more curvy than a Beatle is a babe, but flesh absorbs rather then reflects.

CanvasSky
04-04-2013, 03:20 PM
VW Beetle, eh? That's a great challenge. I'll think about that.

However, I don't think aviation/transportation art is really for me. This was mainly just an experiment, and a break from mountains mountains mountains, trees trees trees.

Chas McHugh
04-04-2013, 05:24 PM
I would not give up; hell if we all did that, nobody would be here! :clear:

Besides which an adventure into a new genre is always productive in some way and this is no exclusive page. We are honest but very supportive and it is only the barren landscapes that have no human influence in them be it property or machinery, and lessons learnt here can be carried over. Likewise, you got a very good impression of movement that is a challenge to many, and we can learn from you. Stick around; we are a good bunch :thumbsup:

lstrvr
04-04-2013, 07:48 PM
I agree with Chas on this. I told myself that I would only paint detailed subjects as my landscapes sucked, but I soon realized that it wasn't what I was painting that was the issue but how I saw and interpreted it. Now I don't see trees, or planes, but colour line and form. I look at everything the same and just paint what I see regardless of what I know it to be. I also found my painting skills improved and now have no fear when it comes to painting be it aviation landscape or even portraiture.

Mark A Bufton
04-04-2013, 08:25 PM
They're right. Aviation Art and landscapes tend to go hand in hand....for obvious reasons. Stick with it.

CanvasSky
04-05-2013, 12:16 AM
The biggest difference, I think, is that the landscape market is not as concerned with realism and fine detail, to the point that it sometimes seems as if the actual subject is just raw material to be transformed. Chas, you'd probably recoil in horror from the size of brush I used on those trees! (I did use tiny twiddlies for the "details" on the plane, if they can even be called details the way they turned out. A 6 for some blending on the fuselage.)

As for branching out, I'm reading in the Classical forum and elsewhere about some techniques that really intrigue me, like underpainting in monochrome grey or brown to establish tonal values, then going over it with colors. That's something I'd like to experiment with, for sure.

One thing I'm wondering about, however. Remember I said upthread:
Initially, the far wing tapered so much as it approached the vanishing point that it looked very strange, and I think the dihedral on the wings also threw me.

How closely do you follow the rules of linear perspective? Are there certain liberties or exceptions that are practically expected?

NeilF92
04-05-2013, 11:09 AM
One thing I'm wondering about, however. Remember I said upthread:
How closely do you follow the rules of linear perspective? Are there certain liberties or exceptions that are practically expected?

For aviation art I'd recommend sticking as close as you can to the perspective rules . I'm not aware of any recognised exceptions . Any print or original that isn't correctly done will be criticised and sometimes avoided . Sometimes collectors will overlook errors if the overall image impresses them enough - but I would'nt bank on it.
As others have said - don't give up . Landscapes are a major element of my aviation art and perspective isn't that hard to master. there are plenty of guides to getting it right..

Chas McHugh
04-05-2013, 01:59 PM
I`ll second Neil and add that there are thousands of high quality photographs that have been taken with telephoto lenses that are just waiting to bite you on the backside if you use them as artistic reference. In the worst case the lines diverge rather than converge. In short, the camera lies.

CanvasSky
04-05-2013, 11:59 PM
I've seen the end result somewhere else in this forum. Thanks for the reminder, though.
For the most part I've been looking at photos and drawings for a sense of the right shapes and proportions, but ending up drawing the planes from different angles anyway.

Chas McHugh
04-06-2013, 03:24 AM
Many seasoned veterans use high quality aircraft models when planning their initial outline drawing. Especially when incorporating the aircraft overly dominant (large) on the canvas that forces a degree of distortion due to the image being 'in your face'.

If you venture down that route, I would recomend a model of at least 1/48 scale from Tamiya or Hesegawa manafacturers, who have a reputation for accuracy.

A model combined with a table light permits light and shadow to be established.

shadwell
04-06-2013, 01:45 PM
for sure stick with it i could go on forums that blow it out of my ass how good my photographic images were or how good my paintings were

but that didn't teach me diddly !! as others have said build on what you do well ( capturing motion ) and add lessons learned from others here

because whatever you paint things will have given rules of perspective lighting etc etc

shadwell
04-06-2013, 01:54 PM
If you venture down that route, I would recomend a model of at least 1/48 scale from Tamiya or Hesegawa manafacturers, who have a reputation for accuracy.

.

airfix new tooling models are very good also 1/48 ME 109 new tool and the 1/48 spitfire MK1 and VA are very much acclaimed new tools

along with quite a few other new tool kits the 1/24 mosquito is a tad pricey but is a much praised kit

unfortunately consistency is not airfixes watch word and regretably there are a few old dogs of kits in the range but over the last few years they are upping thier game and many good kits are comming out and at the right price also