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View Full Version : Elegant - a tire!


PeriSoft
03-03-2014, 04:22 PM
So, this is actually part of a little children's-book-like page I'm doing for fun/practice, with a bunch of little sketches of things that rhyme (Abstract cat, Tuba blat, Stovepipe hat, Old cravat). This one is, "Tire's flat", and it turned out so well I decided to post it here and fish for compliments. ;)

The interesting thing about it is that while I used a photo reference for the rim, I didn't end up following it very closely, and even when I had it all roughed out, it looked awful, like it was just never going to work. I didn't have a feel in my head for what went where, how the shape of the metal was catching the light, or anything, but based on previous experience I decided to try just winging it - I erased most of it and just started going drawdrawdraw in a way that felt kind of tire-rimmy, and after a little bit I zoomed out and :eek: damned if it didn't look pretty good!

I'm really happy with the texture and sheen on the tire itself, too; I didn't use any reference at all for that - aside from a lifetime of watching motor racing - and I made it a bit absurdly melty; I think it came out really well.

Unfortunately it's on the small size pixel wise because it's a little section of a larger piece, but you can still get an idea.

The only bad part is that now I have to go back and redraw the other sketches to make them look as nice as this one! :D

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/03-Mar-2014/1697450-atire.jpg

Leslie F.
03-03-2014, 08:22 PM
Excellent! Love the 'meltyness.' I look forward to seeing the others.

Leslie

LavenderFrost
03-04-2014, 12:50 PM
That tire's screwed. Nice work though.

Elainepsq
03-04-2014, 03:43 PM
I think the tire looks great. The sheen on the painted metal rim and the texture of the rubber look just right. I'm concerned though about the wheel. Perhaps I've been living in a household of men too long (husband and 2 sons and more car projects than I wish to remember) the holes for the bolts to keep it on the vehicle look small to me. But I may be wrong

Delofasht
03-04-2014, 09:38 PM
Melting tires is way better than melting clocks in my opinion. Okay perhaps just slightly better actually. At any rate, nice work, did it take you long to do? I found that when I am zoomed in doing a ton of detailing it often takes me quite awhile to do, and often honestly doesn't quite turn out as good when I do it from being zoomed out and less detailed. You say there is gonna be a bunch more of these though hmm? Sounds fun.

To Elaine, you could very well be right. That is a good sign though, if the only things people tend to notice are small details generally the piece is already a success.

PeriSoft
03-06-2014, 09:27 AM
Melting tires is way better than melting clocks in my opinion. Okay perhaps just slightly better actually. At any rate, nice work, did it take you long to do? I found that when I am zoomed in doing a ton of detailing it often takes me quite awhile to do, and often honestly doesn't quite turn out as good when I do it from being zoomed out and less detailed.

This is a bit of a special case for what I've been doing lately, since what you're seeing there is pixel-for-pixel; mostly I try to do things with the idea that I'd be able to have a high quality physical print at reasonable size, which means that when I post things here they're usually at 30 to 50%.

So when I work on those, I usually do detail at 200% - I find it kind of funny that on the one hand I find myself wishing for a bit better pixel density on my tablet and then end up working with pixels doubled (though interpolated usually) anyway! With the tire I think it ended up being more like 400%. But the physical area I draw in is fairly small; the tablet is something like 11", but by the time you take out the edge bits that are too nonlinear to draw on, menus, place enough to hold on to the thing and place enough to rest your hand, I end up really working in maybe a 4x4" area.

One of the issues with working digitally is that because you can zoom in and out, the scale of your physical motions vs the size of the piece changes as you zoom in and out. So I've run into situations where shading doesn't match because I did it at 150% in one area and 200% in another, so the crosshatching is 30-odd% finer in some parts. I try to settle on a given zoom for the final work and use it exclusively, at least for things where the texture of the brush strokes is important.

One other thing on detailing - I have this set of informal principles that seem to apply for stuff I'm drawing. One is that if I pre-set my brain to do a kind of surface (fabric, skin, rubber, glass) and then specifically stop thinking about it, I'll often just kinda automatically do it and then look and go, "Oh, huh, it looks right." This will probably go away as the standards I set for myself improve beyond 'schlub' level.

Another is that if I draw something and it looks OK at 400%, it'll look good at 200% and fantastic at 100%. I don't aim for that specifically, but for whatever reason, with the way I work (aside from big structural problems) pouring in more close work will make stuff look a ton better. I have a theory that if you make 'high frequency' stuff look really good, your brain will automatically ignore a lot of problems with the low frequency stuff (overall light and shadow, perspective), so you can get away with murder if you happen to be good at high frequency.

The same thing happens in other areas, I think - like, say, computers: Apple is absolutely stellar at high frequency things like packaging, getting the fonts perfect in manuals, making sure icons are rendered nicely and are consistent, that kinda thing. But that's hit or miss with a lot of PCs. So if a user gets a device and has problem N, I suspect that when all the high frequency stuff is great, they subconsciously think, "Well, this is obviously a really well put together thing, so I'm probably an outlier, it's not so bad." But if the other stuff is just serviceable, they're a lot more likely to think, "Damn useless hunk of junk! I knew it'd be like this!"

I can't be sure I'm not mixing correlation and causation here, but instinct tells me there's something to it.

Anyway.

It took... let's see... to outline it originally was pretty quick, maybe five minutes, and to go from outline to the final thing took two episodes of Farscape and a commentary on DVD. So a little over two hours. :)

(Since I draw in the living room around whoever is doing whatever, this is how I measure my output: "OK, this one took 'Pride And Prejudice', a Farscape, and America's Funniest Videos... and this one was only a Tom And Jerry and a Say Yes To The Dress...)

I worry sometimes about myopia when i'm working close in, and sometimes it'll bite me, particularly if I'm not careful about keeping style consistent, but I don't generally run into any issues because of working close in *on its own*. I think I'm so used to thinking that way from hundreds and hundreds of hours of pixeling and photoshop work that I'm pretty comfortable keeping a concept of 'where I am' in the image, even if I'm really zoomed in.


You say there is gonna be a bunch more of these though hmm? Sounds fun.

I'm still working on 'Abstract Cat' and 'Turkey Tat', but 'Stovepipe Hat' and 'Tuba Blat' are looking pretty good. I'll hafta try to put 'em up soon. :)


To Elaine, you could very well be right.

She is. It's definitely off. Like I said, I wasn't being terribly careful, because at first the idea was just to do really rough sketches, and then as I warmed up, each one got more detailed, and so the baseline work I did wasn't good enough to support the level of 'surface quality' I ended up with. And so another one of those myriad little differences between amateurs and pros pops up! :D

PeriSoft
03-06-2014, 11:37 AM
Stovepipe Hat!

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/06-Mar-2014/1697450-hat.jpg