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View Full Version : Color Techniques, Anyone?


baquitania
05-07-2001, 03:00 AM
Hello fellow illustrators. This is a pencil sketch I did on the back of an index card, and I've been wanting to do a color version. I was wondering if anyone could suggest a method other than mine. I usually do a permanent marker inking (I use to use brush & ink)then a series of watercolor overlays. I've tried dyes, but was unhappy, and colored pencils, as well as markers. But with each I had trouble making the metal areas shine. Her girdle and gauntlets are metallic in nature. Any advise would be greatly appreciated... B.
<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/07-May-2001/Untitled-1.jpg" border=0>

dhenton
05-07-2001, 01:54 PM
Sounds like the question is how to "do" metal is an an effective way, not just what media. I have a couple of book covers that I use for reference, and I think I can scan them out of context so as not to get into copyright trouble and post them in the reference library. In the meantime, dig around on <a href="http://www.goodbrush.com">www.goodbrush.com</a> and look for a section on tutorials, where Craig Mullins reproduces some of his student work from Art Center. He used charcoal with a cloth for smoothing, but they look very metallic, and its only black and white!

BTW, welcome. The Illustration section could use a good swords and scandals specialist. I've got the alien-with-5-heads category, myself.

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"Art is anything you can get away with." -- Marshall McLuhan

[This message has been edited by dhenton (edited May 07, 2001).]

baquitania
05-07-2001, 03:36 PM
Thanks dhenton, the goodbrush site was very helpful, though I think he has revamped it's design. I did look at alot of his work, it seems he does a bunch of layers to achieve his highlights. He's very loose, though I was unsure of the general medium in his "forums", is that acrylic? I will look for your posts of those covers, thanks again.

dhenton
05-08-2001, 01:56 PM
It's photoshop and painter. He's known as a major digital matte painter.

You are right, the tutorial's gone. The site said he had a meltdown, and lost that I suppose. I kept a copy, I'll see what I can find.

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"Art is anything you can get away with." -- Marshall McLuhan

baquitania
05-09-2001, 01:52 PM
Thank you Renee. I went to your site, it was great. So that's pencil pastel? Is it chalky like pastels, do you have to use special paper? I love finding new mediums. As for my own site, I just registered on Artisnation, but have to build the site or post my work. Thank you for the kudos, it's the kind of support I haven't had in a while. And the best thing is it makes me want to do more. See you about. Oh check out the art projects area, you should post your work in the mythology project by CkA, the subject matter is right up your alley. Hope to see you there...Bobby

[This message has been edited by baquitania (edited May 09, 2001).]

babys_breath
05-10-2001, 12:36 AM
Hello,
I used to do plain pencil sketches because it seemed like when I tried to give it color,it only took away from the detail.I've found that pencil pastels are great for coloring in pencil drawings.go to my website and you will see what they did for my pictures http://FantasyArtByReneeWare.homestead.com/FantasyArtbyReneeWare.html They have them at any hobby shop.The only problem is that I don't think they would make very good metalic picture art,but I hope it helps alittle.Oh by the way I love your art it is wonderful.Your very talented!!

Thanks,
Renee

babys_breath
05-10-2001, 10:55 PM
Hello again,
Yes it is pencil pastels.I could never seem to work with the big bulky block pastels but the pencil pastels aren't as messy and they are easier to work with.I just use any paper I can get my hands on,but when your finished you have to spray them with finishing spray.They do sell special pastel paper just for pastels but I've always had better luck with smooth paper.When you get finished with your website I would love to see it.Keep up your drawing I love your work!!!It's a special talent that not just anybody has! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/redface.gif)

Thanks,
Renee

baquitania
05-11-2001, 01:06 AM
Thank you babys_breath, I am gonna hunt for those pencil pastels on Monday. I will let you know what I think. Here is a different (color) version of the same character as above. It was done with mixed media. Enjoy. B.
<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/11-May-2001/At_the_Watch.jpg" border=0>
(this is my usual style, but looking forward to the pencil pastels)


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[This message has been edited by baquitania (edited May 11, 2001).]

babys_breath
05-11-2001, 01:21 AM
I'm amazed!You should be illustrating comic books or something!I'm so glad that I told you about the pastels.I mean,If you can do THAT kind of detail with color pencils(which by the way I could never do)I'm sure your work will be super amazing with pastels.The brand I use thats always been great to me is Cretacolor fine art pastels.I found them for 25 dollars at the hobby shop that I go to.Plus don't forget to get a kneadable eraser(They arent as rough on your paper as regular erasers)Check back later.

Thanks,
Renee

bruin70
05-30-2001, 06:45 AM
to begin with, you should render the metal areas in a different style than the looser, sketchy style you've presented. it should be done with harder lines.

next,,,,someone asked about chrome and metal long ago and i did a demo. about three weeks ago i cleared out useless jpg's at my site. the chrome was one of them.

i will use hub caps as examples of chrome. you will basically encounter two types of surfaces,,,,those that are concave, and those that are convex. the classic illustrators way to render chrome were done in the early days of illustration. REMEMBER THAT ALL CHROME IS IS A MIRROR THAT DISTORTS. now,,,the generic chrome reflects three things,,,,horizon, sky, and ground. a convex shape reflects like a fisheye lens distortion,,,with sky above, horizon in the middle, and ground at the bottom. a conCAVE shape reflects in reverse. the sky AT THE BOTTOM, AND GROUND ON TOP.

the horizon is best done as a generic distorted shape, very dark, reflecting the horizon and things in general that sit on the landscape. example,,,,trees, people, other cars. just as you gaze at a store window, the dark "horizon" is the stores across the street, the people walking by, and the cars. you see the sky above, and the pavement below. think of chrome as doing this but more distorted because in cars, and the female you drew, the chrome takes different shapes and so reflects in a distorted way.

for illustration, the comic book way would be to show a lot of wavy darks. this is a simplified version of what the horizon is doing in chrome. the horizon is the most important part of chrome because, as a dark, it defines the chrome and what it is doing. the sky and ground are just vast empty fill-ins that realize the chromes enviroment.....{M}

do you want an example?

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"it's alright to be judgmental,,,,,,,,if you have taste"...MILT


[This message has been edited by bruin70 (edited May 30, 2001).]

Shehaub
05-30-2001, 11:59 AM
I would love to see your examples!

baquitania
05-30-2001, 02:43 PM
bruin, it may not translate to what i want to achieve. I'm not looking for absolute realism. But I would LOVE to learn. where is the tutorial? and thank you for your comments (babys_breath) ,all...

bruin70
05-30-2001, 09:36 PM
i will do a color chrome of a circular hubcap,,,,and a b/w redo of parts of your warrior. i remember now that the demo i did was for another art forum. i had to use my site to upload because it had no posting function that WC has. the jpg's are deleted nfrom my site. i will post here later.....{M}

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"it's alright to be judgmental,,,,,,,,if you have taste"...MILT

bruin70
05-31-2001, 01:22 AM
here are the chromes and the redo.....

we are looking down a bit at the chrome hubs. if we were looking straight ahead, the horizons would be centered in the hub.

i added some clouds and some sharp hilites. you need points of high contrast to POP the metal's sharpness. notice that i subdued the clouds so as not to compete with the hilites. the generic use of brown and blue work even when they don't really match the sky and ground because they work IN EVERYONE'S MINDS. i added some sparkle for fun.

<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-May-2001/chromebetter.jpg" border=0>


in the redo of the warrior. everything is simplified to two values. black and white. greys tend to soften, so keep them to a minimum when doing metal, as metal is hard. use the black( what would be the "horizon") as a way to define the chrome. don't take the word "horizon" literally. it should only be that dark mass that every metal rendering should have that outlines and defines forms on the metal that would distort the dark shape,,,,,,,,,studs protruding from the basic shape, round shapes on flat, a change in the basic metal shape, etc. i slightly colored the arm guard to give you a point of reference.

<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-May-2001/comicwarrior222.jpg" border=0>

when doing metal, it is a good idea to bring in an "alien" color to set off the metal from other elements in the painting. the BLUE in the sky is a good alien color. the metal is reflecting a color not seen in the picture, but rather, outside the picture frame.....{M}

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"it's alright to be judgmental,,,,,,,,if you have taste"...MILT



[This message has been edited by bruin70 (edited May 31, 2001).]

dhenton
05-31-2001, 08:44 AM
bruin70 --- its interesting that you render the metal spheres the way you do. You've described a very cool set of guidelines to help with metal, and I've seen this discussion else where, so its good to hear it again.

In a reply to a similar topic, <a href="http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/Forum10/HTML/000035.html">Keith Russell</a> points out that metal might be indoors as well, in which case the blue,dark horizon and green color scheme for indicating metal would be a bit odd. That's why it would be important to emphasize that its a matter of values rather than colors

[This message has been edited by dhenton (edited May 31, 2001).]

bruin70
05-31-2001, 09:01 AM
yes,,,,metal will reflect its enviroment. but you'll be sirprised at how effective the simple blue and earth is. mainly because you are playing to the viewer's preconceived notions. the key part of the reflections are the ground reflections. why,,,,because the ground is what the metal is sitting on be it tablecloth, another object right next to it, floor,,,whatever,,,,,paying attention to what is next to the metal(and the ground is always next to the metal) will set the metal into its enviroment.

the good thing about all the other reflections, the dark areas and areas above the ground, is that you can add anything you want to make your point about what the metal is doing, because who's to say that that those things are not there to be reflected into the metal. it's all up to the artist. the only reflection the artist can't fudge is the area upon which the metal sits and the things that abut it....{M}

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"it's alright to be judgmental,,,,,,,,if you have taste"...MILT

baquitania
05-31-2001, 03:13 PM
Thank you Milt. The redo was very helpful, I will give it the old college try in a few days... Dhenton, I have read keith's advice on this, but being more visual, didn't get the whole concept until seeing these redos. Milt I posted this piece elsewhere, but tried to fix it with software as so...
<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-May-2001/chromejane.jpg" border=0>
Am I grasping this? the original is in the cafe under "the immortal jane sibert"
Your comments would be very appreciated... Bobby

bruin70
05-31-2001, 06:18 PM
here's a tip.....make your metal the area of highest, SHARPEST contrast. your cleanest darks next to your cleanest lights.

another tip.......metal has many hilites. hilites are best done by putting them next/on a dark,,,,because they will look brighter.....{M}

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"it's alright to be judgmental,,,,,,,,if you have taste"...MILT

Jerd
06-02-2001, 03:50 PM
I have a coloring tip/technique. Im not sure if this really applies to your post. But you seemed interested in trying different mediums to "color". This technique is a pretty quick way to get a finished product. Thats why its used in illustrations alot. For deadline purposes. But with a little extra care it can be a great tool for finished work that will be framed. Anyway...

You start with a fully rendering DRAWING. Shadows and all. Then Take watercolor and paint in all the areas in FLAT color. Paint an object with the SATURATED version of the LOCAL color. So if the hair is blonde... dont bother with all the color and tempature changes in real hair, just paint it yellow. So now you have a very flat saturated painting with only shadow and local color. Next you take 1-3 colors of OILS paint. Thin it down to a point of a "wash". Cover the entire painting. This will unify the painting and mute the colors. Next with a kneadned eraser using differnt amount of pressure LIFT the lights. Now you have shadow (pencil drawing), you have local color (the water color muted with oil), and now you have the lights. Last but not least is picking up accents and details. This can be done quicky with color pencil and more opaque oil.

This sounds very times consuming. But its actually the opposite. You get the effect of a fully rendered oil painting in half the time. It sounds like "cheating". I dont think so. Its meant for deadlines. But like I said with a little extra care it can be as good as an oil painting... and have a unique look. Try it.