Two paintings inspired by “A Short Hike” – one from last year, one from more recently. I really love this game and recommend it wholeheartedly! Maybe at some point I’ll draw Claire doing something other than sitting and taking in the sights.
I did some poster art because I was hype about Squid Game at BAM!
Battle Arena Melbourne is Australia’s largest fighting game event. It’s being held this year from the 18th to 20th of May at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Center. This year we’ll be joining the fun, running Splatoon 2 events throughout the weekend!
I’m pretty proud of this artwork. The sketch, lineart, flats and draft background were all completed in a single session on Monday, with touchups done over the next couple of days.
An extra watercolour painting this week because one of my favourite webcomics is holding a fanart contest. How I wanted to paint something for this comic during August, but none of the characters fit the arbitrary naming rules I’d set for the month.
For an evening’s worth of work I’m pretty pleased with this. Ville’s face looks pretty silly though.
The last painting for Blaugust! (which is spilling into September because my original schedule had the lineart for this teed up for last Friday).
Ushala at World’s End is a fairly new comic which I’ve had the pleasure of reading since not long after its debut. I’ve actually scribbled Ushala a couple of times before, if not drawn inspiration from her design.
This painting dates from around April (and is what you would have gotten as my cop-out post if I was feeling too lazy to do a new painting)
Whilst this marker sketch is a little more recent. It’s not really Ushala, but I’m pretty sure I had her in mind when I was drawing the skull and huge hair.
My favourite part of Ushala’s design is her nose! It’s closely followed by her crown.
We’re getting closer to the end of Blaugust and my enthusiasm has visibly waned. Truth is I have content for at least a couple of the missing updates, but I can’t quite get things together to my satisfaction. Anyway, let’s have a look at this week’s fanart, which was also almost a no-show. Fortunately my attempts to procrastinate ended up spurring me into this piece – I was doing some watercolour scribbles and decided to turn it into the painting for the week.
Last week we had an alien – Zurida, and this week it’s another alien – Ethma from The End.
Because this started out as an unrelated sketch, I had to do some work to coax the composition and colours into the final image. I had a bit of fun with the vivid colours in the shadows, but I think my attempts to introduce darker tones didn’t work across bird-Ethma’s face.
Today I reveal the other common thread between the characters I’m featuring this month – their names all end in “a”*. Today’s character is Trigona Ambrose, from the comic Beeserker. She’s featured here with the Beeserker and Scootsie – or better known to some as Imposter Minineko.
Where are the Scienceman Twins? I don’t know! Maybe they are too busy with their new game or something.
The artist behind Beeserker is an old buddy from the depths of the internet ages, and an inspiration to all who aspire to maintain regularly updating blogs. Kyatt’s blog, Burn the Internet updated daily for five years until he decided to retire it from daily use on its fifth anniversary. Secretly I’m a little relieved, as I have a habit of checking Burn the Internet once every few months – or more – and forgetting where I’d last checked up until, inevitably leaving me reading the archives until 3am in the mornings.
Moving to this picture after last week’s painting was interesting. There were certainly some common threads – both comics feature robots and restricted colour palettes, though the kinds of colours available are quite different. A lot of what drove the direction of this week’s painting was the fact that I started the art tonight, so I didn’t want to be ambitious. I went for bold colours and lines (I used a sharpie for some of the inking!) and didn’t worry about fancy backgrounds. I’m pretty pleased with the result.
*Initially I planned to feature five ladies with three-syllable names ending in “a”. However I wasn’t very excited by two of them so they were cut. Bad luck Rumika and Marina.
On the left – the art as-scanned. On the right, I’ve experimented with digitally deepening some of the shadows. Not quite happy with things yet, but it’s late and time to head to bed.
I was really not sure how I was going to tackle the colours for this one, considering the source material’s approach to colour!
I just had to conquer my fears and dive into it. I got a chance to use some new brown ink (the result of forgetting to empty my wallet before entering an art store), which I’ve used in the shadows across all but Rita1. I was thinking it’d work well to unify the colours across the image but I decided not to use it with the blues.
I reckon I’ll try out some more paintings with the new ink, might be good for some life drawing studies.
Meanwhile I need to work out how to get darker shadows with my watercolours. It’s been a problem in my last few paintings. Might just need to use black ink for it.
When Red String artist Gina put out the call for guest art with a Christmas theme, I initially thought of something fun with Reika and Miharu decorating a tree together. Then I had a second think about the theme, ChristmasÂ dates, and how Christmas is celebrated in Japan.
I tossed out ideas of roaring fires and did a bit of research, and to my surprise I found that Christmas in Japan is celebrated with… KFC! Suddenly cuddles by the fireplace became cuddles and a bucket of chicken. All I had to do was pick which couple to paint…
With the KoL calendar contest deadline extended by a week, I had just one weekend to put together a new painting. Here’s some pics from the working process and some explanations of choices I made along the way.
Thinking in 3D
Once I knew that my piece was going to be based on the fire-fighting world event, I knew I had to illustrate Lord Flameface’s castle. And I needed to do so from an awesome angle, showing off the foreboding, smouldering fortress. Lord Flameface’s abode was a delightfully simple assortment of blocks so I knew I’d be onto a good thing if I created a model of the fortress in Google SketchUp first. I’d then use the 3D model to experiment with perspective and composition.
Using my lightbox drafting table, I traced the SketchUp lines onto a sheet of watercolour paper for a test-run. Since this was my first watercolour piece in many months I wanted to get to grips with the paints again, as well as identify any potential problem areas in the image.
I learned that anywhere I wanted to put the flames down I’d need to leave the white of the paper to shine through. I fiddled with basic portrayals of depth by shading surfaces differently but felt that I’d need something extra for the final thing to make the fortress look hot and fiery.
The draft taught me a bunch of valuable things and particularly helped in setting the pace for the final painting. I realised that I’d have to be patient with use of the blank ink and not hurry with getting the smoky greys in otherwise I wouldn’t be able to paint effective flames.
I identified some of the areas in the draft that I felt were really lacking and areas I wanted to portray better. I then googled images of fire and hot coals as reference and practised these elements on another spare sheet of watercolour.
Onto the Real Deal!
With the title for my painting decided, I opted to swap out the adventurer for Lord Flameface himself. On a new sheet of watercolour paper I marked out my margins and bleed margins, then sketched in Lord Flameface. I also traced in the fortress. Then, it was onto painting!
Finally, I scan the image and balance the colours a bit in Photoshop. The final result can be seen in Tuesday’s post.