Monday, February 28, 2011

Week 9: Progress 3

Since the faces are done now, I'll go ahead and say who they are for 90% of the people visiting here who don't know. They're Hetalia characters, for an alternate-setting RP with a friend of mine. Ivan (the big guy), Amelia (female version of Alfred), and Sebastian (who represents Seborga in the actual series). I'm not sure where I came across the idea of a setting with Sebastian as a cute little mutant child, but there you have it. And my friend plays Amelia and Ivan as the most adorable adoptive parents ever.

Accomplished a good deal on this yesterday because we were writing them. It was really relaxing, which I rather needed with the stress of my internet going out for an hour and spending the time at a restaurant on my laptop with online tech support.

Music: None, was watching various online videos

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Week 9 - Progress 2: Restart

So when I looked at yesterday's progress this morning... I wasn't happy. I also realized that it wasn't something I could put a decent background on or work with over the course of a week. So I started over. Same concept, same characters, more complex poses.

I actually worked on this during church (I draw during church a lot. Helps me focus), and happened to have a pencil with a very limited eraser. I'm cleaning it up now while I make the entry, but I decided to scan it as it was to show how my brain was trying to make it all work. Even now I'm able to see things that need fixed (like the man in the chair's distant arm. It's weird). Also, drawing the chair before the figure didn't work out so hot.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Week 9 - Progress 1: Rough

Well... let's just say I had a busy day and absolutely no attention span most of the night. It's going to be a cute little family picture of sorts... that's all I really have to say right now. Midnight is when my mental function ceases.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Week 8 - Complete and Compare

Yesterday was when I finally gained confidence about this project, because it finally started looking like him, and to more than just me. A lot of my family members on Facebook agreed, which boosted my confidence a lot. The photo you see here was only used as a reference after a majority of the work was done. Before that I was working from his high school senior photo because it's large and I could prop it up beside my computer screen. Of course, it was taken twenty years before my father died, but it was a good base to start with.

The thing about my dad's hair is that it's not the same color in ANY two photos. Or it sure doesn't seem like it. Sometimes it's blond-ish, sometimes it's more brown. I decided to go half-way. Also, the drawing apparently has a golden tint on some computer monitors, which is a pity because that's not what color it is. I adjusted the tint just a little, but I don't think it's enough to make a difference.

This was my first time trying a portrait digitally, and I hadn't done one for quite a while even on paper. It was... interesting. Not bad for a first shot, really. In fact, this is the first time I've drawn my father and been happy with it.

Music: None, but watching "Taken" (starring Liam Neeson) while I added finishing touches.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Week 8 - Progress 3: Vast Improvements

Another two-ish hours was spent on this last night after my journal entry, and I spent a few more on it today. Hopefully this is the last time I'll have to move either eye, because I was pleased enough to add the irises and pupils, etc. Mom was right, it looked a bit... creepy... before.

I think I'm mostly done with the skin shading. Not so sure on the hair but I'm almost done. I can feel it.Also trying to decide on a background color/texture. Also, the hair should be wavier. Dad had natural curls, which he passed down to me and my brother.

Music: Some Hanson again, but today watched "The Jungle Book" while working as well.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Week 8 - Progress 2: Subtle Improvements

I was kind of kicking myself after reading yesterday's feedback (and thank you all for that, really), realizing that I'd forgotten more about facial anatomy than I'd thought. I am working from a photo (sort of), but yesterday I didn't have it propped up right beside my computer screen like I did today. I think it helped a lot.

Since working on the nose without a solid outline was messing me up, I added a temporary one to serve as a guide for the lighting. It will be erased for the final image, but it's helping a great deal. I also re-did the eyes completely, but something about the left one still bothers me.

It was nice to finally start blending the shadows so it doesn't completely look like some weird "paint by number" thing anymore. Hopefully tomorrow I can at least start adding hair. My dad was balding, but in the back, not the front.

Music: Hanson, again, mostly the song "With You In Your Dreams"

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Week 8 - Progress 1: Huge Undertaking

Even as I upload the first progress on this, I'm in the "what was I thinking?!" phase of it. I'm not only trying to digitally paint a portrait, but one of someone that I've never managed to get on paper without disappointing myself; my father.

So far, attempting to accomplish it digitally is working better, as mistakes are taken care of with a simple "CTRL + Z" command. But still, with three hours of work down and several more to go it looks really odd and I'm asking myself if I can really finally do it.

Already I'm seeing that the eyes are uneven and scratching my head as to how to make hair look realistic. Cartoon hair I can do in color. Human hair I can do with graphite or grayscale media. But human hair in color? Already dreading it.

Music: Hanson album "Middle of Nowhere" (...I owned the cassette thanks to my dad. Don't look at me like that.)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Week 7 - Finished

I've had my coffee and am currently freezing, so I'm much more awake than I was when I made the update this morning. Surprisingly, what I did today probably didn't take as long as just merging the images last night. Just some scribbling around to make shadows and highlights, which was rather relaxing.

I'm going to post it on DeviantArt as-is, but if anyone notices a huge detail that I need to fix, feel free to let me know.

Week 7 - Progress 5: Coming Together

So I did, in fact, have time to put the two images together last night. Today I'll finish it up, add the proper shadows, etc.

That's all you're getting from me. I've only been up ten minutes.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Week 7 - Progress 4: Partly DonePart 2

As I said on my Facebook, I did in fact work on this yesterday. I just never got around to scanning it. Well, now I have. There's a small chance I'll have time to at least start integrating it into the background tonight, but in case I don't, here it is.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Week 7 - Progress 3: Partly Done

First of all, a big thanks for the comments on my last entry! They were very helpful!

At Kessie's suggestion I did add a limb to the tree... but now it's covered by the foreground leaves. Oh well. It was a good thought! And I'll be working on Kenjo's hand a bit more, though I didn't make any progress on him today.

Techcat... wow! Thanks for the over-lay drawing to show me what to fix. Is it odd that I'm really flattered when people take the time to do that? Probably. You'll also noticed that I flipped the background image since, sure enough, it'll work better with Kenjo propped against the tree. I have no idea why I didn't think of that to begin with.

The Photoshop brushes, however, I dare not try. The program crashed again today. But I did manage to find an alternative for the leaves, and I think it worked alright. For the most part, the background is done. I'll add more shading and lighting once Kenjo is in it, and save any other tweaking until then as well.

Thanks again!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Week 7 - Progress 2: A Trying Day

Yes, as far as art goes, it was a trying day. Why? Because Photoshop crashed a good five times before it let me make any actual progress on the background. Also, I need to figure out how to make the willow tree's leaves look more like those and less like mutant vines.

Kenjo, however, was decently cooperative. Mostly I like him, but there's a few things that seem off, which is why he isn't inked yet. I'll sleep on it and see what I come up with by tomorrow.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Week 7 - Progress 1: Two for the Price of One!

Good deal, huh? Since my markers are dropping like flies, I decided it was best if I only did the figure in traditional media and used trusty Photoshop + Tablet for the background. Besides, my break from complex backgrounds is over and this just seemed like the best way to handle it.

This week's subject is my Goat-youkai (Japanese mythological being), Kenjo. He's doing his nerdy thing and reading. In Japanese garden. Because he'd love that. Might even give him some tea, too. Yes, the book looks odd right now. I'll fix it tomorrow.

Again using a stock photo for my reference. This one right here. Also using for ideas for the setting.

Music: Kitaro: "The Best of Kitaro" album.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Week 6 - Slight Alteration

As per Kessie's suggestion in my last entry, I tried to tone down the background a bit. What she suggested, however, was the equivalent of a foreign language because my Photoshop knowledge is limited. So, I went about it my own way. I blurred it quite a bit and then adjusted the saturation, etc., hoping that Kat would pop out more.

Also, I decided today what next week's will be; another original character!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Week 6 - Progress 4: Early Finish

Finishing on Wednesday instead of the last day possible felt great, I must say. The background is simple this time, but I'm so fine with that. It was therapeutic and fun, not only drawing something it, but getting to dress Kat up again. Ah costume design, how I enjoy you.

No music while finishing, but I was watching Boondock Saints II, which seemed fitting.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Week 6 - Progress 3: Still Truckin'

This isn't a late upload. I'll admit to not working on this at all yesterday. It was a long day and I had the attention span of a gnat. But today I think I made up for it. I wasn't even planning on doing this much, but since I managed to color all of the subject I think this will still be finished in a timely manner.

For the first time this year I reverted to my habit of doing all the fun stuff and then leaving myself with the dreaded background. On this, however, I think I'll just pull a few tricks with Photoshop and call it good. The point of this week was to relax and have fun, and I definitely did that.

In response to Kessie's comment on my last entry, I'm pleased that it shows which character I'm most comfortable drawing. I've been drawing Kat for ten years as of last December, so she should look rather natural, shouldn't she?

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Week 6 - Progress 2: Leaps and Bounds

Okay, accomplished a lot on this thing today! I knew it'd be fun, and it totally is. Still unsure of the background, but was enjoying it too much to care today. And look, you guys get two updates in 24 hours! Just thought I should make up for not posting yesterday.

I think I was able to do a lot because instead of driving back to my place or killing time online, I was at at a game-day party at my uncle's. Since football means very little to me, I worked on this during the game and paused when commercials were on. Also had some awesome food.

And the pendant she usually wears around her neck is now a tie pin. How handy.

PS: Kessie, probably no Valentine's drawing. :P What I did for Week 2 was a drawing for a contest that ends on V-day, and I draw mushy nonsense on a regular basis anyway, I just never post it.

Week 6 - Progress 1: Gunslinger Kitty

Yes, the update is a day late, but rest assured that I did, in fact, draw this yesterday. It just was late at night by the time I scanned it. I even went through the hassle of scanning it from my mom's computer, e-mailing it to myself, and then uploading it now instead of when I get home tomorrow.

After three weeks of hassling with a lot of straight lines and a distinct lack of curves, I decided that I was going to have as much fun this week as possible. Also, I haven't drawn my main original character, Kat, yet this year. Shameful, isn't it? So I make up for that now by drawing her in a random vigilante-like outfit. Because I love vigilante movies. And yes, she will have under-arm holsters. Those things are awesome.

This is my pose reference for the week, complements of Senshistock on Deviantart

Music: Nada

Friday, February 4, 2011

Week 5 - Done At Last

As predicted in my last entry, I was indeed up until almost midnight working on this, and haven't had time to upload it until just now because it's on the big computer that I don't take to work with me. But hey, here it is in all its completed "glory". Could I have done more with it? Yes. Am I going to? No, I'm calling it good. This week was a challenge and I'm glad to wash my hands of it.

Though as far as the final product, I can't say I hate it. Photoshop improved a lot of things, and the pose of the central figures turned out well. I'll admit that some of the background leaves something to be desired, but it was the wrestling pose that I was most concerned about from the start. Way to cooperate, boys.

Also as predicted, I'm worn out after the hour and a half drive to my mom's house and would have no desire to finish this if I hadn't already. I'm not sure how this is possible after the 20 ounce coffee I had at 11:30 this morning.

Also, link to DeviantArt.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Week 5 - Progress 5: Let's Get This Over With

Well a "bad week" art-wise had to come sooner or later, so it might as well be this one. I am going to finish this, even if I stay up until midnight doing it (entirely likely at this point, since it's 10 PM here). I could finish tomorrow, but I simply will not have time. So, have the almost-finished-coloring version. AKA "I am totally fixing the background with Photoshop because I wasn't expecting half my markers to be on their last leg".

The skyline was meant to be dirty and gritty, considering how big a city Tokyo is, but not "Why markers, WHY?!" kind of gritty. I've never been to Tokyo, but I was in Cairo in 2008 and the sky was indeed disgusting during daylight hours. Cities are only nice to look at once the sun's down.

I also haven't listened to music much while drawing this week. Wonder if that has anything to do with it?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Week 5 - Progress 4: Lined Up

Alright, despite some doubts I managed to finish drawing the background and ink the whole thing today. I can definitely say, however, that next week's drawing will be more organic in its setting. I'm getting bored of all this straight lined artificial nonsense.

I realized after reading Kessie's comment in the last entry that unless you're familiar with Spriggan (and a very limited portion of the anime fan population is) this picture makes very little sense. So, let me elaborate a little:
-It is an office, but it's in a sort of military HQ in the city. Supposedly Tokyo, but I was too lazy to look up Tokyo's skyline.
-The two characters horsing around are super-soldiers and comrades, and have a bit of a brotherly relationship. The one with the long hair (Jean) is older than the Japanese kid (Yu).
-The other two in the room are more minor characters that are not in the Spriggan movie, but do have roles in the manga. I assume they're used to this sort of behavior, hence their not really caring.
-The person who owns the office isn't there yet.

Hopefully now it makes a tiny bit more sense. I'll be sure to include those details when I upload it to DeviantArt

Music: Again, none. Was just watching Mythbusters on Netflix's website.