Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Painting Daenerys: A Time-Lapse Digital Painting Study

So there I was, labeling some spice jars and looking up recipes for a Game of Thrones S3 premiere-themed dinner, when I decided that it would be fun to make some sort of art to put on an invitation for my friends. For fun.

Several hours later, this happened:

Youtube link if you want it in HD: http://youtu.be/sz9bXePMWbQ

What's cool about accidentally making a fan art digital painting demo is a lot of people have asked about fan art lately. Some students wanted to know if it's a worthwhile practice for learning painting skills.

I'd say yes- if you're talking about photo-referenced fan art studies, it's about as useful as any other photo study for learning how to mimic visual images with your digital brush. Try to approach photo studies in a way that helps you get the most out of them. For example (as shown in the video demo):
  • Paint by sight instead of tracing or painting on top of a photo. You get a different learning experience when you make the extra effort to measure proportions by eye.
  • Pick your own colors instead of sampling from the photo. Same principle.
  • And for an even deeper practice, don't faithfully recreate a single photo pixel for pixel- reference two or three images of the same subject if that's available to you. Many portrait artists do this to give their paintings a more lifelike feel.

Digital Study of Daenerys Targaryen


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  2. I know this probably makes me sound like a weirdo who doesn't get to ever leave his little cave and see the sun, but I'm actually a really big fan of your work, and I'm glad you will be at the IMC this summer. Cheers!

    1. Hi Keith,
      Aren't we all weird people who never leave our caves? I think that description fits me pretty well!

      Sadly, I won't be at IMC this year. I just couldn't get the funds together. The last two years were brilliant, and if you've got an opportunity to go you'll have the best time.

      Thanks for your kind words,