August 3rd Thursday-Reworking

  • Am I doing this right!? I'm experimenting with overlay and multiply layers (they don't merge well :P) The effect is cool, and I think as I build up the color and get some hard lines it will look okay. Kind of just muddling through and figuring it out as I go.

    Also are the colors working, or is it too much like the original characters?


  • SVS Team SVS OG

    @bharris Yes you can not merge different layer types with normal layer types. I learned that the hard way. I work with multiple/overlay layers all the time. My layers usually go from bottom to top: Normal Layer for local color > Multiple Layer with a cool blue/grey light shawdows > Overlay with white or a light warm color in the yellow area > Multiple Layer with a darker blue/grey for deeper shadows. Normal layer to render/color pick to blend. My line layer usually is on top of my local color and by the time the rest of the layers are added you can barley see it. But it does hold it together.

    Some of your shadows look dark on Dorthy and Glenda but are working well on Oz and witch.

    I took me some time to trying to find my way in Photoshop and worked best for me and watching countless videos and tutorials Aaron Blaise was the one that hit and stuck with me. If you have not seen some of his stuff, I recommend checking him out. Here is a link to one of his videos he did that explains his whole process. Worth the watch while you paint

  • SVS OG

    @bharris I apologize if i am stating the obvious here - you do not have to merge layers - you can export your image as a png or anything you like and it will flatten the image without the effect that merging uncooperative layers has - you can lock the layer in photoshop and or rename it "do not merge" - you most likely already know this 🙂

  • @Chip-Valecek I knew that from somewhere, probably one of the classes. I'm glad I'm not the only one who has struggled trying to come up with a work flow. I agree they are too dark, but through the painting it's coming out alright! Thank you I'll give that a listen while I work!

    @Kevin-Longueil N, I know, but after a few digital painting classes I'm really liking working with less layers. Just an OCD artist! 😃

    Here is a little progress pic of Dorothy. I'm really having a good time doing this style... but I've started asking myself if I would do a children's book this way and the answer is probably not. Now I'm curious if I'm wasting my time trying all these different rendering styles when they aren't quite in line with the career I want. Anyone else struggle with that?


  • SVS OG

    @bharris I've definitely struggled with the question of style as well! I love what Jake Parker said in one of the videos, something to the effect of "If someone shook you awake at 2am and said 'QUICK DRAW A PIGEON!' that would be close to your natural style."

    As illustrators I think we have to ask not only what comes natural, but what we enjoy doing, and what we could realistically carry through an entire book. I know one author/illustrator who is able to do a bunch of styles and made the choice to keep a simple style for books because it means he can do them in a manageable amount of time for the money.

    Not a big help I know, but food for thought...

  • SVS Team SVS OG

    Having four kids there are plenty of children books around my house. I love to look at them and all the different styles. And I could say one thing is that they are all different and if you like this way of painting then I could see a childrens book done in that style.

  • @natiwata Ha, I'd forgotten about that one! Thanks, I guess I'm not done exploring, but there is an easier way to lean. 🙂

    @Chip-Valecek Thanks Chip! There is certainly some influence on what I think about what I "should" be doing that is based on what is popular right now... It's hard to remember sometimes that it takes all kinds, and hopefully there is a place for whatever I decide to do.

  • You have some wonderful gesture in your studies, especially with the Wicked Witch of the West. It seems like you are having fun with the prompt too.
    On a side note, does anyone else see a smile in Glinda the Goods dress? The pink material swag looks like a pair of eyes and a happy shape mouth. Intentional or not, it adds a cheery element. 🙂

  • @Lisa-Middleton-Griffin Thank you! I really can't wait to get to her, saving the best for last! I hope the smile is still there, but I just had to change the color of the dress! She isn't done yet, but I just wanted to share. 🙂

    0_1470619528177_glinda update.jpg

  • I do prefer this palette. From what I researched about Glinda she had striking red hair and was very confident yet kind in her manners. I think you nailed how elegant she is, maybe her expression could be more confident... she looks slightly concerned or pensive, due to her mouth and eyebrows. BUT that could be what you were going for. Looking forward to seeing your finish. 🙂

  • SVS OG

    You're killing it with this one. Very nice work. Little trick I learned if you want to adjust your values at the end when you have everything colored. Throw on a luminosity layer over the whole thing and then just paint your values in black and white. It won't change any of your colors or saturation. It's a great way to tweak stuff at the end. Keep up the great work!

  • @Lisa-M-Griffin I had to research too, could stand going full movie! But the Wicked Witch will always be green to me, she's just too fun to paint that way!

    @evilrobot Thanks, I'll give it a shot! I changed the background color too, so they don't look so washed out.

  • Little update.


  • OZ.
    Does anyone see anything wrong with him? I had a difficult time with his left hand on the staff...


  • SVS Team SVS OG

    @bharris is his right hand supposed to be on his hip? The shadow that is cast from his hand makes it look as if his hand is hovering away from his hip vs it resting on his hip. Other then that I don't see anything wrong with him.

  • Having a little though and wanted another opinion. I feel like the classic black for the witch is coming across as dull, so I'm wondering about this second option. I like it better when it comes to the over all picture, but something still seems a little off. Thoughts?

    0_1471366925997_Wizard of OZ Character design -1.jpg

    0_1471366938107_Wizard of OZ Character design -4.jpg

  • SVS OG

    @bharris Hey this is looking great! I think you might just need some lighter highlights following the forms to give the witch's clothing a sort of sheen - i think silk has wide defuse highlights with hot spots here and there .... not sure -..thats what i picture though - i like the green version too but possibly you could try the highlights on the green too to see if it works 🙂

  • SVS OG

    @bharris - To me what the problem may be is that you have a nice harmonious color palette going on with the good witch, Dorothy and the wizard.

    When you add in the less saturated gray/green to the dress of the witch it does not fit into the overall scheme (to me) and actually clashes with the very yellow green of her own skin and the wizard next to her.

    I did a google image search for Victorian Dresses and one of the first ones that showed up was this:


    I realize it has as sheen to it but what I liked was that it pulls in reflections from the main light source as well as a fill light. See those hints of blue/teal that show upon the left side.

    So that made me think - what could work to give the witch a bit of color, without actually changing the color of her dress, would be to use those vivid colors from Dorothy's dress and the wizards coat to bounce off the highlights and low lights in the witch.

    All I did was applied those colors on an overlay layer to quickly get you this concept:


    It provides some color and interest to her while still keeping the overall tone of the dress black. Anyway just an option to consider or play around with.

  • Thanks @Rich-Green! That makes it work, finally! I'm cooling off the skin tone a bit too and it's looking much better!

  • @Kevin-Longueil Thanks! I think with more highlights and @Rich-Green's suggestion it will look a lot better. I'm trying to get rid of those hot spots as well.

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