A Halloween theme!

  • I was looking for something fun to do with my friend who does hand lettering and just got a digital set up, and thought why not a Halloween series! These are my concepts and the blank space is for her to work in when I'm finished! I'm going for oranges, purples and blues to do lighting and be magical and I wanted to share because I'm having a lot of fun with this! Should I change the order of these if I decide to display them as a set?

    0_1475780416519_3.jpg ![alt text](image url)

    Obviously not finished yet, I still have to get the edges and details sharper and improve the lighting a bit. I'm having a little trouble getting that purple smoke to really glow. Every time I lighten it it gets too pink, and earlier I had a lot more blue highlight and it took away from the main focus. Also the fire isn't doing it for me, I may back off the red and stay with more orange. The contrast there is a little difficult to figure out. If you have suggestions I would really appreciate it!

    0_1475780502596_Witch's brew up3.jpg

  • I like this piece a lot! Perhaps you could play with value in the relationship between the fire and the smoke? Right now, they are both a very saturated middle-tone. Perhaps what is bothering you is that they are competing for your attention. You may try making one of them darker and one lighter to shift focus a little. Just a thought.

  • @mcucchi That's a great point, I'll work on it! Shadowing that bottom smoke will brighten the fire and help the witch stand in more contrast.

  • SVS OG

    @bharris - ok I actually had to so something like this in the book I recently finished and I found that overlay layers were key in getting that glowing feeling from both a fire and a bubbling potion.

    First - here is a quick sample of fire. Notice how the yellow is intermixed all the way to the tips and not just kept in the center of the flames. I think that could help your fire.


    I took your image and added three separate overlay layers. One for each of the following colors:


    I used the deep blue/purple and a soft edge brush with about 30% opacity and 30% flow to start painting over the bubbly potion directly. It helps bring out the purples in a darker more saturated way.

    Then on the next layer I used the lighter blue (same brush settings) to go over the edges and even beyond the edges of the bubbles into the backgroudn and surrouding areas. It helps give a sense of glow and pulls out those cyan tips you have drawn on the edges of the bubbles.

    And finally on the third overlay layer I used the yellow to make the fire really glow and pop more.


    You can obviously push this much further working with your layered file in Photoshop but hopefully this gives you some tips/tricks to play around with!

  • @Rich-Green Thank you! I completely forgot to add overlay. Here's where I'm at now. Still have some work to do, but I like the fire a lot more now! Rookie mistake not grabbing reference... please don't tell. 😉

    0_1475790284455_Witch's brew up 4.jpg

  • SVS Team SVS OG

    @bharris this is really looking great! I would push the value darker under the table. It would be almost black.

  • Cool! Your candles are nearly white at the center of the flame, you could add some lighter tones to the lowest sections of the fire to make it tie in with the candles/ seem hotter 🙂

  • @Chip-Valecek Thank you! Yes, I'll push that more.

    @Tyler-Blake I gave that a shot, but it seems to wash out the cauldron fire... maybe I'll yellow the candles more...

  • Done for now. I'm trying to get one done a week, so I'll turn this over to my friend and fix anything later. Thank you all for your input! Next is the haunted house!

    0_1475861352367_Witch's brew.jpg


  • SVS Team SVS OG

    @bharris I think it turned out great. Then again I am a sucker for tentacles 🙂 I would love to see that little guy in there. Please share when the text is added.

  • @Chip-Valecek Thank you! Here were her poems. I think she was going to play around with the placement more too (and I still have a few fixes). I really like the effect, it finishes the image off!


    Here is a little progress on the mansion. Trying to keep the color scheme a little, but still make it stand alone. 🙂

    0_1476048112786_Haunted House up2.jpg

  • Love love love all of them! I'm looking forward to seeing that mansion one!

  • @amberwingart Thank you! I'll keep sharing!

  • I'm loving seeing your process. These are wonderful! I love the mansion and the staircase. Can't wait to see more.

  • @Joy-Heyer Thank you!

  • Still have a bit more to go on this, but I wanted to get some feedback. I don't love the pumpkins and I'm struggling with them... Any suggestions or are they working okay?

    0_1477001288456_Haunted House up4.jpg

  • SVS Team SVS OG

    @bharris I think the pumpkins are working, i would however darken the yard in the where the tree shadow is. That will also help with the placement of the text. With that being darker that text will pop more.

  • @Chip-Valecek Thanks. I'm getting them to glow and be a bit more threatening now. You're right about the yard, just hard sometimes to leave a blank space sometimes!

  • SVS OG


    Hi Brittany - when I was looking at this on my computer screen the image was quite large and I had to scroll to see the whole thing. I felt like something was off but I could not quite figure out what it was. Then later I came back to it on my phone and the image was much smaller and I could see it all at one time and that is when it sort of hit me.

    0_1477055037653_2016-10-21 08.00.59.png

    There is almost a disconnect between the color/mood of your three light sources. You have the bright very cool/white light from the moon. The somewhat cooler yellow-green coming out of the windows and then the very warm yellow-orange of the pumpkins.

    And based on the composition that almost cuts your image in half with warm on the lower left diagonal and cool in the upper right.

    As Chip pointed out - I think it might be to your advantage to darken the sky, tone down the brightness of the moonlight and lose the bright reflection/shadow of the tree cast by the moonlight. I think the sky being a bit more dark/atomospheric would make it a little more spooky and allow the more important light sources of the pumpkins and the house to shine. And it would then also allow for much better placement of the text. Because while the cast shadow is cool and well done - it really is not needed for the story telling.

    And then you might consider trying to adjust the color of the light coming out of the house. Something that is cool but compliments the yellow--orange glow of the pumpkins instead of competing with it like it is doing now.

    Hope this all make sense?

  • @Rich-Green Sorry about the size Rich, hope this is easier! I took your advice in toning down the moon light and I like it a lot better! I might try to make the pumpkin light a little more yellow-orange. But I just love the green in the house contrasting with the purple of the house. I'll try to tie it in a little more though.

    0_1477061594461_Haunted House up52.jpg

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