Paint a fan­tasy por­trait

Put your ref­er­ences, mood boards and sketch­books to one side, and see how vi­su­alises a fan­tasy fe­male por­trait from scratch

ImagineFX: Sci-fi & Fantasy Art magazine - - Contents -

aint­ing a por­trait from imag­i­na­tion is a tricky beast! There are so many vari­ables when it comes to pulling off an ef­fec­tive im­age. When work­ing with­out a ref­er­ence or clear goal it can be easy to be­come lost and dis­heart­ened, so I hope by show­ing my own chaotic work­flow I might be able to of­fer some point­ers or at least some re­as­sur­ance that it doesn’t al­ways go to plan.

My ap­proach will as­sume a lit­tle ba­sic knowl­edge of the struc­ture of the head

Pand some un­der­stand­ing of fun­da­men­tal draw­ing prin­ci­pals. If you find it im­pos­si­ble to draw from imag­i­na­tion those are the things you have to get down first. Go out­side and fill some sketch­books with stud­ies from pho­tos and from life and you will greatly im­prove your abil­ity to paint from your head.

In this work­shop I’ll give a gen­eral out­line of my process and some of my per­sonal favourite tech­niques in Pho­to­shop. Nor­mally, I’d put some work into layer man­age­ment and keep­ing all the dif­fer­ent el­e­ments sep­a­rate, but I’ve been do­ing so much tra­di­tional work re­cently that I’ll aim to work on as few lay­ers as pos­si­ble, merg­ing ev­ery now and then to keep track of progress. You might want to think about us­ing a more or­dered method with layer masks if you want to in­volve any com­plex el­e­ments. How­ever, if you’re new to dig­i­tal and find some of that stuff a lit­tle in­tim­i­dat­ing, don’t worry: you can still find ways to achieve in­ter­est­ing re­sults with a rel­a­tively sim­ple work­flow and per­sis­tence.

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