Set your light­ing, paint your shad­ows

ImagineFX: Sci-fi & Fantasy Art magazine - - Imagine Nation | Artist Q&A -

Along with your pre­lim­i­nary sketches, work out your light­ing source or sources be­fore you start to paint. This step is pretty im­por­tant: not only does the light­ing dic­tate the type and di­rec­tion of your shad­ows, but it’ll also set the mood for your piece.

Jan­uary 2016 In this case I’m us­ing a pri­mary light­ing source and a back or rim light for dra­matic ef­fect. When us­ing more than one light source, it can be sim­pler to work out the shad­ows, shapes and high­lights one light source at a time, prefer­ably start­ing with your pri­mar­ily light source. Al­though I usu­ally paint my shad­ows as I go along, in Pho­to­shop it can be help­ful to cre­ate a test layer above your body’s paint layer, set it to Over­lay or Mul­ti­ply, and test paint (usu­ally with a mid­tone olive brush) shadow shapes and ap­pear­ance un­til you’re happy with them.

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