How can I show a crea­ture smash­ing a wooden gate?

ImagineFX - - ImagineNation -

Corey Hoff­man, US


Mark replies

You can cre­ate a more en­gag­ing im­age by im­ply­ing what’s go­ing to hap­pen, in­stead of show­ing it. I de­cide to paint the ac­tions of the crea­ture as seen from within the cas­tle court­yard, de­pict­ing the mo­ment when the gate is still in­tact, but it might break on the next im­pact.

The key to show­ing dy­namism and move­ment in an im­age like this is to show the strength of the at­tack, not just on the gate, but also on the sur­round­ing ar­eas. De­pict­ing the shak­ing ground, the fly­ing dust and wooden shards is just one tech­nique. There are some sim­ple paint­ing tricks as well to help you sell the scene.

Tilt­ing your hori­zon line is one of the most ba­sic op­tions, giv­ing the feel­ing that it’s been caused by the force of the smash in this case. Adding more de­tails to the fo­cal area and leav­ing softer edges out­side pulls in the viewer and adds move­ment.

You can also strengthen this feel­ing by ap­ply­ing some zoom Ra­dial Blur (Fil­ter> Blur> Ra­dial Blur) to your fi­nal im­age. This adds mo­tion blur to the sides but keeps the cen­tral area of the com­po­si­tion clean and sharp.

It’s bet­ter to in­di­cate the fe­roc­ity of the at­tack rather than show­ing the ac­tual hit. The brute force of the smash af­fects not just the gate, but all sur­round­ing ar­eas. Be­side the fly­ing de­bris, I add more ef­fects to the ground to sug­gest that even the earth is shak­ing be­cause of the force of the at­tack.

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