Please explain how to depict stone columns
Answer David replies
To paint natural materials correctly, you need an understanding of how light reacts with certain surfaces. If the surface is rough, like stone, you’ll have to control a more limited use of values so that the texture doesn’t appear too shiny or reflective. As well as this, think about the general shape you’re trying to create. Is it a cube? A pyramid? A cylinder? Thinking like this will help you analyse your work and create a better understanding of how to paint your design.
To help answer this question I’ve illustrated a temple scene that includes a number of cylindrical stone columns. I begin in black and white to establish the composition, as well as the light sources, and then move into colour. I’ve used two light sources in this scene. The first is a natural light source coming from outside, while a secondary green light source comes from the main chamber. These two light sources are useful for defining the shape of my columns and make them look more three-dimensional.
I also use a number of custom brushes and stone textures (from www.textures.com and
www.photobash.org) to add some roughness to the column surface. This is crucial because I don’t want the columns to appear flat or smooth.
Getting to grips with custom brushes can take some time. Many artist put their own brushes online, so have fun experimenting with them.