My project in­volves giv­ing a fan­tasy twist to a real-world an­i­mal. How should I start?

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

An­swer Lorena replies

If you want to give an an­i­mal a fan­tasy twist or want to put it into a fan­tasy set­ting, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, de­cide what you want to do – where does this crea­ture live and how would that af­fect its ap­pear­ance? Once you have that fig­ured out you can get to work. For­tu­nately it’s fairly easy to turn a nor­mal an­i­mal into a fan­tas­tic one as long as you stay con­sis­tent within the story or world you have in mind.

Re­mem­ber that there are dif­fer­ent kinds of the same an­i­mal – so be­fore you get started, look up some pic­tures that might in­spire you. For ex­am­ple I’ve cho­sen a fox but there are many species of foxes that of­fer quite a lot of in­spi­ra­tion: Maned fox, Fen­nec fox, Arc­tic fox… So start out by gath­er­ing some suit­able ref­er­ence. You don’t nec­es­sar­ily have to use it dur­ing your paint­ing process, but it will help you come up with dif­fer­ent ideas. When it comes to adding the ‘ fan­tas­tic fac­tor’, there are no lim­its and you can go from adding feath­ers or horns to turn­ing the an­i­mal into a fire el­e­men­tal and so on.

I de­cide to have my friend sit in the shadow with the back­ground in full sun­light. This gives me nice val­ues to work with. There are many options for the lay­ers in Pro­cre­ate in­clud­ing lock­ing them, us­ing one as a ref­er­ence layer, and chang­ing their blend­ing modes.

En­sure your en­vi­ron­ment ties in with your crea­ture con­cept, so that your beast doesn’t look out of place.

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