Step-by-step: Establish lighting over different surfaces
I start with a quick sketch, then block out the character with a Layer Mask to keep my painting within the confines of the main figure. The lines don’t have to be clean because I tend to colour over them afterwards. I select a monochrome background colour, so that the cast of a bright, orange light will further stand out.
I go over the character’s skin with warm tones, keeping the shading smooth to denote softness and youth. On the other hand, the light reflecting off the weapon is blinding and sharp. With a saturated orange hue, I use the Color Dodge tool to go over the brightest areas, like the tip of her cheekbone and knuckles.
After a quick splash of light across the background, I start to paint over the sketch, and erase away some of the unwanted edges. I use large brush strokes to fill in the rough shape of the folds with a rectangle brush. At this stage, I also Liquify parts of the initial drawing like the eyes and mouth to improve on the overall look.