I want to make my runes glow, rather than ap­pear yel­low. Help!

Hay­den Meekin, New Zealand

ImagineFX: Sci-fi & Fantasy Art magazine - - ImagineNation Artist Q&a -

An­swer Kel­ley replies

For this ex­am­ple, I’ll place my glow­ing runes in an an­cient spell book. I start by es­tab­lish­ing the set­ting. It’s im­por­tant for the glow­ing runes to con­trast against the back­ground. If the en­vi­ron­ment or book pages were in brightly lit sun­shine, the runes would hardly be vis­i­ble at all. I choose to set the scene at night, and paint the book pages a medium brown colour, so that the runes can re­ally stand out.

Now it’s time to paint the runes. My for­mula for paint­ing glow­ing things is to draw the glow­ing el­e­ment on its own layer. Then I du­pli­cate that layer and blur it us­ing the Gaus­sian Blur fil­ter. That’s what cre­ates the glow­ing ef­fect. I ad­just the Layer Opac­ity to change the in­ten­sity of the glow.

Here, I want the runes to have a golden glow to con­trast with the cool en­vi­ron­ment. The rune layer is in a light yel­low, while the blurred glow layer is in a darker gold colour. It may seem that us­ing pure white would make your runes seem the bright­est, but some­times a darker, coloured glow can ac­tu­ally ap­pear to be more in­tense.

Weath­ered carv­ings, over­grown vines, and glow­ing runes all add up to an un­mis­tak­ably mag­i­cal, mys­te­ri­ous set­ting.

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