Ques­tion

Can you ex­plain how to de­pict chain-mail? Gibson Healey, US

ImagineFX - - Imagine Nation -

An­swer

Donglu replies

The trick is to cre­ate a few dif­fer­ent chain-mail brushes, to in­tro­duce some in­ter­est­ing pat­terns to the im­age. For this im­age I make a se­lec­tion of a sin­gle metal ring of the chain-mail and use a soft Eraser to fade the con­tour. Then I dou­ble check if this sin­gle metal ring is till­able. This step is cru­cial, be­cause I have to play with the Brush Spac­ing set­ting later for the in­di­vid­ual metal rings to hook up with each other.

Once I’m happy with the ini­tial pat­tern, I make an in­verted ver­sion be­fore defin­ing the brush. This is also an im­por­tant step be­cause Pho­to­shop reads the val­ues dif­fer­ently when cre­at­ing the brushes. Even though you can use pho­tos for paint­ing the chain-mail, you’re limited by the ref­er­ences that are avail­able.

When gen­er­at­ing an in­ter­est­ing ar­mour de­sign, my best so­lu­tion is to com­bine the chain-mail with other dark leather or metal parts, so the con­trast can bring out the shini­ness of the ar­mour even fur­ther.

Here are the two steps I use for cre­at­ing the chain-mail brushes, in which I cre­ate the ini­tial pat­tern and then paint an in­verted ver­sion of it.

Be­fore

Af­ter This be­fore and af­ter im­age shows how a dark back­ground can give the chain-mail a more pro­nounced, shiny qual­ity. I use dif­fer­ent chain-mail brushes, and the re­sult is par­tially erased with a tex­tured brush.

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