How would you ap­proach paint­ing a bat­tle fea­tur­ing mod­ern-day soldiers? Cindy Soumeru, Nether­lands

ImagineFX - - Imagine Nation | Artist Q&A -


Tony replies

De­pict­ing a mod­ern war shootout is, like with many sci-fi or fan­tasy bat­tle pieces, a mix of chaos and sto­ry­telling. As a gen­eral rule (and, to be hon­est, most art ‘rules’ are noth­ing more than that), you’ll want to es­tab­lish who the fighters are, what they’re do­ing, and what point in the story would be the most in­ter­est­ing to de­pict on the can­vas.

Be­cause this is a more real­is­tic bat­tle scene set in mod­ern times, you’ll want to re­search im­ages of war. The soldiers’ gear, weapons and ve­hi­cles be­ing used are a big help, as well as pic­tures of real-life bat­tle­fields. Fair warn­ing, though: there are a lot of pretty grue­some pho­tos to be found. War is an ugly thing, and if you’re go­ing to paint it you might want to be fa­mil­iar with at least some of the su­per­fi­cial hor­rors of it. That doesn’t mean you need to add bod­ies that have been torn in half, for ex­am­ple, but the en­vi­ron­ment can sug­gest a sim­i­lar level of vi­o­lence.

Keep a few key fo­cal points in mind while work­ing up your com­po­si­tion. This will en­sure that the hec­tic en­vi­ron­ment doesn’t over­take the story.

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