Tips from pro artists on how to paint scars, mist, skeletal hands, iridescent scales and feathers, an imaginary creature stretching and more.
Eustachy Wieczorek, Poland
Surface elements such as scars or cuts add an extra level of finish, making your painting more believable. Done correctly, it can add more depth to a character. Since there are many kinds of different scars, always take a few minutes to think about the scar effect you want to achieve. For example, cuts healed with stitches will scar differently than cuts left to heal on their own.
No matter what kind of scars, cuts, bruises, and so on you’re adding, it should be added at the final stages of a painting. In other words, paint your subject without the scars, and then add them after your figure has been fully rendered. This enables you to focus on the overall lighting and values of your subject without trying to paint around the scars.
When adding the scars, the most important point to remember is to follow the contour of the figure. The scars should look like they’re part of the skin. Finally, ensure that you use the same local skin tones when painting scarred skin.
Adding scars to their back helps to convey a sense of pain and despair that this powerful character is feeling.