A fogg y, rainy mood

A good im­age al­ways starts with an ac­cu­rate base, not sloppy ground­work, as Guweiz ex­plains…

ImagineFX - - Interview Guweiz -

I wanted to draw an im­age in which old Hong Kong-style apart­ment blocks fea­tured in the scene. A low cam­era an­gle is a favourite of mine, so I started with a photo in the back­ground to help me find a per­spec­tive to latch on to. I ma­nip­u­lated the photo us­ing Pho­to­shop’s Trans­form tools un­til I achieved the ex­act feel­ing I was af­ter. Then I threw on a black-and­white fil­ter and painted in the sil­hou­ette of the char­ac­ter.

Once the char­ac­ter and the cat sil­hou­ette were in place, it was just a case of draw­ing line sketches over them and plac­ing all the el­e­ments, then fi­nally ren­der­ing them to be con­sis­tent with the foggy, rainy mood.

The colour­ing stage was quite straight­for­ward. I used a Gra­di­ent Map to re­move the pure greys, and then Soft Light lay­ers to add lo­cal colour. Af­ter this stage, I painted over the sketch un­til I was sat­is­fied. Flat, un­tex­tured brushes are great for de­vel­op­ing forms. Later on, I also used some tex­ture brushes to make the fab­ric of the dress look a lit­tle grit­tier.

Pho­to­shop’s Lasso tool comes in very handy, es­pe­cially when try­ing to add de­tails to edges that re­quire a con­sis­tent look. Af­ter ap­ply­ing the Smudge tool to con­trol edge sharp­ness, and the Air­brush to cre­ate edge value con­trasts, I felt that the im­age was up to a de­cent stan­dard.

A big les­son I learnt here was that, more of­ten than not, a good im­age re­ally needs to start with an ac­cu­rate base. If you’re strug­gling to pro­duce the ef­fect or scene you have in mind, check if your ground­work is sloppy.

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