Help me paint a flap­ping cloak

ImagineFX - - Imaginenation Artist Q & A -

Toby Fair­ley, Aus­tralia

An­swer Sara replies

To paint a cloak caught by the wind, con­sider sev­eral el­e­ments. First, what’s the cloak made from? By search­ing for ref­er­ences and look­ing at dif­fer­ent types of cloth we’ll have a bet­ter idea of how it’ll be af­fected by the wind. For ex­am­ple, a heavy fab­ric such as wool or felt won’t crin­kle as much as, say, a cot­ton cloak. Fab­ric can be rigid, which we can trans­late in our draw­ing by us­ing bro­ken, stiff lines and a few large curves.

An­other key el­e­ment is the wind: the di­rec­tion it’s blow­ing in, and its strength. A strong wind will lift the cloak and stretch the fab­ric, cre­at­ing lon­gi­tu­di­nal folds par­al­lels with its di­rec­tion. Let’s con­sider a very strong gust of wind blow­ing to the right and to­wards the viewer. This will cause the cloak to whip around the char­ac­ter body and flap over on the right and in front of the fig­ure. So we’ll have to pay at­ten­tion to the per­spec­tive of the folds on the edges of the cape.

The flap­ping cloak with mo­tion blur ap­plied to its edges and on leaves gives the viewer an idea of how strong the wind is in this scene.

By first defin­ing the back­ground I’m able to iden­tify the light sources that are shin­ing on the cloak.

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