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Donglu Yu and Andreas Rocha on painting rocks, boosting colour vibrancy and more.
How can I best simplify shapes when painting from outdoor references? Hilda Kvítková, US
Answer Donglu replies
What’s fun with virtual plein-air paintings is that we’re not just reproducing what we see on the photo from Google Street View, but we have the freedom to apply degrees of stylisation to it. Shape stylisation and simplification doesn’t only apply to composition and silhouette – it also affects how you blend your colours.
A standard process is to take a more transparent colour with a smaller brush to blend different colours together. But I’ll show you how to use custom shapes as brushes to blend colours. When you zoom out, you’ll see an interesting colour gradation on the overall image, and when you zoom in, you’ll see abstract and stylised shapes in your images.
If you vary the shape and the level of details of your custom shapes, you can generate different degrees of stylisation when blending your colours. It becomes a fun and creative experiment. I encourage you to take some time to build your own library of custom shapes, because it’s a great way to find your own signature through this stylisation process.
By using a range of custom brush shapes, I’m able to transform the initial sketch into a painting with a bold shape signature.
IFX Q&A - Caption White IFX Q&A - Caption White IFX Q&A - Caption White IFX Q&A - Caption White IFX Q&A - Caption White IFX Q&A - Caption White IFX Q&A - Caption White Here, you can see the collection of my custom shapes, including rocks, characters, mechanical parts, vegetations and patterns. The ones that worked the best for me are the mechanical shapes.