PURE ARTISTRY Con­cept art leg­end Sparth in­vites you into his world to talk com­po­si­tion, sim­plic­ity and the re­wards of im­age-mak­ing

ImagineFX - - Contents - Pub­lisher Sparth Price £6 For­mat Down­load Web www.gum­

We check out Sparth’s en­vi­ron­ment video.

There are many roads that you must travel down to be­come an artist, and many dif­fer­ent types of teacher to help you get there. While some train­ing videos fo­cus largely on the process and tools of dig­i­tal art – use this brush, ap­ply that blend­ing mode – Sparth comes at the sub­ject from a mul­ti­tude of an­gles in this two-hour video.

Com­po­si­tion – “the foun­da­tion of an im­age” as Sparth calls it – is one ex­am­ple. While he touches briefly on some tech­ni­cal as­pects, he’s more in­ter­ested in ex­plor­ing the pur­pose of com­po­si­tion. His mus­ings get to the heart of why it mat­ters: how care­ful ar­range­ment of a pic­ture’s el­e­ments make it pos­si­ble for the viewer to ex­plore the world you’re cre­at­ing.

Sim­plic­ity is an­other cor­ner­stone of the Sparth ap­proach. There’s a chal­lenge be­ing laid down here, ever so gen­tly: what would hap­pen if you didn’t rely on ev­ery uten­sil in the Pho­to­shop tool­box? How few brushes do you re­ally need to craft your im­age, and what ef­fect does a min­i­mal toolset have on the paint­ing?

Un­der­pin­ning the var­i­ous talk­ing points in this video is an ex­plo­ration of what it means to be an artist – why we do what we do, as well as sug­ges­tions for how to do it. For Sparth, there’s a de­gree of com­pul­sion to the process, a need to cap­ture ideas.

Sparth’s nar­ra­tion style is so re­laxed that it’s easy to let the two hours slip by, sim­ply en­joy­ing the sto­ries and per­spec­tives this con­cept art lynch­pin shares. But if you take the time to re­peat the video and fully ab­sorb his lessons and ex­pe­ri­ences, then you’ll dis­cover some new paths to ex­plore, and per­haps con­nect anew with the sim­ple plea­sure of mak­ing art. Not bad for six pounds.

Sparth cre­ates a fu­tur­is­tic cityscape us­ing a min­i­mal toolset and his com­mand of com­po­si­tion and de­tail. Sparth in­ten­tion­ally lim­its the num­ber of brushes he uses, choos­ing a set that works to­gether to unify the im­age. The fore­ground doesn’t have to be the fo­cal point or crammed with de­tail: here it’s a fram­ing de­vice.

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