Con­cept orig­i­nal crea­ture art

Roberto Padula paints an orig­i­nal crea­ture, start­ing with sketches that help him to vi­su­alise his zo­o­log­i­cal ideas

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Roberto Padula paints an orig­i­nal crea­ture, start­ing with sketches that help him to vi­su­alise his zo­o­log­i­cal ideas.

Paint­ing a fan­tasy crea­ture can be a lot of fun. In my opin­ion you’ll strug­gle to find any sub­ject that gives you more free­dom to ex­plore your ideas than cre­at­ing a crea­ture. Yet it’s this same free­dom that can over­whelm many artists and lead to some se­ri­ous de­sign is­sues.

Once you ac­cept the fact that you’re not bound by pre­vi­ously es­tab­lished no­tions of how your paint­ing should look, you then be­come re­spon­si­ble for defin­ing ev­ery sin­gle de­tail about this life form. Where does it live? What does it eat? How does it move? Where does it sit in the food chain?

It’s in this mo­ment that most mis­takes are made. The two most com­mon ones are ei­ther copy­ing a real-life an­i­mal too much and end­ing up with some­thing that, say, looks like a horse in a dif­fer­ent colour, or cre­at­ing some­thing so alien-look­ing that no one knows what it is.

The key to solve these prob­lems is in­for­ma­tion. Study as many types of an­i­mals as you can and their evo­lu­tion process will give you the un­der­stand­ing that you need to ap­ply this same logic into your crea­ture’s de­vel­op­ment. You’ll then be able to cre­ate some­thing new, yet re­lat­able.

In this work­shop I’m go­ing to dis­cuss my de­sign choices as well as my paint­ing process and, if I’m lucky, by the end of it I’ll have painted a cool-look­ing crea­ture!

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