Sunday, 8 May 2011

Schoolism Assignment 5 part two: Tortue des Bois

So, my first attempt at coloring in a line drawing for Schoolism Painting in Painter class Assignment 5 was so horrid (see previous post), that I decided to look through recent line drawings I did for work contracts to find something more "colorful" to draw. I chose this image from the book "Jason et la tortue des bois", published this year by Soulières Éditeur.

You can click on any of the images and they should open larger in another window to see the actual details of what I was working on, and the Painter settings.

First I opened the digitally inked drawing I had already done with the Croquil Pen in Painter:

Again I selected using Select-Auto select- Image Luminance, which selected all the lines, copied and pasted, which made them into a new layer on a transparent background:

I then "filled" the lines with the "current colour": I chose a dark blue:

I added in another layer between the background and the lines layer, which I filled with a mid grey tone:

And then I again began coloring in the lines on the line layer with an Airbrush brush, colors similar to what I anticipated coloring in the shapes:

Then, as in the previous doggy version of Assignment 5, I made Shapes using the automatic tool to trace around each separate part. This created a separate vector shape on its own layer for each part, ie turtle stomach, turtle head, turtle shell, turtle left back leg, turtle right back leg, turtle left front leg... etc. I filled them with a light grey (no stroke outline).

I then went through and committed all the shapes to a layer each, so they were no longer vectors, and began filling them with a sepia gradient again ("spherical" from a highlight in the center to darker towards the outside):

I started to have so many shape layers that I grouped all the "boy" parts into a group, and all the "turtle" parts into a group to organize myself:

I moved around the shape layers to get the right overlap, ie you can see previously the toadstool the boy is sitting on overlaps his butt, and I put it beneath, so he appears to be sitting on it:

Then I started to go into the shapes with the airbrush and eyedropper, to round out the forms of the objects: putting in shadows along edges, highlights etc, so the shapes didn't just have the round sepia gradient:

I started using the eyedroppered sepia tones to draw in details and texture a bit:

Once I was happy with the monochromatic shapes, I started airbrushing colors in on another layer at 10% opacity, onto each shape:

At this point I wanted to start working on the background. I was actually looking for a texture of plants to make "forest" around my characters, and found these reference images of photos I had taken at the botanical gardens:

I basically just copied them onto my workspace, flipping the one on the left, and cutting and pasting bits to fill in the whole background in a very rudimentary manner:

I grouped the photos altogether and collapsed them:

And then went back and kept on coloring in the object shapes with airbrush:

I took out reference for the wood turtle. It is the only reference I actually used for the objects and characters:

And started coloring in the turtle:

When I was pretty much happy with the turtle, I collapsed his group into one layer, and then the boy group as well:

I also chose all of the non-turtle, non-boy elements and collapsed them together:

So I had a boy layer, a turtle layer, and a few other object layers, and collapsed all the painted elements:

This gave me a line layer, a colored objects layer, the background photo layer, the grey layer and the original drawing (background):

I wanted to play around with the photo background layer so I copied and paste it so I had an extra layer of it.

But then I realized that I had a lot of overspray on my painted shapes (I have no idea what I had clicked or unclicked that sometimes when I painted shapes like a strawberry or leaf, that ONLY the shape colored with the airbrush, cleanly, and other times it sprayed beyond the shape onto the "transparent" background. So I closed the photo layer to erase all the excess overspray with an eraser:

It was all cleaned up but I realized that there were things like the boy's chin and strawberry tops, the turtle's tail etc that had been missed when I made the shapes and thus weren't colored in. I selected the shapes I wanted with the lasso tool and airbrushed them in:

Once all those little details like strawberry tops, the caterpillar's eyes, wee rocks etc were colored in, I went back in to adjust the colors of the lines in certain spots:

Once I was satisfied pretty much with both my coloring layer and my colored line layer, I reopened the photo background layer (one of the two) and went into the "adjust color" and turned the saturation down to remove all color and leave it greytone and turned it into an overlay layer:

Then I added another layer beneath it, and started to airbrush colors in:

When I was pretty happy with the colors, I collapsed the greytone photo and the airbrush color, and went in with a Ryanbrush Sable Chisel Tip Water brush which has apparent brushstrokes, to get rid of unwanted texture in the photo and turn it into just painted color, esp near the ground, and with less opacity, in spots of the leaves in the background:

Near the end, I went in with a Soft Pastel brush to color in the boy's hair which just looked to airbrushy, and mixing in with his face too much:

I zoomed out when almost finished to take a look at it:

At the end I saved it in Painter, in psd format, and reopened it in Photoshop. To my surprise the colors all dulled down and became quite chalky. I really have idea why and am quite unhappy with that.

Here's a comparison of the photoshop version, and a 72dpi screenshot of the Painter riff version: You can see how much duller the psd version is. I wish I knew what to do, as one cannot really export riff files, one needs to turn them into psd or jpg etc in order to work on them outside Painter or share them:

So, in the end, I leave you with the cropped screenshot of the final Painter riff drawing:

Not my best work, but interesting, and much better than that screaming orange and red doggy in the previous post! We'll see what the teacher has to say about it. And if anyone has any ideas why the colors changed so drastically on the psd version, do let me know! And also any tips on using those little handles to "round out" vector shapes... I seem to get the shape how I want on one side of the point, and then on the opposite side of the teetertotter handle, it does wonky things. So if you know how to do that I'd like to hear from you too!

And as always, any comments or questions are very welcome and desired! Thanks so much! Til next time!