The first time I started to draw Grenat was in the beginning of this year and I tried to finish it on several occasions but, no matter what I did, the picture just didn’t work. Here is the first attempt:
I finally chosen to abandon it and, in August 09, I decided to start the one I’m presenting to you, working in on-off style. The concept, however, basically remained in both works: dark atmosphere with bold references to war and militarism.
SOME TECHNICAL INFO
This picture was done with a Wacom Tablet and Photoshop CS3, in a total of about 150 or 200 hours. The original file size and resolution is, respectively, 4500 x 4000 pixels and
For painting, I used a hard round edge brush with Pen Pressure option checked all the time to do almost the entire image, varying its opacity during the process: for sketch - a high opacity; for colors blending - low opacity. Few custom brushes were used to do hair, feathers and to give textures to some specific areas, like the boots. Soft round edge brush was also used, but very occasionally and mostly in the end of process to give a smooth touch and finish the picture.
PRIMARY IDEAS AND SKETCH
When I start a drawing I generally do previous outlines but, this time, I decided to not. Instead of this, I doodled a lot, picking different colors, changing character’s pose and picture’s atmosphere. That helped to decide quicker what palette should I use and what mood and look should I opt for (another proceeding that will aid even more is to sketch with black & white colors – that allows you to choice your palette only when you’re sure about the lead features in your picture).
As the color theme of Grenat is the red, I went for, mostly, warm hues, but I also decided to pick green for some other elements, as the feathers on her shoulder: This would avoid monochromatisms and make the scene composition more harmonious and interesting.
Once I was sure about what way would I take, I started to, faintly, define the character expression and other elements in the drawing – in this case, the hair and the eagle. I didn’t pay attention on the details yet: I just did shape limitations and little anatomical corrections, everything with a high opacity (setting to about 75-80%) hard round edge brush.
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