Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Abstract dabbles

Never before did I really appreciate any kind of abstract art, until I found a channel on youtube, which goes by the name agnescecile, who is a watercolourist who expertly mixes traditional art, say, for example a face, with some abstract elements, and this creates a very dramatic and interesting look. I was so inspired, I figured ill try it out myself. At the moment, I have no watercolours at my immediate disposal, so I drew it digitally. Its really a just a quick sketch, just to get the general feeling down, no carefully measured proportions or anything like that.

It looks like this;
I call it "Tripping balls".
The process of drawing the face was the same as in just about all my other paintings, block in general values, define shape and form using shade, etc.. I put the abstract stuff on separate layers, so that the clarity and contrast of the differing colours wouldnt be lost. What I could have done differently is that I could have used Layer masks instead of just fucking about with the pen and eraser, which would have enabled me to smartly use gradients, instead of flat colours. This would have taken alot longer to do though, so it is perhaps not so smart to do it that way if the piece is just going to be a sketch, anyway. Anyhow, to alleviate the flatness, I used a couple overlay layers and also a colour layer.

Im pretty satisfied with the result, it looks very fresh and modern. Usually, Im not that huge a fan of modern art, but this is acceptable.

I also got the chance last week to do it in watercolour, which worked to some degree, but not as well as I had wished. The painting is at school now, so I cant scan it at the moment. Sometime at the end of the year, when I take all my stuff home, then ill perhaps upload them here, by then youll surely be sick of all the digital redundancy anyway.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Opencanvas and Event files

So, as I said in my earlier entry, im going to show off this last awesome feature of OpenCanvas. What makes it so useful for people like me, who blog, share, and show our art to other people, is the Event history recorder and player. Basically, I can replay any painting I ever did in OC, just the way I drew it then, brushstroke by brushstroke. Thats right, any painting I ever drew, yes, the whole process of painting it. Just like some speed painting/time lapse drawing on youtube. These files arent big, its not like an avi recording of you drawing, its simply recorded history being played back.

Heres an example.

Drawn, say, 2 years ago. Recorded 1 year ago ;) This is a feature i really like.

Unfortunately OC has no built in video recorder, you'll have to use some screen capture software like Fraps, Xfire or whatever pleases you. I used some freeware shit I found on the internet, worked well enough.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Le victor.

Alrightyos, ten days since my last update. Been busy doing exactly nothing at all, theres really no excuse. Oh well, heres another self portrait that you might like. It wasnt actually meant to be one, I just made the bowtie and then spun off that. Quite different from anything ive done before, but I think it turned out pretty cool. Biggest problem I faced was choosing what to write in the fields of text. Being a classy man, I of course went with putting my name in a hundred and twenty places.

I thought about adding my signature, but they said im overdoing it? LOL, Yah right.

And here are some of the layers used.

A couple more in there somewhere. Not all are visible in the final piece. My biggest gripe with how it turned out is that it looks a little cluttered :/ Basically turned a very simplistic concept into a very large design, which doesnt always turn out exactly great. Im still satisfied, it was great fun making, too!

Ill leave this entry short, as im reading for a finnish test. For a taste of the burning fragment of hell im dealing with here, heres a list of all the forms of a Verb there is in the finnish language. Note that this is a single, very easy word, other verbs will differ greatly.  Lets not forget nouns and adjectives, prepostitions and postpositions, adverbs and conjunctions, and all the other types of words im forgetting. Verbs, though, are but the beginning.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Warm and cold colours

 This piece is relatively old, creation date listed is 3.5.-11. It was actually one of the key pieces of my portfolio that I showed at the entrance exams/auditions for the school at which I currently study (Scored maximum points, i did.)! As i promised, I will walk you through the steps of the painting process.

1. Begun by blocking in the general shape and value for the head. I think i made a mistake by not painting in the neck/body too at this stage, drawing it later on was awkward at best, and it looks not as good as it could have. It pays off for me personally to sketch in the whole figure before i proceed in rendering and shading, as is the case with most of you, too, I am sure. If not, then good for you.

2. I refine the structure and shading, using both the original normal layer and a couple overlay layers. One thing I often do is I paint the shading and highlighting in 2 different phases. Shade completely, then only once this is done, i add in highlights. After this i will adjust as necessary, if necessary. That way usually works out best for me, it may or may not work for you. 

3. Started out colouring by slapping on a big fat overlay layer filled with green ._.
How to properly colour a grayscale picture ive found hard in the past, and Ive found that Overlay layers seem to be the best way. One thing that is good about them, as opposed to colour layers, is that they also allow you to change values at the same time, which is nifty. 

I put on some warm and cold colours in an overlay layer to create some depth and that sense of pop-out, since it looked so flat.
And this is how it turned out in the end. The things that bug me the most is the sense of detachment between the neck and the head, and at in some places the shape is incorrect, for example the lower jaw should be nowhere that wide. Easy to see now later on, but was not evident when I painted it.

Ah, and as for the subject i was supposed to talk about... 
In our world we have such things as warm and cold colours. Once i read some gibberish about how they move backwards or forwards in space, and how this makes your eyes can pick up on this and youll think theres some depth, i remember not exactly, but visually warm and cold colours clearly exist.

By using for example orange and blue, and creating a contrast between them, it will create this effect of coming at you. Even subtle hints of it will suffice, you need not even use a cold colour, warm to neutral or cold to neutral contrasts will work aswell! But the bigger the difference is, the more it will catch your eye. Some artists will be bored to death by this following picture, and some will praise it like the holy grail.

(If the source were ever to go offline, and the picture would no longer be availible, it is a simple colour-wheel. Google it.)

It illustrates which colours are considered warm and which cold. For maximum pop out, one would contrast the cold colour with the directly opposite warm colour, for example, vibrant yellow and that deep, marine blue.

Other factors that create the same effect are contrasting values, say for example a white spot in a black field will stand out pretty well, and differing saturation.  A stronger red will stand out more than a weaker shade of red. In practise one could blend the objects farther away with grey, and staurate the ones closer, and a sense of depth would be created. I combined all of these things in the piece above, and i think it created a very interesting look. 

If you havent thought about this before, by all means do experiment! If you feel like youre chewing the same gum over and over again, good for you, atleast you know how to employ an important asset of painting!

Gosh, all my entries here seem to be so long! Too long, I worry? So much to write, yet the human attention-span is so little. Feedback would be appreciated! Feel free to leave a comment below.