This is a cover design for a book that I came up with. I decided to experiment by adding text to my digital painting to give it a little more oomph. This piece was created using Clip Studio Paint. I have switched back from Photoshop as I enjoy the tools and the drawing experience a bit more.
What are your thoughts? Would you be attracted to a book with a cover like this?
Tis the season for Christmas Concept Art. The assignment I gave myself was to design a Christmas scene with a focus on textures and lighting effects also ensuring that I divided the foreground, middle, and backgrounds appropriately. This piece was created with Clip Studio Paint and is almost 43 layers…Yikes! That’s a lot for me.
What did I do first?
The first thing I did was browse through internet to find some references of Christmas scenes, winter backgrounds, and some cool colored environments….brr. After getting a general idea for what I wanted to create, I sketched out my different sections using a selection tool this time. I used to just pencil the whole design out using a G-Pen or brush tool but the selection tool saved me a lot of time. I also used reduced the opacity each time that I went further into the background.
I built the entire scene using only a grayscale and focused entirely on where the lights and darks needed to be along with any other atmospheric dispersion. Spending the most time on this part really helped me identify any composition errors, tangents (where an element touches something else create depth confusion), and balance.
During the coloring phase, I used a lot of different layer settings. I used Hue, Color, and Overlay layers the most. I found that I could quickly play around with different color schemes without having to erase a lot. Gradient maps also saved me a ton of time combined with the air brush selection tool combo.
I used additional gradient maps to darken specific areas and glow layers to add some special effects. Mote time was spent than normal zooming around the design and adding thoughtful detail. I actually saved my progress, walked away for a day, and then returned to it to make a lot of corrections that I was missing during my initial phases. Lots of last minute tweaks.
To get the effect that you see in this design, I used a dark blue exclusion layer over the whole piece. This really added a nice level of nighttime darkness which I erased back out where light would naturally fall. Once I did all that and was happy, I exported the version with the exclusion layer as a .jpg and then reimported it into Clip Studio Paint. After extending my canvas, I dropped the other version next to the first one I did so you can see the differences side by side.
I have been studying a lot of techniques offered by Trent Kamingua. His courses have helped me to identify a lot of the flaws that I have missed in my own work and really helps you understand the basics. Simplicity is where it starts. Too complex, and you drown in your own process. I am no way an instant professional now that I’ve practiced these skills. It’s something you have to do every day.
This was just really cool. I loved playing the Diablo games and never knew he was one of the artists…wow. Anyway, another good set of techniques to help understand how elements are supposed to work together.
Monster Mountain is the idea explosion for this post. This week I spent some time working with Photoshop gradients, lighting techniques, and textures. I also used a portfolio template that I purchased from Trent Kaniuga. You can get this detail and more from my last post. So…why a mountain monster?!! Well, why not!
This was sketched and completed entirely inside Photoshop. I used a nice hard brush to build the initial design and then use and air brush tool to fill in shadows. I used shortcut keys and moved through the initial design pretty fast. I didn’t allow myself to be overly critical. I typically lose most of my time doing that. Once I was happy with the overall design and the values I dropped in, I created additional layers for the color gradients. I would have normally flatted the entire piece first but I just jumped into the color gradients. I found the overall color of the creature that I wanted to use first and that became my base. I used additional gradients for the background and the hammer. The finger nails I separated into a gradient as well. I wanted to have a nice “pop”. Lastly, I used a final two final layers. Once was for fine details and the other was for lighting. I couldn’t decide between using a multiply layer or a vivid color mode. Both seemed interesting. I had my kids look at the piece and I changed the blending modes with them watching. They really liked the multiply so that’s how I chose it.
After the design was completed I made selections and placed them throughout the portfolio template. I added the additional text boxes to describe the parts that I wanted to draw attention to. The whole piece took about 3.5 hours. This was probably my best time.
I hope you enjoy this. Please hit me up with any questions that you have. Have a good one!
I am gathering opinions on my latest design. What do you think?
It is a new banner idea that I may use for my websites and other social media. I need to work on the sizing for sure as it is a bit big for Twitter and Facebook.
The inspiration for the design came from the origin of the word “freelance”. A freelance was considered a mercenary back in medieval times. These “Freelancers” would take on work in return for payment. This was once the easiest way to raise an army to fight for a cause. I imagine the downside of this is that your opponent could have more gold to offer and your troops would be bought out from under you. Tides would quickly be turned as the cause is only worth as much as the gold that is backing it.
When life gives you lemons, you can certainly make lemonade or any other type of beverage you like this holiday season. Challenges can come in all shapes and forms but how you handle them will enlighten you and provide you with growth so face them head on! As artists, there are lots of challenges to face such as time, subject matter, and inspiration to name a few.
Time can be found through planning. I plan to give myself at least of a few hours to draw each day after coming home from a busy work day. It’s not written anywhere or put into my phone calendar so that I don’t feel stressed about it if I don’t. Planning balanced with flexibility allows for better expectations.
Subject matter is not as much of a challenge as it used to be thanks to some of the YouTuber’s out there who provide lots of ways of overcoming blank page syndrome. I still might spend a few minutes envisioning what I want to draw but after a few brush strokes, I’m off.
Inspiration to draw something that takes work. When you love to draw, it can come easier than those who don’t draw often. The best inspiration comes to me from watching what happens around me and then just asking, “Hey, what if?” The snowman image I came up with was inspired by talking to my kids about all the funny things that could happen to a snowman. The rest was easy after that. I have to keep a notebook sometimes to keep track of the funny things they come up with.
Below are some process pics for you to see. I designed this piece using Clip Studio Paint and Photoshop. Clip Studio Paint was used to make the design and Photoshop was used to make the snow fall as I did in my recent post.
I hope you enjoyed this. Please comment, like and share with your favorite social media apps!
Season’s Greetings to all of my fans out there. Thanks so much for your comments and support to my page and my designs. This week I incorporated some Photoshop video integration to create the .GIF File you see below. The layered technology of Photoshop made it extremely easy to build. The stock was available here.
The Design Process
This design was painted using brushes I purchased from @TrentKaniuga located from his store at Trent Kaniuga (gumroad.com) . The entire design took about four hours all together. Using separate layers I was able to create the illusion of depth by making adjustments to contrast and brightness. A nice glow layer with the brightness turned all the way up was used for the fine highlights. I think this added a nice haunted appeal to the whole piece overall.
Most of my time was spent blending the colors together until I found a nice selection. By keeping the color selection simple, I reduced the complexity of the shading process. Had there been more colors, there would have been more to balance….and it would have taken a lot longer I’m sure to get the desired results.
The simple red scarf provides just enough of an added focal point since that’s the only other color there really. It makes the eyes jump to it and then over to the moon.
What Do You Think?
I’d really like to see your comments and questions. If there is something you’d like me to create, drop a comment and let me know. I’d love the challenge. By the way, I am very new to Photoshop. I’ve used Clip Studio Paint forever but it never hurts to learn something new. Another shout out to all the artists who create YouTube videos because that’s how I learn the best!
My 2017 – 2020 Portfolio is here. It has been a great three years of drawing and sharing with all of my friends, followers, and clients I’ve worked with. Hopefully it has been just as great for all of you as well. I’ve compiled my favorite works and compiled them into a portfolio located at https://artofjeffreyhunt.com. Here you’ll see my categorically organized designs in a very clean viewing format with the help of Adobe software.
Concept Art Idea Book
The Concept Art Idea Book is still available here on Amazon.com. This book is meant for either the amateur or the professional. Everyone runs into roadblocks when they create. This work is a presentation of my creative processes highlighting how I bring my creations to life. It is meant to provide inspiration to those who need and information for those who want it. While this does not discuss how to use specific software functions, it does describe process that can be used whatever digital software you chose to use.
I wish everyone a happy holiday and a happy New Year as we move into 2021!
My Photoshop Training exercise is inspired by the Christmas Holiday. This week’s subject is Santa and his favorite reindeer, Rudolf. I used a screen layer to make Rudolf’s nose appear to be shining light while also allowing for the images underneath to show through bathed in a soft red light. Certainly helpful when the weather gets bad over in the North Pole.
I have spent the latter part of the last two weeks learning to use Photoshop as well as I use Clip Studio Paint. A shout out to all of the YouTubers who post tutorials and who sell brushes online. It’s great that there are so many talented artists out their who share their techniques and provide inspiration.
The line art I used is below. I drew / inked the design directly into Photoshop. I used some pictures of reindeer as reference but wanted to keep a more comic style appearance since it is Rudolf after all. The line art took me three days to perfect. I changed my mind on some of the details in the design a bit.
The line art was drawn directly into Photoshop. I tend to work completely electronically.
Flats were a lot of fun to do. I enjoyed color picking and bringing life to the design. I used the flats layer to add some additional textures to. Of note, it’s a good practice to keep these elements on separate layers so you don’t have to make a lot of extra changes should you want to change the colors. By keeping the flats simple, you get a good base line to have more fun with when you get to highlights and shading.
Extra details were added into my flats along with some shading so that I could better visualize the overall design.
Christmas Fireplace Warmth is sure to warm your heart as the temperature gets colder outside. Hanging Christmas stockings lovingly placed over the fireplace along with just enough decorations creates a warm and inviting mood. This holiday design works with many gifts you may have in store for your loved ones and is available here.
I took the Easter Holiday and added a bit of a SCI FI look to it. EST’R is the conceptual cyberpunk style character blasting his way through a wasteland just to survive. Created in photoshop and using my new XP-Pen tablet. I worked through a lot of glitches but ended up with a nice looking…