Thursday, 1 June 2017

Gurney Book Club Week 6 & Other Studies

Some more colour and lighting studies this week, out of my comfort zone:

Did this study of Tom Van de Wouwer's work, looking at what happens when two coloured lights are simultaneously lighting a surface. Also trying out a more brushy um.. brushwork

I never paint environments, and I actually think I'm starting to enjoy them! This one was focusing on using warm and cool colours in a painting, although I think I could have pushed the clearness of the shadows more.

Some practice rendering fabric and form, in monochrome

First painting in a long time that wasn't just at study! Quite proud of that hand painted wood ^_^

 A Loish study, I've always admired the way she uses limited but super punchy palettes.

Discovered Anatomy360 and downloaded the Head Pack! Super impressed so far.


Some sketches done to study lighting

Also! been doing some 3D modelling in Blender for work:

Last but not least, I was really mystified by this breakdown of a horse's walk, so I decided to hand-animate it to try to visualize it more easily for myself:


AND I think I've finally settled on my grad project idea: Dune. (and House Atreides). So you'll be seeing a lot more of that soon. Here's a first pass at Jessica and Leto!

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Notes on Gottfried Bammes' Animal Anatomy

I've owned Gottfried Bammes' The Artist's Guide to Animal Anatomy long enough that I don't even remember where I got it. I can't fathom why it took me so long to get into it, it's excellent as heck so far. Been jotting down notes:

also did a quick horse anatomy study in VR using Oculus Quill: (click for Vimeo link)

Here's the book:

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

More Lighting & Colour Studies~

Did some more studies for Week 5 of Gurney Book Club:

Local Colour study (from The Sartorialist): still trying to nail down a skin colour that doesn't get too grey with the blue sky light, or too brown in the shadows

Notes from Sam Nielson's Schoolism class

felt like a bunch of things really got demystified! especially why there's a warm highlight above the cool specular highlight, and why white & very dark hair don't usually have this

still gotta take a swing at painting iridescence >.<

the first time I've studied anisotropic reflection!

Monday, 15 May 2017

Gurney Book Club: Week 5

Studies from this week's Gurney Book Club (Week 5):

Non-Lambertian Surfaces: the Form Principle we've been studying only really applies well to matte/Lambertian surfaces, we still haven't addressed semi-transparent or translucent surfaces. Starting with matte/opaque surfaces and transitioning to semi-opaque is a structure Sam Nielson follows in his course too.

Leaf study: seems to really depend on how opaque the leaves are to determine how much light penetrates. Gurney talks about "The Green Problem" and how green has been seen as a problem colour by painters but I honestly don't see it! I'm wondering if it's mostly a traditional painting problem. He does recommend weaving pinks and reds in to brighten the greens, which I still want to try.

Cloud study: quite a bit of light goes through to the shadow side (different than bounce light). I ended up using a lot of hair and smoke brushes for this, and a few variations on the blur/blend tools. It seems like the key is putting down lots of soft gradients and then pulling hard edges/contrast just at the edges of some choice forms, so you don't end up with one single blob.

Google Earth digital plein air: trying to paint clouds with a bit more movement! I'm happy with the water here the most, still need to work a lot (!!) more at landscapes.

Gurney Book Club Update

My friends and I are nerds so we started a Gurney Book Club, where we meet once a week to go over chapters of James Gurney's Color & Light. Here are some studies I've done over the past few weeks since it started:

Week 1:  analyzing direction, cast shadows (hard/soft), bounce light and rapidity of falloff 

Direct Sunlight: has hard cast shadows, soft form shadows, tends to be warm with blue fill light from the sky (if outside) with warm bounce light from the ground

Electric Lighting - commonly incandescent (red/orange) or fluorescent (yellow/green), forms soft cast shadows because of the radiating light source (depending on distance)

Candlelight - yellow/orange, a weak light with a rapid falloff (inverse square law), often has a halo in the darkness. Flame parts in order are: blue > dark zone > luminous > non-luminous

Week 2:

The Form Principle: Reviewed the kinds of light sources I've studied so far but applied them to the Form Principle, the general pattern of light and shadow on a matte/Lambertian object. What's really helping me is thinking about every surface as a source of illumination--so even shadows aren't darkness they're just the effect of weaker sources of illumination.

This last one was the hardest! I'm also taking Sam Nielson's Colour & Light Schoolism class, so this was an assignment for the second week, we were not allowed to use reference! 

Week 3:

Three-Quarter Lighting: Most Renaissance portraits are painted this way, with the light at 45 degrees to the model (why it's called "Rembrandt lighting". This way both eyes are illuminated, and light reaches most of the visible form. A small triangle of light usually is seen on the cheek farthest away from the light source.

Frontal Lighting (Waterhouse study): Apologies to Waterhouse--frontal lighting while seemingly more boring than 3/4 lighting can help a silhouette read better from a long way off (emphasizes the 2D design over the 3D) and shows off the local colour/pattern

Half Shadow (The Fall study): super dramatic form of lighting, and depending on how soft or hard the shadow edge is it can suggest to the viewer how close or far the object casting the shadow is.     

Week 4:

Contre Jour (Ryan Lang Study): A fancy name for backlighting, where the subject blocks out the light (usually a bright sky or an illuminated doorway*). The light is such a strong presence that it becomes an active presence, surrounding the object. The silhouette is emphasized, and colours tend to lose their saturation. *best not to go to 100% white

Edge Lighting (Another! Ryan Lang Study) : Seems to be a great way to pull an object out from the background, but usually requires a very strong (or very close) light source. It does occur naturally when the sun is low and shining toward the viewer. **The width of the light edge depends on the size of the plane

Light From Below: usually associated with theatre or fire, tends to distort the features and give a sense of eeriness

Spotlighting: great for drawing the viewer's attention, used to be used frequently in classical cinema - "eye lighting"