Thursday, September 27, 2007
Catty for a cause
Ok, so I lied. The sketch a few posts down isn't going to be the eventual piece up for auction, but rather this one here:
This is the digital sketch for the actual auction piece. I wanted to do something that was a bit more familiar, plus I'm a Catwoman fan. I'm inking it now and wrestling with a way to color it in the hopes of somehow coming close to the sketch below. I consulted a couple of the guys here at the studio and got some really great information on their process and how they approach a piece. This image could be the beginning of a long road back to traditional media for me which I'm excited about.
The auction is this Saturday, info is here.
Here are the process shots:
This first one I was experimenting with watercolor and acrylic. The watercolor is on the right and is just a test section of the couch. I felt it was lacking intensity color wise. On the left side is the acrylic; I liked the flatness of the tones, but since it's opaque, I would not be able to trace off the ink lines on the light box. It would require either a transfer of the drawing or a "winging it" approach, recreating the drawing by eye. I didn't feel comfortable with either of those options at the time, so I went for test two.
The second test was done with Tria markers; they're alcohol based and would easily pull up the ink into a muddy mess so I laid down blocks of color first and then inked over it on the light box. The problem with this was it was hard to see the ink lines through the darker areas (such as the purple on the couch). Again, I liked the flatness of the tones.
This third test is what I eventually went with; a combination of watercolor and Dr. Marten's concentrated water color. This turned out to be the best way since I could ink the drawing on the light box, then watercolor directly over the ink lines. The concentrated watercolor added the intensity that I wanted. The major issue here for me was the toothiness of the paper...it didn't have enough to grab the liquid and it tended to pool in areas, got pushed around by the brush, and eventually dried uneven. So for this technique, that is the area that needs a bit more exploration. The concentrated water color also dries very fast which makes gradients and transitions tricky.
Well, the final turned out a LOT different than the original digital sketch...this was the first actual traditional color media work I've done in a very long time and I learned a lot from it. It was definitely not easy and there were a couple of times when I thought I was going to bail out of the whole endeavor. But it's done and I'm happy with it.