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Photoshop: Making of Puppy

mime 2004-11-26 00:00 tutorial  > Photoshop  > digital paiting

The main idea was to create something rather funny than scary and dark. I thought some kind of dog would be just great, one in style similar to looney toons character.

As I remember there was a bulldog named "Spike" (but maybe I'm wrong) and it was my very first inspiration. The second one was dog belongs to Lobo comic character. Remember I read one of Lobo's adventure illustrated by Simon Bisley couple of years ago and design of the dog character was just great. It was scary and funny at the same time, and that was the goal -to create something like that.

Concept Sketch
Since I used to draw from scratches using color I didn't put much effort to this part to be honest. Simply caught the nearest pencil around and made a few minutes sketch ona a sheet of paper just to get right composition. It was very unimpressive stuff but enough to move forward.

Outline sketch
I just scanned drawing to photoshop and bold main shape with hard black brush at maximum opacity. I already had the base idea what mechanical parts my puppuy should have but I found useless marking them at this stage of work. Also had in my mind some funny, got scared cat with dumb face look but had no idea where's the best place for it. Basically I didn't want all those hi-tech blinking gadgets can be seen in most of sci fi movies but implants made of rusty yunkyard garbage -some mix of a car wreck and dog. I thought it would be much more original than another future designed android.

I started with dark tones in Painter using its various brushes mostly "palette knife" and some from "oils" and "pastels" category. Basically, these are my favorite. What I really like about painter is how you can easliy make a mess with all those tools simulating natural media. Thaht's why it's just perfect to start with and design whole image. I knew I didn't want my picture was full of various colors but rather dominated by one color scheme. That's why I used mostly bronze in the begining. When Image was dirty enough I decided to let some light in and increase contrast by putting some dark spots here and there. Now it was prepared to start a real work. With brushes mentioned earlier I tried to create right color scheme and range and mark most of the details but without finishing them. Just to have base idea of final result. Personally I think it's the most creative and interesting part of the process where you can notice and realize how various colour put in the same place creates totally different effect and can bring your work to higher level. So I spent couple of hours doing my best to get as good result as possible conducting experiments with colours and brushes. Don't know why but I pierced doggy while messing with it's tongue. It was one of those idea which hits your mind suddenly and you find it extremely cool. Also drew two big srews stick to doggy's back. Finally I found it finished enough to switch to Photoshop and start working on details.

I don't like doing detail work in painter. I think just got used to Photoshop's brushes control and how they work with pressure sensitve hardware. Anyway I started from color adjustment and turned the whole into red since. I tried with different colors but the red seemd to be best. I did it becouse realized I got too far from my primary idea of keeping image in one color range. After that drew that little kitty, very flat without deep shading that it couldn't be seen at first look.

Final coloring
With small size brush put very bright parts of the fur what gave an extra strong light source effect. Moved forward on foreground started working on environment. It's a fortune I arrange it to some walls. One second I wanted to leave it with unfinished look, next second found it too undefined. Anyway, made some wholes in wall caused by machine claws and add a plastic bowl with "Spike" on it. With couple of mixed dirt maps overlayed at low layer opacity got rid off walls smoothness. Must say I'm not sure until this day if it was good step. Finnaly I decided to leave it. I didn't want to make the whole overdetailed so left most of the ground untouched. Just add some little stones at the bottom. Almost finished, just extra touch with 1px brush and thats the final.

In the end want to say that it was one of those images you really enjoy to move forward. Everything went according to plan and I manage to finish it within about 12 hours in total.

Best Regards,
Damian 'mime' Bajowski

Author: mime
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