The use of references in artwork.

Join the #1 Art Workshop - LevelUpJoin Premium Art Workshop
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 37
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    The land of Double-Decker-Buses
    Posts
    6
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0

    Question The use of references in artwork.

    Hi, I'm an student in Illustration and am currently working a graphic novel for my final major project that requires the knowledge of the male anatomy, military uniforms and weapons.
    The best plan of action for me I think is to use a series of photo references of the male figure, the uniforms and weapons.
    But can I use existing artwork as references of my work?
    I asking this because there are some elements in existing work that can be pulled off that real models can't, such as the poses and structures, and I would like to use those elements in my work. But there has been colliding opinions about what is consider Art Theft or tracing which has been frowned upon.
    I simply want to know if it right to reference existing as well as photo reference?

    It would be great if I can get this clear for me once and for all!
    Thank you!

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  


  2. Hide this ad by registering as a member
  3. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    5,234
    Thanks
    3,512
    Thanked 4,905 Times in 2,546 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    There is no real conflict or confusion...only a lack of experience and awareness of those just getting started (which is ok btw, just don't confuse the two). You can reference anything you want - in fact you can't create something without referencing something - that's just an axiom of creation. You just have to understand what "reference" means - and many don't these days.

    Anyway, as far as a practical answer to your question, hell, if it's student work what's the problem? When I was in my graphic design major and we had to dummy up say a rock climbing catalog (in my case) I just cut pics out of magazines and pasted things up. Student work is treated and understood as a different kind of thing as opposed to professional, commercial work. Do what you have to do to make it look as good as you can.

    Now if heavy referencing conflicts with the assignment that is a different situation. If you're in illustration then I imagine part of any assignment is to learn how to draw, use models, use reference, etc. toward a professional practice.

    What would Caravaggio do?
    _________________________

    Portfolio
    Plein Air
    Digital
    Still Life
    Sight Measuring
    Fundamentals
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    The land of Double-Decker-Buses
    Posts
    6
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Thanks for that, that explains a lot of things!
    But, I'm sure you can use do that as professional as well? Does it apply differently as a professional when you need something to help you along the way?

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    1,287
    Thanks
    219
    Thanked 167 Times in 106 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by JeffX99 View Post
    You just have to understand what "reference" means - and many don't these days.
    Even though we've made a LOT of threads talking about references and how to use them, people very rarely talk about how to use "found reference". Emily G posted in her thread that's been stickied...

    Is it ok to use other people’s photos as reference?
    It depends. Just like you own the copyright to your art, a photographer owns the copyright to his or her photos.

    If you copy all or most of someone else’s photo without permission, this could be a copyright violation. There is no rule that says “if you change it X%, then it’s ok.” In U.S. courts, the test is if a reasonable observer could look at the original and the copy side-by-side and tell that it is a copy. It is ok to copy someone else’s photo as much as you want if it is only for your personal study. It is considered a courtesy to acknowledge your source if you then show that work to anyone.

    Here are some examples of ways artists can use others’ photos as reference:
    Using individual, generic parts of a photo. Ex. A tree, hills, clouds.
    Using individual, specific parts of a photo. Ex. The Empire State Building, a Jeep.
    For historical research. Ex. Looking at pictures of WWII uniforms to get the design accurate.
    Gathering multiple photos of a subject without using a specific one. Ex. Looking at many photos of lions to see how they are built and how they move.
    Using multiple photos for general inspiration. Ex. Gathering photos of different kinds of machinery in order to get inspiration for your own machine design.
    That's really about the extent of what's been shared (though I do appreciate it!). There's never much examples found and shared about this, except for Chris Bennett. Chris Bennett is the only one I can think of off the top of my head that has. There has to be numerous techniques.

    And I wish I could find just what in the world the Charles E. Cooper Studio did that fascinated Al Williamson so much!

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  6. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Bowlin For This Useful Post:


  7. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    5,234
    Thanks
    3,512
    Thanked 4,905 Times in 2,546 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by AOTenshi View Post
    Thanks for that, that explains a lot of things!
    But, I'm sure you can use do that as professional as well? Does it apply differently as a professional when you need something to help you along the way?
    It just all depends on the individual situation. Far too broad a question to answer specifically, except to say that you can't use someone's copyrighted work without their permission. That is pretty much a hard and fast rule, but within that context there is a great deal of leeway depending on the what, why, where, how much, etc. For student work it is pretty wide open from a legal standpoint...unless as I said, the objective of the assignment is to create your own image. Take a monster for example, if you just copy a Wayne Barlowe that would be a fail. Using Barlowe's concepts, style or even creating a creature that would fit into one of his worlds would be ok. Again, just all depends.

    What would Caravaggio do?
    _________________________

    Portfolio
    Plein Air
    Digital
    Still Life
    Sight Measuring
    Fundamentals
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  8. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Hudson River valley, NY
    Posts
    16,212
    Thanks
    4,879
    Thanked 16,675 Times in 5,021 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Bowlin View Post
    And I wish I could find just what in the world the Charles E. Cooper Studio did that fascinated Al Williamson so much!
    If you can give me a more specific reference I might be able to help you.


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
    -John Cale

    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  9. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Fallingwater
    Posts
    5,083
    Thanks
    1,522
    Thanked 5,168 Times in 1,710 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Williamson changed his interests between the time he was at EC and when he took on his own strips.

    Being influenced by Raymond's stylistic changeover from his days on Flash Gordon to his days on Secret Agent X-9, Williamson followed suit and learned crisp technique, crisp clothing with proper creases, crisp linework, no feathering with the brush except now and then in the hair, opaque shadows, unsullied lights, laying down every passage with the minimal of strokes, no messing around with invented figures, no violent action that needed to be imagined. He went for sophistication and simplicity. Minimal rendering, lots of flat black and flat whites.

    Williamson had previously done everything in a more organic style, rough, the hair was wild, men wore dungarees, he used the brush to give a softness to skin, he drew poses out of his imagination. Much of this was under the influence of Frazetta and the Brandywine illustrators. But Williamson really didn't have a painterly imagination. He preferred to know what he was doing, highly referencing everything, and having a repertoire of pen and brush conventions/techniques that he could use right off the shelf to solve whatever problems he encountered. Earlier in his career he ripped up or abandoned a lot of work out of frustration. So he figured out how best to do the kind of work he wanted to do, or needed to do, and that method was the Cooper Studio/late Alex Raymond way of working.

    At least Icarus tried!


    My Process: Dead Rider Graphic Novel (Dark Horse Comics) plus oil paintings, pencils and other goodies:
    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...d.php?t=101106

    My "Smilechild" Music. Plus a medley of Commercial Music Cues and a Folksy Jingle!:
    http://www.myspace.com/kevferrara
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  10. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to kev ferrara For This Useful Post:


  11. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    1,287
    Thanks
    219
    Thanked 167 Times in 106 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Elwell - I'm assuming you mean show an example of Al's work? I didn't have anything particular in mind, just that it comes up every once in awhile that he was influenced by the Cooper studio method. I have no clue what these methods are, but I always assumed it was using found images? Didn't realize it was more specifically Alex Ramond's method he was interested in, as Kev just pointed out. That makes sense, since Al worked on Flash Gordon and Secret Agent X - 9 also!

    Kev - Are you saying that he just heavily referenced when he could with a combination of his own particular stock character stylization? Do you believe he was trying to imitate Alex Ramond to some extent, often borrowing heavily from Ramonds comics?

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  12. #9
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Hudson River valley, NY
    Posts
    16,212
    Thanks
    4,879
    Thanked 16,675 Times in 5,021 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    No, not found images, at least when it comes to the Cooper Studio specifically. One of the things about Cooper is that they had a photo studio on premises, making that highly reffed mid-century illustration style that those artists epitomize really convenient.


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
    -John Cale

    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  13. The Following User Says Thank You to Elwell For This Useful Post:


  14. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Ypsilanti,MI,USA
    Posts
    649
    Thanks
    707
    Thanked 444 Times in 226 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    From "The Art of Al Williamson" by James Van Hise;
    "Williamson: The best schooling I had was working with John Prentice [on 'Rip Kirby']. You have to have reference to draw a tank, unless you're a genius and can see it once and draw it at all different angles. So once I started doing civilian stuff [non-fantasy, non-science fiction] I started putting a file together.
    Leonard Starr ['On Stage'] had his file and he showed me how to file stuff, separate it into vehicles and so forth. So I learned a lot working with those guys.."

    A paragraph or so before;
    [still Williamson]:"I'm talking about, say, here's a tank job, now go out and get some tank pictures. If you have to use a Sherman tank, you go out and get pictures of a Sherman tank. You can get a model of a Sherman tank, you put it together, and if you can, you photograph it at different angles, or you draw from it."

    In the course of the discussion Williamson uses "reference" and "swipe" interchangeably.

    "Three's so little room for error."--Elwell
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  15. The Following User Says Thank You to Cory Hinman For This Useful Post:


  16. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Fallingwater
    Posts
    5,083
    Thanks
    1,522
    Thanked 5,168 Times in 1,710 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Yeah, I think Williamson tried to ape Alex Raymond as much as possible. Raymond was Williamson's idol.

    Yes, Cooper Studio had an in house photography set up. And Williamson took all sorts of shots of himself too. But all those Cooper Studio guys would project and trace off reference that was from their massive "swipe" files. Boats, Ships, houses, planes, trains, cars, street scenes, complex machinery, close ups of guns, etc. Anything of a technical nature. They were all business and very organized. All comic book and comic strip artists who did realistic style stuff did that. You can see Toth do it, Neal Adams told me he did it.

    This is not to say that they wouldn't also take a camera outside and take their own ref of these things. But you can't always get a cruise ship or haunted house or '37 Ford or Gatling Gun when you need one. So a swipe file was mandatory.

    The big thing was to integrate these elements in the inking, using all those inking conventions. So it looked seamless.

    Last edited by kev ferrara; March 26th, 2012 at 10:17 PM.
    At least Icarus tried!


    My Process: Dead Rider Graphic Novel (Dark Horse Comics) plus oil paintings, pencils and other goodies:
    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...d.php?t=101106

    My "Smilechild" Music. Plus a medley of Commercial Music Cues and a Folksy Jingle!:
    http://www.myspace.com/kevferrara
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  17. The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to kev ferrara For This Useful Post:


  18. #12
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Hudson River valley, NY
    Posts
    16,212
    Thanks
    4,879
    Thanked 16,675 Times in 5,021 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    The original Famous Artists School course had a whole section by Al Dorne on how to collect and organize a morgue/swipe file. In the pre-internet days, it was one of the necessary skills for a career as an illustrator. Every illustrator in the New York area was intimately familiar with the Public Library Picture Collection, and for times when both that and one's own files came up short, there was Reference Pictures, a whole business dedicated to clipping books and magazines and renting the pics out to artists. They were still operating up until at least the late '90s, but now the only reference I can find for them on line is this.

    Last edited by Elwell; March 26th, 2012 at 11:19 PM.

    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
    -John Cale

    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  19. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Elwell For This Useful Post:


  20. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Ypsilanti,MI,USA
    Posts
    649
    Thanks
    707
    Thanked 444 Times in 226 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Kitchen Sink inherited "The Spirit" magazine from Warren Publishing and eventually turned it into "Will Eisner Quarterly", at which time issues would include Eisner chatting with another comics pro. I have some, but unfortunately not the issue where Eisner talks to Neal Adams. I just tried to scare it up. I remember it being an interesting exchange between THE big foot artist and THE little foot artist, with the latter insisting you have to have big foot exaggeration down even if you're doing little foot style. But I also remember liking how they touched on their opposing philosophies on reference.

    "Three's so little room for error."--Elwell
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  21. The Following User Says Thank You to Cory Hinman For This Useful Post:


  22. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    New York, USA
    Posts
    2,337
    Thanks
    1,074
    Thanked 2,199 Times in 1,055 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    My school had a swipe file in their library, in a special room lined with filing cabinets, I wonder if it's still there... (I still have the remains of a swipe file that I started back in the day. My parents never did understand why I saved so many clippings.) (It's all been gathering dust since the advent of Google Images, though.)

    And reference books. Oh my, piles and piles of reference books. But those still get used. (Wasn't there a video somewhere of Feng Zhu showing all the reference books he used on one project?)

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  23. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    5,234
    Thanks
    3,512
    Thanked 4,905 Times in 2,546 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    In the pre-internet days, it was one of the necessary skills for a career as an illustrator.
    Just one of the many things that seems like it was better. I just did a thorough flushing of my ref files...still have six full filing drawers full. One of the things "kids today" don't get is I can pull twenty+ related images from that file in one minute...and have them all pinned to a bulletin board the next. I can visually scan them all simultaneously...see things from different angles...walk into the studio in dim light and see a silhouette in an image...and plenty more reasons for old school kicking ass.

    What would Caravaggio do?
    _________________________

    Portfolio
    Plein Air
    Digital
    Still Life
    Sight Measuring
    Fundamentals
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  24. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to JeffX99 For This Useful Post:


  25. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    225
    Thanks
    63
    Thanked 90 Times in 58 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    I really like those 3 view blueprints you can find of various vehicles and such, because you can use them as a plan view to draw the vehicle into perspective. It can go a bit wrong without photo reference, though. I've lost track of the times I've drawn one thing, then found a photo later and realised it was nothing like that at all. I've got a gigabyte of aircraft plans and six books of armoured vehicle plans which I guard like a treasure chest.

    It's more time consuming than just copying a photo, but it means you can pick the angle you want to draw the vehicle from.

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  26. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to zx52hg For This Useful Post:


  27. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    2,597
    Thanks
    106
    Thanked 1,494 Times in 744 Posts
    Follows
    1
    Following
    0
    We always called it a clip file. RISD's clip file took up a whole room, albeit a small one. I had a friend who worked in the library there, and when they cleaned out some redundancies in the clip file, she snagged the lot for me. That was the core of my personal file, which I added to for years.

    I threw the lot away when I moved (which hurt, let me tell you). It had grown to two two-drawer filing cabinets, which is pretty modest. There's just no point in the Google images era.

    In the early days, I can recall my boss sending me to the library for picture references.

    I was once on the receiving end of a critique so savagely nasty, I marched straight out of class to the office and changed my major (sketchbook).
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  28. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    5,234
    Thanks
    3,512
    Thanked 4,905 Times in 2,546 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Stoat View Post
    I threw the lot away when I moved (which hurt, let me tell you). It had grown to two two-drawer filing cabinets, which is pretty modest. There's just no point in the Google images era.
    See I just totally disagree there. At least for me, I like having more than one thing to look at at a time, presented on a little screen. One of the things I've noticed is that Google tends to turn up the same ten images for a given subject or search...page after page after page. It is far more narrow than my swipe/clip/morgue file (unless I want a nude cutie in one of eight pose variants - and even then I'm not sure there are eight).

    I think this reliance on Google search/internet diminishes imagination in two ways: 1) As I mentioned, the repetitive results for a search which leads people to think Syd Mead did 10 paintings his entire career for example, and more importantly 2) When I look/looked through mags or books for reference my mind was always actively engaged trying to figure out what I could do with a particular model shot, landscape photo or how could I make that particular vehicle look cool and like it has anti-grav?

    I wasn't searching for something already made to fit the bill, I was looking through something to see what I might be able to use, mulled over every decent shot in a handful of ways as to what value it might have as reference, and then pass or file it. This is I'm sure part of why I have a fairly active imagination - constant evaluation and mental manipulation to see if I just do X, maybe I could make that be Y.

    IDK...maybe it's just me...but I'm glad I wore flares and ran from sabretooths.

    What would Caravaggio do?
    _________________________

    Portfolio
    Plein Air
    Digital
    Still Life
    Sight Measuring
    Fundamentals
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  29. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to JeffX99 For This Useful Post:


  30. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    1,287
    Thanks
    219
    Thanked 167 Times in 106 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    The original Famous Artists School course had a whole section by Al Dorne on how to collect and organize a morgue/swipe file. In the pre-internet days, it was one of the necessary skills for a career as an illustrator. Every illustrator in the New York area was intimately familiar with the Public Library Picture Collection, and for times when both that and one's own files came up short, there was Reference Pictures, a whole business dedicated to clipping books and magazines and renting the pics out to artists. They were still operating up until at least the late '90s, but now the only reference I can find for them on line is this.
    Kev had mentioned about agencies in New York that had their own photographers with models and costumes for the romance novels. Add this idea of "Reference Pictures" to this, it's no wonder one needed to move to NY to become an illustrator. I always assumed illustrators moved to New York just to be closer to their clients. That just makes more sense!

    I can't help feel though, that a lot of illustrators started a swipe files for their figure work, specifically. Like in James Gurney's book, he mentions that he has over 50 folders for people. I can see when he paints very small figures he can change and simplify them so much, they're indistinguishable to the reference, with no need to be specific.

    But some other artist are able to draw figures from memory to some extent, much like a comic artist, they have a stock drawing of the figure they do and they indirectly use reference on top of this. Like this Jason Chan tut. He's looking up reference before he even sketches out his roughs? Or in this Todd Lockwood tut, you can see the references he looked up for the old woman (it's small, you have to look for it) and seems to composite the reference with his own stylized stock characters.

    I keep thinking there's a lot of artist that have developed techniques of easily using references, some way of composting found reference, not so it wouldn't break copyrights, but to construct their own figures, to create something unique. For example, tracing figures on tracing paper and layering the papers to create their own figures.

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  31. #20
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Hudson River valley, NY
    Posts
    16,212
    Thanks
    4,879
    Thanked 16,675 Times in 5,021 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Yeah, I do all those things, invent, work from scrap, shoot specific ref. It's all part of the same process. Stuff comes in through your eyes, gets scrambled up in your brain, and art comes out your hands. No big mystery


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
    -John Cale

    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  32. The Following 7 Users Say Thank You to Elwell For This Useful Post:


  33. #21
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Hudson River valley, NY
    Posts
    16,212
    Thanks
    4,879
    Thanked 16,675 Times in 5,021 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Also, research is as much a skill as anything else, whether you're using dead trees or computers. If you just keep coming up with the same google hits over and over, you're doing it wrong.


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
    -John Cale

    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  34. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Elwell For This Useful Post:


  35. #22
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    New York, USA
    Posts
    2,337
    Thanks
    1,074
    Thanked 2,199 Times in 1,055 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by JeffX99 View Post
    See I just totally disagree there. At least for me, I like having more than one thing to look at at a time, presented on a little screen. One of the things I've noticed is that Google tends to turn up the same ten images for a given subject or search...page after page after page. It is far more narrow than my swipe/clip/morgue file (unless I want a nude cutie in one of eight pose variants - and even then I'm not sure there are eight).
    .
    Maybe you need to brush up on your Google-Fu.

    I do agree with having physical refs that you can pin up all over the place, I usually take all the stuff I found on Google and print it out so I can do exactly that. On the other hand, maintaining a swipe file that's large enough to be useful takes up gobs of space, so if you're in, say, a typical New York size working space, it gets problematic.

    And I've found Google invaluable for finding extremely specific and/or obscure items that I wouldn't have had in my ref books or swipe files anyway - like a New York taxi cab from between the years 1934 and 1936.

    I still like reference books better than Google, though... It's easier to flip through and find something because I already know my book collection, and I get a print resolution ref, and textual info to go with it. I tend to collect reference books on subjects that I refer to frequently (historical costume, animals, plants, architecture, vehicles, etc.) So often I can find what I need by hitting the books. And for weird stuff, there's Google.

    My usual procedure for drawing anything is usually something like:
    1: Can I make it up? If not...
    2: Can I wrangle a live reference easily in time? If not...
    3: Are there any useful images in my reference books? If not...
    4: Time for a little Google-Fu!

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  36. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to QueenGwenevere For This Useful Post:


  37. #23
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Fallingwater
    Posts
    5,083
    Thanks
    1,522
    Thanked 5,168 Times in 1,710 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Bowlin,

    You keep looking for magic shortcuts. There ain't none. Draw draw and draw some more. Draw from photos, draw from life, draw on the street, draw from your imagination. Learn color theory, copy over bridgman's anatomy books into your notebooks. Go walk in the woods and think about what you are seeing. But for god's sake, stop asking these same kinds of "secrets of using reference" questions. You get ref any way you can find it. The better you draw, the less of a slave you are to your ref, the more you command it. There is no substitute for hard work, long hours drawing drawing drawing. And finishing drawing after drawing. And it will take years for you to get to where you want to be. Maybe a lifetime. Maybe never. But asking dreamy questions will do absolutely nothing for you.

    The greatest secret to Art is drawing and painting like a bad ass motherfucker. That is all.

    At least Icarus tried!


    My Process: Dead Rider Graphic Novel (Dark Horse Comics) plus oil paintings, pencils and other goodies:
    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...d.php?t=101106

    My "Smilechild" Music. Plus a medley of Commercial Music Cues and a Folksy Jingle!:
    http://www.myspace.com/kevferrara
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  38. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to kev ferrara For This Useful Post:


  39. #24
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    5,234
    Thanks
    3,512
    Thanked 4,905 Times in 2,546 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by QueenGwenevere View Post
    Maybe you need to brush up on your Google-Fu.

    I do agree with having physical refs that you can pin up all over the place, I usually take all the stuff I found on Google and print it out so I can do exactly that. On the other hand, maintaining a swipe file that's large enough to be useful takes up gobs of space, so if you're in, say, a typical New York size working space, it gets problematic.

    And I've found Google invaluable for finding extremely specific and/or obscure items that I wouldn't have had in my ref books or swipe files anyway - like a New York taxi cab from between the years 1934 and 1936.

    I still like reference books better than Google, though... It's easier to flip through and find something because I already know my book collection, and I get a print resolution ref, and textual info to go with it. I tend to collect reference books on subjects that I refer to frequently (historical costume, animals, plants, architecture, vehicles, etc.) So often I can find what I need by hitting the books. And for weird stuff, there's Google.

    My usual procedure for drawing anything is usually something like:
    1: Can I make it up? If not...
    2: Can I wrangle a live reference easily in time? If not...
    3: Are there any useful images in my reference books? If not...
    4: Time for a little Google-Fu!
    Probably - I make dpaint find stuff for me! Now if you go to the trouble of printing out a bunch of googled ref that would be pretty much the same.

    But really part of what I'm talking about is that "accidental discovery" you stumble across in your files or in a book while looking for somehting else...and it says, "hey dork...this would be cooler anyway", or try this shape instead? Or you know...any of the other things that can happen that you weren't specifically searching for.

    But yes, Google is great for specific things...that can be found like your taxi example. But I guarantee no amount of Google-fu can find something that no one has put up...and there's a lot of that!

    What would Caravaggio do?
    _________________________

    Portfolio
    Plein Air
    Digital
    Still Life
    Sight Measuring
    Fundamentals
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  40. #25
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    5,234
    Thanks
    3,512
    Thanked 4,905 Times in 2,546 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    Also, research is as much a skill as anything else, whether you're using dead trees or computers. If you just keep coming up with the same google hits over and over, you're doing it wrong.
    Nah...there's just not a lot of the stuff I'm looking for on there sometimes. Rare stuff. Or maybe I just suck with searches...entirely possible.

    Try to find some shots of Bridgman's lost lecture drawings...or Carl Rungius' flayed horses...or Syd Meads robot standing in a mountain lake...maybe I'll be embarrassed when a handful of people tell me it only took two seconds...but I'll take the cance.

    Edit: Posted at 5:20 Pacific time...

    Edit dos: 5:52pm, Pacific Time

    Last edited by JeffX99; March 27th, 2012 at 09:52 PM.
    What would Caravaggio do?
    _________________________

    Portfolio
    Plein Air
    Digital
    Still Life
    Sight Measuring
    Fundamentals
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  41. #26
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Hudson River valley, NY
    Posts
    16,212
    Thanks
    4,879
    Thanked 16,675 Times in 5,021 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by JeffX99 View Post
    But I guarantee no amount of Google-fu can find something that no one has put up...and there's a lot of that!
    Definitely. I don't think people realize how much stuff isn't on line.


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
    -John Cale

    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  42. The Following User Says Thank You to Elwell For This Useful Post:


  43. #27
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    5,234
    Thanks
    3,512
    Thanked 4,905 Times in 2,546 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    Definitely. I don't think people realize how much stuff isn't on line.
    Exactly...like either of my favorite new wave band "3D" albums...hell, they didn't even make it to CD!

    And really, you'd think those lost Bridgman's that surfaced awhile ago would be all over the place...but nope, same few images because people just grab them from other online posts.

    What would Caravaggio do?
    _________________________

    Portfolio
    Plein Air
    Digital
    Still Life
    Sight Measuring
    Fundamentals
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  44. #28
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    New York, USA
    Posts
    2,337
    Thanks
    1,074
    Thanked 2,199 Times in 1,055 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    Definitely. I don't think people realize how much stuff isn't on line.
    Quite a lot of art, for starters... :/

    You still can't beat art books for art inspiration.

    Historical material also tends to be a bit patchy on the web, I've noticed. And costume, for some reason. But anything remotely geeky is available online in spades.

    Also, I've discovered how incredibly useful Google Maps can be. Say you need to show a specific street or intersection in a specific city - go to Google Maps street view, pan around and take screenshots, maybe grab an aerial shot too, voila! Perspective is strange, but you have all the info you need, it's like going there and taking virtual snapshots.

    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  45. The Following User Says Thank You to QueenGwenevere For This Useful Post:


  46. #29
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Hudson River valley, NY
    Posts
    16,212
    Thanks
    4,879
    Thanked 16,675 Times in 5,021 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by QueenGwenevere View Post
    Also, I've discovered how incredibly useful Google Maps can be. Say you need to show a specific street or intersection in a specific city - go to Google Maps street view, pan around and take screenshots, maybe grab an aerial shot too, voila! Perspective is strange, but you have all the info you need, it's like going there and taking virtual snapshots.
    Great suggestion, here are some other sources for reference, besides plain old Google Images:
    Google Earth (many famous sites have been 3D modeled, for instance I had to do a scene from a specific spot at Epcot once, it saved my ass)
    Google's 3D Warehouse for free Sketchup models (quality varies from poor to amazing)
    Flickr (great for places, animals, art)
    Ebay (weird objects, antiques)
    DeviantArt (figures, costume, animals)
    Stock photo sites (Corbis, Getty Images, iStockPhoto, etc)
    The Library of Congress (old photos, maps)

    Anybody have any more?


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
    -John Cale

    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
    -Marc Maron
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

  47. The Following User Says Thank You to Elwell For This Useful Post:


  48. #30
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Cambridge UK
    Posts
    5,460
    Thanks
    6,454
    Thanked 4,521 Times in 2,457 Posts
    Follows
    0
    Following
    0
    Theres a Tumblr for all sorts of stuff nowadays

    sb most art copied to page 1
    Weapons of Mass Creation 2011 ::: Add your favourites!
    skype: velocitykendall
    facebook: Alface Killah
    Reply With Quote Reply With Quote  

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Members who have read this thread: 1

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
  • 424,149 Artists
  • 3,599,276 Artist Posts
  • 32,941 Sketchbooks
  • 54 New Art Jobs
Art Workshop Discount Inside
Register

Developed Actively by vBSocial.com
The Art Department
SpringOfSea's Sketchbook