Grayscale to color - what am I doing wrong?
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Thread: Grayscale to color - what am I doing wrong?

  1. #1
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    Question Grayscale to color - what am I doing wrong?

    This is an Illustration i've been working on for a while now. The lighting scheme I was striving for is something similar to what Shishkin used in one of his landscapes: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...ubLesu_114.jpg

    Here is the grayscale:


    This is what happens when I try to add color by using overlay layers:



    C&C greatly appreciated, feel free to comment on anything else about the piece as well.

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    Overlay layers are okay for quickly colorizing stuff, but they don't produce anything beyond a color tint, really. You're essentially limited to adding black to color, with this technique. It can't give you a full range of colors.

    To get painterly color, you ought to actually paint opaque color on, paying attention to the lighting and interaction within the scene.

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    you seem to be going in the right direction! good job on what you have! looking good. What you may consider doing is pushing your detail more.I took a look at the painting that you wanted to emulate and the difference is the amount of detail found in it. Your painting is a good start, but pushing your colors, values, and adding more details will also help bring your painting to life.

    What arenhaus said about using an opaque brush could help too. Just put a normal layer over your piece and start painting.

    Overlay layers only add hue and saturation to your painting, but it doesnt add value (light and dark) you can see this by making your painting black and white to check your values. So if you wish to push values more (making things look 3d and close or far) you may want to either push your black and white painting, or paint on another layer set to normal with a brush.

    The main difference between what you have and what you want it to look like is just the sheer amount of detail. Observe the light on the leaves, the reflection on the water, or even just the small textures he painted in.

    There are a couple of youtube videos that you can find to help out with the overlay layers. I'll see if i can find any for you. the only thing that comes to mind now is "rendering concept art" the one with the tentacle monster, but thats from line art. it may be useful or help point you to the right direction

    Looking forward to seeing the finished piece!

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    Color issues aside for a moment, you need to take a look at the ambiguous spatial relationship between the tand and the tree. You have the tree closer than the smoke by overlap, but you have the tree farther away by reflected light. You have the tree closer than the tank tread, but farther than the turret because of the perspective construction. The whole is rather disconcerting.

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    Hi Mephisto,

    Could you explain that a little more? thats something i havent encountered yet but seems very important and something i should know. hehe! sorry, im just starting up myself and trying to learn as much as i can anywhere. hope you dont mind me asking.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Floopate View Post
    Hi Mephisto,

    Could you explain that a little more? thats something i havent encountered yet but seems very important and something i should know. hehe! sorry, im just starting up myself and trying to learn as much as i can anywhere. hope you dont mind me asking.
    If you look at some of the depth cues between the tank and the tree next to it, there is some conflicting visual information which makes the area spatially ambiguous. The smoke from the fire is behind the tree, which would put the tree more forward in the scene than the smoking turret. However, there is a lot of reflected light from the fire wrapping around the front of the tree, and it seems too intense to be from the ground fire, thus making it look like it is coming from the turret. However this is a problem, because that would mean that the turret is in front of the tree, which is contradicted by the smoke depth I just mentioned. This confuses the spatial arrangement to the viewer.
    If you look at the perspective construction of the turret, it seems to be turned way around to the left side of the tank, hanging over the left fender. That fender and tread seems to be behind (farther back than) the tree because it is driving up the little hill the tree is sitting on. Now this is clearly a problem because the turret is drawn as being in front of the tree.

    I think this could all be easily solved by simply re-drawing the little hill the tree is on so that it is clearly is in front of the tree and letting the smoke overlap the tree instead of the other way around.

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    oooh! now i get it! wow... good eye! i really need to start looking at things more carefuly! thanks so much for your help! really appreciate it!

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    Sorry for the late reply, thank you everyone for your feedback, I felt like i needed to do some studies before continuing this piece ( they're in my Skb).

    @Floopate & arenhaus. Yes, overlay layers only add an overtone. However, i've seen plenty of people draw in a lot of detail at the grayscale stage. What's the point if you'll need to be painting overtop anyways? Is it only to consolidate the focus point of the image?

    @MephistoLv. Very good observation, that completely slipped past me, I'll definitely be correcting that.

    Alright enough talking, I'll get back to my studies.

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    If you add a lot of the detail and get your values correct on the grayscale stage, just glazing color on with an overlay/multiply layer then just adding minor details opaquely is something you can do.

    I dont know if this was what you were asking about, but this youtube video might be able to help shed some light on using overlay and multiply layers. the whole series was pretty interesting actually.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVsEsXkkO3o

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tea of Doom View Post
    @Floopate & arenhaus. Yes, overlay layers only add an overtone. However, i've seen plenty of people draw in a lot of detail at the grayscale stage. What's the point if you'll need to be painting overtop anyways? Is it only to consolidate the focus point of the image?
    Because repainting is easier than painting.


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    well, another aproach you could use was by using photo or photo texture fragments to get colour and so on from.
    made a quick example.. kind of cheating, but it can get you on the road again quickly if you are stuck or in a hurry. after adding the photo elements, orcolour pick from another image and painting over, i would take it to Artrage, and play and blend colours.. then go back into photoshop and re paint it on top, adding fine detail and so on. you dont nessesary have to use the photo in the painting, you can colour pick from a small thumbnal to get values.. just play with it and have fun.


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    You make coloring difficult for yourself when you have such bright light open space in the background. If you were to darken the background a little more you would give yourself more room to push the color. If you look at the photo textured versions thekapow created you will see that the fourth and fifth images give you a lot more range of color because the bright background isn't overpowering your focal point in this case the tank.

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